Keith Richards was glad to reunite Chuck Berry and Johnnie Johnson
Keith Richards says getting Chuck Berry back with his longtime collaborator Johnnie Johnson was a great “triumph”.
The Rolling Stones guitarist worked with the iconic musicians when he served as the musical producer and band leader for the 1987 film ‘Hail! Hail! Rock ‘n’ Roll’, and despite the pair falling out they were convinced to come together for rehearsals for the project.
Speaking to Steven Van Zandt at the YouTube Space about the moment Johnnie joined them in the studio, he said: “Suddenly I realized I had the original makings of all of Chuck Berry’s great stuff together. I had the two of them.
“Because I know how important Johnnie was in the making of Chuck Berry’s records - ‘Sweet Little Sixteen’, ‘Maybellene’ - from the beginning. To put them back together was like a triumph.”
Keith, now 75, took on the project after going solo in the 1980s when The Rolling Stones took a break when relations between himself and the iconic rock ‘n’ roll group’s frontman Sir Mick Jagger, also 75, reached an all time low during the making of their album ‘Dirty Work’, which the former described as “forget about it times”.
The guitarist previously admitted that he had no idea how difficult it is to front a band, until he decided to do his own thing.
He said: “All that pressure of being the frontman. I mean, I remember some disastrous shows, Vegas, I’d blown the throat out totally and somehow we managed to do it and there was still a standing ovation.
“But you learn a lot about being the frontman, that nonstop ... with the Stones I can poke myself out in the front when I want and retire with Charlie with the music.
“Not to have that option ... I did understand a lot of the pressure on a frontman.”