The Rolling Stones are reportedly working with the surviving Beatles for an upcoming album

Mick Jagger, Keith Richards, Paul McCartney
(Image credit: Elena Di Vincenzo/Archivio Elena Di Vincenzo/Mondadori Portfolio / Roberto Ricciuti/Redferns via Getty)

According to reports, two of music’s most influential bands of all time are currently working together on an album for what will be without a doubt one of the biggest team-ups of 2023.

As per an article published by Variety, the surviving members of both The Beatles and The Rolling Stones are set to join forces on the latter's forthcoming studio album, which will be helmed by Grammy-winning producer Andrew Watt.

On paper, Paul McCartney and Ringo Starr will link up with Mick Jagger, Keith Richards and Ronnie Wood for the as-yet-unnamed record, with the Beatles bassist said to have already recorded his parts.

Variety also reports that Starr is slated to play drums on some of the album, sharing the sticks with the band’s late drummer Charlie Watts, who had recorded a number of his drum parts for the album in 2021 before he passed away at the age of 80.

Speaking to Los Angeles Times in 2021, Jagger and Richards confirmed Watts’ presence on the upcoming album, with the latter saying, “Let me put it this way: you haven’t heard the last of Charlie Watts.”

As for this new album, it’s also noted in Variety's report that recording sessions took place over the past few weeks in Los Angeles, and that the record’s production is edging towards the mixing phase. However, it’s unclear as yet whether the two Beatles will feature on the same songs, or if they’ll have separate cameos on a handful of tracks.

News of the two music institutions joining forces comes after their so-called rivalry was reignited in late 2021, when McCartney dubbed the Stones "a blues cover band".

The prospect of new music from the Stones has been around for a few years now. In the previously referenced Los Angeles Times interview two years ago, Jagger teased that the band had “a lot of tracks done” for their first new studio album since 2005’s A Bigger Bang. More recently, Richards said in a New Years’ Instagram post that “there’s some new music on the way”.

Furthermore, McCartney himself met up with the reported producer for the unconfirmed record, Andrew Watt, back in 2021, with the Beatle confirming in a Q&A he “ended up making a track” with the producer-guitarist. 

“I’ve started working with this producer called Andrew Watt, and he’s very interesting,” McCartney revealed at the time. “We’ve had some fun. Beyond that, I don’t have anything massive planned … at the moment!”

Watt’s own involvement in the project comes as no surprise, with the in-demand producer becoming the go-to studio brain and session guitarist for many of rock’s biggest names. 

Recently, Watt worked on Ozzy Osbourne’s Patient Number 9, and starred in an instrumental capacity alongside Zakk Wylde for Osbourne's live performance at the LA Rams halftime show. Some of his other live credits include Iggy Pop’s all-star Kimmel band, and Eddie Vedder’s The Earthlings backing band.

No official details surrounding Rolling Stones’ upcoming album have been released at the time of writing.

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Matt Owen

Matt is a Staff Writer, writing for Guitar World, Guitarist and Total Guitar. He has a Masters in the guitar, a degree in history, and has spent the last 16 years playing everything from blues and jazz to indie and pop. When he’s not combining his passion for writing and music during his day job, Matt records for a number of UK-based bands and songwriters as a session musician.