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so if keith was such a junkie (and he was) why do we never see tracks or bruising in photos?
Posted by: swiss ()
Date: October 23, 2010 11:57

In anticipation of tonight's San Francisco Art Exchange Keith photo exhibition, I was glancing at images of handsome Keith and realized--admiring his bare sinewy torso and arms--that in photos of him, even at his junkiest, you never see track marks or other evidence of shooting up.

How's that possible?

- swiss



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 2010-10-23 11:58 by swiss.

Re: so if keith was such a junkie (and he was) why do we never see tracks or bruising in photos?
Posted by: Edith Grove ()
Date: October 23, 2010 12:05

Did you see the Matt Lauer interview?

Keith talked about something that I speculated on just a few days ago, that the junkie reputation was largely overblown.


Re: so if keith was such a junkie (and he was) why do we never see tracks or bruising in photos?
Date: October 23, 2010 12:14

Hey Swiss.....enjoy the show at SFAE, should be some fantastic photos on show -


Re: so if keith was such a junkie (and he was) why do we never see tracks or bruising in photos?
Posted by: bustedtrousers ()
Date: October 23, 2010 12:22

Quote
swiss
In anticipation of tonight's San Francisco Art Exchange Keith photo exhibition, I was glancing at images of handsome Keith and realized--admiring his bare sinewy torso and arms--that in photos of him, even at his junkiest, you never see track marks or other evidence of shooting up.

How's that possible?

- swiss

Excellent point/question swiss. And regardless of whether or not Edith's theory is the case, Keith did shoot up, quite a bit I think, yet you never see any physical indication like you mention in any photos. How did he achieve that?

Re: so if keith was such a junkie (and he was) why do we never see tracks or bruising in photos?
Posted by: swiss ()
Date: October 23, 2010 12:40

Quote
Edith Grove
Did you see the Matt Lauer interview?

Keith talked about something that I speculated on just a few days ago, that the junkie reputation was largely overblown.

I did see it, thanks! (thought it was ok - a mainstream show like Today has to keep the talk pretty mainstream and accessible)

What I heard was Keith saying many people still think he's a junkie, and that rap is something he lugs around like "a ball and chain." I don't think he was implying he merely dabbled in junk. We know that's not the case. He went down the rabbit hole and all but disappeared for a stretch of years there. He could always kick pretty easily, from what I've read, so he may have done so on and off, like when he was living in Switzerland and skiing a lot, or times when he was doing, as he has said recently, large quantities of booze and Tuinals, but I don't think his drug use is all that exaggerated.

Tho....on the third hand....I have wondered the same thing as you are. Like, at Nellecote, people make sweeping statements about Keith and his dope usage. But from what we know they'd often play and record all night, hang out for a while and maybe eat the next morning (maybe hop in Mandrax and grab a bite in Italy across the way), maybe fall into bed around 11 or noon, get up around 6 or 8pm, eat something and hang with the entourage, then by all accounts go upstairs to tuck in Marlon, but also (I think maybe) just to be by himself, just to carve out some time alone, being the introvert he is, and he'd shoot up, relax, and as he's said plant himself in the bog with his guitar, for a few hours. If there were laptops and i Phones then maybe he would've been playing video games and wasting time tweeting or on facebook connecting with fans, or watching random youtube videos. My point being, along the lines of what you're saying, I don't think he was one solid junk mess for 20 years.

So maybe I contradicted myself. Or maybe not. I think Keith Richards did substantial quantities of heroin. But that's not all he did for decades, tho some periods were more saturated with getting high than others.

- swiss



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 2010-10-23 12:56 by swiss.

Re: so if keith was such a junkie (and he was) why do we never see tracks or bruising in photos?
Posted by: paulywaul ()
Date: October 23, 2010 12:44

Quote
swiss
In anticipation of tonight's San Francisco Art Exchange Keith photo exhibition, I was glancing at images of handsome Keith and realized--admiring his bare sinewy torso and arms--that in photos of him, even at his junkiest, you never see track marks or other evidence of shooting up.

How's that possible?

