Keith Richards Talks Fatherhood: ‘What Counts Is Family’
For some rockers, home life is just something that fills the spaces between tours. But for Keith Richards, it's the only thing that really matters — no matter what his infamous reputation might lead you to believe.
"I don't care how cool and hip and whatever you think you are. You get down the line, baby, what counts is family," Richards argued during a recent interview with GQ. "This is what I did it for."
Richards' staunch family-first perspective was shared as part of a detour into discussion of his son, Marlon, who spent some of his formative years shepherding Keith through the worst of his battles with addiction. "Of course it was hard on him, growing up like Gypsies, outlaws, nomads. No education. On the road," admitted the Rolling Stones guitarist, but countered that — as evidenced by the well-adjusted adult Marlon grew into — no one has, or needs, a perfect childhood. "It's amazing what kids can adapt to. It all comes out in the wash. And anyway, we didn't really do anything that wrong. I mean, he could have grown up the son of health-nut freaks."
Crosseyed Heart, Richards' most recent release, ends a gap between solo projects that spanned more than 20 years — but he insisted he wouldn't have started a solo career in the first place if it hadn't been for Stones singer Mick Jagger's insistence on keeping the band waiting while he made his own albums, which Richards dismissed as having "something to do with ego."
"He really had nothing to say," retorted Richards. "For me, I never thought of making records as a way of being famous or making a statement. I just want to make good records with good musicians, to play with the best and learn."
He should have a chance to do just that in the very near future: According to Stones guitarist Ron Wood, the band plans to reconvene in the studio before the end of the year to start work on their next record, followed by a Latin American tour in 2016.
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