About the book
With the Rolling Stones, Keith Richards created the riffs, the lyrics and the songs that roused the world, and over four decades he lived the original rock and roll life: taking the chances he wanted, speaking his mind, and making it all work in a way that no one before him had ever done. Now, at last, the man himself tells us the story of life in the crossfire hurricane. And what a life. Listening obsessively to Chuck Berry and Muddy Waters records as a child in post-war Kent. Learning guitar and forming a band with Mick Jagger and Brian Jones. The Rolling Stones' first fame and success as a bad-boy band. The notorious Redlands drug bust and subsequent series of confrontations with a nervous establishment that led to his enduring image as outlaw and folk hero. Creating immortal riffs such as the ones in 'Jumping Jack Flash' and 'Street Fighting Man' and 'Honky Tonk Women'. Falling in love with Anita Pallenberg and the death of Brian Jones. Tax exile in France, wildfire tours of the US, 'Exile on Main Street' and 'Some Girls'. Ever increasing fame, isolation and addiction. Falling in love with Patti Hansen. Estrangement from Mick Jagger and subsequent reconciliation. Solo albums and performances with his band the Xpensive Winos. Marriage, family and the road that goes on for ever. In a voice that is uniquely and intimately his own, with the disarming honesty that has always been his trademark, Keith Richards brings us the essential life story of our times.
Life is pretty faultless as the quintessential depiction of the man in full and his extraordinary life and times to date. -- Nick Kent THE TIMES Addictive reading VOGUE This autumn's best entertainment comes from the notorious Rolling Stones' guitarist in this tell-all memoir... All the sex, drugs and rock 'n' roll are there - let the fun begin! SAINSBURY'S MAGAZINE Richards has written an opus on a lifetime of brutal honesty, an all-encompassing account of what it's been like to be one of the coolest rock stars in the world. THE ATLANTIC Keith comes across as a thoroughly decent man, with just a hint of the devil. His relationship with Jagger is complex and fascinating... -- Pete Clark EVENING STANDARD Electrifying... the intimate and moving story of one man's long strange trip over the decades, told in dead-on, visceral prose without any of the pretense, caution or self-consciousness that usually attend great artists sitting for their self-portraits. NEW YORK TIMES an absolute blast... mesmerizing. It is like being button-holed by a piratical ancient mariner with amazing tales to tell. But Life offers much more than vicarious thrills. It captures the true spirit of rock and roll... It also movingly captures Richards's extraordinary love of music...and perhaps more surprisingly, his manifest decency as a human being...how good is it that this hugely endearing rock and roll legend...is able to describe his extraordinary life with such honesty and panache. -- Charles Spencer THE SUNDAY TELEGRAPH The 500-plus pages of Life throb with energy, pulsate with rhythm and reverberate with good stories... densely textured, vivid and utterly charming autobiography - far better-written and more coherent than anyone could have hoped -- John Walsh THE INDEPENDENT a fascinating book; by turns appalling, rambling, hilarious and even surprisingly touching... Life is an important addition to rock literature, giving fresh insights into the working dynamic between Richards and Jagger... Life crackles with the authentic, likeable voice of a man who is not what you think -- Jan Moir DAILY MAIL the very existence of this book is a marker against the ravages of time. It suggests Richards's memory is fresh in a way that his face isn't...funnier than Spinal Tap's reminiscences of their native Squatney... And he can be tender, too... There's a junkie-artist frankness throughout, coupled with a refusal to omit things: how he plays the guitar, how post-gig coupling works, and his recipe for bangers and mash (don't try it at home). -- Tom Payne THE DAILY TELEGRAPH from music to Mick, and from drugs to deaths: Richards holds little back in his immensely readable memoir THE SUNDAY TIMES 'Must Read' Keith Richards's autobiography Life has resulted in a huge outpouring of adoration for 'the human riff' - much of it well deserved... The entire world currently seems to be in love with this charmingly gnarled relic. -- Suzanne Moore MAIL ON SUNDAY Life, as it's very aptly titled, is testament to not just a man with a superhuman constitution, but a passionate discourse on the nature of rebellion, how to take every day as it comes and, yes, live life to the full... Richards' guitar playing and music making are inseparable from how he conducts every other aspect of his life. It's this very attitude, indeed commitment, that comes across as remarkably refreshing. He's the ultimate pirate adventurer and outsider. -- Henry Sutton DAILY MIRROR Life is a riveting, exhilarating read... With brutal honesty Keith spills all, taking in his childhood in grim, post-war Dartford, Kent, and 50 turbulent years of the Stones. It's all here - the drugs, the arrests, the bust-ups, the women and the music. -- Simon Copeland THE SUN never boring... A rocking good read. NEWS OF THE WORLD There is much