With Robert Plant on lead vocal and Jimmy Page on guitar, Led Zeppelin is one of the most iconic, legendary, and influential rock bands in musical history. Tales of their indulgence in sex, drugs, and excess have swirled for decades.Read more...
With Robert Plant on lead vocal and Jimmy Page on guitar, Led Zeppelin is one of the most iconic, legendary, and influential rock bands in musical history. Tales of their indulgence in sex, drugs, and excess have swirled for decades. In this definitive oral history of the band, Barney Hoskyns finally reveals the truth about Led Zeppelin, paring away the myths and describing what life was really like for four young men on top of the world, enjoying fame on a scale that not even the Beatles experienced as a touring live act. Through fresh new interviews with the surviving band members, close friends, their tour manager, and scores of other fascinating characters, Hoskyns provides deep insights into the personalities of the band members and chronicles the group's dramatic rise, fall, and legacy.
- Based on more than 200 interviews with everyone from Robert Plant, Jimmy Page, and John Paul Jones to road manager Richard Cole, their late manager Peter Grant, and many others central to the Zeppelin story
- Features striking photos of the band both on and offstage, many published here for the first time
- Takes a fresh look at Led Zeppelin's music, cultural significance, and legend, as well as the highs and lows of the sex, drugs, and rock and roll lifestyle on the road
- Analyzes the way the band wrote, arranged, and recorded, from how they created the stupendous sound and dynamics on ""Dazed and Confused"" and ""Whole Lotta Love"" to the group's folk-suffused acoustic side embodied in songs like ""Friends"" and ""That's the Way""
- Written by Barney Hoskyns, contributing editor at British Vogue who is the author of the bestselling book Hotel California and the co-founder of online music-journalism library Rock's Backpages
Publishers Weekly® Reviews
- Reviewed in: Publishers Weekly, page .
- Review Date: 2012-08-27
- Reviewer: Staff
This collection of interviews explores Led Zeppelin's music, partying, mysterious aura, and business and interpersonal relationships. Starting with two sessions players (Jimmy Page, John Paul Jones) joining forces with two English country rockers (Robert Plant, Bonham) and their meteoric rise to popularity, then their drug-fueled tours and ultimate demise, Hoskyns (Hotel California) leaves no stone unturned. He does an especially great job finding people who knew the band members before they were famous and their voices paint a dynamic picture of what American blues meant to the British rock scene. Through the rest of the work, the balance of quotes comes from the band's management, roadies, and families/groupies, which means that while there are a lot of great anecdotes and stories, the focus often turns to the business and social aspects of the band's world. For those less interested in the rock and roll lifestyle and more into music, there are some nice passages about Zep's recording, production, and songwriting methods that help to bring their songs to life. While Page, Plant, and Jones spoke to Hoskyns, only Plant, who explains why he remains opposed to getting the band back together, truly opens up about his feelings, making this a fitting if just slightly incomplete history of one of rock's most enigmatic bands of all time. (Nov.)