- swiss

Because he did not inject intravenously, but intramuscularly ... that's what accounts for the line of atrophied muscle that is clearly visbile on both of his upper arms.

[ I want to shout, but I can't hardly speak ]

Re: so if keith was such a junkie (and he was) why do we never see tracks or bruising in photos?
Posted by: swiss ()
Date: October 23, 2010 12:53

Quote
bustedtrousers
Quote
swiss
In anticipation of tonight's San Francisco Art Exchange Keith photo exhibition, I was glancing at images of handsome Keith and realized--admiring his bare sinewy torso and arms--that in photos of him, even at his junkiest, you never see track marks or other evidence of shooting up.

How's that possible?

- swiss

Excellent point/question swiss. And regardless of whether or not Edith's theory is the case, Keith did shoot up, quite a bit I think, yet you never see any physical indication like you mention in any photos. How did he achieve that?

thanks and hello my friend, BustedT : ) I look forward to any insights here. Will also ask around at the Keith photo exhibition tonight - not a viable conversation-starter at most places, but doable at SFAE, where many knowledgeable hip peeps will be.

The only thing I know almost certainly is Keith didn't shoot up intravenuously. I believe he did skin "pops" (subcutaneous injections) and maybe then graduated to intranmuscular injections? (which I think I read did something really weird to his skin and shoulder muscles - his skin is really puckered or something on his upper arms, I think I read some years ago?) but don't know 100% what that means - but maybe that accounts for no bruising or tracks.

- swiss

Re: so if keith was such a junkie (and he was) why do we never see tracks or bruising in photos?
Posted by: Green Lady ()
Date: October 23, 2010 12:54

Keith talks about not mainlining right at the end of the first published extract from his book: it's a l-o-n-g extract and maybe people didn't read past the notorious "tiny todger" bit...

The first time I took heroin

I have no clear recollection of the first time I had heroin. It was probably slipped in with a line of coke, in a speedball – a mixture of coke and smack. If you were around people who were used to doing that in one line, you didn’t know. You found out later on. “That was very interesting last night. What was that? Oh.” That’s how it creeps up on you. Because you don’t remember. That’s the whole point of it. It’s suddenly there.

They don’t call it “heroin” for nothing. It’s a seductress. You can take that stuff for a month or so and stop. Or you can go somewhere where there isn’t any and you’re not really that interested; it’s just something you were taking. And you might feel like you’ve got the flu for a day, but the next day you’re up and about and you feel fine. And then you come into contact again, and you do it some more. And months can pass. And the next time, you’ve got the flu for a couple of days. No big deal, what are they talking about? That’s cold turkey? It was never in the front of my mind until I was truly hooked.

It’s a subtle thing. It grabs you slowly. After the third or fourth time, then you get the message. And then you start to economise by shooting it up. But I’ve never mainlined. No, the whole delicacy of mainlining was never for me. I was never looking for that flash; I was looking for something to keep me going. If you do it in the vein, you get an incredible flash, but then you want more in about two hours.

And also you have tracks, which I couldn’t afford to show off. Furthermore, I could never find a vein. My veins are tight; even doctors can’t find them. So I used to shoot it up in the muscles. I could slap a needle in and not feel a thing. And the spank, the smack, is, if you do it right, more of a shock than the actual injection. Because the recipient reacts to that and meanwhile the needle has come and gone. Especially interesting on the butt. But not politically correct.

Re: so if keith was such a junkie (and he was) why do we never see tracks or bruising in photos?
Posted by: swiss ()
Date: October 23, 2010 12:55

Quote
Manofwealthandtaste
Hey Swiss.....enjoy the show at SFAE, should be some fantastic photos on show -


Thank you, Manofwealthandtaste. I dropped my camera into the sea some weeks ago but may snag a new one and snap some images to share here.

- swiss

Re: so if keith was such a junkie (and he was) why do we never see tracks or bruising in photos?
Posted by: JJFlash2010 ()
Date: October 23, 2010 12:58

.......



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 2010-10-23 13:53 by JJFlash2010.

