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A Message From The Trenches

The Rolling Stones Liberation Front is not merely a vehicle for pulling elaborate pranks on one of the biggest Rock N Roll bands in history  it is also an organ for the advancement for the purity of the genre itself as well as means to save the band from self-destruction and self-parody.

It is necessary for intellectuals, students, lovers of live music and the average peasant to pay attention and involve themselves with work which smashes against musical imperialism. This is particularly true now that the Rolling Stones Organization is within our borders, fleecing our populace and lining their already stuffed millionaire pockets. 

Battles upon battles upon battles; may the tired working class rock fan never rest until affordable, quality rock shows are once again available. 

 

All power to the RSLF!  

 

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05.08.13 All quiet on the Western Front.

Another night of battle ahead of us and we’ve taken the precautions to be even more careful after Sunday’s foiled attempt in Oakland; things go wrong, that’s just the nature of this business. The best part of this process is that we’re learning as we go, even with the experience gained by guinea pigging on other, lesser bands over the years. Our East Coast battles will no doubt be more precise, more deliberate, more successful as we learn from these West Coast gigs.

There’s not much else I can add right now without compromising our little mission here, but I will mention last Saturday’s  psilocybin party produced some fantastic ideas (that is until we became far too distracted with the ceiling and the Sticky Fingers outtakes we were listening to at the time),which are being worked now ideas which we’ll make public in the coming weeks. You’ll hear about it.

 

Anyway, onward and upward…almost time to apply our war paint and let our shadows darken the door of the HP Pavilion.

 

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05.06.13

Well, Oakland stymied us a bit and we’d love to report a rundown of what happened inside the walls of the Oracle Arena but our lawyers are already squeamish about this journal idea; we need to back off on the details a bit as it could be “used against us”  if we were ever to be charged with anything. But, really, who could possible bring charges up against us? Shucks, we’re just a bunch of good time Charlies out to save Rock ‘N Roll from itself. What’s wrong with that?

Anyway, our efforts to pay back the Rolling Stones Organization for freezing out the working class from their latest tour were kept at bay, but all experiences, good or bad, are learning experiences in the world of guerilla actions. It all boiled down to the number of hired security guards on site being more than we were told would be there. Simple as that. Luckily, the same company will be working security at the next show at the HP Pavilion in San Jose on Wednesday so it’s a good chance the same mistakes won’t be repeated.

These efforts of The Rolling Stones Liberation Front are not a walk in the park nor merely words on a page; these efforts are acts of courage, defiance and grandiose dreams come true.  All setbacks are as important as victories, they must be used to our advantage and thought of as rungs in the ladder which we climb to victory. And victory will be ours.

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05.05.13 Oakland, California

Here we are (or some of us, actually) in the home of The Black Panther Party For Self-Defense. Much respect to those brave men and women who, along with the beautiful American Indian Movement (which originated Minneapolis, Minnesota, 1968), led the way and are a huge inspiration to us all. Of course, our cause is not as anywhere near as important in the grand scheme of things as theirs, but a we all must pick our battles, right?

Anyway, “warnings” have gone out to the Oracle Arena and San Jose’s HP Pavilion (where the band will perform Wednesday the 8th) and local media groups. It may seem like much but it’s a lot of hard, tedious work, but we feel it necessary. 

Our stringers are at the Oracle Arena as I write this and, so far, reports coming back to us are positive; they’ve infiltrated the building and are on their way to selected positions.

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Tonight’s schedule. 5/4/13

As this 50 & Counting Tour progresses, we’re going to try and utilize our WordPress page a bit more. Almost all of us have a lot to do, not just with the RSLF but with our own lives so it’s hard to maintain all this stuff. So, to keep things up-to-date and interesting, we’ll try to update this as much as the other social media outlets. It was suggested by one member to use WordPress as a journal and we all thought that was a grand idea. Please forgive us if we stray from our plans to keep this blog current, much of this work is being done on the run as the tour spider-crawls its way across the country and things can easily go pear-shaped. That being said, let’s start with tonight.

 

 

05/04/13 (43nd Anniversary of the Kent State killings)

The Los Angeles show went well enough for us to re-consider our future plans; luck, public opinion and great timing seem to be on our side. However, there are a few things we still need to re-tool so we’re planning to do a free-for-all brainstorming session tonight. I guess it’ll be equal parts party and summit meeting for those on the West Coast who want to partake. Music, fresh air and psilocybin mushrooms (donated by confidants from Oregon) will be abundant as we try to figure out the best way to proceed. The next two Stones shows are in the Bay Area and all concentration is focused there. Obviously, there’s some speculation as to exactly how much work will be accomplished tonight but it’ll be a grand ‘ol time either way.

