Wild Tales

A Rock & Roll Life
Narrated by: Graham Nash
Length: 12 hrs and 33 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (605 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

From Graham Nash - the legendary musician and founding member of the iconic bands Crosby, Stills & Nash and The Hollies - comes a candid and riveting autobiography that belongs on the reading list of every classic rock fan.

Graham Nash's songs defined a generation and helped shape the history of rock and roll - he’s written over 200 songs, including such classic hits as "Carrie Anne," “On A Carousel,” "Simple Man," "Our House," “Marrakesh Express,” and "Teach Your Children." From the opening salvos of the British Rock Revolution to the last shudders of Woodstock, he has rocked and rolled wherever music mattered. Now Graham is ready to tell his story: his lower-class childhood in post-war England, his early days in the British Invasion group The Hollies; becoming the lover and muse of Joni Mitchell during the halcyon years, when both produced their most introspective and important work; meeting Stephen Stills and David Crosby and reaching superstardom with Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young; and his enduring career as a solo musician and political activist. Nash has valuable insights into a world and time many think they know from the outside but few have experienced at its epicenter, and equally wonderful anecdotes about the people around him: the Beatles, the Stones, Hendrix, Cass Elliot, Dylan, and other rock luminaries.

From London to Laurel Canyon and beyond, Wild Tales is a revealing look back at an extraordinary life - with all the highs and the lows; the love, the sex, and the jealousy; the politics; the drugs; the insanity - and the sanity - of a magical era of music.

©2013 Graham Nash (P)2013 Random House Audio

What members say

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

The Best of the Recent Rock Biographies

After listening to Keith Richard's and Clapton's bios in addition to Billy Crystal's, I liked Nash's the best. Nash was always the most articulate of Crosby Stills & Nash. Which is remarkable for a guy who never completed high school. He doesn't waste lot of time discussing his drug use like in Keith Richard's bio, nor does he spend a lot of time bragging about his children and worrying about his imminent demise like Billy Crystal. lnstead, Nash gives us the condensed version of what we came for, which is his rise to rock and roll stardom 1st through the Hollies and then with Crosby Stills & Nash. It's a remarkable story. How the Hollies 1st big U.S. hit Bustop was written by the 14 yr. old Graham Gouldman, and how Nash was blown away when the kid performed it for him. And the 1st time he sung together with Crosby and Stills at Joni Mitchell's house. He also brings us up to date with his current pursuits.

What made the audiobook for me was that it was read by Nash himself, a really nice personal touch.

9 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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A Great Story for fans of the Hollies and CSN!

What did you love best about Wild Tales?

I loved hearing Graham's story from himself, rather than a paid reader, as was the case with Clapton's audio book and Keith Richards'. Graham is generous to the many people who came into his life and is full of wonder and excitement about how his life changed when he entered the music business. Escaping the rigidities of British society and learning to express himself musically is a major theme of his account, which led to his leaving the Hollies and coming to America and joining Steve Stills and David Crosby to start a new group, CSN. For those of us who are long time Hollies fans, his detailed account of the events leading to his departure is something we've wanted to hear from him, personally, for a long time. It was hard to stop listening to his story, and I give it a full five stars. The only negative was his constant use of the "F" word, which was ubiquitous! So, be prepared!

What other book might you compare Wild Tales to and why?

The audio versions of Clapton, Richards and Townshend autobiographies. Those where the author is reading his own book, are the best. Townshend's book is an example, whereas the Clapton book and Keith Richards is read by a paid reader. Even so, I recommend them all to those of us who are "children of the 60s"!

Have you listened to any of Graham Nash’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

This is his only performance that I am aware of for a book.

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

Yes, absolutely, although I was not able to. It is over 14 hrs long. A great buy.

11 people found this helpful

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Brilliant

Where does Wild Tales rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

Very Highly

What did you like best about this story?

Great to hear Nash reading and singing. The beautiful illusion is the feeling that Graham Nash -and other readers of their autobiographies like Stephen Fry- are sitting in the same room as you telling stories from their lives (in my case via the audiobook played through iPhone speakers in my shirt pocket) while I am doing the cooking and sipping a glass of nice South Australian wine.

Which scene was your favorite?

Meeting David Crosby and building their great friendship

Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

His childhood

4 people found this helpful

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The Inside Story

If you could sum up Wild Tales in three words, what would they be?

Trip through time

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

Graham's personality and his viewpoint came through clearly. He made it come alive through the whole story.

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

A movie could never live up to the reality.

Any additional comments?

This book took me back in time to relive what happened then. Having been at several of his concerts, with and without the full band, it made me feel pleasantly nostalgic. Especially about a Crosby/Nash/Carole King show in the 70's. I could hear the friendship I saw on many occasions.This was one of my best purchases and I can't wait to tell others about it.

3 people found this helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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Hated the Band, Loved the Book!

