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Fe Now at last the man himself tells us the story of life in the crossfire hurrica. So we will start with first things first If you were to ask me what my recommendation would be for best rock musician biography or autobiography of all time it would be Keith Richards s Life hands down You ll see why as you read the rest of this review but in short I ll just say that it s by far the most authentic and genuine take on the subject of what life is like being in the spotlight for 48 years at the time of printing in 2010 anyway Written with the assistance of journalist James Fox Life gives voice to one of the true legends of rock music Keith states early on that he remembers everything And you know what I believe himTHE OBLIGATORY AUTOBIOGRAPHICAL NONSENSE BY THE REVIEWER Feel free to skip if you wish I truly became a Rolling Stones fan at the age of 14 in 1978 The band had just released Some Girls and my older brother took me to the record store to obtain a copy That platter opened up my head and I was soon deep into collecting a lot of the back catalog The Stones at that point were only 16 years old as an entity still very much in an extended adolescence and using punk rock as a springboard to updating their sound and image to reflect the era They were one of the old stalwarts that the punks really couldn t rail too much against giving them a rough respect eualed only by The Kinks and The Who and The Doors In short order I was now on the train and I would never really get off again The weight of years and a few spotty albums would later dull the relationship but once a fan always a fan OBSERVATION NUMBER ONE Keith s love of music seeps off of every page of this book From his formative years to the last page you can tell that he really had no choice in the matter He was going to be a musician and that was that He gives enormous credit to his mother and his maternal grandmother for opening his ears to a wide variety of influences when he was a child and you can hear those influences on every Rolling Stones record ever produced Steeped in blues and big band and country music Keith would figure out a way to add all of these sounds to the Stone s catalog at various points in time OBSERVATION NUMBER TWO Keith speaks candidly about his relationships with women down through the years His portraits of Marianne Faithfull and Anita Pallenberg are honest and heartbreaking at times Keith owns up to his own failures as a husband and a father and he seems sincere and forthright when he talks about these thingsOBSERVATION NUMBER THREE Keith is also very open and honest perhaps a bit TOO honest about his relationship with Mick Jagger At one point Keith refers to Jagger s manhood as a tiny todger an unfortunate choice of words for describing another man s junk It is obvious that he loves Jagger like a brother but it is also obvious that he really doesn t LIKE Mick all that much Honestly though that creative tension and the ability of both men to soldier through it made for some of the best and most engaging rock music to have ever been recorded OBSERVATION NUMBER FOUR Keith spends a lot of time covering the Exile on Main Street record made at a point in time when the Rolling Stones were real life tax exiles Keith would spend days at a time working on the sounds for Exile high on cocaine and speed and grooving on the aural and production aspects of the record It s a fascinating look at someone who is a perfectionist at heart even if the final product seemed a bit sloppy and overburdened Another autobiographical note Exile on Main Street is my personal favorite of the Stones recorded output They virtually invented Americana music with that disk showcasing a wide variety of different influences and regional sounds Not bad for a bunch of English art students OBSERVATION NUMBER FIVE Let s get this out there I am amazed that Keith is still alive No other musician in the history of musicians has abused his body through drink and hard drugs as much as Keith has Period No one Listen I ve read Motley Crue s The Dirt Nice try boys I ve read Nikki Sixx s Heroin Diaries Harrowing and real it still doesn t stand up to Keith I ve even read Lemmy Kilmister s autobiography and if ANYONE could give Keith a run for the roses it would surely be Lemmy right Nah not even close Ozzy Gotta be Ozzy correct The man snorted ANTS fer Chrissake Nope Keith dusts them all with a litany of drug related arrests and a legacy of heroin recoveries that would put anyone else to shame And to be fair Keith doesn t brag about his adventures with substance abuse at all in Life It just comes out naturally in the narrative as a point of everyday life with the Keefster Seriously read the book You tell ME if you think that anybody has ever partied like this guy I am both impressed and appalled in eual measureOBSERVATION NUMBER SIX Keith spends several pages describing what he calls his musical epiphany which consists of dropping the E4 string from his guitars This simplifies chording for him and allows him to get a different set of sounds out of his instrument Keith s role in the Stones is primarily as a rhythm guitarist although he occasionally gets out in front for a solo here and there Keith is a rudimentary soloist at best but he is one of the premier rhythm guitarists of all time right up there with James Hetfield and Malcolm Young It was fun getting some insight into his actual playing methods and he keeps everything simple for people who don t play guitar OBSERVATION NUMBER SEVEN Keith and Anita Pallenberg had a third child together Tara Jo Jo Gunne a boy was born in the spring of 1976 He was named for Tara Browne the London socialite whose death inspired the Beatles to write A Day in the Life and the Chuck Berry song Jo Jo Gunne Sadly Tara lived for only 10 weeks dying in June while Keith was on tour with the Stones Pallenberg later said that she blamed her rampant and irresponsible drug use during her pregnancy for Tara s tragic death Richards is uite outspoken and frank in the book that his relationship with his older son Marlon saved him from a spiral of depression This was obviously a painful topic for Richards and I applaud him for opening up about this tragic episode in his lifeOBSERVATION NUMBER EIGHT Life was written over a period of some five years as James Fox chased Keith as best he could and hooked him to a wire for interviews He then sat down and read the entire rough draft to Keith and found him to be a natural editor This is a big book at 574 pages but it never FEELS like a big book As I mentioned earlier in the review it seems to be as honest and authentic a look at Keith Richards as you will ever find short of meeting the man and interviewing him yourself I applaud Mr Fox for his diligent efforts to capture Keith in his natural environment and get the best out of him And I m getting kind of tired of making observations Suffice it to say that I dug this book a lot It is the gold standard as far as rock biographies go It is as much a portrait of a man as it is a portrait of an era in rock music a time when rock itself was an unruly toddler and then a difficult adolescent destined to become a flabby middle aged geezer hollering at you to get off of the lawn I can t recommend it enough if you are into this kind of thing

