Chuck Leavell Talks About Mick and Keith’s Past Conflicts
via Paste Magazine / Youtube
The perfect, harmonious band NEVER really exists—it’s been debunked ever since the dawn of music, and it wouldn’t exempt our pioneers in the rock and roll scene, not to mention the legendary Stones.
In an interview with Louder Sound, the decade-long live-hate relationship between vocalist Mick Jagger and guitarist Keith Richards was highlighted by their touring keyboardist and musical director Chuck Leavell.
It is common knowledge that Jagger and Richards were an amazing songwriting duo and their shared taste of musical direction paved the way for The Rolling Stones to be the icons they are today. But despite of their strong dynamic, they had their fair share of conflicts as they progressed.
It was in the roaring 80’s when they started to have cracks between them. Jagger apparently had an attitude problem which got on Richards’ nerves; Thus, the guitarist calling Jagger “Her Majesty” or “B*tchy Brenda.” Things were then escalated when Richards said something about Jagger’s ‘tiny penis,’ and made fun of his solo album. Their professional relationship within the band was okay, but Jagger never really considered them as a family.
After years and years of arguments, the fire finally started to die down between the two and they never stopped producing and touring worldwide. It has also become evident that they were very supportive of each other, on and off the stage. Richards described it as an ‘indescribable’ friendship.
This was something that Leavell was amazed by. He revealed that there was tension between the pair when he joined them years ago; but when it comes to music, Richards and Jagger always meet halfway and things would be solved despite other conflicts present. According to Leavell:
“It wasn’t just an obligation to a label; it was about making music.”
Time has passed and the cracks between Jagger and Richards’ relationship has seemed to heal, and found their common ground to fully understand each other. On Leavell’s perspective, the pair’s relationship has significantly changed and has seen them behave like siblings, even during band rehearsals.