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Shrieks for the Rolling Stones at Detroit’s Olympia Stadium

June 14, 1964 - The popcorn vendors at Detroit’s Olympia Stadium held their ears tonight. Nobody else did. They just screamed.

Outside, it sounded like Frankenstein loose in a girl’s school.

Inside, a swarm of jumping, jittering, squirming, squealing girls dance in their seats. There were boys too — about one in seven. Adults looked lonely.

The occasion was the first confrontation in Detroit of a new British import — the Rolling Stones — with an American teenaged audience.

The result was a happy, wild half hour of noise.

The Stones — shouting cousins of the Beatles — are lean lads with long locks. They play and sing too. At least it looked like it.

In some sections of England, they say their music outsells that of the Beatles.

Under thick mops — ranging from an untidy “Prince Valiant” to a sophisticated “Wolfman” — were Mick Jagger, Brian Jones, Bill Wyman, Keith Richard, and Charlie Watts.

Usually, an audience listens, then applauds or maybe boos.

Not so tonight. From the start, the audience and performers stood two feet apart and tried to yell each other down.

Occasionally, the listener caught something about Route 66 or Lisa Jane. But most often, the girls seemed to be winning.

Too soon it was over. In a scurry of swarming fans, the Stones rolled off into the night, leaving their fans forlornly looking at unsigned autograph books.


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