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When Giants Walked the Earth: A Biography of Led Zeppelin | [Mick Wall]

When Giants Walked the Earth: A Biography of Led Zeppelin

They were the last great band of the '60s and the first great band of the '70s. They rose, somewhat unpromisingly, from the ashes of the Yardbirds to become one of the biggest-selling rock bands of all time - and eventually paid the price for it, with disaster, drug addiction, and death.
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Publisher's Summary

Led Zeppelin rose to become one of the biggest-selling rock bands of all time. Mick Wall, respected rock writer and former confidant of band members Jimmy Page and Robert Plant, unflinchingly tells the story of the band that wrote the rulebook for on-the-road excess and eventually paid the price for it, with disaster, drug addiction, and death.

Wall also recounts, in a series of flashbacks, the life stories of the five individuals that made the dream a reality: Jimmy Page, Robert Plant, John Paul Jones, John Bonham, and their infamous manager, Peter Grant.

Finally, the full, shocking story is told from the inside.

©2009 Mick Wall; (P)2009 Blackstone Audio, Inc.

What the Critics Say

"So this is the big one: a fat, juicy biography of the biggest band ever....Mick Wall, the veteran rock journalist, lays it all bare in a book that can only be described as definitive." (Daily Telegraph)
"That Wall can add so much fresh detail to the Led Zep story is in itself an extraordinary achievement. That he manages to humanize these planet-striding giants while doing so puts this book into the 'definitive' category." (Classic Rock magazine)

"Wall painstakingly traces Zeppelin's development and musical pedigree. His access and attention to detail make this a definitive work….an essential source for anyone eager to learn about the era when rock stars ruled the world." (Publishers Weekly)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

3.9 (172 )
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4.2 (124 )
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Performance
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  •  
    David Hoboken, NJ, United States 09-14-11
    David Hoboken, NJ, United States 09-14-11 Member Since 2004
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    "Must read for Led Zeppelin Fans"

    I love Led Zeppelin, so when I saw this book on Audible, I had to get it. The stories in this book at just delicious--these guys were the quintessential out of control British rock stars, and they relished their roles to the hilt. The stories of their sexual escapades, while not for the faint of heart, are really funny and crazy.
    I wasn't wild about the fake first person flashback sequences, and I wish the author had just written the information in a more conventional fashion, but the book has so much interesting material that I would highly recommend it. Be sure to have you Led Zeppelin library available on iTunes so you can listen to the tracks as they are discussed.

    5 of 5 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Elliot Lethbridge, AB, Canada 04-25-11
    Elliot Lethbridge, AB, Canada 04-25-11 Member Since 2007
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    "There was alot I didn't know about Led Zep"

    I enjoyed this book from start to finish. They are truly one of the greatest rock and roll bands onstage and off. Crazy stories, check. Early life of each artist, check. Rise to power and back down again, check.

    Highly recommend.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Rich 02-08-11
    Rich 02-08-11
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    "Led Zeppelin Bio"

    I have always been a huge Led Zeppelin fan and this is the most in-depth biography of the band. Gives details of all the key-players who influenced Page, Bonham, Jones and Plant as well as in-depth insight into the lives of all who contributed to their success, mystery, and to their demise. A real behind-the-scenes story. A must-listen for any Zeppelin fan!!

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    H. S. Moore Charleston, SC, USA 09-12-13
    H. S. Moore Charleston, SC, USA 09-12-13 Member Since 2013

    Life is Love is Life

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    "A Whole Lotta Overloaded LOVE!!!"
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    If You wanna know every fact about Zeppelin then this is the book to listen to.This author did so much research down to every date, time and crazy antics of what the coming of life in rock history this band is even today.
    I grew up and own almost every Led Zeppelin album as they were released so it was fun to listen in and revisit those times back in the late 60's and early 70's. Some of the book became a bit cumbersome with facts but I feel this author wanted to give his perspective as best he could on what he believes really happened.
    Some of the material I am not too sure about and he did seem to give a sort of negative spin on Jimmy Page but all in all it is a good book.


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    Jimmy Page, Robert Plant, John Paul Jones and Bonzo


    What about Simon Vance’s performance did you like?

    He did a great job and this book needed a British accent to help out with the full vision of this band


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    No there is no way you can listen to this in one sitting, Too many facts and information, details.


    Any additional comments?

    Led Zeppelin will go down in history as one of the greatest bands of all time 100 years from now.
    This was a time where there were no computers mixing the sound and what they endured to get the music to the level they did is almost amazing today (with all the technology that is used now in the recording industry).
    It is also becoming more rare to find bands that write their own songs, play their own instruments, and sing and perform it and stay together as long as they did.
    If you want to know what music of the real rock and roll era then this is the audio for you. After you listen to this you will have to go listen to their music because you will even further appreciate what they went thru to get it to the level they did from such a meager beginning.
    Peace~and A Whole Lotta Love~

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Amazon Customer FRESNO, CA, United States 06-06-13
    Amazon Customer FRESNO, CA, United States 06-06-13 Member Since 2011

    I am a professional photographer, a motorcyclist, and an avid reader and listener. I enjoy history, business books and

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    "One great book, great naration."