to learn from Keith Richards' richly entertaining biography... This is the "Keef" of Rolling Stones legend: rascally, dangerous, witty; the ultimate rock-and-roll survivor. -- Ludovic Hunter-Tilney FINANCIAL TIMES one of the most honest, amusing, no-holds-barred rock biographies I have ever read... informative and often amusing with no excuses or false contrition... there is something for everyone here, even a particularly good recipe for bangers and mash. -- Barry Miles NEW STATESMAN One of the greatest rock memoirs ever...The title of Richards' book is a simple, accurate description on the contents: the 66-year-old guitarist's highs, lows and death-defying excesses, from birth to now, vividly related in his natural pirate-hipster cadence and syntax. -- David Fricke ROLLING STONE A vivid self-portrait and, of the Stones and their musical era, a grand group portrait. Surely thanks in part to his co-writer James Fox, Richards shows a strong, sure authorial voice, acute in detail, passionate about his achievements in music and nearly always amused by his excesses, not least in having survived them...spellbinding storytelling. -- Richard Corliss TIME MAGAZINE Entertaining...a slurry romp through the life of a man who knew every pleasure, denied himself nothing, and never paid the price. -- David Remnick THE NEW YORKER Keith Richards's Life is an excellent insight into the life of this extraordinarily gifted man. It's touching and breathtaking. As important as Van Gogh's letters to his brother. Fabulous. -- Joanna Lumley He is not just a credit to Sidcup Art School; he is an inspiration to every London child who peeps a recorder or strums a guitar. I cannot think of another member of the British artistic, cultural or media world who has done so much or who has so widely penetrated the global consciousness. David Attenborough? Stephen Fry? He knocks them into a cocked hat... Arise Sir Keef, I say, and if there were any damn merit in it, he would have the Order of Merit, too. -- Boris Johnson
Keith Richards Biography
Keith Richards (born 18 December 1943), often referred to during the 1960s and 1970s as Keith Richard, is an English musician and songwriter who has achieved international fame as the co-founder, guitarist, secondary vocalist, and co-principal songwriter of the Rolling Stones. His songwriting partnership with Mick Jagger is one of the most successful in history. His career spans over six decades, and his guitar playing style has been a trademark of the Rolling Stones throughout the band's career. Richards gained press notoriety for his romantic involvements and illicit drug use, and he was often portrayed as a countercultural figure. Richards was born in and grew up in Dartford, Kent. He studied at the Dartford Technical School and Sidcup Art College. After graduating, Richards befriended Jagger, Bill Wyman, Charlie Watts, and Brian Jones and joined the Rolling Stones. As a member of the Rolling Stones, Richards is the only member, aside from Jagger, to sing lead on some Stones songs. Richards typically sings lead on at least one song a concert, including "Happy", "Before They Make Me Run", and "Connection". Outside of his career with the Rolling Stones, Richards has also played with his own side-project, The X-Pensive Winos. He also appeared in three Pirates of the Caribbean films as Captain Teague, father of Jack Sparrow, whose look and characterisation was inspired by Richards himself. In 1989, Richards was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and in 2004 into the UK Music Hall of Fame with the Rolling Stones. Rolling Stone magazine ranked him fourth on its list of 100 best guitarists in 2011. The magazine lists fourteen songs that Richards wrote with the Rolling Stones' lead vocalist Jagger on its "500 Greatest Songs of All Time" list.
Early lifeRichards was born on 18 December 1943 at Livingston Hospital, in Dartford, Kent, England. He is the only child of Doris Maud Lydia (née Dupree) and Herbert William Richards. His father was a factory worker who was wounded in the Second World War during the Normandy invasion. Richards's paternal grandparents, Ernie and Eliza Richards, were socialists and civic leaders, whom he credited as "more or less creat[ing] the Walthamstow Labour Party", and both were mayors of the Municipal Borough of Walthamstow in Essex, with Eliza becoming mayor in 1941. His great-grandfather's family originated from Wales.His maternal grandfather, Augustus Theodore "Gus" Dupree, who toured Britain with a jazz big band, Gus Dupree and His Boys, fostered Richards's interest in the guitar. Richards has said that it was Dupree who gave him his first guitar. His grandfather 'teased' the young Richards with a guitar that was on a shelf that Richards couldn't reach at the time. Finally, Dupree told Richards that if Richards could reach the guitar, he could have it. Richards then devised all manner of ways of reaching the guitar, including putting books and cushions on a chair, until finally getting hold of the i ... Read full biography
|Publisher:||Orion Publishing Co|
|Imprint:||WEIDENFELD & NICOLSON|
|Languages:||| English ||
|Illustrations:||32 b/w photos|
|Publication date:||Nov. 2, 2010|
|First Publication Date:||None|
|Publication City/Country:||London, United Kingdom|