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Life [Kindle Edition]

Keith Richards , James Fox
4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (983 customer reviews)

Print List Price: $17.00
Kindle Price: $3.99
You Save: $13.01 (77%)
Sold by: Hachette Book Group

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Book Description

As lead guitarist of the Rolling Stones, Keith Richards created the riffs, the lyrics, and the songs that roused the world. A true and towering original, he has always walked his own path, spoken his mind, and done things his own way.

Now at last Richards pauses to tell his story in the most anticipated autobiography in decades. And what a story! Listening obsessively to Chuck Berry and Muddy Waters records in a coldwater flat with Mick Jagger and Brian Jones, building a sound and a band out of music they loved. Finding fame and success as a bad-boy band, only to find themselves challenged by authorities everywhere. Dropping his guitar's sixth string to create a new sound that allowed him to create immortal riffs like those in "Honky Tonk Woman" and "Jumpin' Jack Flash." Falling in love with Anita Pallenberg, Brian Jones's girlfriend. Arrested and imprisoned for drug possession. Tax exile in France and recording Exile on Main Street. Ever-increasing fame, isolation, and addiction making life an ever faster frenzy. Through it all, Richards remained devoted to the music of the band, until even that was challenged by Mick Jagger's attempt at a solo career, leading to a decade of conflicts and ultimately the biggest reunion tour in history.

In a voice that is uniquely and unmistakably him--part growl, part laugh--Keith Richards brings us the truest rock-and-roll life of our times, unfettered and fearless and true.
Richards' rich voice introduces the audiobook edition of LIFE and leads us into Johnny Depp's performance, while fellow artist Joe Hurley bridges the long road traveled before Richards closes with the final chapter of this incredible 23-hour production, which includes a bonus PDF of photos.





Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

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

From Publishers Weekly

Johnny Depp and Joe Hurley capture Richards's rock 'n' roll spirit in a wise, charming, and textured narration of the famed guitarist's memoir. Tracing Richards's trajectory from boyhood in England through the formation of the Stones to the band's rise to world domination, this audiobook is chock-full of frank revelations and enlightening stories behind the music. The three readers do superb turns—but the seemingly arbitrary switches between them can be jarring and confusing. Depp's narration is steady, well-paced, clear, and grounded. He produces a delicious range of voices for dialogue (most notably a drunk judge in Arkansas), and Richards himself sounds a bit like an elderly, bluesy Jack Sparrow. Hurley captures the voice of Richards throughout, narrating in a gritty, growl that is spot-on. And sections read by Richards are a real treat; his raspy voice is unmistakable and haunting. A Little, Brown hardcover. (Oct.)
(c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.

Product Details

  • File Size: 11224 KB
  • Print Length: 536 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: B007F7QG0Y
  • Publisher: Little, Brown and Company; 1 edition (October 26, 2010)
  • Sold by: Hachette Book Group
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B003UBTX72
  • Text-to-Speech: Not enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Lending: Not Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #8,453 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
1,003 of 1,067 people found the following review helpful
Format:Hardcover
Keith Richards. Right, he's the Rolling Stone you notice when Mick Jagger's not shaking and singing. The one who kicked his heroin addiction by having all his blood transfused in Switzerland. Who was --- for ten years in a row --- chosen by a music magazine as the rocker "most likely to die." Whose solution to spilling a bit of his father's ashes was to grab a straw and snort. Whose most recent revelation is about the size of Mick's equipment.

Yeah, that's the guy. Wild man. Broken tooth, skull ring, earring, kohl eyes --- he's Cpt. Jack Sparrow's father, lurching though life as if it's a pirate movie, ready to unsheathe his knife for any reason, or none. Got some blow, some smack, a case of Jack Daniels? Having a party? Dial Keith.

When you get a $7 million advance for your memoirs, there's no such thing as a "bad" image. But the thing about Keith Richards is, he wants to tell the truth. Like: he didn't have his blood transfused. Like: he didn't take heroin for pleasure or to nod out, but so he could tamp his energy down enough to work. Like: he and Jagger may not be friends but they're definitely brothers --- and if you criticize Mick to him, he'll slit your throat.

Why does Keith want to undercut his legend?

Because he has much better stories to tell.

And in the 547-page memoir he wrote with James Fox, he serves them up like his guitar riffs -- in your face, nasty, confrontational, rich, smart, and, in the end, unforgettable.

Start with the childhood. Keith grew up in a gray, down-and-out suburb of London. School: "I hated it. I'd spend the whole day wondering how to get home without taking a beating." By his teens, he'd figured the system out: "There's bigger bullies than just bullies. There's 'them,' the authorities.
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258 of 280 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars 5 stars ... 3 stars ... 2 stars November 5, 2010
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
The first third of the book is absolutely fantastic. Keith Richards chronicles his childhood and the formation of the band with lots of personality and charm. Highly recommended. I really couldn't put the book down.

The book loses steam in the middle third -- the drugged-out 70s. I wish a little more time was spent talking about the music. When he *does* write about how songs come together, or about musical insights he has (like discovery open tuning), it's great reading. The sections where his son Marlon talks about life on the road with his dad are interesting. But much of the middle just gets bogged down in all the drugs, the drug busts, the cold turkey sessions, etc. Yeah OK, that was his life, but they were still making records, and a better balance of material about the band and the music would have been a nice respite from all the drugs.

It gets a bit better when he's writing about the late-80s/90s - the split with Mick and their respective solo careers.

