I really thought that Mick Jagger and I were oil and water so I was very surprised when the following year, we got a call asking if we wanted to do the Stones again. This time they wanted to play the larger Long Beach Arena, with a capacity of about 14,000. Since time has a way of healing and being concert promoters, we said yes.
Once again, our major problem was security and once again it looked like an armed camp all around the building. Jagger came to me before the show and said that it was important that they leave immediately after the concert to catch a helicopter shuttle to a television show in Hollywood. We had a little car waiting for them inside the building to take them down a loading ramp with a motorcycle escort to deliver them to the waiting helicopter. I said, “No problem. All you have to do is get off stage.” He assured me that they would do everything they could to make that happen.
The concert was crazy. Girls were screaming and running down the aisles, trying to get on stage. The police even pulled a young lady off a drainpipe that she was trying to shimmy up to get into the building. The music was incredible. But now came the test. We had the little station wagon backstage and the motorcycle police were outside the building waiting at the bottom of the loading ramp, but once again, Mick couldn’t resist hanging around the stage!
With the delay, by the time we got Mick into the station wagon, there was a huge group of kids outside the building. The driver of the car panicked, went down the wrong ramp and was immediately engulfed with thousands of kids. I remember looking down and seeing a mound of girls covering the station wagon with one policeman up on the top being mauled. The Stones were on their backs with their feet up against the car’s ceiling to keep the roof from being pushed down on them. I actually saw a little girl’s foot get run over, but she acted as if nothing happened. It was pure pandemonium. The police somehow finally managed to break the station wagon loose.
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