For the general public guitarist Ron Wood and keyboard player Chuck Leavell still are the 'new guys' within the Rolling Stones, despite the fact that they're working with the band since 1973 and 1981 respectively. In a recent interview with Relix, Chuck Leavell sheds light on his predecessors in the band:
The Stones have a history of great keyboardists and piano players: Ian (Stu) Stewart, Jack Nitzsche, Nicky Hopkins, Billy Preston, Ian McLagan and others that made brief appearances - like my pal Mac Rebennack (Dr.
John) and another one of my heroes, Leon Russell. In the beginning, it
was really Stu’s band, and when I came in, he became my big brother. He
treated me so well and looked after me as the “new guy.” He was such a
great guy, unique individual and fantastic boogie and rock player.
to know Nicky a bit - we were introduced in ‘82 by Ronnie Wood when we
played Wembley Stadium. I was such a big fan and was quite nervous when
we met. He invited me to lunch the next day, and we went - just the two of
us. We traded stories, and we wrote letters to each other after that
for years. I always called him “The Master of the Motif.” He had this
unbelievable ability to find these little vignettes that just made a
song like 'Angie' and 'She’s A Rainbow'. It’s sad that Stu, Nicky, Billy
and Jack are no longer with us.