Keith Richards has criticized his old friend and fellow Rolling Stone Mick Jagger for accepting a knighthood.
In an interview published in the December issue of the music magazine “Uncut,” the Stones’ guitarist was quoted as saying, “I thought it was ludicrous to take one of those gongs (awards) from the establishment when they did their very best to throw us in jail,” in a reference to his and Jagger’s 1967 conviction on drug offenses, later overturned on appeal.
“Just as we were about to start a new tour, I thought it sent out the wrong message. It’s not what the Stones is about, is it?” he said. “I told Mick, ‘It’s a… paltry honor.'”
“He defended himself by saying that (Prime Minister) Tony Blair insisted that he took the knighthood. Like that’s an excuse. Like you can’t turn down anything. Like it doesn’t depend how you feel about it.”
Jagger said Tuesday that his busy touring schedule has finally allowed him to arrange a date to collect his award from Queen Elizabeth II at Buckingham Palace: Dec. 12.
Richards, who was once briefly imprisoned for allowing marijuana to be smoked in his home – another conviction that was later overturned – said he doubted he would ever be offered a similar honor.
“Because they know what I would’ve said… they knew I’d tell them where they could put it,” he said.