Stanley Booth, a member of the Rolling Stones’ inner circle, met the band just a few months before Brian Jones drowned in a swimming pool in 1968. He lived with them throughout their 1969 American tour, staying up all night together listening to blues, talking about music, ingesting drugs, and consorting with groupies. His thrilling account culminates with their final concert at Altamont Speedway—a nightmare of beating, stabbing, and killing that would signal the end of a generation’s dreams of peace and freedom.
But while this book renders in fine detail the entire history of the Stones, paying special attention to the tragedy of Brian Jones, it is about much more than a writer and a rock band. It has been called — by Harold Brodkey and Robert Stone, among others — the best book ever written about the sixties.
In Booth’s new afterword, he finally explains why it took him 15 years to write the book, relating an astonishing story of drugs, jails, and disasters.