Mick Jagger once famously said he'd “rather be dead than singing ‘Satisfaction’ when I’m 45."
It didn't work out that way.
Jagger's band is now 50, he’s 69, and the Rolling Stones are continuing to churn out rock and roll, including their greatest hits.
The Greatest Rock and Roll Band in The World is celebrating their five tumultuous decades together with a greatest hits collection that includes two new tracks, the new HBO documentary “Crossfire Hurricane,” and five concerts in London and New York area in the coming weeks.
“It’s very exciting, we did a show last week, the week before, it was fun and I got excited about that,” Jagger told FOX411’s Pop Tarts column. “Very pumped for it.”
According to Ronnie Wood, the reunited Rolling Stones rehearsed intensely in Paris for the highly-anticipated string of gigs.
“The magic is more focused, it’s just concentrated enjoyment and focus,” he enthused. “It’s hard work doing it, but it is also what we do. We owe it to the people and ourselves to play the music better than ever.”
Guitarist Keith Richards, famous for employing a myriad of substances to get himself into altered states, now says music is the best way.
"It’s the only place I can levitate,” he quipped.
Anniversary celebrations aren’t typically a huge focus for the band, which formed in Dartford in 1962, but Richards said outside pressures got the better of them this time.
“We didn’t think ‘Oh, 50 years’ – but as the year wore on (we) became very aware of it from outside pressures, so it seemed the perfect time to get back together again,” he said. “It had been long enough that I was getting little antsy, something was missing from my life. I know what it is – playing with the guys. It’s great to play with the guys and I’m really looking forward to what’s coming.”
“The big wheel is in motion again now so hopefully it won’t be able to stop. So it’s very exciting,” Wood added. “Things like this just help it roll a bit more.”
- Ashley Dvorkin contributed to this report.