Keith Richards slams The Beatles: “Sgt. Pepper’s” is “a mishmash of rubbish”
The 71-year-old rock icon spoke to Esquire about his new solo album, “
Keith Richards may be 71 years old, but that doesn’t mean the #Rolling Stones’ storied rivalry with the Beatles has faded into the past. Not by a long shot. In a new interview with Esquire, Richards lobs some pot-shots at the mop-tops, calling out their pathbreaking 1967 album “Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band” for being “a mishmash of rubbish.”
Discussing the frenzied adoration bands like the Stones and the #Beatles received from female fans, Richards suggests that when it came to the Beatles, “those chicks wore those guys out,” adding that “they stopped touring in 1966—they were done already. They were ready to go to India and shit.”
“The Beatles sounded great when they were the Beatles. But there’s not a lot of roots in that music,” he continued. “I think they got carried away. Why not? If you’re the Beatles in the ’60s, you just get carried away—you forget what it is you wanted to do. You’re starting to do Sgt. Pepper. Some people think it’s a genius album, but I think it’s a mishmash of rubbish, kind of like Satanic Majesties—”Oh, if you can make a load of shit, so can we.”
Double Gonzo: Hunter S. Thompson interviews Keith Richards
Keith Richards and Hunter S. Thompson muse on The Beatles, the afterlife, getting a full blood transfusion and using the Hells Angels for concert security.
Wayne Ewing, who shot this video, writes of the behind the scenes goings on at the Hunter Thomson Films website:
The interview itself was, like most of Hunter’s interviews, quite disappointing. You can begin to see why it took me so many years to shoot and piece together enough material with Hunter to make intelligible films – Breakfast with Hunter & the work-in-progress Breakfast with Hunter: Vol. Two. Old television interviews with Hunter like these abound on the internet, except this one has Keith.
At 4am we stopped shooting, and I urged the crew from Denver to wrap as quickly as possible. Rather than splitting asap as you expect, Keith hung around while we wrapped, sitting on the couch in the kitchen, not wanting to leave the inner sanctum of Gonzo quite yet. Hunter clearly wanted to get the Denver crew out so he could have more private time with Keith, who by now had fallen asleep on the couch, looking exactly like the famous 1972 Annie Leibovitz shot of him splayed out in a chair. As the crew endlessly wrapped cables, an unconscious Keith began to slide off the couch onto the floor.
Good luck understanding much of what the good Doctor says. Keith speaks the Queen’s English compared to mush-mouthed Thompson.