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Life by Keith Richards

Life (2010)

by Keith Richards

Other authors: James Fox

Other authors: See the other authors section.

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Showing 1-5 of 98 (next | show all)
I wished I had taken ?uestlove's advice about reading musicians bio and started with chapter 3, since as ?uestlove noted the first two chapters are always going to be - I was born, I lived here, etc, etc. The book was ok, I read it in many pieces over a long period of time, which made it easier to digest the facts. The main fact I gathered: Richards and Jagger are jealous of each other, but can't do without each other. ( )
  bjkelley | Nov 13, 2015 |
If a musician who I don't really care much about can hold my interest for most of a very long book, then it must be well written. And this is, but I do think it's long-winded and it could have been greatly condensed.
Also, I listened to the audio version and I did not like the way that it was put together. It starts out with Johnny Depp as the narrator and he does a brilliant job. But then there is an abrupt switch to another narrator who sounds totally different. It's very jarring and makes you feel like the person who is telling you the story of his life is all of a sudden a totally different person. This other narrator, Joe Hurley, was very inconsistent with his voice and the way he was "acting" out the story. Well I got used to listening to him but then it switched again and we were back to Depp. I don't mind multivoiced audiobooks, but this switching narrators back and forth like that was annoying to me. Then near the end it changed again and I think it may have been Richards himself reading it (which was good of course). ( )
  debs4jc | Aug 10, 2015 |
Well ghosted. The conversational style well suits the tale. I was interested in reading this and was moved to actually read it as an assignment for a music appreciation class. I grew up with the Stones but I'm not really a fan. Great tunes but their style is just too hard-core for me.

I kept thinking this guy is turning 70 this year (2013) He is a grandfather. When he talks about being held captive by a public image, this is his perspective. He could not have imagined becoming the success he is and has been, nor the horrible drug addiction he has survived. There is plenty of material to think about his relationships with his band members, comments on becoming a songwriter, special notes on songs that mean something to him, police harassment, the wonder and thrill of creating and performing rock and roll.

The early years get much more treatment than his later years. This is not a philosophical work, nor a backstage confidential but is seems pretty honest and vulgar and earthy by a Lucky Man. ( )
  joeydag | Jul 23, 2015 |
I’ll start this off by saying that I am not a big Rolling Stones fan, but was intrigued by what Keith Richards might have to say about his life and the band. I must say this book was good. Mr. Richards does not pull any punches and does not sugar coat the less savory aspects of his life and career. I found it enjoyable to be escorted through the decades of music history and be told where ideas and inspirations came from and how some of the most iconic Stones songs came into being.

I listened to this book on audio and cannot post this review without major kudos to Johnny Depp for his narration. Had the book not been as interesting as it was, that alone would have made it a worthwhile listen.
( )
  ChristineEllei | Jul 14, 2015 |
Interesting perspective...

While I will not claim to be a fan of the Stones I will not say that I dislike their stuff either...Richards puts together background about the band and himself that most would not be aware of. I found the writing to be very easy to read but nearing the end things seemed to be a little disjointed with a timeline that did not seem to stay on point.
I learned a lot about the man and the band and have a greater appreciation for the music. ( )
  gopfolk | Jun 17, 2015 |
Showing 1-5 of 98 (next | show all)
If you can remember the Sixties, blah blah blah. Boy can Keith Richards remember the Sixties, which is great. The real miracle is that he can remember the Seventies, considering that Keith’s poison was heroin, which would surely make performing in a high-energy band quite difficult, let alone raising two children, with a heroin-addicted Anita Pallenberg. So the very existence of this book is a marker against the ravages of time. It suggests that Richards’s memory is fresh in a way that his face isn’t. His memory has had a little help: there are letters he sent to relatives, and even a diary, as well as testaments from friends and garnering from other people’s memoirs. Goodness, there’s enough material to start an archive in somewhere like Texas, or for Andrew Motion to contemplate an official biography. For now, though, we have a lot of kind, perhaps even indulgent, transcription from James Fox.
added by lkernagh | editThe Telegraph, Tom Payne (Nov 5, 2010)
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.
added by lkernagh | editThe Guardian, Sean O'Hagan (Oct 31, 2010)
Mick Jagger has always looked -- will always look -- like Mick Jagger. But try to connect the glum schoolboy-guitarist of early '60s black-and-white pics with the Keith Richards of today. A heap of living and occasional bouts of near-dying have gone into that flayed, weathered, kohl-eyed visage, whose topography suggests a moonscape irrigated with Jack Daniel's. After half a century on the road, Richards has the face he deserves -- but not, it appears, the brain. Against all pharmaceutical odds, he has held on to a substantial portion of his own history and has turned it into the most scabrously honest and essential rock memoir in a long time....And yet here he is, defiantly alive, and defiant in every other respect, too, his language just as politically incorrect, his judgments every bit as summary.
“Life” is way more than a revealing showbiz memoir. It is also a high-def, high-velocity portrait of the era when rock ’n’ roll came of age, a raw report from deep inside the counterculture maelstrom of how that music swept like a tsunami over Britain and the United States. It’s an eye-opening all-nighter in the studio with a master craftsman disclosing the alchemical secrets of his art. And it’s the intimate and moving story of one man’s long strange trip over the decades, told in dead-on, visceral prose without any of the pretense, caution or self-consciousness that usually attend great artists sitting for their self-portraits.

» Add other authors (8 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Keith Richardsprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Fox, Jamessecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Lindert, Jolanda teTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Co-written with journalist James Fox.
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Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 031603438X, Hardcover)

Amazon Best Books of the Month, November 2010: It's hard to imagine a celebrity memoir--or any memoir for that matter--that is as easy to drink in (so to speak) as Keith Richards's Life. Die-hard Stones fans will love tales of the band's ascension from the "interval" band at the Marquee to the headliners at Super Bowl XL; guitar gearheads will scramble to sample the one lick that has eluded Richards for 49 years; and historians and romantics alike will swoon over the raspy, rambling, raucous detail of this portrait of the artist in situ. Yes, some tales are told, but Life is refreshingly not gossipy, mean-spirited, or sordid--or at least not more than the truth demands. Richards is as comfortable in his bones as a worn pair of boots, and Life captures the rhythm of his voice so effortlessly that reading his tale is like sharing a pint with an old friend--one who happens to be one of the most iconic guitarists of all time. --Daphne Durham

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:22:47 -0400)

(see all 5 descriptions)

Autobiography of the guitarist, songwriter, singer, and founding member of the Rolling Stones, Keith Richards. With the Rolling Stones, Keith Richards lived the original rock and roll life. He tells his story of life in the crossfire hurricane; his listening obsessively to Chuck Berry and Muddy Waters records, learning guitar and forming a band with Mick Jagger and Brian Jones, the Rolling Stones' first fame and the notorious drug busts that led to his enduring image as outlaw folk hero, creating immortal riffs like the ones in "Jumping Jack Flash" and "Honky Tonk Women." He discusses falling in love with Anita Pallenberg and the death of Brian Jones, his tax exile in France, wildfire tours of the U.S., isolation and addiction, as well as falling in love with Patti Hansen, and his bitter estrangement from Jagger and subsequent reconciliation. He talks about his marriage, family, solo albums and Xpensive Winos; the road that goes on forever.… (more)

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