Re: so if keith was such a junkie (and he was) why do we never see tracks or bruising in photos?
Posted by: swiss ()
Date: October 23, 2010 12:59

Quote
paulywaul
Quote
swiss
In anticipation of tonight's San Francisco Art Exchange Keith photo exhibition, I was glancing at images of handsome Keith and realized--admiring his bare sinewy torso and arms--that in photos of him, even at his junkiest, you never see track marks or other evidence of shooting up.

How's that possible?

- swiss

Because he did not inject intravenously, but intramuscularly ... that's what accounts for the line of atrophied muscle that is clearly visbile on both of his upper arms.

whooops! what PW says - I was writing something similar while you, paulywaul, were posting smiling smiley

Re: so if keith was such a junkie (and he was) why do we never see tracks or bruising in photos?
Posted by: JJFlash2010 ()
Date: October 23, 2010 13:01

Oh I didn't realize paulywaul answered the question either.

Re: so if keith was such a junkie (and he was) why do we never see tracks or bruising in photos?
Posted by: swiss ()
Date: October 23, 2010 13:03

Quote
Green Lady
Keith talks about not mainlining right at the end of the first published extract from his book: it's a l-o-n-g extract and maybe people didn't read past the notorious "tiny todger" bit...

The first time I took heroin

I have no clear recollection of the first time I had heroin. It was probably slipped in with a line of coke, in a speedball – a mixture of coke and smack. If you were around people who were used to doing that in one line, you didn’t know. You found out later on. “That was very interesting last night. What was that? Oh.” That’s how it creeps up on you. Because you don’t remember. That’s the whole point of it. It’s suddenly there.

They don’t call it “heroin” for nothing. It’s a seductress. You can take that stuff for a month or so and stop. Or you can go somewhere where there isn’t any and you’re not really that interested; it’s just something you were taking. And you might feel like you’ve got the flu for a day, but the next day you’re up and about and you feel fine. And then you come into contact again, and you do it some more. And months can pass. And the next time, you’ve got the flu for a couple of days. No big deal, what are they talking about? That’s cold turkey? It was never in the front of my mind until I was truly hooked.

It’s a subtle thing. It grabs you slowly. After the third or fourth time, then you get the message. And then you start to economise by shooting it up. But I’ve never mainlined. No, the whole delicacy of mainlining was never for me. I was never looking for that flash; I was looking for something to keep me going. If you do it in the vein, you get an incredible flash, but then you want more in about two hours.

And also you have tracks, which I couldn’t afford to show off. Furthermore, I could never find a vein. My veins are tight; even doctors can’t find them. So I used to shoot it up in the muscles. I could slap a needle in and not feel a thing. And the spank, the smack, is, if you do it right, more of a shock than the actual injection. Because the recipient reacts to that and meanwhile the needle has come and gone. Especially interesting on the butt. But not politically correct.

Hi Green Lady, thanks for posting this. I hadn't read any excerpts yet...was saving myself for the whole banana. But this is totally interesting and solves all mysteries. thanks again smiling smiley
-swiss

Re: so if keith was such a junkie (and he was) why do we never see tracks or bruising in photos?
Posted by: JJFlash2010 ()
Date: October 23, 2010 13:05

.......



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 2010-10-23 13:54 by JJFlash2010.

Re: so if keith was such a junkie (and he was) why do we never see tracks or bruising in photos?
Posted by: crumbling_mice ()
Date: October 23, 2010 13:06

Also, many heroin users choose not to use their arms, for obvious reasons and will dig into thighs, bums, feet - you name it!


Re: so if keith was such a junkie (and he was) why do we never see tracks or bruising in photos?
Posted by: Cocaine Eyes ()
Date: October 23, 2010 13:45

Quote
swiss
In anticipation of tonight's San Francisco Art Exchange Keith photo exhibition, I was glancing at images of handsome Keith and realized--admiring his bare sinewy torso and arms--that in photos of him, even at his junkiest, you never see track marks or other evidence of shooting up.

How's that possible?

