- I'd play whenever I could get my hands on an electric guitar; I was trying to pick up rock'n'roll riffs and electric blues-the latest Muddy Waters. I'd spend hours and hours on the same track, back again, and back again.
- What interested me about Chuck Berry was the way he could step out of the rhythm part with such ease, throwing in a nice, simple riff, and then drop straight into the feel of it again. We used to play a lot more rhythm stuff. We'd do away with the differences between lead and rhythm guitar. You can't go into a shop and ask for a "lead guitar". You're a guitar player, and you play a guitar.
- I thought it was ludicrous to take one of those gongs from the establishment...it's not what the Stones is about, is it? I don't want to step out on stage with someone wearing a fucking coronet and sporting the old ermine. I told Mick, It's a fucking paltry honour.
- There are certain guys that are band players and there's certain guys that ain't. If there's anybody lazier than me, it's Eric (Clapton).
- I looked upon myself, in a sort of romantic and silly way, as like a laboratory.
- I thought rock and roll was an unassailable outlet for some pure and natural expression of rebellion. It used to be one channel you could take without ever havin' to kiss arse, you know?
- I was number one on the Who's Likely To Die list for 10 years. I mean, I was really disappointed when I fell off the list.
- The idea of retiring is like killing yourself. It's almost like Hari Kari. I intend to live to a 100 and go down in history.
- BBC Newsnight 2005; reported in "In quotes: Keith Richards", BBC (April 4, 2007).
- I don't encourage anybody to do what I do, you know? Why should you? More for me!
- Interview 2006.
- This morning on Dartford station a guy I knew at primary school came up to me. He's got every record Chuck Berry made. He is called Mick Jagger.
- From letter to Keith's aunt Keef comes clean, The Times p4, 15 Oct 2010.
- Rap — so many words, so little said. What rap did that was impressive was to show there are so many tone-deaf people out there. All they need is a drum beat and somebody yelling over it and they're happy. There’s an enormous market for people who can't tell one note from another.
- Reported in Jon Blistein, "Keith Richards: Rap Is for 'Tone-Deaf People'", Rolling Stone (September 3, 2015).
About Keith Richards
- New Rule: Airplane black boxes must now be made out of Keith Richards. The man, who has taken more drugs than Whitney Houston, Rush Limbaugh and Robert Downey, Jr., combined, recently fell out of a tree, and then crashed a jet ski. And yet, somehow, that cigarette never fell out of his mouth. What is this guy still running on? I've got to know. Because I'm beginning to think the future of medicine isn't injecting stem cells, it's injecting heroin.
- Real Time with Bill Maher, May 12, 2006 (Season 7, Episode 9)
- ...how come Keith Richards still walks? Explain that Mr. Surgeon General! You never mention Keith do you? Aah, a little hole in the theory there! Surgeon General says, "Drugs are bad, drugs are evil!...except for that guy, they work real good for him, -but the rest of you...
- Keith Richards is shooting heroin into his eyeballs and still touring all right! I'm getting mixed signals! I picture nuclear war and two things surviving: Keith and cockroaches! (does Keith Richards impression) "Where did everybody go-o? I saw a bright light and thought we were on ..."
- Bill Hicks, "Dangerous" audio 1990
- I was reading an interview with Keith Richards in a magazine and in the interview Keith Richards intimated that kids should not do drugs. Keith Richards! Says that kids should not do drugs! Keith, we can't do any more drugs because you already fucking did them all, alright! There's none left! We have to wait 'till you die and smoke your ashes! Jesus Christ! Talk about the pot and the fuckin' kettle.
- I know there is a cure for whatever bio terrorism they throw at us and it lies within Keith Richards I do know that. He is the only man on the planet that could go (imitates Keith snorting something), "Anthrax? All right! Doesn't go with my E. coli but fuck." Keith makes The Osbournes look fucking Amish. He's insane. I've seen Keith go to a drug dealer and the drug dealers go, "I'm out, man. I'm sorry. I have nothing left. Supposedly, he goes to Switzerland and changes his blood. Not like one pint but like a fucking Chevrolet all of it. I just wanna know who gets his blood. Some old Swiss man's going, "HEIDI!! We've gotta go out tour, you bitch! We've gotta pay for Mick's babies! COME ON!!!" Because I know this. I know that we may all be dead and gone, Keith will still be there with 5 cockroaches. Keith will go, "Ya know, I smoked your uncle! Did ya know that? Fucking crazy!"