Mick Jagger has responded to Paul McCartney’s recent comments that the Beatles were “better” than the Rolling Stones. McCartney’s initial statement came during an April 14 conversation on Howard Stern’s radio show. When the host asserted that the Beatles were superior to the Stones, McCartney agreed, opining that his band had a more varied sound.
“[The Stones] are rooted in the blues. When they are writing stuff, it has to do with the blues. Whereas, we had a little more influences,” McCartney explained. “There’s a lot of differences, and I love the Stones, but I’m with you. The Beatles were better.”
“That’s so funny. He’s a sweetheart. There’s obviously no competition,” Jagger said when asked for his response by Zane Lowe of Apple Music. “The big difference, though, is and sort of slightly seriously, is that the Rolling Stones is a big concert band in other decades and other areas when the Beatles never even did an arena tour, Madison Square Garden with a decent sound system. They broke up before that business started, the touring business for real.”
The Stones singer went on to ruminate on how the dawn of stadium touring makes any comparisons between his band and the Beatles moot. “That business started in 1969, and the Beatles never experienced that,” he noted. “They did a great gig, and I was there, at Shea stadium. They did that stadium gig. But the Stones went on, we started doing stadium gigs in the ’70s and [are] still doing them now. That’s the real big difference between these two bands. One band is unbelievably luckily still playing in stadiums and then the other band doesn’t exist.”
Jagger was appearing on the streaming service to promote his band’s new single, “Living in a Ghost Town.” The song, though originally penned a few years ago, is especially poignant during the COVID-19 pandemic, given its theme of isolation. Both Jagger and McCartney recently appeared in the One World: Together At Home benefit event, performing from their respective homes.