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Life by Keith Richards

That roused the world and over four decades he lived the original rock and roll li. And what a life Keith Richards has hadIt s really a shame that internet memes have turned Keith Richards into a caricature instead of portraying him for what he is a hard working genius of a man fully dedicated to the highest standard of music he can achieve Written with the assistance of James Fox this is an in depth account starting from Keith s boyhood and his maternal grandfather s musical influence on him through the rise of The Rolling Stones band through marriages children drug use and always through the steadying obsessive influence that music had on him Keith Richards is by no means perfect but who would be if they had been sky rocketed to worldwide fame during the wild and crazy 60 s 70 s His total dedication to the creation of uality music is the only drum beat this man follows Side note 1 I still remember exactly where I was the first time I heard Wild Horses 2 I have the original Stones Sticky Fingers album with metal zipper Blessed hippie days of yore A fantastic audio rendition

characters Life by Keith Richards

With the Rolling Stones Keith Richards created the riffs the lyrics and the songs. I have liked the Rolling Stones for a long time I remember going to see them back when I was in high school on the Voodoo Lounge tour 2004 and I thought they seemed old back then But I will say while I enjoyed them I was of a casual fan However in the past couple of years I have become obsessed I am sad that it took me this long because while many successful bands have a few great songs here and there the Stones have one of the best collections of music of any band I have ever enjoyed I can honestly say they have over 100 songs that I would enjoy listening to at any moment The next band behind them might have 20 at the mostI am going this summer to see them again I can t waitMany will put the Beatles up against the Rolling Stones For me it is no contest by a long shot The Stones ALL THE WAYDue to my recent obsession I was excited to check out this autobiography by Keith Richards I will say that unless you are as into the Stones as I currently am or you really enjoy any music history I don t know if you will like this or not So be sure you base your response on whether to check this book out or not on that in addition to my reviewI thought this book was phenomenal I enjoyed every single second of this book Even when Richards was discussing music theory that went way over my head I loved it I feel like you could turn the story of Richards live into a fantastic movie He had so many different things that happened in both his life and with the Stones death drugs travels relationships controversy feuds successes failures etc This was uite a long book and it needed every page to fit it all inNote on the audiobook I think this may be a case where listening to the book will greatly enhance the experience A few sections are read by Johnny Depp and the final part of the book is read by Richards himself However MAJOR KUDOS to Joe Hurley for his narration his delivery was perfect I am sad to see that this appears to be the only book he has narrated as I would love to hear from himMany joke that Keef his famous nickname has been around forever and when the world ends it will just be some cockroaches and Richards You know I kind of hope this is true because I think the world is a better place with a colorful character like him in it


10 thoughts on “Life by Keith Richards

  1. says:

    Keith Richards was a clever kid a talented artist a choirboy who sang for the ueen and became an outstanding musician in one of the world's best bands What is most on display in this book is his tremendous interest in musi

  2. says:

    I have liked the Rolling Stones for a long time I remember going to see them back when I was in high school on the

  3. says:

    I started listening to the Rolling Stones back in the early 1970s “Hot Rocks” an early “greatest hits collec

  4. says:

    Keith Richards’ autobiography starts really well and holds that momentum for a long time; although when it reaches the period covering the Eighties it does fall somewhat into score settling and after that becomes somewhat bland and without spark As such you have to hand it to this book it really does mirror T

  5. says:

    And what a life Keith Richards has hadIt’s really a shame that internet memes have turned Keith Richards into a caricature instead of portraying him for what he is a hard working genius of a man fully dedicated to the highest standard of music he can achieve Written with the assistance of James Fox this is an in depth account starting from Keith’s boyhood and his maternal grandfather’s musical influence on him through the rise of T

  6. says:

    It was 1975 a time of brutality and confrontation Open season had been declared since our last tour the tour of '72 known as the STP The State Department had noted riots true civil disobedience also true illicit sex whatever that is and violence across the United States All the fault of us mere minstrels We had been inciting the youth to rebellion we were corrupting America and they had ruled never to let us travel in the United S

  7. says:

    I have a fascination with music and the undead so reading Keith Richards' autobiography was a no brainer and I'

  8. says:

    Bob Dylan's memoir is a classic Patti Smith's memoir Just Kids a classic Life by Keith Richards not a classic but a really

  9. says:

    So we will start with first things first If you were to ask me what my recommendation would be for best rock musician biography or autobiography of all time it would be Keith Richards’s “Life” hands down You’ll see why as you read the rest of this review but in short I’ll just say that it’s by far the most a

  10. says:

    Growing up in Dartford for Keith – was somewhere to get out of After WWII it was pungent with horse manure desperation and he never forgot th

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