Stones Readying 40th Anniversary Box Set

The Rolling Stones plan to celebrate the group's 40th anniversary next year with the release of a box set, featuring rarities, outtakes, and unreleased live tracks taken from different stages of the b

The Rolling Stones plan to celebrate the group's 40th anniversary next year with the release of a box set, featuring rarities, outtakes, and unreleased live tracks taken from different stages of the band's career.

A spokesperson says the group is not yet ready to announce plans for its 40th anniversary, but guitarist Ron Wood has revealed that the Stones are is already at work compiling the box set in an interview due to be published in January the British rock magazine Uncut. He also suggested the release would be supported by tour dates in autumn 2002.

Details remain sketchy, but according to Wood, all members of the group were recently delivered "hundreds of hours" of tapes and have been sifting through them to select potential material for the project. In the interview, Wood says he has already been comparing notes with Stones guitarist Keith Richards over what should be released from the tapes.

Next year marks the 40th anniversary of the Stones' first appearance on the stage of London's Marquee Club, on July 12, 1962. However, according to Wood, the commemorative box is unlikely to be released before September. Mick Jagger told Billboard last month that "we're trying to cook something up. I don't want to talk about it too much yet, but the 40th anniversary is a good party to give."

If a tour gets off the ground, it would be no surprise if their longtime tour producer, Michael Cohl, would be in on the action. Cohl, whose Toronto-based concert promotion firm The Next Adventure was acquired by Clear Channel Entertainment (then SFX) in 1999, would not comment in late October on any specifics regarding a Stones tour, but did tell Billboard, "I love the Rolling Stones. Every year I propose they should tour, and this year is no different."