- swiss

Hey swiss - When he was busted in Toronto in 1977, he said he only shot up in the upper arms (where we all get needles from doctors). Then, at his Oshawa gig in 1979, Keith wore a red sleeveless t-shirt and we all could see the long "gash" of track in his upper left arm, just under the shoulder. I have old photos of him at Oshawa and the track line is really clear.

And....enjoy the show in San Fran!!

Ooops, I didn't realise the question had already been answered!!smoking smiley

------------------------
It's just that demon life.......



Edited 2 time(s). Last edit at 2010-10-23 14:39 by Cocaine Eyes.

Re: so if keith was such a junkie (and he was) why do we never see tracks or bruising in photos?
Posted by: aprilfool ()
Date: October 24, 2010 00:40

If I have a good memory, Performance movie, Anita shoots herself in her buttocks. They lived together and surely used the same way of shooting.

Re: so if keith was such a junkie (and he was) why do we never see tracks or bruising in photos?
Posted by: MKjan ()
Date: October 24, 2010 00:51

There have been some clear photos of his upper left arm, at the shoulder...looks like the surface of the moon.

Re: so if keith was such a junkie (and he was) why do we never see tracks or bruising in photos?
Posted by: 24FPS ()
Date: October 24, 2010 02:34

He wore a sleeveless shirt on stage when I saw him solo in 1988 in L.A. His upper arms looked like hell. I was shocked he would reveal them like that.

Re: so if keith was such a junkie (and he was) why do we never see tracks or bruising in photos?
Posted by: scottkeef ()
Date: October 24, 2010 02:48

You can really see the scarring of the upper outside arms clearly on numerous 81/82 tour photos also...

Re: so if keith was such a junkie (and he was) why do we never see tracks or bruising in photos?
Posted by: marchbaby ()
Date: October 24, 2010 03:28

Quote
swiss
In anticipation of tonight's San Francisco Art Exchange Keith photo exhibition, I was glancing at images of handsome Keith and realized--admiring his bare sinewy torso and arms--that in photos of him, even at his junkiest, you never see track marks or other evidence of shooting up.

How's that possible?

- swiss


Keith commented on one of the NY Times excerpts of Life that his veins are so small, he injected it into his muscles and butt.

Mick's rock, I'm roll.

Re: so if keith was such a junkie (and he was) why do we never see tracks or bruising in photos?
Posted by: bustedtrousers ()
Date: October 24, 2010 03:30

Quote
swiss
Quote
bustedtrousers
Quote
swiss
In anticipation of tonight's San Francisco Art Exchange Keith photo exhibition, I was glancing at images of handsome Keith and realized--admiring his bare sinewy torso and arms--that in photos of him, even at his junkiest, you never see track marks or other evidence of shooting up.

How's that possible?

- swiss

Excellent point/question swiss. And regardless of whether or not Edith's theory is the case, Keith did shoot up, quite a bit I think, yet you never see any physical indication like you mention in any photos. How did he achieve that?

thanks and hello my friend, BustedT : ) I look forward to any insights here. Will also ask around at the Keith photo exhibition tonight - not a viable conversation-starter at most places, but doable at SFAE, where many knowledgeable hip peeps will be.

The only thing I know almost certainly is Keith didn't shoot up intravenuously. I believe he did skin "pops" (subcutaneous injections) and maybe then graduated to intranmuscular injections? (which I think I read did something really weird to his skin and shoulder muscles - his skin is really puckered or something on his upper arms, I think I read some years ago?) but don't know 100% what that means - but maybe that accounts for no bruising or tracks.

- swiss

Thank you for the kind words swiss, and I'm sorry I had/have no real insights on this. I could talk all day about when Keith may of started, when he supposedly quit, how he quit, etc., but when it comes to how he physically took it, I always assumed he mainlined- shot into his veins, primarily his inner arm at the elbow. I thought that's what all junkies did, and then went through a rotation around the body, always looking for fresh veins. After you brought this up, I realized how little I knew about that aspect, and how little has been written about it with Keith.

