UP AND DOWN WITH THE ROLLING STONES by Tony Sanchez
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UP AND DOWN WITH THE ROLLING STONES

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KIRKUS REVIEW

Sanchez was the ""paid companion"" of Keith Richards, lead guitarist of the Rolling Stones. He is able to describe life with the Stones on their way to the top because he filled a very important need. Through underworld connections he could supply them with the enormous quantities of cocaine, heroin, marijuana, acid, and a host of less familiar pharmaceuticals, essential to their lifestyle. He also listened to their troubles, slept with their women, fixed legal complications, and tried to deflect their less attractive whimsies--hooking people on drugs, double-crossing monsters, and ordering people beaten or killed. He tells us that he was a friend, not a dealer, and that he disapproved of such excesses and tried to stop them quietly. Very quietly--for he seems never to have protested. But this sterling soul is well-equipped to describe the ""arrogantly hedonistic attitude"" the Stones so carefully cultivated. When Andrew Oldham, an early manager, saw their potential, he said: ""We're going to make you exactly the opposite of those nice clean tidy Beatles."" Brian Jones, who formed the group, was ""into orgies, lesbians, and sado-masochism,"" but Richards needed heroin and Jones' example to master the art. And Mick Jagger, a drop-out from the London School of Economics with a fake cockney accent, ""lived his prim, prissy, bourgeois life with his baroness' daughter and worried in case someone spilled coffee on his Persian carpets."" Sanchez makes an occasional stab at the Stones' social importance--""No other musicians in history had wielded such power for revolution""--but he dwells mostly on drugs, sex, hype, and the endless procession of Jaguars, Bentleys, Rolls, Hovercrafts, and Nazi staff cars. The violence and calculation of the Stones' concerts (especially Altamount) are described in lovingly gory detail. It is hard to decide whether the Stones' lifestyle, or Sanchez' account, is more unbelievable.

Pub Date: Aug. 28th, 1979
Publisher: Morrow