Bill Wyman refused to play more Stones shows
Bill Wyman refused to appear at the Rolling Stones’ US anniversary shows last year after only being given guest spots at their UK events.
The former bassist says he was led to believe his involvement would be far greater – and he’s “got better things to do” than travel across the world to hit the stage for just a couple of songs.
That’s one of the reasons he’d also say “no” if he was asked to rejoin full-time.
Wyman tells The Express: “It was great for five minutes – that’s about as long as they let me play. Keith Richards made me think that I would be a large part of it, but when it came to it they told me they only wanted me to do two songs.
“It was fun but I regretted not playing more. I was a bass guitarist, a rhythm guitarist – I have to be on the button from the moment Charlie Watts does that first drum roll. I came off just as I was warming up and getting into it.
“When they asked me to go to America for two weeks to do three shows there, I said, ‘For two songs? No thank you.’”
He says he remains on good terms with the Stones. But if they asked him to consider reuniting with them he’d refuse. “Thirty years was great but I’ve got better things to be doing now,” he reflect. “That time has gone.”
Fellow ex-Stone Mick Taylor, on the other hand, has agreed to join the band on their US tour, kicking off next month, and at their two Hyde Park concerts on July 6 and 13. They also play this year’s Glastonbury Festival.
Richards tells US TV host Jimmy Fallon: “With Stones records, sometimes there’s four, five, maybe six guitars on them. Then Ronnie and I get onstage, there’s two of us and we have to decide which are the important bits. So to have Mick Taylor with us as a third guitar, this means this is gonna be an interesting tour all around.”
Meanwhile, Wyman – whose Rhythm Kings will also play Glastonbury – has published a limited-edition book detailing his life in the band. Only 1962 signed, numbered copies of Scrapbook will be made available. It’s a large-format coffee-table title that comes with a 10-inch vinyl picture disc featuring rare and unreleased material. Over 1000 units have already been sold. Find out more.