It looks like all the recent covert activity by members of the Rolling Stones -- including recent reports of recording sessions and rehearsals -- is indeed leading to something. The Stones have announced they'll play four shows later this year in celebration of their 50th anniversary as a band. The shows will mark their first live appearances since 2007.
There will be two shows at London's O2 Arena in November, followed by two shows at Brooklyn's Barclays Center before the year is out. Official dates have yet to be announced.
"This was accomplished in a Navy SEAL-like operation," a band source told Rolling Stone magazine. "No one I knew whispered a word of this before yesterday."
Last week, the Stones recorded two new songs at Guillaume Tell Studios in France, both of which will be used on an upcoming box set. Singer Mick Jagger let the cat out the bag when he tweeted, "Had fun in the Paris studio this week!"
Of course, the band never ruled out the possibility of new material, with Keith Richards telling Rolling Stone earlier this year, "I'd love to get some tracks down and see what songs we've got. And that goes along with part of getting the band back together and getting things moving. So I'd love to cut some tracks."
The Stones also rehearsed songs from their back catalog in New York in April. The final day of rehearsals was filmed for Crossfire Hurricane, a film that will span the band's 50-year career. The film, which is directed by Brett Morgen, is set to premiere November 15.