 

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Rolling Stones Liberation Front Communique #9

 

 Brothers and Sisters, it has begun. The final tour of rock ‘n roll’s greatest, most loved, mocked, respected, joked about, written about and debated bands has shoved-off for what will no doubt be their final tour of America.

The Rolling Stones Liberation Front, do hereby declare all plans of retaliatory actions back on. We postponed all actions to respect the aftermath of the sickening violent display in Boston last month and now the time has come to move forward with our intended goals.

It’s has to be a bittersweet time for the band as they face the biggest backlash of their career as fans and the media have balked at the unnecessarily high price of concert tickets. The Rolling Stones had been warned. The Rolling Stones knew the consequences. And now, as they’ve ignored our pleas for a saner, more economical, a more practical and varied live music experience, The Rolling Stones will soon fall victim to their own greed.

The Rolling Stones Organization (RSO) knows better. After decades of powerful world tours which generate enough money to fund a small, third world country for an average fiscal year, they have built themselves an infrastructure strong enough to experiment; that they refuse to lead the way in forming a new way of touring for first-tier bands is reprehensible. The greedy must pay. And the greedy will pay.  The creative power of the underprivileged shall not be underestimated.

The working class rock fan does not need an elaborate stage design, million dollar lights and video screens. The working class rock fan needs a good show to take our minds off the stress which comes with having to constantly make ends meet. The working class rock fan already knows about repetition, so why would we pay to see a band play the same old songs yet again in a giant arena for a huge chuck of money? It’s time to pay back The Rolling Stones. With interest.

So, it has begun. Over ten years of work is now underway. Our contacts in Los Angeles have reported back to us that all is moving as planned. Showtime.

Brothers and Sisters, in the name of the honorable Chuck Berry, it’s time to get yer ya-ya’s out! All power to the RSLF and long live The Rolling Stones!

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Rolling Stones Liberation Front Communique # 8

 

 

In light of the recent tragic events in Boston this week, The Rolling Stones Liberation Front has ceased all proposed actions until further notice. Our thoughts sympathies go out to the victims and their families.

 

This country is already jittery from a string of violent incidents at the hands of gun-toting, half-witted aggressors. This country is constantly spooked by the mass media constantly scrutinizing the gory details, reanalyzing them over and over until the populous become desensitized from the horrendous deeds. There’s no room at the moment for the prankster-ish antics of a slapdash operation such as ours; even if we’re only out for fun and a good laugh at the expense of millionaire rock musicians.

 

Whoever is responsible for the bombings this week are killers of not only humanity but of Fun as well. It has been proven over and over again violence has never solved and will never solve anyone’s problems, only furthered them. Is there no better illustration as to why the RSLF chooses pranks over violence?

 

Whoever is responsible for the bombings this week are unoriginal cowards hiding behind callous explosions, victimizing the innocent and ruining lives.

 

Whomever is responsible for the bombing last week, we say unto you:

enough.

 

Until further notice, keep calm Brothers and Sisters; don’t worry about getting yer ya-ya’s out right now; instead concentrate on healing and sending out good thoughts to the victims and their families in Boston. Now is the time to bask in the healing powers of music.

 

All power to the RSLF and long live The Rolling Stones!

Communique # 7

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Brothers and Sisters, I write these words to you ensconced in a west coast safe house preparing for the final stage of our plan. Fittingly, a steady rain falls outside; the storm has arrived.

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As you know, the official announcement came down this week (although we had been tipped off weeks earlier by contacts in New York and London as what to expect) and The Rolling Stones Organization has decided to continue with business as usual instead of leading a revolutionary trend in modern-day touring. The colossal management company, AEG Live, will handle the proceedings and the band will earn between $4 million and $5millon per gig. Ticket sales will hover between $170 ($142.75 + $27.25 in fees) and $635 ($571.50 + $63.50 in fees). A trek through Europe will follow with a possible return to the States near the end of the year. They will continue to fleece their predominantly working-class fanbase for the same show they’ve been doing for over twenty years. Business as usual.

 

Through various high placed contacts, we learned the RSO had considered aspects of our 6-Point Program, (namely our demand for lower ticket prices and smaller venues) and even went as far as hinting in the press last summer of a tour schedule centering on multiple nights at select theaters around the country. This, of course, was ultimately dismissed.

 

 The Rolling Stones Liberation Front is now preparing for battle, preparing to counter the RSO’s business as usual with unusual business. Ten years of groundwork has led us to this moment; our stringers around the country have been called back for last minute briefings before we move into action. “The fat is in the fire” as the good doctor liked to say and we’ve never been one ignore his wisdom.  .

 

We, The RSLF, have made our demands clear, taken the RSO to task and, at the same time, held them in the highest regards. Music is for the people, not just the wealthy or financially careless. We are here to bring justice to an unjust musical landscape; people work hard and in no way should they be denied entertainment because an artist sees fit to inflate their music with needless bells and whistles, smoke and mirrors.

