GIMME SHELTER Jagger, Richards, Jones (inset)
Are the Rolling Stones behind a successful cabal to shelve an unfavorable book about the band's history and frighten the book's author? Gloria Shepherd seems to think so. Early this year, her rock bio Brian Jones Straight from the Heart: The Rolling Stones Murder caused a minor firestorm in the UK and resulted in her receiving anonymous death threats. Shepherd is now living in remote Colorado, where she remains in semi-hiding.
The book in question centers on the mysterious death of Brian Jones, a founding member of the Stones, and argues that Jones was murdered and law enforcement was bribed to cover it up. Now the book's been banned in the UK under cloudy legal issues, though it remains a strong seller on Amazon's American site.
Following up on a report from last week, Radar tracked down the author-in-hiding to ask her about the alleged threats. She acknowledges that this may all stem from shadowy people in the Rolling Stones organization and not from Mick, Keith, Ronnie, or Charlie directly, but adds, "First I was threatened by their attorneys in letters, getting nasty, personal e-mails ... Then they death threats got really nasty. Before I wrote the book, I was told I was putting my life in danger if I wrote this book. I guess they were right."