Regular price: $20.66

Membership details Membership details
  • A 30-day trial plus your first audiobook, free.
  • 1 credit/month after trial – good for any book, any price.
  • Easy exchanges – swap any book you don’t love.
  • Keep your audiobooks, even if you cancel.
  • After your trial, Audible is just $14.95/month.
OR
In Cart

Publisher's Summary

Around about September of 1948, Mr and Mrs Cyril Wakeman had an early night. And some time later, at Perivale in Middlesex, Mrs Wakeman produced a bonny baby son. They named him Richard, but he quickly became known as Rick.

Rick was a likable little fellow who had a talent for the piano (and for making trouble), and music became his life. Later, he joined a popular music group called Yes and became a legend.

Much later, he became a Grumpy Old Man who appears on Countdown, hosts a hugely popular radio show on Planet Rock and performs a one-man show telling stories about his rather extraordinary life.

That's where this book you comes in. Mr Wakeman is simply one of the great storytellers of our age - let's face it, he has some fabulous material. It seemed a shame that some of the funniest yarns should not be more widely known. So he accepted some cash and here we are.

Curl up by the fire with a Grumpy Old Rockstar and your nearest and dearest. We defy you not to listen and laugh.

©2008 Rick Wakeman (P)2008 Random House Audiobooks

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

Overall

  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    39
  • 4 Stars
    10
  • 3 Stars
    5
  • 2 Stars
    3
  • 1 Stars
    2

Performance

  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    36
  • 4 Stars
    5
  • 3 Stars
    1
  • 2 Stars
    1
  • 1 Stars
    2

Story

  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    33
  • 4 Stars
    6
  • 3 Stars
    2
  • 2 Stars
    0
  • 1 Stars
    3
Sort by:
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

This Curmudgeon's favorite "Grumpy Old Rock Star"

Would you consider the audio edition of Grumpy Old Rockstar and Other Wonderous Stories to be better than the print version?

Absolutely! Why would anyone NOT want to hear Rick's own voice reading the book rather than hearing some silly professional narrator or random VIH (Voice in Head) stumble through such a flavorful text?

What does Rick Wakeman bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

Didn't you read my answer to your first question?!

Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

Not really "laugh"-- more like "chortle." An occasional "guffaw."

Ok, maybe more than once I ended up like Uncle Albert (from Mary Poppins... not the Paul McCartney one), splitting a gut and gasping for breath. Not for the timid, this book

Any additional comments?

As the "Corner Office Curmudgeon," if not a "Grumpy Old Entrepreneur," I'm at least known as a "snarky Uncle Horace" to many a tech start-up founder and the VC community. And yet I found virtually NOTHING to complain about!

Well, get off if my lawn anyway!

I'm a proud, if a bit gruff child of the 70's and prog rockaholic myself, Rick Wakeman has always been an enigma who in his later years has been reborn as a radio/TV etc. celebrity and has ended up yes (no pun intended) reminding me of snarky Uncle Horace indeed.

Settle in for a spider web of interconnected quirky stories delivered by a grand storyteller and legendary contrarian non-conformist who always seemed to be at the center of near mythical calamities and bizarre going-on associated with the excess of the time and place. I imagine many, many a late night pub outing (non-alcoholic, of course) could be filled with his banter. Should be good for three or four more books, at least.

Can't wait for the audio version-- nothing else will do-- of the author reading the sequel. Until then I guess I'll just have to be satisfied to follow the Premier League and catch another ARW gig.

But if that fat ol' geezer chick with the faded Strawbs T-shirt that was "sitting" in front of me at the last show is there again and spends the night on her feet dancing (more like shuffling) and blocking my view of the "stout" fellow wearing a cape playing keyboards, I'll have to thump her boney head and tell her to squeeze back into her seat. Same with her reed-thin middle-aged companion (who despite all logic, reason and conceivable imagination appeared to be her daughter with a permed, slightly less gray hairstyle) wearing a Union tour tee tied into a halter top.

Sheesh. No respect for elderly, let alone the music. Kids these days..

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Fantastic

Great read/listen, grew up in the 70s when the music business was a powerful industry. Rick Wakeman is not only a super talented musician but equally talented story teller. Highly Recommended!

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Rick Wakeman: Office Bloody Rocker

Rick Wakeman delivers a collection of anecdotes from his amazing 50 year career that at times had me wiping tears from eyes but those were tears of laughter because these are some of the best unfiltered rock stories I've ever heard! Wakeman has no axe to grind here and his tales are full of folly,fondness and admiration for the many of the colorful characters he has encountered and how he has seen the world change from his days playing gigs behind the iron curtain to 100,000 seat arenas with Spinal Tap inspired stage sets.

"Rocky Wigwam" as one promoter called him is a complete 180 from how I had perceived him (snooty art rocker) but in turn is quite the affable english rascal one would expect to find at the neighborhood pub captivating the crowd with his hilarious tales, which after a year of Audible listens about serial killers, post apocalyptic worlds, monsters, killer robots, endless tragedies and scientific wonders were a breath of fresh air... unless of course you were in YESes dressing room...(get the book)

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Love this, such a great telling of his experience.

Such a great telling of his experiences. The production quality made it easy for me to hear.

