Their cover of the Bobby Womack/Valentinos song "It's All Over Now" was a British Number One, their first. Their "Tell Me (You're Coming Back to Me)" was the group's first U. From that point on, all but a handful of Stones hits were Jagger-Richards compositions. The heavy jail sentences they received were eventually suspended on appeal.

Their June American tour was a smashing success; in Chicago, where they'd stopped off to record the Five by Five EP at the Chess Records studio, riots broke out when the band tried to give a press conference. In January 1965 their "The Last Time" became another U. The Stones temporarily withdrew from public appearances; Jagger and his girlfriend, singer Marianne Faithfull, went to India with the Beatles to meet the Maharishi Mahesh Yogi.

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Richards joined the band as second guitarist; soon afterward, he was expelled from Dartford Technical College for truancy.

Meanwhile, Brian Jones had begun skipping school in Cheltenham to practice bebop alto sax and clarinet.

In June 1963 the Stones released their first single, Chuck Berry's "Come On." After the band played on the British TV rock show , its producer reportedly told Oldham to get rid of "that vile-looking singer with the tire-tread lips." The single reached Number 21 on the British chart.

The Stones also appeared at the first annual National Jazz and Blues Festival in London's borough of Richmond and in September were part of a package tour with the Everly Brothers, Bo Diddley, and Little Richard. By this time the band had become a sensation in Britain, with the press gleefully reporting that band members had been seen urinating in public. In January 1967 the Stones caused another sensation when they performed "Let's Spend the Night Together" ("Ruby Tuesday"'s B side) on The Ed Sullivan Show.

In December 1963 the Stones' second single, "I Wanna Be Your Man" (written by John Lennon and Paul Mc Cartney), made the British Top 15. In April 1964 their first album was released in the U. The band's next single, "(I Can't Get No) Satisfaction," reigned at Number One for four weeks that summer and remains perhaps the most famous song in its remarkable canon. The Middle Eastern–tinged "Paint It, Black" (1966) and the ballad "Ruby Tuesday" (1967), were both U. Jagger mumbled the title lines after threats of censorship (some claimed that the line was censored; others that Jagger actually sang "Let's spend some time together"; Jagger later said, "When it came to that line, I sang mumble").

In January 1964 the Stones did their first headlining British tour, with the Ronettes, and released a version of Buddy Holly's "Not Fade Away," which made Number Three. K., and two months later they made their first American tour. Jagger and Richards had now begun composing their own tunes (at first using the "Nanker Phelge" pseudonym for group compositions). The followup, a nonoriginal, "Time Is on My Side," made Number Six in November. Jagger and Richards continued to write hits with increasingly sophisticated lyrics: "Get Off My Cloud" (Number One, 1965), "As Tears Go By" (Number Six, 1965), "19th Nervous Breakdown" (Number Two, 1966), "Mother's Little Helper" (Number Eight, 1966), "Have You Seen Your Mother, Baby, Standing in the Shadow? In February Jagger and Richards were arrested on drug-possession charges in Britain; in May, Brian Jones, too, was arrested.

Their music started as a gruffer, faster version of Chicago blues, but eventually the Stones pioneered British rock's tone of ironic detachment and wrote about offhand brutality, sex as power, and other taboos.

Jagger was the most self-consciously assured appropriator of black performers' up-front sexuality; Keith Richards' Chuck Berry–derived riffing defined rock rhythm guitar (not to mention rock guitar rhythm); and the stalwart rhythm section of Bill Wyman and Charlie Watts held everything together, making sure teenagers could dance to whatever Mick and Keith dreamt up.

By the time Taylor left, they began to call themselves the Rolling Stones, after a Muddy Waters song.