CBC Digital Archives

Maggie Trudeau goes clubbing with the Rolling Stones

It's only rock 'n' roll but we like it! For nearly 40 years, Mick and the boys have had a torrid love affair with Toronto. From secret rehearsals and club gigs, to Keith Richards' heroin bust in 1977 and partying with Margaret Trudeau, the world's greatest rock 'n' roll band has called Toronto its home-away-from-home, and delivered the one thing they're famous for: Satisfaction. Ladies and gentlemen... The Rolling Stones.

media clip
It's one of the biggest scandals in Canadian history and As It Happens is part of the press having a field day. On their sixth anniversary, March 4, 1977, Prime Minister Pierre Elliott Trudeau and wife Margaret Trudeau go their separate ways. The public learns about the split in dramatic fashion, when Maggie is spotted at a Rolling Stones concert at Toronto's El Mocambo club. As heard in this retrospective As It Happens clip, Mick Jagger and both Trudeaus attempt to defuse the scandal. 
• The relationship between Pierre and Margaret Trudeau is one of the most publicized in Canadian history. The couple met in Tahiti in 1967 and were married in secrecy in 1971. Margaret Sinclair was 22 (half Pierre's age), a flower child who spoke no French and had little interest in politics. The press followed their every move during their six-year marriage, the birth of the couple's three children, a very public divorce and Pierre Trudeau's death in 2000.

• Margaret Trudeau described her scandal with the Rolling Stones in her 1979 autobiography Beyond Reason. She claims she ran into Ron Wood in a hotel corridor and he invited her to take pictures of the band at the El Mocambo. She says that the following day she looked after Keith Richards' son Marlon when Keith overdosed in the hotel, and later had the band over to "drink, play dice, smoke a little hash."

• Margaret went to New York the next day and says she never saw the band again.

• The press suggested the event was more like a sex orgy. Margaret Trudeau says the incident branded her as a "promiscuous, irresponsible wife."

• Margaret went on to become a professional photographer, writer, actress and television host.
Medium: Radio
Program: As It Happens
Broadcast Date: Sept. 22, 1980
Guest(s): Mick Jagger, Pierre Elliott Trudeau, Margaret Trudeau
Host: Alan Maitland
Duration: 2:23

Last updated: February 19, 2014

Page consulted on September 24, 2014

All Clips from this Topic

Related Content

Getting the Games: Canada's Olympic Bids, ext...

It might be the most ruthless of all Olympic competitions: the race for the right to host the ...

1971: Canada's first successful plane hijacki...

An armed gunman reroutes Air Canada jet to Cuba.

1978: Keith Richards convicted for heroin pos...

Rolling Stones guitarist Keith Richards pleads guilty to heroin possession in a Toronto courtr...

1974: 28 million rotten eggs

Agriculture minister Eugene Whelan is in the frying pan over an egg scandal.