AN embarrassed Keith Richards says he was merely sitting on a tree stump rather than climbing up a lofty palm tree when he fell and hit his head while on vacation in Fiji in April.
The mysterious incident led to emergency head s
urgery in New Zealand and the postponement of the Rolling Stones’ summer tour of Europe. Amid a news blackout, rumours emerged that a drunken Richards was trying to gather coconuts and might never play again.
“It’s embarrassing, really,” Richards (62) says in the upcoming issue of Rolling Stone magazine. “I was sitting on this gnarled shrub about 1,83 metres off the ground. I was wet — I’d been swimming. I hit the ground the wrong way, my head hit the trunk, and that was that.”
The guitarist, whose legendary fondness for drugs is surpassed only by his passion for music, described the accident as “just a little stumble along the way”.
“It’s not the first brush with death I’ve had. I guess what I learned is, don’t sit in trees anymore.” The Rolling Stones have just launched the second North American leg of their “Bigger Bang” world tour, which began 13 months ago. They are visiting smaller cities this time around, and were scheduled on Wednesday to play Missoula, Montana.
They will also take a break from stadiums by playing two shows later this month at New York’s Beacon Theatre, for which tickets will be priced at just US$50 and US$35, the band’s spokeswoman said. — Reuter.