BOOKS: Keef’s Life Sentences

NEW YORK TIMES: “Life” has already attracted undue attention for a schoolyard-sounding anatomical swipe at Mr. Jagger. But this is a book that pulls no punches, and most of its disses are more serious than that. “Cold-blooded” and “vicious” are only two of the more printable words he uses to describe Brian Jones. Allen Ginsberg was an “old gasbag.” Mick Taylor, the former Rolling Stone, “didn’t do anything” after he left the band, and Donald Cammell, the film director (“Performance,” starring Mr. Jagger and Anita Pallenberg, Mr. Richards’s longtime lover and partner in crime), couldn’t commit suicide quickly enough to suit Mr. Richards. (He shot himself in 1996.) When Marlon Brando propositioned him and Ms. Pallenberg, Mr. Richards remembers replying with this: “Later, pal.” As for Mr. Jagger, the complaints are deep-seated. They involve credit hogging, social climbing, egomania, insecurity, unethical business behavior and — here comes a Freudian’s holiday for anyone who’s ever watched the bare-chested young Jagger and Richards vamp it up together — uncertain sexual identity. There’s also a cool condescension about Mr. Jagger’s contributions to the duo’s songwriting. And a nasty nickname or two, like “Disco Boy.” In conversation about all this, Mr. Richards is emphatically blasé: “It’s bound to be somewhat rough, but the point is I’m trying to tell the story from Day 1 to now,” he says. And sure: “There’s the odd conflict here and there. But if you weigh it all out, those things count for nothing.” MORE

EXCERPT: The 1972 tour was known by other names – the Cocaine and Tequila Sunrise tour or the STP, Stones Touring Party. It was the of the booking of whole hotel floors, with no one else allowed up, so that some of us – like me – could get privacy and security. It was the only way we could have a degree of certainty that when we decided to party, we could control the situation or at least get some warning if there was trouble. MORE

NPR FOR THE DEAF: Keef On Fresh Air

RELATED: It is one of the most intriguing chapters in the history of the Rolling Stones. The drugs raid on a party at guitarist Keith Richards’s Sussex home, Redlands, more than 40 years ago very nearly destroyed the band. And one of the 1967 episode’s unexplained mysteries was the identity of the man blamed by Richards and Mick Jagger for setting them up, a young drug dealer known as the Acid King. Crime scene: Mick Jagger and Keith Richards outside Redlands, the home that was raided by police in 1967. He was a guest at the party – and supplied the drugs – but vanished after the raid, never to be seen or heard of again. Jagger and Richards were arrested and jailed for possession of cannabis and amphetamines, though later acquitted on appeal.Richards claimed last week in his autobiography, Life, that the Acid King was a police informant called David Sniderman.The truth appears to confirm Richards’s long-held belief that the band was targeted by an Establishment fearful of its influence over the nation’s youth. The Mail on Sunday can reveal that Sniderman was a Toronto-born failed actor who told his family and friends he was recruited by British and American intelligence as part of a plot to discredit the group. MORE

RELATED: It was recently announced that Disney hired Rolling Stones guitarist Keith Richards to reprise his role as Captain Jack Sparrow’s (Johnny Depp) father in the upcoming “Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides.” Now, according to the Drudge Report, the studio is considering cutting all of Richards’ scenes out of the movie. Apparently, the musician’s new book, “Life,” talks about things that Disney doesn’t agree with, like teaching people that using high-quality drugs in moderation is a safe way to get stoned. MORE


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