But the final section just falls apart. It reads like the anecdotes that celebrities tell on talk shows. "Ah, the funniest thing happened at my daughter's wedding ...." "The crew found a puppy hanging around near the stage ...." "You wouldn't believe the enormous snapping turtle ...."

And there are some odd omissions: Bill Wyman is barely mentioned, which is fine, but more explanation is needed. Some of the biggest Stones albums are glossed over in half a page. Great songs like Shattered and Some Girls aren't even mentioned. The mixing and release of Tattoo You is barely discussed (if at all ... I don't recall now).

So 5 stars for the first third / 3 stars for the middle / 2 for the end.
Still worth it, especially for Stones fans.
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168 of 184 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars RIVETING ACCOUNT OF RICHARDS' LIFE IN AND OUT OF MUSIC October 26, 2010
Format:Hardcover
This memoir, written with the help of writer James Fox, is an intricately detailed account of Keith Richards life, both in and out of music-but mostly in. All the stories are here-the funny, the touching, the horrendous, and the amazing. Some are well known, some weren't even known to Richards-he only hears later, from others who were with him, what went on. And he's put it all in this book. Included are 32 pages of b&w and color photographs (including one of the band, with Jagger driving, in a vintage red convertible, across the Brooklyn Bridge) in two groups, plus photos throughout the book itself chronicling Richards' life. Also of interest is an early diary that Richards kept detailing the bands early gigs and impressions of the music the band played.

Richards has been known as many things-"the human riff", as some kind of prince of a dark underworld filled with drugs, booze, and skull rings, as "Keef", a rock 'n' roll pirate, as someone who should be dead (several times over) from massive drug use and other lifestyle choices, and as someone hounded by law enforcement-looking to incarcerate this bad example to all the kids. But Richards is also known as a settled (for him) family man. But somehow he's survived it all. And now, with this autobiography, he's letting us into his life. This book looks back at all the times-good, bad, and just plain strange.

Beginning with Richards' boyhood in post-war England, no stone is left unturned in detailing his young life. A life which changed forever with his discovery of American blues. From that era the book details the formation of THE ROLLING STONES (I would like to have learned more about Brian Jones' in relation to the formation of the group), which changed his life again-a life he continues to the present.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
2.0 out of 5 stars Richards wrote some great stuff but he's really not that good of a ...
Read the one and two-star reviews; I'm in agreement. No need to repeat.

There is some interesting information but most of the book is self-indulgent babble. Read more
Published 9 hours ago by Catman
3.0 out of 5 stars Intimate look inside the stones and his life......
Let me start off by saying that I am a Blues Guitar Fan. I love reading about the artist and the history of the music. Read more
Published 10 hours ago by JStewart82
4.0 out of 5 stars "It's only Rock and Roll"but it's his Life
Richards has lived a rock star life and survived to tell about it.Thru all his ups and downs it's always been about the music. Read more
Published 1 day ago by Robert Webb
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Great read. Tough to put down.
Published 8 days ago by Brett S.
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Bought it for my wife. She loves it.
Published 11 days ago by Vincent Aquino
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
exactly what i wanted
Published 12 days ago by shockadelica
4.0 out of 5 stars Great insight on the quintessential Brit rock star
I got the audio of this and used it for my daily walks. What a hoot! Great insight on the quintessential Brit rock star! Keith was a true musician and goes on in length about it. Read more
Published 12 days ago by MakeupJunki13
5.0 out of 5 stars Great read!
What a great book... the writing is awesome for anyone, but coming from a true rock and roll legend it sings with intrigue and gritty real life. Read more
Published 12 days ago by T. DELPORTE
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
AWESOME AS ORDERED!
Published 12 days ago by Carla R. Weiss
4.0 out of 5 stars life is the best title for this book they could have choosen
All the patterns of a colorful biography, sometimes lengthy, sometimes funny, sometimes sad. It is like sitting in a time machine.
Published 15 days ago by gunther hampel
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More About the Author

Keith Richards was born in London in 1943. A guitarist, vocalist, songwriter, and cofounder of the Rolling Stones, he has also released solo albums with his band, The X-Pensive Winos. He lives in Connecticut with his wife, Patti Hansen.

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So, the narrator...
I thought Depp did a pretty fair job of narrating without affectation. Or did he? In the middle of the book, when the narration changes, it's totally unclear who the reader is, and it's horribly over accented and sounds forced and phony. I'm about halfway through the audiobook, and it's getting... Read More
Jan 4, 2011 by Mr. Zog |  See all 16 posts
Why are we celebrating Bad Boys?
It is the press and the Stones first manager that labeled The Rolling Stones the "bad boys" of Rock n Roll. From the beginning the Stones wanted to play music and live their lives like the Blues musicians that they idolized. Basically, that is what Keith Richards has done and will do... Read More
Oct 25, 2010 by Greg Pearce |  See all 25 posts
Again, Kindle Edition not available in Europe
I have the same problem! Not available for Africa:(
Sep 14, 2011 by Heleen Destroo |  See all 2 posts
Photos in Kindle edition of "Life" by Keith Richards
Yes, the photos are there at the end of the Kindle version. You can access them pretty easily through the table of contents. They are scans, so some of them are quite small and you might have to squint to read the captions. The quality isn't terrible for a small black and white screen, but if you... Read More
Nov 11, 2010 by Amazon Customer |  See all 4 posts
Ernest Richards, Keith's grandfather
Blasphemer! I could listen to J. Depp read a shopping list and be transported.
Aug 26, 2011 by Elle d'Amour |  See all 4 posts
Africa Availability Be the first to reply
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