Box office receipts for the Rolling Stones' latest tour have topped half a billion, according to the tour's producer.

The final tally for the band's A Bigger Bang tour has been calculated at $558,255,524, Michael Cohl told Billboard.

The lengthy tour comprised 144 shows, beginning in autumn 2005 and concluding at London's O2 Arena on August 26th.

With a paid attendance of 4,680,000, A Bigger Bang is now the highest grossing tour in history, having soared past the previous record of $389 million, held by U2's Vertigo tour.

The Stones' Voodoo Lounge tour in 1994-5 had been the previous record holder, having grossed $320 million.

Cohl admitted that the tour had not been without its problems, notably guitarist Keith Richards' fall from a Fijian palm tree in April 2006.

The hard-living axeman (apparently only 62 years old) was hospitalised after suffering a mild concussion.

Cohl told Billboard: "It was a long tour, but more than anything it was fantastic. We had to overcome a lot; this was like Homer's Odyssey.

"There were all sorts of difficulties to overcome and it turned out to be just one amazing triumph."

04/10/2007 12:01:04