I knew you could shoot in between toes and fingers, but I still assumed it always had to be in a vein. I had no idea you could just shoot it in your ass cheek, or upper arm, like a flu or some other shot you'd get from a doctor. Am I understanding correctly that that is skin-popping? I've always wondered what that term meant. The whole vein thing, especially for people with a major habit, seems like it can be such an ordeal, always having to find a fresh one. I've seen more than one movie or TV show where a junkie freaks out because his veins have dried up. Not to mention cops and whoever spotting them as a junkie from the marks mainlining leaves. Hollywood dramatizations sure, but I know such things actually happen. After reading Keith's explanation, I don't understand why all heroin users don't just shoot it in the muscles.

Thank you to Green Lady and the others who helped answered this question. I'm surprised it was done so quickly, I thought it would either disappear, or turn into a multi-page thread of speculation and off-topic meanderings. I really appreciate the knowledge gained through this one, swiss. Thanks.

Re: so if keith was such a junkie (and he was) why do we never see tracks or bruising in photos?
Posted by: Marie ()
Date: October 24, 2010 04:59

When did Keith become a heroin addict? In Rock and Roll Circus he looks under the influence, but that would be too early right? 1968? Also, did Anita influence him or vice versa?

Re: so if keith was such a junkie (and he was) why do we never see tracks or bruising in photos?
Posted by: Rockman ()
Date: October 24, 2010 05:04

.....Photoshop....one of the handiest things since Whiteout....

ROCKMAN

Re: so if keith was such a junkie (and he was) why do we never see tracks or bruising in photos?
Posted by: bustedtrousers ()
Date: October 24, 2010 11:31

Quote
Marie
When did Keith become a heroin addict? In Rock and Roll Circus he looks under the influence, but that would be too early right? 1968? Also, did Anita influence him or vice versa?

I don't know who influenced who, but as far as when it happened, who knows. Based on what I've read, I'm guessing it took Keith at least a couple of years to become a full blown junkie, who could no longer just take it or leave it as he pleased. In Stanley Booth's True Adventures book, Keith got him high on the 69 tour, and Stanley quotes him as saying at that time that he only occasionally did it. I think this is accurate, because his footage in Gimme Shelter, and photographs from then too, show him to be consistently coherent and healthy looking. But by the time of the Marquee farewell show in 71, he looked pretty rough, and I think was showing signs of a problem.

The Season In Hell book, which needs to be taken with a grain of salt, says a go-cart accident, which scraped the shyte out of Keith's back and drove him to seek relief from the pain, started him back on it after a significant break. While that book is full of ridiculous inaccuracies, I still don't think it was until sometime between 71-72 that he got hooked.

Read True Adventures Of The Rolling Stones, Up And Down With The Rolling Stones, and Season In Hell. The last two especially need to be taken with a grain of salt, but they all paint a fairly consistent timeline and story about Keith, which gives you a pretty good idea of when and how he became a junkie.

Also, Victor Bockris's book about Keith too. A lot of people criticize Bockris as just re-hashing articles and interviews, but if that is the case, and if he does so fairly accurately, then his book is a pretty good one stop reference for info on Keith. That's how I took it. Don't believe everything you read, but when you start to see certain consistencies among separate people who write about him, I think you can piece together a reasonably accurate history of Keith.

Of course, only Keith knows the true story, but like anyone, even his version is biased towards his memory. Like any good story, there's the versions of everyone involved, and then there's the truth.

Re: so if keith was such a junkie (and he was) why do we never see tracks or bruising in photos?
Posted by: Addicted ()
Date: October 24, 2010 12:44

Quote
marchbaby
Quote
swiss
In anticipation of tonight's San Francisco Art Exchange Keith photo exhibition, I was glancing at images of handsome Keith and realized--admiring his bare sinewy torso and arms--that in photos of him, even at his junkiest, you never see track marks or other evidence of shooting up.

How's that possible?

- swiss


Keith commented on one of the NY Times excerpts of Life that his veins are so small, he injected it into his muscles and butt.

That's correct.
And heroin injected into muscles kills muscle fibres after a while. If you look at his over arms, you see some muscles are practically gone.



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 2010-12-06 14:28 by Addicted.

