Keith Richards hits out at rap music: ‘I don’t like to hear people yelling at me’

Keith Richards has criticised rap music, explaining he doesn’t enjoy “people yelling at me”.

The Rolling Stones guitarist, 79, also took aim at the pop music scene, describing the genre as “rubbish”.

Richards made the comments during an interview with The Telegraph, ahead of the release of the Rolling Stones’ new album, Hackney Diamonds.

The musician stated that he listens to a wide variety of musical genres, including blues, jazz and classical, but drew the line at the pop charts.

“I don’t want to start complaining about pop music,” he said. “It’s always been rubbish. I mean, that’s the point of it. They make it as cheap and as easy as possible and therefore it always sounds the same; there’s very little feel in it.”

Richards continued: “I like to hear music by people playing instruments. That is, I don’t like to hear plastic synthesised muzak, as it used to be known, what you hear in ­elevators, which is now the par for the course.”

He then turned his ire to rap music, adding: “I don’t really like to hear people yelling at me and telling me it’s music, aka rap. I can get enough of that without ­leaving my house.”

Richards, along with bandmates Mick Jagger, 80, and Ronnie Wood, 76, announced the forthcoming release of Hackney Diamonds at a press conference in Hackney earlier this month.

Speaking at the event, the Stones paid tribute to their late drummer Charlie Watts, who died in 2021.

“Ever since Charlie’s gone it’s different – he’s number four, he’s missing. Of course, he’s missed, incredibly,” Richards said.

Keith Richards onstage in March 2022 (Getty Images for Love Rocks NYC)
Keith Richards onstage in March 2022 (Getty Images for Love Rocks NYC)

“But thanks to Charlie Watts we have [replacement drummer] Steve Jordan – his recommendation, that if anything should happen to him, he’s your man. He’s been a friend of ours, I’ve worked with Steve so it was a natural progression. It would’ve been a lot harder without Charlie’s blessing on that, you know.”

Watts’s drumming features on two tracks on the album, which will be the band’s first studio album of original material in 18 years.

Fans in attendance at the press conference were also given a first look at the music video for the Stones’ new single “Angry”, which stars Euphoria actor Sydney Sweeney.

The album was also confirmed to feature a number of high-profile guest artists, including Lady Gaga, Paul McCartney – said to be playing bass – and Stevie Wonder.

Hackney Diamonds is scheduled for release on 20 October.