Keith Richards on The Beatles' Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band: 'It's a mishmash of rubbish'

'The Beatles sounded great when they were the Beatles'

Jack Shepherd
Thursday 06 August 2015 14:45
Related video: Gimme Shelter documentary charts The Rolling Stones US tour in 1969
Related video: Gimme Shelter documentary charts The Rolling Stones US tour in 1969

While The Beatles’ 1967 album Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club band is held by many as the greatest album of all time, it still hasn't over rival Rolling Stones guitarist Keith Richards.

In a recent interview, Richards, while talking about the 60’s, takes aim at Sgt. Pepper, along with his own band’s Their Satanic Majesties Request - an album released the same year - calling them a “mismash of rubbish”.

“The Beatles sounded great when they were the Beatles,” he told Esquire. “But there's not a lot of roots in that music. I think they got carried away. Why not? If you're the Beatles in the '60s, you just get carried away—you forget what it is you wanted to do.

Groundbreaking: Sgt Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band

“You're starting to do Sgt. Pepper. Some people think it's a genius album, but I think it's a mishmash of rubbish, kind of like Satanic Majesties—"Oh, if you can make a load of s**t, so can we."

He also spoke about his own bands touring schedule in the sixties, saying at times “3,000 screaming chicks could just wail you out of the whole place.

“Just looking at the crowd, you could see them dragging the chicks out, sweating, screaming, convulsing. Astonishing, even at that age. At the same time, a whole roomful of chicks yelling at you is not so shabby, either.”

Richards also mentioned The Beatles, saying “those chicks wore those guys out. They stopped touring in 1966—they were done already. They were ready to go to India and s**t.”

Earlier this year, The Beatles iconic album, Sgt. Pepper, will be taught to GCSE music students. Britain’s biggest exam board, the AQA, is to make all students study three songs from the album – “Lucy In The Sky With Diamonds”, “With A Little Help From My Friends” and “Within You Without You”.

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