The long-awaited autobiography of the guitarist, songwriter, singer, and founding member of the Rolling Stones. Ladies and gentlemen: Keith Richards.
With The Rolling Stones, Keith Richards created the songs that roused the world, and he lived the original rock and roll life.
Now, at last, the man himself tells his story of life in the crossfire hurricane. Listening obsessively to Chuck Berry and Muddy Waters records, learning guitar and forming a band with Mick Jagger and Brian Jones. The Rolling Stones's first fame and the notorious drug busts that led to his enduring image as an outlaw folk hero. Creating immortal riffs like the ones in "Jumping Jack Flash" and "Honky Tonk Women." His relationship with Anita Pallenberg and the death of Brian Jones. Tax exile in France, wildfire tours of the U.S., isolation and addiction. Falling in love with Patti Hansen. Estrangement from Jagger and subsequent reconciliation. Marriage, family, solo albums and Xpensive Winos, and the road that goes on forever.
With his trademark disarming honesty, Keith Richard brings us the story of a life we have all longed to know more of, unfettered, fearless, and true.
Hardcover: 864 pages Author: Keith Richards, and James Fox Publisher: Little, Brown and Company; Large Print edition (October 26, 2010) Language: English Dimensions: 6 x 2.1 x 9 inches
About the Author Keith Richards was born in England in 1943 and founded the Rolling Stones with Mick Jagger in 1962. He lives in Connecticut.
James Fox has been a longtime friend of Richards. He is the author of White Mischief.
Editorial Reviews "The survivor's story is one of the predominant narratives of our time. It usually traces a familiar arc from excess through despair to redemption, and, as such, allows us to enjoy the vicarious thrill of voyeurism within the framework of a cautionary or salutary tale. Life by Keith Richards, the most famous survivor of them all, breaks with this tradition insofar as it contains excess aplenty but hardly any despair and very little redemption. Keith did it all, had a hell of a good time, and survived to brag about it.Life has the macho swagger that rock'n'roll in general – and the Rolling Stones in particular – once possessed. This is both its strength and its weakness. It often reads like a historical document of another time: a lost world in which women were always "chicks" or "bitches", an inflatable giant penis was a non-ironic stage prop, and a bottle of Jack Daniel's was the de rigueur rock'n'roll accessory." (The Guardian)
"For legions of Rolling Stones fans, Keith Richards is not only the heart and soul of the world’s greatest rock ’n’ roll band, he’s also the very avatar of rebellion: the desperado, the buccaneer, the poète maudit, the soul survivor and main offender, the torn and frayed outlaw, and the coolest dude on the planet, named both No. 1 on the rock stars most-likely-to-die list and the one life form (besides the cockroach) capable of surviving nuclear war. Halfway through his electrifying new memoir, “Life,” Keith Richards writes about the consequences of fame: the nearly complete loss of privacy and the weirdness of being mythologized by fans as a sort of folk-hero renegade." (The New York Times)
"Over more than 500 pages, its narrative only rarely fails to grip. Written in collaboration with James Fox (the author of White Mischief) I’d guess that Keef mostly talked and Fox merely tidied up the tape. The effect is mesmerising. It’s like being button-holed by a piratical ancient mariner with amazing tales to tell. Keef’s seen it all, done it all, and somehow, miraculously, survived. You might say that he’s lived his dark, glamorous and dangerous life so we don’t have to, and can merely look on like enchanted voyeurs. Indeed, as he gently advises the reader on more than one occasion when his story begins to get particularly wild and twisted, 'Don’t try this at home.’ It might have made a good subtitle. But Life offers much more than vicarious thrills. It captures the true spirit of rock and roll, the nitty-gritty of life on the road, and just what it feels like to be a heroin addict who doesn’t know where his next fix is coming from. It also movingly captures Richards’s extraordinary love of music – an even more powerful addiction for him than smack – and perhaps more surprisingly, his manifest decency as a human being." (The Telegraph)