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    1 out of 5 stars

Unbelievable

Rick Wakeman is an excellent story teller without a doubt. And that's all you'll get here, hence the subtitle. If you're looking for ANY biographical information about Rick Wakeman, any of the musicians he's worked with or any of the music he's made, look elsewhere. This is a guy recounting tales of thoughtless, narcissistic man-children on tour. Many of the stories I find unbelievable. And when most of the author's life has been soaked in alcohol to an extreme level, how can you believe him? How credible is his memory? Great reader, tedious stories - most of which aren't even that "wild."

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Great fun form the golden age of rock and roll.

Rick's narration really brings these stories to life.I am so glad that he did not use a professional narrator, it would have ruined the stories and lost half of the fun. If you like rock and roll and especially if you are a yes fan this is a must listen.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Arthur
  • Simi Valley, CA, United States
  • 09-24-16

A real hoot

Quite enjoyable this one was, and an entertaining presentation in the reading by Mr Wakeman himself. I wish there would be another installment on Audible by Wakeman at some point.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • John
  • South River, NJ, United States
  • 04-20-15

Wasn't a Rick Wakeman fan, until now!

Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

Absolutely. This is one of the funniest books I have ever "read". Rick's life and bizarre experiences are beyond belief. What a life! And his storytelling style is spot on for the material.

What did you like best about this story?

Drinking airplanes dry.

Which scene was your favorite?

Probably smuggling Soviet captains uniforms out of Russia.

Any additional comments?

This is a book that anyone would enjoy. Even if you aren't a Wakeman fan, even if you don't like Yes, or prog rock, you will love the craziness of a life beyond anything you could imagine. Booze, money and a Keith Moon-like personality make for some interesting moments. And yes, Keith Moon does thrash a restaurant in this book.

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars

Entertaining vignettes from a charmed life.

Would you recommend this book to a friend? Why or why not?

Yes

If you???ve listened to books by Rick Wakeman before, how does this one compare?

Only book I've read by Rick

Which character ??? as performed by Rick Wakeman ??? was your favorite?

Rick

Any additional comments?

Wakeman does a fine job narrating bringing his autobiographical stories to life. Some insights into the Yes years but mostly a series of short stories about his career. Fun stories from another era.

  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    1 out of 5 stars
  • susan
  • Kamloops, British Columbia, Canada
  • 11-07-12

No comparison with Keith or Eric

I was so looking forward to this listen as it came highly recommended;however I think my friend had read it rather than listened to it. Rick does himself a huge disservice by reading it himself. He isn't a natural reader and his delivery is irritating. He also is just not funny when he's reading passages he obviously thinks should have us rolling in the aisles.I gave up after His Russian escapade.Rick should have kept to his day job.

0 of 1 people found this review helpful

Sort by:
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Donald
  • 05-30-09

Slow car trips to hear more of this

A great and funny listen, mostly in fairly short chapters that are ideal when driving to work. I find myself driving slower in order to listen a little longer.
Rick narrates his life that could have gone so wrong like many other talents have but so far has come out on top. Long may it continue.
I am not a fan of his music but this book makes him a favourite author, let's hope for more.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Justin
  • 12-06-09

Hillarious !

One of hte best books ive downloaded, made me crack a few belly laughs as well as some seriously interesting stoaries about ricks life !

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • trixie
  • 08-24-09

a great storyteller

Rick Wakeman is good value! You're always in for a great time when he shows up on radio and TV. This was one of the most enjoyable author-read audiobooks I've heard in a long while. Sequel, please!

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Bub58
  • 09-17-18

A natural

Very enjoyable, Rick is a good entertainer and a great laugh - Have seen him live when telling such anecdotes inbetween mysical pieces

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Bignose2
  • 06-22-18

Really enjoyed, great stories.

Little dramatic in delivery sometimes but enthusiasm was nice. Would have liked tiny bit more detail about his career but perhaps that is another book.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • D J Essen
  • 05-13-18

very funny stories

nice easy listen, very entertaining. was something I looked forward to being able to find time to listen to.

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars
  • sam
  • 04-24-18

Hmmm

Love Rick and his music and his wit I just felt that even though it’s all poss true it had to much gloss on it bravado if you like but a good listen non the less

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • A. Morris
  • 11-23-17

Anecdote packed !

Great listen. Some highly amusing anecdotes. Jack (or Rick?)-anory style story telling " are you sitting comfortably children? then I'll begin. What a life ( and near death)!

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • GS
  • 09-02-17

Wonderous Stories

Wonderfully read and very, very funny. What a life. Rick Wakeman a national treasure. Follow him on twitter for a daily smile.

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Mark
  • 07-25-17

Funny Old Rockstar

Rick is a national treasure and most of the time this memoir is a hoot.
True or not it's worth your time even if Rick's biggest fan is probably his good self!

Sort by:
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Anonymous User
  • 01-11-18

Must Listen Book

Rick’s Stories and the way he explains them brings everything you want from a rock biography.
Very enjoyable listen which is highly recommended.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Paul
  • 02-28-17

Rick Wakeman is the best (I never give 5 stars)

Very funny very moving. If you are a fan of Rick Wakeman when you start the book you will be by the end.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Thesle
  • 12-19-14

An hilarious riot from start to finish

Rick Wakeman has certainly not led a dull life and has many interesting stories to tell. This book will have you laughing repeatedly and is well worth a listen and a re-listen.

As Rick Wakeman narrates the book you get to see his eagerness for life, even as he recounts circumstances that could have brought an end to it for him.

You don't have to be a fan to enjoy the book but every fan will find it a purchase they wouldn't be without.