 

We are a non-violent guerrilla organization. We are funded by our own members who have other “straight” jobs, we do what we can to scrape by but in the end it will be worth the strain. We come from all walks of life, from different backgrounds and are of different ages. But we’re of the same mindset and we’re serious and ready. We’ve been studying every outing since Steel Wheel and attending multiple shows of each tour since 2002’s Forty Licks Tour. We’ve been hiding in plain sight and have charmed our way into high-placed contacts at every major venue in every major city; we know the details of the venues, we know how to enter and exit without detection, we know hideaways and side doors; we’re now on the inside of the matter. From the beginning, we’ve had people willing to help us, donating their time and experience, from lawyers to steel workers, janitors and bankers. We’ve interviewed unaffiliated people who have experience in sound and managing large-scale tours. Basically, we’ve got the RSO surrounded. We’ve come to play. Our days of yelling “scale it back” are over; the time has come to shout “pay it back”.

 

Pay it back. With interest.

 

We, The RSLF, came out of hiding and made our demands public at the beginning of 2012 by creating social media accounts, blog pages and the like; we were contacted for many interviews, two of which we agreed to, both of which were cancelled at the last minute when it was discovered a conceivable private investigation. Still, we have made some good friends and met like-minded comrades over the last fifteen months, let alone over the past ten years. We know when the 50 & Counting Tour ends, so will our work, no matter the outcome; we’ll scatter in the wind and go back to our lives knowing the time we put into this project was worth the personal sacrifice. We will not stop the show, we’re just going to make it more…interesting. Unusual is our business and business is good.

 

That’s it for now; the rain continues to fall and the time has come. We’ll see you on the front lines, we’ll see you at the shows. Stay tuned for further communications.

 

Brothers and Sister, in the name of the honorable Johnnie Clyde Johnson and Charles Edward Anderson “Chuck” Berry, it’s time to get your ya-ya’s out! All power to the RSLF and long live the Rolling Stones!

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Rolling Stones Liberation Front Communique #6

Communique #6

Brothers and Sisters, since the announcement of the two November shows, the RSLF has taken a lot of heat from a lot of mouths coming from a lot of different directions; then general consensus seems to be: now it’s become clear The Rolling Stones Organization (RSO) has decided to continue with their campaign of giant venues and giant ticket prices (for these two shows, anyway) it’s no use for us to continue. Apparently, in some corners of the globe, our commitment and plight have been grossly underestimated. To suggest we “pay up or shut up” is amazingly dismissive and beside the point. While our movement has been referred to as an “experiment” in one publication and “ridiculous” is another, our plight should not be devoid of importance.

We despise arrogance be it in the form of high ticket prices or flippant comments from the peanut gallery.

Victory or defeat is partly determined by the political, economic and natural conditions as well as each side’s subjective ability in steering the action and its outcome. We are a patient organization. We wait, assess the situation, continue to wait and will strike when and if necessary. No movement wins their struggle by striking before thinking; any action taken by the RSLF (while seemingly inevitable at this point) will happen only when all other options have been exhausted.

The honorable the honorable Chuck Berry once wrote:

“Ten thousand eyes were watching them leave the floor / five thousand tongues were screaming ‘More! More!’ / About fifteen hundred waiting outside the door”.

The live music experience should not be an exclusionary puppet show for the fat-cats and tight-rope walking working class willing to spend their vacation pay on a two hour show of the obvious hits and hypnotizing lights. The live music experience is for the people, it’s not a tiered system of exclusionary or privilege. The live music experience should not be exploited for the mere purpose of lining one’s pockets.

The probability is high these two shows in Newark and London are a mere warm-up for a bigger run next year and it’s that prospect we’re focusing on. The RSLF has no interest in these two shows beside a curiosity. We will have operatives there hiding in plain sight looking it over, seeing how things run but nothing more; we’re treating these shows much like the Stones themselves: reconnaissance.

Let it be known, if or when it comes down to it, our non-violent tactics will not ruin the show for our fellow working class Brother and Sisters; such a result would be counter-productive. Our target is the money-wrapped heart of the RSO who continue to play the economics game. The people who have paid their hard earned money will get to see the show they deserve but they’ll also witness first-hand the glory of our persistence.

Brothers and Sister, in the name of Muddy Waters, get yer ya-ya’s out! All power to the RSLF and long live the Rolling Stones.

 

 

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RSLF Communique #5

 

 

It’s been a while since our last communication, Brothers and Sisters, but don’t let that lead you to believe we’ve shuttered the operation. Far from it. Once the decision came down earlier this year that there would be no Rolling Stones tour in 2012, we receded back into the shadows to play the waiting game once again. After ten years of quiet work, why stop now? Besides, it’s just getting good.  

