Here is the only definitive biography of Keith Richards. For thirty years Keith Richards stood in the shadow of Mick Jagger. Now, for the first time, Richards is put in the spotlight and emerges as the power behind the throne, the creator, the backbone, and the soul of the Rolling Stones. From his poverty-stricken roots in postwar England to his apotheosis on the 1989-90 world tour and beyond, this no-holds-barred investigation chronicles Richards's embattled rise to the top as the archetypal bad boy of the sixties, his epic struggle with heroin as the rock star most expected to die in the 1970s, and his rebirth as the model paterfamilias of the 1980s. Bockris has gone beyond anything ever written about the Rolling Stones to explore the true story behind their music: how Richards's creative battles with his demons - women, drugs, and a love-hate relationship with Jagger - gave birth to the sound track of our times, from "Ruby Tuesday" to "Gimme Shelter" to "Slipping Away." This unauthorized account of a life that mirrors the zeitgeist of the second half of the twentieth century finally puts this primary rock artist, and rock itself, in political, cultural, and spiritual perspective, and establishes Richards as one of the most important guitar players and greatest songwriters in the history of rock and roll.