Keith Richards life and biography

Keith Richards picture, image, poster

Keith Richards biography

Date of birth : 1943-12-18
Date of death : -
Birthplace : Dartford, Kent, England
Nationality : British
Category : Arts and Entertainment
Last modified : 2011-09-08
Credited as : rock musician, Rolling Stones, GQ Man of the Year 2011

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Keith Richards is an English musician, songwriter and founding member of The Rolling Stones. Rolling Stone magazine said Richards had created "rock's greatest single body of riffs" and, placed him as the "10th greatest guitarist of all time." Fourteen songs written by Richards and songwriting partner and band vocalist Mick Jagger are listed among Rolling Stone Magazine's "500 Greatest Songs of All Time". Richards' notoriety for illicit drug use has stemmed in part from several drug busts in the late 1960s and the 1970s.

Keith Richards is the only child of Bert Richards and Doris Dupree Richards. He was born at Livingston Hospital in Dartford, Kent. His father was a factory worker injured during World War II during the Normandy invasion.

Even as a child, Richards knew he wanted to play rock and roll. He would pose in front of the mirror and practice "getting down his moves," as he called them. These moves most likely didn't help him much as a choirboy (he once sang for the Queen), but his angelic voice helped mask the miscreant lurking just beneath the surface. When he was 15, his mother bought him his first guitar, and from that moment, it became the most important thing in his life. A rekindled friendship with Mick Jagger (they were sandbox mates) and a mutual love of American blues led to the formation, in 1962, of a band called the Rolling Stones. Their guitarist, Brian Jones, came up with the name, which he borrowed from the Muddy Waters classic "Rollin' Stone Blues." The group began playing gigs around London, doing mostly covers of songs by their heroes Chuck Berry, Muddy Waters, and Willie Dixon to name a few.

Richards' edgy guitar style set the band apart, and once he and Jagger discovered that they could actually write songs, there was no stopping them. One of their earliest collaborations was the classic "(I Can't Get No) Satisfaction," which Richards wrote during a bout of insomnia while on tour; Newsweek called the song's chord progression "five notes that shook the world." The song made a name for the band in America, and was the first of a long string of hits. The band stood in stark contrast to the shiny, happy Beatles even white sailor suits could not make them look less menacing and soon their off-stage antics garnered as much press as their music. Jagger and Richards were the bad boys of rock and roll, and were soon dubbed the "Glimmer Twins." Keith was at the forefront of a gathering cloud of controversy, which began with a 1967 arrest on trumped-up drug charges. Over the next decade, he was arrested ten times, with the most serious charge leveled in March of 1977, when he was arrested in Toronto, Canada, for heroin possession. He narrowly escaped jail, partly due to the pleas of a young blind woman, who told the court how Richards had made sure she was returned home safely after a Stones concert. He worked out a plea bargain that included a benefit show for the Canadian National Institute for the Blind, and he was allowed to enter the United States for drug treatment.

A true and towering original, he has always walked his own path, spoken his own mind, and done his own thing.

Reluctant outlaw, rock 'n' roll's unparalleled hellraiser, and one of the greatest guitar gods of all time, Keith Richards has forged a life that most of us can only imagine--and often envy. And amazingly he's lived to tell about it. Now, at last, in his own words, the ultimate rock Icon gives us the definitive rock autobiography.

In Life, in his own raw, fierce voice, the man himself tells about life lived fast and hard in the creative hurricane--from his early days as a young boy growing up in a council estate, listening obsessively to Chuck Berry and Muddy Waters records, to taking the guitar to its absolute limit and joining forces with Mick Jagger to form The Rolling Stones.

With unflinching honesty, he reveals all the highs and lows of rock 'n' roll, from the meteoric rise to fame and the notorious drug busts to the women, drinking, and heroin addiction that made him infamous. The living legend chronicles how he created the revolutionary, high-octane riffs that defined "Gimme Shelter" and "Honky Tonk Woman," his affair with the equally infamous Anita Pallenberg (the mother of three of his children), and the tragic death of Brian Jones. From falling in love with Patti Hansen to his tumultuous relationship with Mick, we follow Keef on the ultimate road trip we have all longed to know more about--of an unfettered, fearless, on-the-edge life lived to the fullest.

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