It’s been exactly 50 years since a small band of long-haired teenagers put their career in advertising on hold and decided to make a go of their little rhythm and blues group, the Rollin’ Stones. And what do you know? They’re still at it.

In this bumper celebration, we chart that heady half-century, from the band’s first gig in London’s Marquee Club and NME’s first meetings with the young Stones to future classic interviews with Mick and Keith as they talk rock’n’roll, drugs, the death of their friend Brian Jones and the alchemical songwriting partnership that’s kept them going through thick and thin.

Also in this week’s NME:

Amy Winehouse, One Year On
The good works being done in her name

Vampire Weekend
Back after two years – with a new song

The Roses Rule! The Roses Suck!
Should Ian, John, Mani and Reni make another album? Two NME-ers duke it out

Radar Star
It’s French electro prodigy Madeon

Kate Nash
The Cockernee pop diarist turned riot grrl screecher goes wild in LA

The giant of New York rap holds forth on the state of the art

What happens if you listen to the 21 discs of ‘21’ in one sitting? NME tried it so you don’t have to

New Releases
Plan B, Passion Pit, Purity Ring and Micachu get a critical going over

Caught Live
MIA! Cerebral Ballzy! Wireless! And what happened after Bloc Festival fell to pieces

Rock’n’Roll Kills Braincells
What can Chester Bennington from Linkin Park remember about his illustrious career in rock?

Free Posters!
The best shots from the UK festival season

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