Ronnie Wood life and biography

Ronnie Wood picture, image, poster

Ronnie Wood biography

Date of birth : 1947-06-01
Date of death : -
Birthplace : Hillingdon, London, England
Nationality : British
Category : Arts and Entertainment
Last modified : 2010-05-19
Credited as : Rock guitarist and bassist, The Jeff Beck Group, The Rolling Stones

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Ronald David "Ronnie" Wood (born 1 June 1947) is an English rock guitarist and bassist best known as a member of The Jeff Beck Group, Faces, and The Rolling Stones. He is known for his characteristic slide guitar style, and also plays lap and pedal steel guitar.


Guitarist Ron Wood has been a member of several "classic" British rock outfits, but the one that he's undoubtedly most associated with is the Rolling Stones, with whom he's been a member since 1976. Born on June 1, 1947, in Hillingdon, London, Wood made his first appearance on record during the late '60s, as a member of the oft-overlooked mod outfit the Creation (Wood only appeared on a smattering of singles, collected years later on the compilation Complete Collection, Vol. 1: Making Time). Immediately after his split from the Creation, Wood was invited to play bass in the Jeff Beck Group, a band that also included a then-unknown Rod Stewart on vocals. Despite high hopes for the group (they're often credited as one of the founders of hard rock/heavy metal), the band only managed to issue a pair of classic recordings, 1968's Truth and 1969's Beck-Ola, before splitting up just prior to an appearance at the legendary Woodstock festival. Wood and Stewart opted to stick together, as they joined the Small Faces the same year (with Wood returning back to the six-string).

Releasing one album under the Small Faces' name, 1970's First Step, the group then shortened their name simply to the Faces and soon after became one of rock's most notoriously party-hearty outfits of the era (influencing such future punk outfits as the Sex Pistols and the Replacements, among others). Further albums followed (1971's Long Player and A Nod Is as Good as a Wink...to a Blind Horse, plus 1973's Ooh La La), before the group split up in 1975. Wood also found the time to issue a string of solo releases during the mid-'70s: 1974's I've Got My Own Album to Do, 1975's Now Look, and a collaboration with ex-Faces bandmate Ronnie Lane, 1976's Mahoney's Last Stand, but this era of Wood's career is best-remembered for his enlistment into the Rolling Stones.

With the exit of Mick Taylor in 1974, the Stones began auditioning replacement guitarists, but all along, founding Stones guitarist Keith Richards knew that Wood (a longtime friend) was the man for the job. Wood contributed to half of the Stones' 1976 album, Black and Blue, before becoming a full-time member and appearing on 1977's Love You Live and 1978's Some Girls. Although the Stones didn't issue any albums during 1979, the year was a busy one for Wood, as he issued his fourth solo release, Gimme Some Neck, and toured alongside Richards in a one-off side band, the New Barbarians. Wood and the Stones conquered the charts once more in the early '80s, with such hits as 1980's Emotional Rescue and 1981's Tattoo You, but tensions between Richards and Mick Jagger caused the group to not tour the U.S. between 1982-1988, while only managing to issue a pair of spotty studio albums (1983's Undercover and 1986's Dirty Work).

During this time, Wood issued such further solo albums as 1981's 1234 and 1988's Live at the Ritz (the latter a collaboration with Bo Diddley), and became an avid painter. Jagger and Richards eventually buried the hatchet by the late '80s, as the Stones sporadically issued new studio albums and toured from 1989 onward (1989's Steel Wheels, 1994's Voodoo Lounge, 1997's Bridges to Babylon, etc.). Wood has continued to issue solo recordings throughout the '90s and beyond (1992's Slide on This, 1994's Slide on Live: Plugged in and Standing, plus a pair in 2002, Not for Beginners and Live at Electric Ladyland). Additionally, Wood has guested on countless recordings by other artists over the years, including albums by the Band, David Bowie, Eric Clapton, Donovan, Bob Dylan, Aretha Franklin, B.B. King, and his old pal Rod Stewart, with whom he taped a popular edition of MTV's Unplugged in 1993, resulting in the hit album Unplugged...and Seated.

Since 2000 Wood has continued to combine solo work with his Rolling Stones schedule. Following the 2001 release of his album Not For Beginners, Wood toured England and Ireland in 2001 and 2002 with his own group, The Ronnie Wood Band. The band included members of his own family, Slash and Andrea Corr. After the tour a DVD called Far East Man was released.

