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Thursday 22 March 2018

Jagger is 'unbearable', says Richards in tell-all memoir

Keith Richards with Mick Jagger during the Rolling Stones' Licks world tour in Madison Square Gardens, New York, in 2002.
Keith Richards with Mick Jagger during the Rolling Stones' Licks world tour in Madison Square Gardens, New York, in 2002.

Lauren Turner in London

Keith Richards has said fellow Rolling Stone Mick Jagger was "unbearable" in a candid memoir that lays open their fraught relationship.

In his autobiography 'Life', the musician reveals his nicknames for Jagger are "Brenda" or "Your Majesty", and compares coping with an annoying mynah bird as "like living with Mick".

Richards writes of the distance between the pair, saying: "I used to love Mick, but I haven't been to his dressing room in 20 years.

"Sometimes I think, 'I miss my friend'. I wonder, 'Where did he go?'."

Richards uses the book to take personal swipes at his bandmate, writing: "It was the beginning of the 80s when Mick started to become unbearable."

In a comment that could infuriate Jagger, renowned for his sexual appetite, Richards writes about the singer's relationship with Marianne Faithfull, saying she "had no fun with his tiny todger".

"I know he's got an enormous pair of balls -- but it doesn't quite fill the gap," he writes.

He also dismisses Jagger's solo album, 'Goddess In The Doorway', by saying: "It's like 'Mein Kampf' -- everyone had it, but no one read it."

Richards says Jagger has read 'Life' and adds: "I think it opened his eyes, actually."

Richards (67) says the only part Jagger wanted to be taken out of the book was a section disclosing that the frontman used a voice coach, but he refused, saying: "I'm trying to say the truth here."

He describes the relationship he had with Marianne Faithfull, who had been Jagger's girlfriend, after fearing he was losing his own partner, Anita Pallenberg, to his bandmate.

Asked whether he was trying to "wind up" Jagger, Richards replies: "We've had our beefs but, hey, who doesn't? You try and keep something together for 50 years."


He insists he still wants to work with Jagger, saying he plans to go on tour with the Rolling Stones.

Richards says: "Well, you know, we'll be on the road again in the future. Yeah. On the road.

"I think it's going to happen. I've had a chat with . . . Her Majesty. Brenda."

Richards also gives his opinions on politicians in his autobiography, describing Bill Clinton as a "great" man, but "a lousy sax player".

He also discloses that he corresponded with former British prime minister Tony Blair over the Iraq war, saying: "I wrote him a letter, telling him he had to stick to his guns.

"I got a letter back, saying: 'Thanks for the support'."

Despite years of drug-taking, Richards says he hopes he has many years left to live, adding: "Well, I'm not putting death on the agenda. I don't want to see my old friend Lucifer just yet. He's the guy I'm gonna see, isn't it? I'm not going to the Other Place, let's face it."

On the topic of drugs, Richards admits that he would start taking heroin if he was given the chance to live his life over again.

He says he has now given up cocaine, adding: "I've given up everything now -- which is a trip in itself."

Richards also revealed that Johnny Depp was a frequent visitor to his home for two years before he twigged he was a star.

Richards admitted that he feared the Hollywood superstar was his son's drug dealer.

"It took me two year before I realised who he was. He was just one of my son Marlon's mates, hanging around the house playing guitar.

"I never ask Marlon's mates who they are because, you know, 'I'm a dope dealer'. Then one day I was at dinner and I'm like 'woah, Scissorhands'."

Irish Independent

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