Rolling Stones announce a free concert. Their first free show since the disastrous Altamont concert in 1969 will raise awareness of global warming

By Gary Susman
Updated December 31, 2002 at 05:00 AM EST

The Rolling Stones, who kicked off their current tour with a blast of hot air (they arrived at the kickoff press conference in a blimp), will play a free show to raise awareness of global warming. The band announced this week that it will perform free, for the first time in more than 33 years, on Feb. 6 at Los Angeles’ Staples Center, in a partnership with the National Resources Defense Council (NRDC), a 500,000-member environmental organization. Paying for the show, which will be the second to last in the North American leg of the rockers’ Licks tour, will be movie producer and former Elizabeth Hurley paramour Steve Bing, Reuters reports.

The Stones haven’t performed gratis since the catastrophic Altamont concert outside San Francisco in 1969. The hastily arranged show, which drew 500,000 fans, resulted in multiple injuries and the murder of one fan at the hands of local Hell’s Angels, whom the Stones had hired to take charge of security. Presumably, security will be handled more professionally this time, and fans who want to go can win tickets by entering a raffle at the NRDC website.