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English rocker Ron Wood became the Rolling Stones' guitarist in the mid-1970s, and is now a two-time Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductee.
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Ron Wood was born on June 1, 1947 in Hillingdon, London. He joined a number of English bands as a guitarist and bassist — most notably Faces and The Rollingstones — and produced many hits during his career. Wood also produced solo albums and, as a gifted painter, held art exhibits throughout the United States and elsewhere. For his musical talents, Wood was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame twice.
"I like it when journalists are nice to me, and it's happening more and more."
"I can't be left unsupervised."
Ronald David Wood, better known as Ron Wood, celebrated three milestones in 2012—his second induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, his 65th birthday and the 50th anniversary of the Rolling Stones, which Wood joined in 1975. The British rocker's achievements have brought him a long way away from his humble roots. Born in Hillingdon, London, on June 1, 1947, Wood was the youngest of three boys raised in what has been referred to as a "family of gypsies."
Wood started out as an artist, first displaying a talent for painting when he was 3 years old, but his interest in art piqued when he was an undergraduate at the Ealing School of Art in London. Wood's love of art was not unrivaled, though: He had an affinity for creating music. At 17, he began his musical career with The Birds, a rhythm and blues band that was popular in the United Kingdom in the mid-1960s.
After The Birds disbanded in 1967, Wood joined The Jeff Beck Group as a bassist, along with vocalist Rod Stewart. He toured with the Beck band on several occasions and released two albums with them before parting ways. After Wood was fired from The Jeff Beck Group in 1969 (despite being rehired only weeks later), he and Stewart went on to join another English rock band, Faces (initially called "the Small Faces"). With their two newest members, Faces met with major success, regularly touring the United Kingdom, Europe and the United States. The band was among the top-grossing live acts from 1970 to 1975.
According to an article published in Phonograph Record Magazine in June 1975, "Wood's career really began when he was fired from the Beck band, and unleashed a distinctive slide guitar on the first cut of Rod Stewart's first solo album."
During his final year with Faces, 1975, Wood began working with the Rolling Stones. Two years earlier, he had collaborated with Mick Jagger and Keith Richards, who contributed to his first solo album, I've Got My Own Album To Do. In 1974, Rolling Stones guitarist Mick Taylor departed, and several months later, Wood was brought in to participate in recording sessions for the group's upcoming album, Black and Blue. He also toured North America with the group. Faces disbanded in December 1975, and in February 1976, Wood became an official Rolling Stone.
Throughout his musical career, Wood released more than a dozen solo albums and was credited as a co-writer for more than a dozen songs, including Stay With Me for Faces, and It's Only Rock 'n Roll (But I Like It) for the Stones. In September 2010, when his latest album, I Feel Like Playing, was released, Wood spoke to Vanity Fair about the impetus for making solo albums.
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