50 Years Ago: The Rolling Stones Rock And Roll Circus Is Filmed

On December 11, 1968 The Rolling Stones Filmed the Rock and Roll Circus which was meant to showcase the best of British rock, culminating in a performance from the Stones themselves. The show featured performances from The Who, Jethro Tull, Taj Mahal and The Dirty Mac, a supergroup with John Lennon, Keith Richards, Eric Clapton and Mitch Mitchell. The show was complete with fire eaters and other classic circus acts and was to be a major television event but it never aired. The Stones finally released the recording as a CD and DVD set in 1996 after sitting in the vaults for almost 30 years.

Many have claimed that the reason that it was never released in it’s time is because The Rolling Stones were unhappy with their performance and felt upstaged by The Who, who were by then developing quite the live reputation. Let’s take a look at some of the highlight performances and judge for yourself.

The Dirty Mac- Yer Blues 

This was quite the lineup and provided one of the first solo glimpses of John Lennon outside of The Beatles


The Who- A Quick One While He’s Away

It was this performance that has long been called the reason why The Rock And Roll Circus was never released


The Rolling Stones- Sympathy For The Devil 

By far the highlight of the Stones performance



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