 

However, a funny thing happened on our way to the shadows. In their statement to the public about the future the band, multiple sources within the Rolling Stones Organization voiced an option for alternative ways of touring, to wit:

A top concert-business source confirms the reservations over Richards’ condition. “They don’t want to do a full tour,” he says. “They don’t want to travel, and there are concerns about Keith’s health.” A more likely scenario would see the band camping out for multi­night runs in arenas, similar to Prince’s recent stands in New York and Los Angeles. “For example, they’d do 10 nights at MSG, 10 nights at Staples, 10 nights at London’s O2 arena,” the source adds.

 

The Stones are already considering offers: The band asked for proposals from promoters AEG, Live Nation and longtime Stones promoter Michael Cohl. “We’re drilling down on this new proposal,” says the source. (Rolling Stone 3.29.12)

 

While it’s impossible at this time to take direct credit for this surprising turn of events, it’s encouraging news to the RSLF that our hard work might be paying off. Promising as it may be, the Rolling Stones can go even farther with this “new proposal” instead of ten nights at the 02 Arena, why not twenty nights at The Royal Albert Hall? Smaller venues are a must. Scale it back!

 

But that argument is for another time as a new development has reared its ugly head. In place of a 2012 tour, the band decided to celebrate their 50th anniversary with…another greatest-hits release. Their seventeenth, by our count.  Seventeenth. Five of these greatest hits compilations for a recording group is ample, or: one for each decade of work. Ten is overkill. Anything beyond that is downright criminal.

 

The biggest band in the world seems determined now more than ever to embrace the corrupt idealism of the record industry by fleecing the public, offering up a collection of songs we all already own; some of us may’ve already bought these songs seventeen times. It’s a shell game! It’s a sham! The RSLF condemns the release of GRRR! and this kind of flagrant opportunisms using the loyal fan’s undying love and lack of resolve as the primary target.

 

Oh, but stop the presses: we stand corrected! The Rolling Stones Organization obviously knows how cynical of a release this release is so they’ve included two new songs recorded in August of this year to further entice the buyer into the trap and further hoodwinking them into forking over hard-earned money. This is just latest act of vampirism and we will not let it go unnoticed!

No more blood upon the necks of the weak and easily persuaded collectors market!

 No more rock ‘n roll aristocracy!

No more duping the public out of their hard earned Dollars, Euros, Yen, Rubles and whatever the North Koreans are using these days (bullets?).

 

Will this tactic of sliding new songs into this latest compilation increase interest? Definitely. Is it the right thing to do? Definitely not. With its incredibly garish artwork and the appropriate title: GRRR!, the Rolling Stones Fanbase must try to cede to this latest victimization. 

 

Brothers and Sisters, it’s these backhanded, selfish, money grubbing stunts which lay at the heart of our desire. Can there be no greater reason for the RSLF to exist? Lay down your weary tune and ignore this latest collection of pre-previously released material and instead save up your money for next year’s rumored tour.

 

Better yet, instead of buying GRRR!, the RSLF strongly suggests you purchase a copy of Johnny Thunders And The Heartbreakers debut release from 1977, LAMF (available on LP, CD, cassette from Jungle Records), one of the best bands to carry on that raw, primal sound that the Stones might not’ve invented but  certainly perfected and modernized it for their times. The Heartbreakers took it and ran. Underneath the druggy overtures and punk bravado, this music is haunted by the same ghosts which fly through the Stones finest work. The ragged and simplistic, good-time-for-all, go-for-broke phantoms of Little Richard, Eddie Cochran, Gene Vincent, Wanda Jackson, T-Bone Walker, Johnny Burnett Trio, Janis Martin, pre-Army Elvis, Jerry Lee, Johnny Guitar Watson, Joe Clay….rock’n roll is a celebration and the Heartbreakers are it!

 

Indeed! Rock ‘n Roll is a celebration more than it is a business and if the release of GRRR! is any indication, The Rolling Stones Organization will be up to their old generic tricks yet again for this possible 2013 tour. The RSLF will be there to see that the show does not go on as planned. No more same old, same old! We demand lower ticket prices! We demand smaller venues! No more inflatables and unnecessary light shows! Let’s hear some more current songs and to hell with the greatest hits. To hell with the 1960’s!  Out with the really old and in with the somewhat new!

 

The chant is rising again from the every corner of Stones’ loving countries: CUT IT BACK, CUT THE FAT!

 

The RSLF sits in the shadows waiting; it’s our word against theirs. The love of capital gains vs. the love of simplified Rock ‘n Roll. Who will get the last laugh? It’s our world against theirs.

 

Brothers and Sisters, in the name of Sister Rosetta Tharpe, get yer ya-ya‘s out! All power to the RSLF and long live The Rolling Stones!

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