Keith Richards is in “peak performance” mode after putting down the cigarettes.
Richards, 78, revealed that he quietly quit smoking two years ago after 55 years of lighting up. The Rolling Stones guitarist, who utilized nicotine patches to make the transition, has experienced the benefits of performing with clear lungs.
“It’s funny, I don’t think about it much anymore…. Sometimes, you know, a bell rings and something inside says, ‘Hey pal, enough.’ I just put the hammer on it,” Richards told “CBS Sunday Morning”, per People. “Luckily, I don’t miss it, and that makes me feel good. Until I started rehearsing for the tour last August, and then I realized that I had 10 times more wind.
“A lot more air in the lungs and in the voice, more stamina.”
Richards also opened up about the death of bandmate Charlie Watts, 80, in August.
“I think he’d been trying to keep it under the wraps for a while last year, so that it came as quite a shock,” Richards said. “He had had a round with cancer a year or two before, and he’d beat that one. He just got hit with a double whammy. Bless his soul.”
Watts, often regarded as one of the greatest drummers of all time, died at a London hospital on Aug. 24. He was surrounded by his family.