Re: so if keith was such a junkie (and he was) why do we never see tracks or bruising in photos?
Posted by: Doxa ()
Date: October 24, 2010 13:08

Quote
bustedtrousers
Quote
Marie
When did Keith become a heroin addict? In Rock and Roll Circus he looks under the influence, but that would be too early right? 1968? Also, did Anita influence him or vice versa?

I don't know who influenced who, but as far as when it happened, who knows. Based on what I've read, I'm guessing it took Keith at least a couple of years to become a full blown junkie, who could no longer just take it or leave it as he pleased. In Stanley Booth's True Adventures book, Keith got him high on the 69 tour, and Stanley quotes him as saying at that time that he only occasionally did it. I think this is accurate, because his footage in Gimme Shelter, and photographs from then too, show him to be consistently coherent and healthy looking. But by the time of the Marquee farewell show in 71, he looked pretty rough, and I think was showing signs of a problem.

The Season In Hell book, which needs to be taken with a grain of salt, says a go-cart accident, which scraped the shyte out of Keith's back and drove him to seek relief from the pain, started him back on it after a significant break. While that book is full of ridiculous inaccuracies, I still don't think it was until sometime between 71-72 that he got hooked.

Read True Adventures Of The Rolling Stones, Up And Down With The Rolling Stones, and Season In Hell. The last two especially need to be taken with a grain of salt, but they all paint a fairly consistent timeline and story about Keith, which gives you a pretty good idea of when and how he became a junkie.

Also, Victor Bockris's book about Keith too. A lot of people criticize Bockris as just re-hashing articles and interviews, but if that is the case, and if he does so fairly accurately, then his book is a pretty good one stop reference for info on Keith. That's how I took it. Don't believe everything you read, but when you start to see certain consistencies among separate people who write about him, I think you can piece together a reasonably accurate history of Keith.

Of course, only Keith knows the true story, but like anyone, even his version is biased towards his memory. Like any good story, there's the versions of everyone involved, and then there's the truth.

Really good account of the issue here.

As far as Keith's own phenomenological perceptions go (not to mention his memory), like said, that doesn't necessarily capture the truth either... It could be that when finally one sees that one is having a problem there, some other people close to him had made the same observation earlier.

- Doxa

Re: so if keith was such a junkie (and he was) why do we never see tracks or bruising in photos?
Posted by: tonterapi ()
Date: October 24, 2010 13:52

Quote
Marie
When did Keith become a heroin addict? In Rock and Roll Circus he looks under the influence, but that would be too early right? 1968? Also, did Anita influence him or vice versa?
According to Helen Spittal Brian said to her that he had never seen Keith that high on drugs as he had been during the RnR Circus. Brian had been worried because he knew what path it would lead to and he didn't like it at all. It does not say what drug he was on but heroin seem to have been a thing for Lennon/Ono during that time. So it's not unlikely that Keith also had found it by then.

IMHO Keith does look like he is under the influence of something at RNRC. His skin is pale yellow for starters!



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 2010-10-24 13:54 by tonterapi.

Re: so if keith was such a junkie (and he was) why do we never see tracks or bruising in photos?
Posted by: 71Tele ()
Date: October 24, 2010 17:27

Quote
tonterapi
Quote
Marie
When did Keith become a heroin addict? In Rock and Roll Circus he looks under the influence, but that would be too early right? 1968? Also, did Anita influence him or vice versa?
According to Helen Spittal Brian said to her that he had never seen Keith that high on drugs as he had been during the RnR Circus. Brian had been worried because he knew what path it would lead to and he didn't like it at all. It does not say what drug he was on but heroin seem to have been a thing for Lennon/Ono during that time. So it's not unlikely that Keith also had found it by then.

IMHO Keith does look like he is under the influence of something at RNRC. His skin is pale yellow for starters!

If you like at The Dirty Mac (Lennon, Clapton, Richards) from R&R Circus it looks like a veritable junkie party. They all look doped up.

Re: so if keith was such a junkie (and he was) why do we never see tracks or bruising in photos?
Posted by: slew ()
Date: October 24, 2010 17:35

Keith says it was 30 years ago. I'd be willing to wager that he has not been completely clean for the last 30 years!

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