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"The World's Blackest White Man." "The World's Most Elegantly Wasted Human Being." "The Human Riff." These descriptions are all part of the myth surrounding the legendary songwriter and rhythm guitarist of the Rolling Stones. A veteran observer of the rock scene on both sides of the Atlantic, Kris Needs has interviewed Keith Richards regularly for 25 years. Drawing on archives, interviews, and his encyclopedic knowledge of the Stones' discography, he reveals the complex man behind the myth, from blues-infatuated working class kid to world-renowned musician nearly ruined by heroin to present-day elder statesman of rock who continues to find personal redemption in music. Dozens of photographs and interviews with the legend himself make this the most up-to-date biography of the "Soul of the Stones."