The album capturing Mick Jagger and Keith Richards ‘Violence’

Mick Jagger and Keith Richards

Mick Jagger and Keith Richards have experienced highs and lows like any other couple. “The Glimmer Twins” endured through many sticky phases together, whether due to general hedonism, romantic conflicts, or musical disagreements.

After the band had been together for more than 20 years, the second half of the 1980s was one of the most turbulent. By the time they were in their 40s, the group established themselves as icons, ascended to the top of the music industry. And, for the most part, they were at the top of the hill. The arrival of punk altered the rock zeitgeist, causing acts like The Rolling Stones to lose their cultural significance to a rare level.

Although the band may have returned to form with Tattoo You (1981), they weren’t exactly pushing the envelope creatively. Furthermore, the quintet had been around for ages, so people weren’t exactly losing sleep over what they were up to. Especially to Generation X, who at the time dominated the music consumption market. They were no longer relevant.

Mick Jagger’s acts also reflected this feeling. To be fair to him, his debut solo album, She’s the Boss, isn’t bad at all, but in 1985, he appeared as losing interest in The Rolling Stones. But his abrupt transformation into Mick Jagger without the band led to a lot of conflict between him and his former partner, Keith Richards.

The Rolling Stones followed up their lacklustre 1983 album Tattoo You with the album Dirty Work, which came out in 1986. The process of creating the record was difficult for everyone concerned. Richards claimed that their frontman was the true issue because he was ignoring his band duties. He favoured his solo album and had a generally bad attitude.

Early in the 1980s, their relationship began to suffer because of Jagger’s “unbearable” egotism. Richards mentioned it in his memoir Life. The guitarist revealed the hilarious monikers the singer made for himself during this time. He wrote: “It was the start of the Eighties when Mick started to become intolerable. At that point, he assumed the aliases Brenda, Her Majesty, or simply Madam.

After a few years, when Dirty Work was being made, Richards had had enough of Jagger. Richards states in Life, “By the time we got together in Paris to record Dirty Work in 1985, the atmosphere was bad.” Mick was working on his solo album and was currently occupied with its promotion, so the sessions had been postponed. Mick had barely brought any songs for us to practise. On his own record, he had exhausted them. And he frequently simply did not show up at the studio.

He wrote several new songs about Jagger, who would ironically sing them, channelling his rage into his music. Richards said, “I started writing a lot more songs on my own for Dirty Work, different kinds of songs.” Everyone was impacted by the terrible atmosphere in the studio. Bill Wyman virtually vanished from sight. Charlie Watts took a plane home. Looking back, I can see that the songs “Had It with You,” “One Hit (to the Body),” and “Fight” were rife with violence and menacing. In addition to our acting roles, we almost literally came to blows in the “One Hit (to the Body)” music video that we made. At this point, “Fight” offers a glimpse of the Glimmer Twins’ fraternal love.

Richards later assert that he and the other band members, Ronnie Wood, Bill Wyman, and Charlie Watts, tried to tour Dirty Work immediately upon its early 1986 release. But Jagger refused to travel with them, writing that he preferred to carry on with his solo career. That’s when World War III was declared, according to the guitarist.

After this, Jagger and Richards’ relationship was at its lowest point. Nevertheless, they would eventually make up and prioritise the band because they were the strongest men in rock. The 2023 release of Hackney Diamonds has demonstrated that Mick Jagger and Keith Richards are far from finished.





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