Today, 52 years ago, the Rolling Stones’ Mick Jagger and Keith Richards were arrested at Richards’ West Sussex, England, home for drug possession. The bust followed Donovan’s arrest by the same drug squad, led by Norman Pilcher, the previous year, and sparked not only public debate within the rock community, but also within the underground and conservative press. Eric Clapton reportedly escaped arrest by Pilcher who rang his doorbell pretending to be a mailman by fleeing from his back door.
Jagger and Richards, along with Jagger’s then-girlfriend Marianne Faithfull and various friends, including photographer Michael Cooper who shot the Beatles’ Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band album cover, art dealer Robert Fraser, and George and Pattie Harrison, were partying after a Stones recording session at Richards’ country estate, Redlands.
According to the Stones, the raid was a set-up by the British newspaper The News Of The World, which had earlier reported that Jagger had taken LSD at a party thrown by the Moody Blues.
The song above, “Dead Flowers”, taken from Live: Texas, 1972; it’s about heroin, a favourite drug of the Rolling Stones back then.
It’s safe to say Stones have tried it all: pills, papers, powder, and plants. Jagger & Richards know their drugs. And you don’t.
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Sources: KSHE-95 Real Rock Radio.
Featured image via Showbiz CheatSheet.