The Reason Chuck Berry Punched Keith Richards In The Face
Chuck Berry was a guitarist known to be one of the pioneers of rock and roll who passed away at the age of 90 in 2017. Also known as the ‘father of rock and roll,’ he had a major influence on a lot of rock and roll legends by uniting rhythm and blues into rock and roll.
Berry achieved his fame in the 1950s but the peak of his career was in the 1970s when he released ‘My Ding-a-Ling’ and took his place several times in the greatest of all-time lists of Rolling Stone. After his death, many rock stars such as Elvis Presley, Jimi Hendrix, and bands like The Rolling Stones and The Beatles made covers of his songs as a tribute.
There is no doubt that The Rolling Stones’ Keith Richards and Mick Jagger had a major feeling towards the late guitarist. The Stones may not have been famous until this day if it wasn’t for Chuck Berry. Even before they encountered him, Richards first saw Jagger on a train and began talking about Berry who bought them closer and gave them the idea to form a band.
What Happened After Richards Met Berry?
Keith Richards was roaming around Berry’s dressing room in New York and that is when he noticed Berry’s guitar. Being a fanboy and also a guitar player, Richards claimed that he wanted to touch the guitar just to see how it feels like. That is when Berry walked in and punched the guitarist in the face.
Here is how he told the story:
“We saw him play in New York somewhere, and afterward I was backstage in his dressing room, where his guitar was lying in its case. I wanted to look, out of professional interest, and as I’m just plucking the strings, Chuck walked in and gave me this wallop to the frickin’ left eye, but I realized I was in the wrong. If I walked into my dressing room and saw somebody fiddling with my ax, it would be perfectly all right to sock them, you know? I just got caught.”
Richards did not have a hard feeling towards Berry’s action and in fact, thought that he had the right to. He related to him as a guitar player and stated that he would probably do the same. He also spoke about this funny event at ‘The Tonight Show’ with Jimmy Fallon in 2014 and made the audience laugh a lot.
You can watch Richard’s conversation with Fallon below.