Mick Jagger and Keith Richards have to be rock and roll’s favourite bickering couple. To start, they’re ridiculous. Their nickname is literally “the Glimmer Twins.” One is a lead singer who still chicken-dances across the stage in skintight outfits and the other a guitarist who dresses like a pirate and whose decades of hard living have gifted him the complexion of a melted candle. Sure, they fight and say things they regret in public, but they don’t split the band and spend the rest of their lives bad-mouthing each other. Instead, they vent their frustration, make up and then head out on a tour that grosses half a billion dollars. Relationship goals, right?
The latest spat between the two comes courtesy of the usual instigator – Richards – who criticized Jagger, 74, for becoming a father for the eighth time, in 2016.
“It’s time for the snip — you can’t be a father at that age,” Richards, 73, told the Wall Street Journal, making a reference to a vasectomy. “Those poor kids!”
The comment, predictably, garnered a lot of attention, prompting an apology. “I deeply regret the comments I made about Mick in the WSJ which were completely out of line,” Richards tweeted. “I have of course apologised to him in person.”
Richards, curiously, had no words for bandmate Ronnie Wood, who became the father of twins in 2016, a day before his 69th birthday. Regardless, with the situation diffused, you can add this rift to the annals of squabbles, rows and tiffs between Mick and Keith, which date back to the mid-1980s, when Jagger dared to branch out and record a solo album, 1985’s She’s the Boss. Richards didn’t like the idea, calling it, “too hard a slap in the face to deliver us,” before going on to release his own disc sans the Stones, Talk is Cheap, three years later.
In 2003, Richards viewed Jagger accepting a knighthood as selling out, noting publicly his, “Cold, cold rage at his blind stupidity … I threatened to pull out of the tour—went berserk, bananas! But, quite honestly, Mick’s fucked up so many times, what’s another fuckup?”