Stones' 'Circus' Heading To DVD

The December 1968 concert was filmed for a television special, although it was never broadcast.

ABKCO Records is preparing the Rolling Stones' film "Rock and Roll Circus" for DVD release, reports. The December 1968 concert was filmed for a television special, although it was never broadcast.

In 1996, ABKCO released a CD and videocassette of the event, which also featured performances by the Who, Jethro Tull, Taj Mahal, Marianne Faithfull and the Dirty Mac, a supergroup comprising John Lennon, Eric Clapton, Keith Richards and Mitch Mitchell.

Directed by Michael Lindsay Hogg, the film features the Stones performing tunes that had just appeared on their "Beggars Banquet" album: "Parachute Woman," "No Expectations," "Sympathy for the Devil" and a giddy version of "Salt of the Earth." They also performed their current hit at the time, "Jumpin' Jack Flash" and premiered "You Can't Always Get What You Want," which would debut the following year on the album "Let It Bleed."

Blink Digital, an independent DVD-authoring facility in New York, is preparing the DVD, which ABKCO hopes to release in the fourth quarter. It will feature a surround-sound mix and bonus content, including never-released performances from the concert and contemporary commentary from participants.

Although nothing came of "Rock and Roll Circus" until recent years, Mahal told Billboard in 1996 that it was a turning point in his career.

"I had been playing in a club in California, and Mick Jagger was in the audience," he recalled. "So I went up to him after the show and said, 'Mick, we got a snowball's chance in hell of making things happen over here. If there's any kind of way we can help you in the U.K., playing on records with you, anything, we'd be glad to.' Three months later, the tickets came in the mail for my band, the road guys, and two of our management people, carte blanche, to go to London and perform in the 'Rock and Roll Circus.'"

As previously reported, the Stones' previously import-only collection "Jump Back" will arrive Aug. 24 in North America via Virgin/EMI Catalog Marketing.