• Walk This Way

  • Run-DMC, Aerosmith, and the Song That Changed American Music Forever
  • By: Geoff Edgers
  • Narrated by: Geoff Edgers
  • Length: 6 hrs and 51 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook
  • Categories: Arts & Entertainment, Music
  • 4.3 out of 5 stars (36 ratings)
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Publisher's Summary

Washington Post national arts reporter Geoff Edgers takes a deep dive into the story behind "Walk This Way", Aerosmith and Run-DMC's legendary, groundbreaking mashup that forever changed music.

The early 1980s were an exciting time for music. Hair-metal bands were selling out stadiums, while clubs and house parties in New York City had spawned a new genre of music. At the time, though, hip-hop's reach was limited, an art form largely ignored by mainstream radio deejays and the rock-obsessed MTV network. 

But in 1986, the music world was irrevocably changed when Run-DMC covered Aerosmith's hit "Walk This Way" in the first rock/hip-hop collaboration. Others had tried melding styles. This was different, as a pair of iconic arena rockers and the young kings of hip-hop shared a studio and started a revolution. The result: something totally new and instantly popular. Most importantly, "Walk This Way" would be the first rap song to be played on mainstream rock radio. 

In Walk This Way, Geoff Edgers sets the scene for this unlikely union of rockers and MCs, a mashup that both revived Aerosmith and catapulted hip-hop into the mainstream. He tracks the paths of the main artists - Steven Tyler, Joe Perry, Joseph "Run" Simmons, and Darryl "DMC" McDaniels - along with other major players on the scene across their lives and careers, illustrating the long road to the revolutionary marriage of rock and hip-hop. 

Deeply researched and written in cinematic style, this music history is a must-hear for fans of hip-hop, rock, and everything in between.

©2019 Geoff Edgers (P)2019 Penguin Audio

Critic Reviews

“The question with a book like this - a book that zeroes in on a particular happening or art moment and then extrapolates boomingly outward - is always: Is there enough there? Enough action at the core, that is, and enough concentrically moving energy to prevent the narrative from collapsing in on itself as it stretches to book length? The answer in this case, I am happy to report, is yes.” (The Atlantic)

"[A] fascinating chronicle.... Edgers proves a master storyteller, rushing through the parallel narratives like a hip-hop DJ crossfading between turntables.” (The Boston Globe)

“An exhaustively sourced, briskly entertaining read.” (The Washington Post)  

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A MUST LISTEN/READ

This book is an essential read or listen for those who are fascinated by history and compelled by the kind of story telling that puts you in the room as a fly on the wall.

Mr. Edgers does an incredible job of connecting the dots artistically and culturally at a time of revolutionary change in the music industry. Walk This Way is crafted in a visual style that captures the characters, plot twists and humor while chronicling the good, the unexpected, the ugly and the triumphant.

I was in my late teens producing music when this was happening and couldn’t believe my ears and always wanted to know what was REALLY goin’ on behind the scenes. Geoff has done a great service for production nerds and historians. Walk addresses a myriad of unknowns in this unexpected intersection of Hip Hop and Hard Rock that changed perceptions and DESTROYED the way music was made AND paved the runway for what we’ve been listening to ever since.

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1st time audio book...couldn't have been better

I saw the author on the Dan Patrick Show a couple of weeks ago talking about the book and was curious about it.

I grew up listening to rock in the early 70's and eventually added punk, metal, rap , etc... in the 80's when cassettes made it much easier to buy and share with friends.

The book was excellent in that it gave insight into how the early actors and players in the next wave of music were forced to work together or lose out on what seemed like an exorbitant amount of money back then.

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Unless the story already connects to you save a credit

Probably an interesting enough story if you have some investment in it already. Wasn’t a story I had much connection with going in and the author didn’t hook me in and create that connection. Not a terrible listen but not a memorable one either.