Wood toured with the Rolling Stones in 2002 and 2003; in 2004 he performed several one-off concerts and guest appearances, including a number of appearances with Rod Stewart. Later in the year the two expressed intentions of finishing the studio work on a collaborative album to be entitled You Strum and I'll Sing. In 2005, however, Wood was again busy with the Rolling Stones as they recorded their A Bigger Bang album. Although only playing on ten of the album's sixteen tracks, Wood embarked on the tour which ran through till August 2007.

In 2005 Wood launched his own record company, Wooden Records, which has released recordings by his daughter Leah, The New Barbarians and others.
Wood with the Rolling Stones at Virginia Tech. (2005)

In November 2006, during a break in the Rolling Stones' A Bigger Bang tour, Wood played guitar on three tracks for British soul artist Beverley Knight's album Music City Soul, released in 2007.

On 9 May 2009, Wood along with Red Hot Chili Peppers members Anthony Kiedis, Michael "Flea" Balzary, Chad Smith and musician Ivan Neville performed under the name, The Insects at the fifth annual MusiCares event honoring Kiedis.

On 11 August 2009 Wood joined Pearl Jam on the stage of Shepherd's Bush Empire in London for a performance of "All Along the Watchtower".
Ronnie Wood, Bill Wyman and Mick Hucknall at Faces reunion performance, 25 October 2009

On 25 October 2009, Wood, Ian McLagan and Kenny Jones joined forces for a Faces performance at London's Royal Albert Hall on behalf of the Performing Rights Society's Music Members' Benevolent Fund. Bill Wyman played bass and lead vocals were shared by several performers, notably Mick Hucknall. Rod Stewart, who had earlier denied rumours of plans for a Faces reunion in 2009, was not present.

On 2 November 2009 Wood was given an "Outstanding Contribution" award at the Classic Rock Roll of Honour ceremony in London. Pete Townshend presented the award.

Slash mentioned on his blog that he is featured on Wood's upcoming album.

Personal life

Wood has four children. Jesse is his son with his first wife, Krissy (née Findlay), a former model to whom he was married from 1971 to 1978;(during this time he had an affair with George Harrison's wife, Pattie Boyd). Krissy died in 2005. In 1985 Wood married his second wife, Jo Wood (née Karslake), mother of his daughter Leah and son Tyrone; her son Jamie from a previous relationship completes the family. Also a former model, Jo Wood has developed a successful line of organic beauty products. The Woods own homes in Kingston Vale in Greater London and County Kildare, Ireland.

Wood has been frank about his struggle with alcoholism; although reports between 2003 and 2006 had indicated that he had been sober since the Rolling Stones' 2002-03 tour, in June 2006 it was reported that Wood was entering rehab for a couple of weeks following a spell of increased alcohol abuse. By July 2008, ITN news reported that Wood had checked himself into rehab a total of six times; the last time being before the wedding of his daughter Leah. He had plans once again for a seventh admission.

In July 2008 he left his wife for Ekaterina Ivanova (variously reported to be between 18 and 21 years old at the time), whom he had met in a London club. Wood checked into rehab again on 16 July 2008. Jo Wood filed for divorce and was granted a decree nisi in November 2009.

On 3 December 2009, Wood was arrested over assault "in connection with a domestic incident". He was officially cautioned for this offence on 22 December 2009. Following this incident, Wood and Ivanova parted ways, and Ivanova later asserted that at his worst Wood drunk up to a litre of spirits a day, took cocaine and chained smoked up to 50 cigarettes.

Ronnie's solo discography

* I've Got My Own Album to Do (1974)
* Now Look (1975)
* Mahoney's Last Stand (1976) with Ronnie Lane
* Gimme Some Neck (1979)
* 1234 (1981)
* Live at the Ritz (1988) with Bo Diddley
* Slide on This (1992)
* Slide on Live: Plugged in and Standing (1993)
* Live and Eclectic (2000) (reissued in 2002 as Live at Electric Ladyland)
* Not for Beginners (2001)
* Ronnie Wood Anthology: The Essential Crossexion (2006)
* Buried Alive: Live in Maryland (2006) with The New Barbarians
* The First Barbarians: Live from Kilburn (2007)

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