After 60 years of music, Keith Richards and the Rolling Stones have influenced countless musicians, and not just with their tracks. The Stones have faced several challenges over the years, and they have overcome them. But before influencing other bands, Richards and the Rolling Stones were inspired by American blues and rock artists, and Chuck Berry was a big one. However, Richards’ favorite Berry song is not the one most people would think of upon hearing his name.
The Rolling Stones found inspiration in American blues and rock musicians such as Chuck Berry
Like many English bands that formed in the early 1960s, the Rolling Stones took American rock music, synthesized it, and turned it into something different. The Stones have never hidden their influences.
On their first album, 1962 England’s newest hitmakers, the Stones covered Buddy Holly, Willie Dixon and Chuck Berry, among others. They covered Berry’s “Carol” on this album, then redid “Around and Around” and “You Can’t Catch Me”. They didn’t cover it, but a Berry song inspired “(I Can’t Get No) Satisfaction,” which is one of the Rolling Stones’ biggest hits.
Still, Richards’ favorite song, Chuck Berry, isn’t one of rock ‘n’ rollers’ original greatest hits.
Keith Richards’ favorite song about Chuck Berry is a “not obviously Chuck Berry” song
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Berry wrote classic rock hits such as “Johnny B. Goode”, “You Never Can Tell” and “No Particular Place to Go”. This is just a small sample of Berry’s tracks that helped shape rock ‘n’ roll as we know it.
Yet Richards’ favorite Berry song isn’t one of his signature songs. Instead, it’s the slowed-down blues of “Wee Wee Hours,” a song in which the piano takes center stage. Richards picked out a handful of essential tunes for the BBC radio program Desert Island Discsand he explained why “Wee Wee Hours” is his favorite Berry song (per Far):
“‘Little Hours’ [by] Chuck Berry, first a big inspiration to me, and I also thought I’d like to hear something that obviously isn’t Chuck Berry, be surprised. And it always surprised me, this piece, such a supple blues, almost Nat King Cole in style with Johnny Johnson’s brilliant piano.
Keith Richards on his favorite Chuck Berry song
“Wee Wee Hours” may not be one of Berry’s many signature songs. And it might not remind you of Richards’ most famous Rolling Stones licks. Still, it’s not hard to listen to the song and hear the Stones passages. You can almost trace the prominent piano and blues of “Wee Wee Hours” back to two Stones hits – “Angie” and “Honky Tonk Woman.”
Richards’ favorite Berry song may seem obscure, but it’s not hard to hear the influence this song had on the Stones’ music.
What other songs does Keith Richards like?
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Richards’ favorite song, Chuck Berry, isn’t one of the hits, but it does have a Rolling Stones connection. The same goes for many of his other essential songs.
According NMERichards named country legend Hank Williams’ “You Win Again,” Freddie Scott’s “Are You Lonely For Me,” Etta James’ “Sugar on the Floor,” and Little Walter’s blues classic “Key to the Highway.” as essential songs during his Desert Island Discs appearance.
Richards speaks poetically about his favorite Chuck Berry song, but he doesn’t have the same respect for his own work. He once said that another artist made a better version of “(I Can’t Get No) Satisfaction”, which is one of the Rolling Stones’ signature songs. And he and Mick Jagger were both fired Request from Their Satanic Majesties like total trash.
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