Obvious History: Mick Jagger bought a mansion while high on LSD

Published February 9, 2018

In collaboration with @velvetcokeObvious History is a weekly series which unearths forgotten moments in pop culture’s past, where the famous and the fascinating collided.

Mick Jagger once purchased a mansion while high on LSD. An unpublished 75,000-word memoir written by Jagger in 1981 details the story of how he bought the crumbling estate, Stargroves, for £55,000 from Sir Henry Carden.

His first time heading out to Stargroves, Jagger was dating the singer Marianne Faithfull. According to Christopher Sandford’s book The Rolling Stones: Fifty Years, the pair ended up “stopping at various hostelries along the way for a little sharpening up—a joint here, a line there—and arrived at the house to meet the then owner, a rather buttoned-up chap called Sir Henry Garden.”

After realizing he’d purchased a sweeping manor in a druggy stupor, Jagger made the most of it, attempting life as a horse-riding country squire. “Having never ridden a horse before, he leapt on to a stallion, whereupon it reared and roared off ‘like a Ferrari,’” the manuscript’s owner John Blake wrote in The Spectator.

“He gave the stallion a thump on the forehead right between the eyes and slowed it down—otherwise the Stones’ story might have ended differently.”

Stargroves became the storied the site where The Rolling Stones recorded various hits for albums Exile On Main Street, Sticky Fingers, and It’s Only Rock ‘n Roll. Other bands like The Who, Deep Purple and Led Zeppelin also used the residence as a de facto recording studio. Jagger lived there through the ’70s, selling the property in 1976. It was later purchased by Rod Stewart in 1998.

As for the full story of Jagger’s acid trip shopping spree, we will likely never find out, as the singer—who admits his mind has been all but wiped by years of drug use—cannot recall if the manuscript was truly his work.