Former Rolling Stones Bassist Bill Wyman Is 86 Today

Think about that for a moment. Is he our oldest living rock royalty?

Happy Birthday to former Rolling Stones bassist Bill Wyman, who turns 86 today (October 24th). Wyman, who quit the Stones in 1991, was on hand for the band's 2012 London shows as part of their 50 & Counting Tour. Both Wyman and longtime fans were disappointed that he was relegated to only two songs during the shows, sitting with the band during "It's Only Rock N' Roll" and "Honky Tonk Women."

In 2020, Wyman set the record for the highest selling bass guitar at the three-day "Property From Bill Wyman And His Rolling Stones Archive" sale via Julien's Auctions. Wyman’s 1969 Fender Mustang bass with a competition orange finish, which was a mainstay of Stones concerts and recording sessions in 1969 and 1970, sold for a whopping $384,000.

Also raising eyebrows was Wyman’s legendary 1962 Vox AC30 Normal model amplifier, which snagged a cool $106,250 -- easily besting last year's sale of two of David Gilmour's prized amps. Wyman's Vox AC30 is particularly historic, seeing as Wyman owning professional gear the band could use cemented his membership into the Stones. A portion of the proceeds from the auction benefited the Prince’s Trust, Macmillan Cancer Support, and the Central Caribbean Marine Institute.

In 2019, Bill Wyman published his latest book featuring his previously unseen photos of the band. The 272-page tome, Stones From The Inside, features 246 color shots along with 28 black and white photos showcasing the band on-stage, backstage, and on the road. The book, which spans Wyman's decades with the band, also features timeless shots of such legends as John LennonEric ClaptonDavid BowieIggy PopJohn Belushi, and Dan Aykroyd, among others.

April 2018 saw the release of Bill Wyman's Rhythm Kings' latest album, Studio Time.

The recent documentary on Wyman, titled The Quiet One, is now available on demand. The Quiet One spotlights never before seen footage and stills from Wyman's massive personal archive and features testimony from Eric Clapton, early-Stones manager/producer Andrew Loog OldhamBob Geldof, Stones engineer Glyn Johns, and the SupremesMary Wilson.

Bill Wyman, who has recently battled prostate cancer, explained to Variety why he finally allowed his story to be documented: "My life has been an extraordinary adventure. The time feels right to delve into the archive and tell my story before I croak."


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