5 Denver landmarks younger than the Rolling Stones | Arts & Entertainment

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The Rolling Stones return to Denver this week, making a stop at Empower Field for their “Hackney Diamonds” tour, which marks the band’s return to the Mile High City for the first time since 1994 and a possible last opportunity to see the band live for their Colorado-based fans, as Denver Gazette arts reporter John Moore explains.

The band was founded in 1962, now more than 60 years ago. Lead singer Mick Jagger is now 80-years-old, as well as guitarist and songwriter Keith Richards.

Despite their age, reviewers still praise their performances and sound, even in 2024. Brian Rolli, writing for ultimateclassicrock.com, described their Houston stop on the tour, saying, “Jagger leapt, spun and sauntered across the stage with a ballerina’s grace as he barked with barrel-chested virility, and Ron Wood’s searing guitar solo slashed through Richards’ sturdy riffs.”

The Rolling Stones have proven to be both ageless and timeless, but for some it may be hard to grasp where they stand on the grand timeline of history.

As a testament to their longevity, here are five things in Denver younger than the Rolling Stones:

The Auraria Campus (1976)

Auraria was originally founded as one of Colorado’s oldest settlements, a mining settlement along the Platte River. Later, it housed the historic Tivoli Brewery.

But in its current modern state as the location for institutions of higher learning including Metropolitan State University of Denver, CU Denver, and Community College of Denver, it traces its founding back to 1976, according to historical archives from the Denver Public Library.

The campus is still home to several historical Denver sites including the Spanish Colonial St. Cajetan’s Church, St. Elizabeth of Hungary Catholic Church, the original Tivoli building and the Auraria 9th Street Historic District, a former street and neighborhood which now houses campus offices.

The same year that the Auraria Campus was founded as a center for students, the Rolling Stones released their album Black and Blue. It’s notable as their first album recorded after former guitarist Mick Taylor quit in December 1974. The main single from the album is “Fool to Cry”.

Denver’s Tallest Building – Republic Plaza (1984)

Completed in 1984, Republic Plaza still stands as Denver’s tallest building. The building designed by Skidmore, Owings & Merrill, Republic Plaza stands at 717 feet with 56 floors. Clad in Sardinian granite, its modern, clean-line architecture primarily houses office spaces and ground-floor retail. Its ground floor recently became home to Done Deal, a social cocktail lounge opened by Troy Guard.

In the same year that Republic Plaza was completed, the Rolling Stones released the album Rewind, a greatest hits compilation featuring their most popular songs from 1971-1984.

Denver International Airport (1995)

Replacing the former the former Stapleton International Airport, Denver International Airport official opened in February of 1995. Today, it has become one of the largest and busiest airports in the United States. But its tent-like exterior structures, art inside and outside of the airport, including the famous “Bluecifer” statue, as well as conspiracy theories about the airport have cemented it as a staple of Denver’s culture and identity.

As previously stated, the Rolling Stones’ previous tour stop in Denver occurred before DIA was completed. In 1995, the band released the album Stripped, which included a cover of Bob Dylan’s “Like a Rolling Stone”. Two of the studio sessions were recorded in Japan in March of 1995, just days after DIA’s opening. The album also featured the single “Wild Horses”.

Empower Field at Mile High (2001)

The stadium which will play host to the Rolling Stones when they come to Denver was completed in September of 2001 as a replacement for the original Mile High Stadium. It is still colloquially known among residents as “New Mile High Stadium” or “Mile High Stadium”, but has been officially named and renamed as Invesco Field, Sports Authority Field, briefly unnamed as “Broncos Stadium” before its current name as Empower Field. The venue has a seating capacity of approximately 76,125.

The first concert at Empower Field at Mile High (then known as Invesco Field at Mile High) was performed by Metallica, with Limp Bizkit as the opening act, on August 1, 2003.

The turn of the new millennium marked a rare break for the Rolling Stones between their “No Security” tour in 1999 and their “40 Licks” tour in 2002. 40 Licks the album was a double compilation of what was then 40 years of music from the band. It debuted at No. 2 on both the UK and U.S. charts.

Denver Justice Center (2010)

After three years of building at a cost of a then-reported $160 million, the Denver Justice Center, which includes the Lindsey-Flanigan Courthouse and the Van Cise-Simonet Detention Center opened in April of 2010.

The opening of the center was a crucial development for the city, addressing longstanding issues with outdated facilities, improving safety and efficiency, and providing a modern judicial complex that looked to address the pressing needs of a growing urban population.

As for the Rolling Stones? They also revamped a necessary staple. In 2010, the band produced a deluxe reissue of the album Exile on Main St.

Rolling Stone magazine (itself a nod to the band) ranked it No. 7 on its list of the 500 Greatest Albums of All Time in 2020.

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