“There’s not a night goes by that he’s not here”Keith Richards
Exclusive to Stu, the following are excerpts taken from private interviews with Keith Richards during Toronto tour rehearsals and the night before the show in Washington DC on the Forty Licks Tour, 2002.
The thing is that when he died I was waiting for him to visit me. I was staying at Blakes Hotel, just off the Fulham Road. ‘I’ve got to pop into town and see the quack,’ was the way Stu put it. He was going to come down afterwards and see me as he wanted to talk about something. I was waiting, as it was very unlike Stu not to make his appointments. At around three or four in the morning I got a phone call from Charlie, saying, ‘Are you still waiting for Stu?’ I said ‘yeah’. He said, ‘He’s not coming.’ And that’s how I got the news… kind of ironic, in a way, that I was his next destination but he got diverted.
Stu was probably one of the hardest hits I ever had, apart from my son dying. But you go into a sort of anaesthetised blank after a bit. And the first thing I did was get really mad at him, which is my normal reaction with any friend or somebody I love that croaks when they’re not supposed to, as far as I’m concerned. That’s my criteria: you’re not supposed to croak. I mean I’m counting – where’s my shoulders? And I get mad with them for leaving me alone. And that’s the kind of way I’ve always dealt with the close ones dying, and it’s only a cushion. Eventually you do it, and then I think they haven’t really died because I talk to Stu all the time.