Lisa McLemon's Reviews > Life

Life by Keith Richards
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Dec 06, 10

Recommended for: Musicians, Music fans, Rolling Stones fans
Read from October 25 to December 01, 2010

** spoiler alert ** I haven't even finished this yet and I can tell you it's amazing. The life of Keith Richards is very storied and in some cases, surprising. Apparently, for example, he used to get the shit beat out of him at school when he was a kid. Used to spend the entire day trying to figure out how to get home without running into the two kids who beat the crap out of him every day, until one day he fought back.

More importantly than the surprises though, at least to me, is his musical knowledge. The man KNOWS HIS SHIT. These parts of the book might be boring or completely lost on those who are uninterested or know nothing about the technical aspects of music. But to me - hearing Keith go on about how he plays all the classic Stones songs we know and love so well - "Tumbling Dice", "Jumping Jack Flash", "Gimme Shelter" - whatever you can think of, he gives away all his secrets here. If you're a guitar player, you'll probably be going, "So THAT'S how that's played!" - particularly if you've tried to play something a million times and it never sounded quite right. I could listen to him ramble on about chord changes, songwriting techniques and tuning structures all goddamn day.

The whole book is written as though Keith is sitting there with you in a bar somewhere telling you his life story. The chapters are long, but are broken up into smaller bits, so the whole thing has a very "Tell me a story, Uncle Keef!!" feel to it. I fucking love it. And if you're a Stones fan, you will too.
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Jane Turner I agree! The musical info is the best part of the book -- it explains why the Stones resonate (so to speak)....insert droaning chord here....
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