Rolling with it, Keith Richards relaxes in the garden

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NEW YORK (AP) – Keith Richards is so old-school that when he does his interviews – he will do it from a landline.

The Rolling Stones icon is no fan of technology. Years ago, he admitted not owning an iPod when the device was the most popular. He is one of the few people who did not download Zoom during the pandemic. And he doesn’t even own a cell phone.

“I’m not at all addicted to high-tech internet,” he says. “I don’t even have a (cell) phone, man. I’m talking to you from a landline. Why would I want a (mobile) phone? You are crazy? “

The 76-year-old undisturbed rocker has been home for a year now – a first for Richards, he reveals. He, Mick Jagger, Ronnie Wood and Charlie Watts wrapped up part of their No Filter tour in August 2019, and they planned to hit the road again in May 2020, but things changed after the coronavirus outbreak.

“I saw the garden grow, really amazing,” says Richards. “Usually I come, it’s spring and suddenly it’s fall when I come back. I spent the whole summer admiring the garden and doing some gardening myself; baste the vegetables and everything else. I have entered a more likely normal way of life, which is not normal.

While some artists in their seventies, including Stevie Nicks and Bruce Springsteen, worried that the pandemic would keep them from hitting the road during their key years, Richards isn’t too worried: “I can’t say that I feel like a year has been stolen. I’ll catch up on that later.

“I’m getting nervous,” he admits. “I guess I can take a year off, but it’s in the bones. I guess after all these years it’s in our calling, body and everything. It’s like, ‘Come on, where’s our show, bro?’ It’s a little weird, but at the same time, we all have bigger things to deal with right now.

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In the meantime, Richards has something to give his die-hard fans that involves live music: On Friday, he released a limited-edition box set of his 1988 concert at the Hollywood Palladium recorded during his first solo tour.

“Live at the Hollywood Palladium” will be available on CD, vinyl and digital, and the show supported “Talk Is Cheap,” his first solo album was also released in 1988. It is supported by The X-Pensive Winos, a group of players stars and good friends, including drummer Steve Jordan, guitarist Waddy Wachtel, bassist Charley Drayton, keyboardist Ivan Neville, singer Sarah Dash and the late Bobby Keys, who played saxophone during the shows.

The tour came at an uncertain time for the Rolling Stones – some thought the group could go their separate ways.

“The Winos got together because of the Stones around 86, said there was a permanent hiatus. Let’s put it that way, ”Richards laughs. “It’s understandable, especially in retrospect, after these many years, Mick and I and the whole band (thinking), ‘Is the whole world just the Rolling Stones?’ I guess it was that kind of feeling. And I think Mick had more than me. But at the same time we needed a break from each other and it turned out to be really helpful for both of us.

Richards admits that being a conductor allowed him to fully understand what it was like to wear Jagger’s shoes: “I learned so much about what Mick’s job is – being the leader. It opened my eyes.

“With the Stones I do a few songs anyway, so my appetite was kind of wet that way. I was not totally foreign to the idea. Although, doing the whole show like that, yeah, that’s what I enjoyed (of) Mick’s work, ”he continued. “It’s a relentless thing to be the leader. In the Stones, I can go back and forth, hide behind Charlie, or look up. With the Winos, there is no retreat.

Although Richards is currently in the United States and Jagger is in Europe, they have been in contact and even exchanged song lyrics for Stones’ new album.

“We got used to this since our exile. Having to work remotely until they kick us out of England, ”he said. “Over the years, we have figured out how to put our things together in different ways. We’re writing stuff now. I think we’ve finished about half of an album. We kind of hung up because of the usual, 2020. I haven’t seen any of the boys since last year. We are talking, but I haven’t seen them. We can’t finish this album we’re working on. ”

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The whole world got a glimpse of what the album looks like with the track “Living in a Ghost Town”, which was written before the pandemic but released during it because the band felt it strongly resonated with it. current era.

“Once the thing hit I called Mick and I said, ‘This’ ghost town’ is so fitting, man. Let’s say it. We were doing. It was amazing. It’s kind of become an anthem in Europe for this whole thing, until now. Let’s say, for the first wave, ”he says.

“Mick wrote the lyrics,” he adds. “Maybe he’s a prophet, eh?”

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