Jeff Beck nearly joined The Rolling Stones at one point, but Keith Richards explained that the late musician was too much of a “individualist” for the collaborative spirit needed in his band.
Aside from his impressive solo career, the late blues rock pioneer Jeff Beck also played with a number of other extraordinarily skilled bands, such as the legendary Yardbirds and Beck, Bogert & Appice.
However, rumor has it that he almost joined The Rolling Stones themselves. When Mick Taylor, who had previously replaced the band’s late heavyweight Brian Jones in 1969, left soon after the release of the “It’s Only Rock ‘n’ Roll” LP, the ill-fated union of the two groups was intended to happen in 1974.
Speaking to Guitar World in a recent interview, Keith Richards said that it never would’ve worked either way. Reflecting on the audition, the guitarist said:
“We felt that Jeff had his own furrow to plow and that he was not a team man. He was a soloist to the max. He was such an individualist. It wouldn’t have worked with the Stones at all. We’re all about teamwork.”
Similarly to Jeff Beck himself, who on several occasions noted it was never meant to be but still praised his colleagues’ work, Richards has nothing but the best to say about the late icon:
“But don’t get me wrong, he was a tremendous player. The odd times we got together, I was always amazed by the stuff that he did with his tremolo bar. He was one of the best, man, and he’s going to be missed.”