Mick Jagger went to a dive bar in Charlotte and literally everybody missed him
One of the world's most recognizable men walked into a beer joint and nobody recognized him. Here is how that happened, according to the people who were there and the owner who's mad that he wasn't.
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Folks, here’s the situation:
Some context here: The Rolling Stones are playing a concert tonight at Bank of America Stadium. So, yes, he’s in town. And yes, this is very big deal. If you don’t know the story of the Thirsty Beaver Saloon, it’s worth reading. Or, if you don’t want to read, this picture tells the story of what they did when some apartment builders tried to force them to sell:
Yes, they built the apartments around the bar.
The Thirsty Beaver is an astonishingly low-key place. So low-key, in fact, that last night, Mick Jagger came in for a beer and literally nobody noticed him.
That’s not hyperbole. NOBODY KNEW HE WAS THERE. Not one damn person.
I tracked down two people on Twitter who were drinking at the Beaver last night. One, Zach Curtis, was there but left around 10:45, and thinks Jagger was there after he was. Another guy, Joshua Stone, arrived around 9:50 and posted this about an hour later:
However! Joshua thinks that Jagger was already gone by the time he got there. It’s also safe to say that nobody else in the bar last night recognized him in the moment. I did a thorough search through social media last night. Nothing came up. Zilch. Nobody had any idea until 8:33 a.m. this morning.
I threw Jagger’s picture into Photoshop and lightened it up, looking for clues:
Seriously. I’ve stared at this picture of a solitary man, drinking a beer alone, while everyone carries on around him, for a good long time today.
You know who else has been staring at it? Brian Wilson. The guy who owns the bar. A guy who also had no idea that Mick Jagger came in for a beer last night.
“I wasn’t there. I missed it. I was putting my little girl to bed,” he says. He left the Beaver around 5, and came back around 11:45 at night. There was no buzz or gossip or talk about Mick Jagger. At all. “I don’t even know when he was there, exactly. Between 10-11, I think.”
Brian helped me understand a tiny bit more about what’s going on in the picture. See these folks on the left?
They were there until closing. Some of them were from out of town. None of them are looking at Mick Jagger. Now, see the dudes on the right?
Those guys are regulars. Brian knows them. In fact, one of them is staring right in the vicinity of one of the greatest Rock and Roll singers that has ever walked this Earth. Look at this poor man. Look at him smiling. HE HAS NO IDEA.
I asked Brian if I could could talk to one of those regulars. I don’t want to make fun of them, I said. “Oh no,” he says. “We’re making fun of them.” Brian has been ripping them all morning long because those guys, those regulars, have tickets to the concert tonight. “They’ll pay $400 for a ticket on the floor,” Brian says, “but they don’t recognize Mick Jagger when he walks in the door.” Those guys have not gotten in touch with me yet. They could be horribly embarrassed. Or, you know, they could have day jobs.
The bartender also did not recognize Mick Jagger. She’s young, Brian says.
Let’s move on. Computer, enhance the beer please:
I cannot tell what kind of beer he is drinking. Alas, Brian does not know either. He thinks, and this is pure speculation, that it might be one of the non-alcoholic beers that the Beaver keeps in the cooler. But there is no way of knowing, for sure, because again, NOBODY RECOGNIZED MICK JAGGER.
We’re also unsure because Brian thinks Mick Jagger paid cash. “I went through the credit card receipts to see if I had a Mick Jagger signature anywhere,” he says. Alas, he did not. “That would have gone up on the wall.”
Now, don’t judge. Don’t say “you know what, if I would have been there, I would have recognized Mick Jagger.” Because chances are, you would not have. Ten people had a chance to say “Hey, are you Mick Jagger?” or, more likely, whisper to their friends, Hey, I think that might be Mick Jagger over there. Or, most likely, they would have taken a dark, blurry picture of Mick Jagger and posted it somewhere online. Which did not happen. So yes, it is possible for one of the world’s most regognizable men to walk into a bar in Charlotte and not be recognized. People who live in brick bars should not know Stones.
Here’s the thing, though: Not being recognized is kind of a thing at the Beaver. “Kacey Musgraves came in one time,” Brian says. This was back in 2019. Musgraves posted about being there on her Instagram stories, but nobody else seems to have made a big deal about it. “My brother was bartending that night and didn’t recognize her,” Brian says. “I was like ‘Mark, what the hell man!’”
People did recognize Dale Earnhardt Jr. one night at the Beaver, but they pretty much left him alone. The guy from Soul Asylum came in a while back. Sturgill Simpson was there before he was famous.
So, yes, Brian is mad that he missed Mick Jagger, as, I’m sure, is everybody else in the picture (and based on his crude timeline, either Zach or Joshua were there when Mick was there). Brian is a huge fan. He’s seen the Rolling Stones maybe 20 or 30 times, and he’ll be there tonight. He has some Stones tunes on the jukebox. But he’s also proud that this happened the way that it did. He’s thrilled that someone had to have told Mick Jagger that the Thirsty Beaver was a great place to go if you just want to be a regular guy. “Everybody curates their own vibe,” Brian says. It’s true of Mick Jagger. It’s true of the Beaver.
But the investigation is not over. I want to know who took the picture. I want to know what he was drinking. I want to know why Mick Jagger picked the Beaver. I want to know everything. So, I’ve asked Mick Jagger to tell it all to me.
When he struts into my DMs, you all will be the first to know.
NOTE: Yes, I know, I wrote just this week that I was going to take a break to figure things out, and that’s I’d be back when “something extraordinary and inane happens around here.” I just didn’t expect it to happen the very next day!
Thank you all for all of the love lately, and I’ll see you all again soon.
What's puzzling you is the nature of his game.
I bought Bruce Springsteen a beer at the (divey but great music even by that town's high standards) Green Parrot in Key West in 2019. It was only when I heard his voice as he ordered a bottle of Yuengling at the bar that I was certain who it was and told the bartender, "that's on me." "You don't have to do that," he said, and I replied, "Yes, I do. You music got me through the worst times of my life. It was the exclamation point on the best times of my life. On at least one occasion, your music got me laid. For that alone, I owe you a beer." His wife, Patti Scialfa had come over and heard the last of that, laughed and said, "Honey, let him buy you a beer."