Would you say that listening to this book was time well-spent? Why or why not?

The fact that Graham Nash was not a rock-and-roll genius made this book all the better! Nash's story of a working-class kid from the Manchester slums who found success with The Hollies and mega-success with Crosby Stills Nash and Young is so interesting because he wasn't and isn't a genius. What Graham Nash has always been is curious, appreciative of talent, embracing life's opportunities, positive-minded, forward looking. Every time a new opportunity presents itself, Graham Nash says, "That's interesting, that's cool, let me try that!" and then works hard once he's in the situation.

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

You really feel he's telling us his story without mediation. It's very intimate and friendly and draws you in. That North England/West Coast accent is disarming, to say the least!

Was Wild Tales worth the listening time?

Yes, to see Nash's evolution from an almost 19th century childhood in Manchester (no hot water, no indoor toilet) to discovery of rock-and-roll to the perfect timing of following The Beatles into rock-and-roll hero status ... it's a cultural history as well as a personal one.

The second half of the book was far less interesting to me -- as was the case with Keith Richards' book. All those tales of decadence in the 1970s and 1980s are tedious, sad, annoying. But they were part of the trajectory, I suppose!

Any additional comments?

I still don't like any of CSN's songs, and thought they were corny and mushy even when I was young! But Graham is like a favorite uncle: not cool, perhaps, but loving and really great to have over for a visit.

10 people found this helpful

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Full disclosure

Not everyone allows the reader into his heart and soul. Graham did just that. Hope you enjoy reading about a life well lived in full self expression! With gratitude for your courage and commitment!

2 people found this helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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Loved hearing it from The author!

If you could sum up Wild Tales in three words, what would they be?

David Crosby constantly

Who was your favorite character and why?

Graham Nash seems like the perfect person to write about CSNY, since he seems to be the most normal of them all.

Which scene was your favorite?

I liked the Joni Mitchell parts and wish there had been more.

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

Drugs make you an artist

Any additional comments?

I really enjoyed this book, but it did get bogged down with too much about drugs, and not enough about his relationships. Wish he had talked more about his wife, Joni, Rita Coolidge, not just constantly about David Crosby.

1 person found this helpful

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I was sooo disappointed!

Would you try another book from Graham Nash and/or Graham Nash?

No - I don't know as there would be another - but no - he needs to get over himself in general.. he reads what he wrote about all the women he bedded ike he's reading a newspaper article... and talks about Crosby getting a lot of action - almost incredulously - like he's jealous - and keeps talking about how he and Cros are the best friends - but turns around and is denigrating him all the way through.. the same with Cass Elliott - how important to him and what a muse she was - and ties it up with she indicated she wanted to have sex - and why not - he boinked anyone - and he says no, he isn't attracted... it's always him against everyone - complains about Stills and Young.. I know it's an autobiography - but he even whines when he's reading... and considering how well his voice sounds when he sings on records, when he sang parts of songs - I don't know - maybe he was singing his harmony line? I was excited to listen to this book - by the end I just wanted it to be over - but waited until the end to see if he would redeem himself... He sure has had a lot of people helping get him through his life... Maybe they should write a book!

Would you ever listen to anything by Graham Nash again?

Singing on his old records with Stephen Stills and David Crosby.

How did the narrator detract from the book?

For much of the time I thought he read as if he wasn't reading something he - in essence - had written. When he whined it was more annoying.. I became disappointed in who he was. Then I saw him on a show called Speakeasy with Rita Coolidge shortly after I finished reading the book - he was the same - He seemed annoyed that he had to be there until Rita started asking him questions.. he seemed insecure and all caught up in himself... I don't know - maybe I was wanting him to impart some wisdom - not know about all the houses he had where...

If you could play editor, what scene or scenes would you have cut from Wild Tales?

I would hope there was more written and recorded that talked about time doing concerts - more about who all he sang with - I thought those stories were great - more stories about great things that happened - and leave out the judgemental caca.

Any additional comments?

I don't usually write reviews that are negative - and I waited a couple of weeks to see if I felt differently. Nope. I'm disappointed and annoyed. At least I know!

1 person found this helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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First half great, the rest is OK

The first part of this books- his early days through the formation of CSN and then CSNY - is very entertaining and a wonderful perspective not only on his career but the broader evolution of rock. The rest of it somewhat degenerates into a series of anecdotes, many fairly repetitive, of fights, drugs, concerts, personal
philosophy, name dropping, and self-congratulation. In fairness, for all that, it gave me a real appreciation of Nash's dedication to music, the sheer persistence of CSN, and the breadth of Nash's interests and talents, although not accompanied by a lot of insight. For me the part up through the formation and development of CSNY made the second part worth it.

1 person found this helpful

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Fantastic read.

Graham Nash masterfully narrates a his autobiography full of interesting and moving stories. Uncompromisingly honest and sparing no details. Great read.

1 person found this helpful