    I had had this book in my wish list for about a year before I decided that it was time to listen to it. I grew up in the era of Led Zeppelin, and one of my life's biggest regrets is that I never saw them live, but that being said, I was never a hug fan. I recognized that they were the biggest band of that era, and that they had something that no other band had, that certain mystique, that certain quality that held them up as rock gods, thus the title of the book is appropriate. My rock god was Ritchie Blackmore and Ronnie James Dio, but that is nether here nor there.

    This was one of my favorite audio books, and I listen to a lot of them, I knew a little of the story, but this gave a very in depth portrait of the players in the story, the band and back players. By the end of the book I was feeling a bit sorry for Jimmy Page, who seemed to never be able to let Led Zeppelin go, and Page who was just sick of it. They had climbed the mountain, unlike anyone else, they had reached the very top, and then, for several of them, life was no longer fun. Life at the top is not all that it is cracked up to be. Drugs, booze, death all took their tole.

    Simon Vances narration is perfect for this book. I do agree that if you do not like off color language, as one reviewer said, this is not the book for you, but in the context used her, it is just as I would think the players would talk, and the use of first person narration, Vance changes his voice, ever so slightly and for me it was brilliantly used to brake up the normal flow of the book. all in all, a great read,. I was sorry to come to the end of it and will listen to it again sometime.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Rick A. Bissonnette Marquette, MI, United States 12-23-11
    Rick A. Bissonnette Marquette, MI, United States 12-23-11 Member Since 2008

    Husband, Father, Grandfather, Bassist, Fan of Blues and Classic Rock, Avid Reader, Pharmacuetical Rep...

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    "Great listen for any classic rock/Led Zeppelin fan"
    Would you recommend this book to a friend? Why or why not?

    I would recommend to any classic rock fan.


    What was the most interesting aspect of this story? The least interesting?

    The most interesting aspect of the story is how much of a role Jimmy Page played in Led Zeppelin. I found Jimmy Page's interest in occult very interesting.


    Who would you have cast as narrator instead of Simon Vance?

    The guy who does the Geiko Gecko....oh wait they sound the same.


    Was When Giants Walked the Earth worth the listening time?

    Yes


    Any additional comments?

    Freest listen

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    JOHN H. RUSSELL III 06-27-10 Member Since 2008
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    "Great listen"

    I'm listening for the second time. I liked it that much. Informative rock and roll stuff. Zeppelin fans can really appreciate this one.

    3 of 4 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jason Moab, UT, USA 03-22-10
    Jason Moab, UT, USA 03-22-10
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    "author too obsessed w occult"

    this could be about 1/2 the length -- some interesting background, but more gossip and he focuses way too much on Crowley and the occult -- obviously an obsession with the author, and while mildly interesting to me, not what I was looking for... this book desperately need an abridged version that cuts out all the occult crap and talks more about the music and the band -- also the conceit of pretending to read from the diaries of each band member gets tiresome... especially after the 20th time! Don't buy this audiobook.

    11 of 20 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Dr. Dream 04-26-14
    Dr. Dream 04-26-14
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    "Pretty good"
    Would you consider the audio edition of When Giants Walked the Earth to be better than the print version?

    Only listened to the audio version. I'd like to see the book to review and make some notes.


    Would you be willing to try another book from Mick Wall? Why or why not?

    If the topic interested me.


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    You bet. Some good behind the scenes information, recording info etc... I don't really care about the behavior that much. I want to know about the gear and inspiration for the songs, well the ones they did compose.


    Any additional comments?

    Mick Wall made dumb comments about Alice Cooper and got the Moby Grape release completely wrong.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Paul Roy Burleson Texas 08-30-13
    Paul Roy Burleson Texas 08-30-13 Member Since 2012
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    "What a great story"
    What did you love best about When Giants Walked the Earth?

    I have been a fan of Led Zeppelin for over thirty years and I thought I knew the whole story there was so much insight into the lives of each member of the band.


    What other book might you compare When Giants Walked the Earth to and why?

    Iron Man by Toni Iomi these two storys were happing together during the 70s both groups are mentioned in each book


    Which character – as performed by Simon Vance – was your favorite?

    John Bonam


    If you were to make a film of this book, what would the tag line be?

    All that glitters is not gold


    Any additional comments?

    I hope all fans of Led Zeppelin take the time to enjoy this great book.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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