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Hammer of the Gods: The Led Zeppelin Saga
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Hammer of the Gods: The Led Zeppelin Saga

3.82 of 5 stars 3.82  ·  rating details  ·  7,478 ratings  ·  327 reviews
The members of Led Zeppelin are major deities in the pantheon of rock gods. The first and heaviest of the heavy metal monsters, they violently shook the foundations of rock music and took no prisoners on the road. Their tours were legendary, their lives were exalted—and in an era well known for sex and drugs, the mighty Zeppelin set an unattainable standard of excess and m ...more
Paperback, 432 pages
Published April 8th 2008 by It Books (first published 1985)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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Jason Koivu
Ah-a-aaaahhhhHAAAA!!! Ah-a-aaaahhhhHAAAAAA!!!

It's been a long time since I read this book
It's been a long time, but let's have a look

What a whole lotta love Davis has for Zeppelin!
What a whole lotta love!

Here's a fanboy who's sure all that glitters is gold
And he's written the band into heaven

And if you said you were a Led-head
Oh what fun this book would be

Me, I'm gonna ramble on
I'm gonna find a new read to quench my greed
Ramble on!
Ben Loory
Mar 22, 2009 Ben Loory rated it 2 of 5 stars
Recommended to Ben by: all the stoners in high school
this was really a crappy book; i give it two stars because of the interesting but lifeless information it gave me. facts. they had a lot of groupies. they fucked some girl with a shark they caught fishing out the hotel window. they did cocaine, then heroin. bonham bought a lot of cars but couldn't drive. jimmy had a 14-year old girlfriend he kept locked in his hotel room. robert plant's dog's name was strider. john paul jones... played bass. some other shit. most of it interesting. some not.

Apr 13, 2011 Chris rated it 2 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: hardcore Zeppelin fans with nothing better to read
Shelves: non-fiction
This book is disappointing, which is odd because the story it tells should be so interesting. Unfortunately, the author simply doesn't write very well.

The story reads more like a list of events than a narrative, and to provide interest and emphasis his primary tool seems to be the use of italics.

The redeeming quality of the book is that the author takes each studio album and breaks it down song-by-song, citing influences and inspirations behind the music.

Otherwise, apart from the infamous 'shark
I've heard it said that "rock'n'roll ain't pretty".

I never it expected it to be quite so repugnant, however. Read this book if you want more information than anybody needs about what goes on when young adults are allowed to have no limits absolutely.

I'd have to blame most of the raucous behavior on the road manager, Richard Cole, and the band's manager, Peter Grant. I'd only been a casual fan of Led Zeppelin (collected all their cds but preferred my 70's hard rock a bit more Purple or Black), so
Great band. Actually THE greatest ever, in my opinion. Not a great book. I've read it twice. Just not written very well. I'd like to find a better bio on Zeppelin and read it, if I could actually part from romance/erotica long enough!
Sex, drugs and rock 'n' roll. These guys invented it. Yeah, baby.
I read this book because it's one of the only books that my husband has ever read more than once. I wanted to see what was so great about it, so off I went.

First off, this book is not for me. In my view, this is a zero star book. (Smack-headed pedophiles, angry violent drunks, and dudes who marry a women, have kids with her, divorce her, then marry her sister and have kids with her also, don't really do it for me. Seriously -- those kids are siblings AND cousins. WTF?)

Not only did my husband lov
May 29, 2008 Bex rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: Led Zeppelin fans and rock and roll fans
Shelves: bios, rock-books
started: 5/26/08
finished: 5/29/08

First of all, no rock and roll book could possibly be any more shocking then Motley Crue's The Dirt. lol. Hammer of the Gods is a must read for any Zep fan, really. A classic book about a classic band. It is completely up to date, until 2007 - that's only last year people! :P I really enjoyed it, I always wanted to know what was coming next and I just about cried when it reached 1980 and it was time to say goodbye to Bonzo. Maybe because I love the band so I'm em
Michael Cunningham
'Hammer of the Gods' is the cult classic Led Zeppelin biography, famous for its unflinching portrayal of the band's legendary exploits with groupies, orgies, violence, hotel destruction, black magic, and drugs. With this book, Stephen Davis captures the true spirit of the "sex, drugs and rock and roll" philosophy of the 70s and vomits it up on the curb for all to see. If you have an aversion to seeing the word 'fuck' in print, or to reading descriptions of groupies getting fucked by dead sharks ...more
Hammer of the Gods is missing historical context. I realize Davis was writing about four people and could not cover them all as profoundly as he could have, but despite the actual writing, I think in 1985 he was lacking both the historical perspective and the maturity to be able to give Zeppelin its full due.

Despite the selling one's soul to the devil bit, which is merely a catchy framing device, he starts out well, chronicling Jimmy Page's early musical growth and subsequent session work, under
Steve Mcgrath
I grew up thinking Led Zeppelin was a bit over-rated and kinda bloated with their "Everyone gets a 20 minute solo" concert structure. I also thought that Robert Plant wanted to try to be "majestic-lion-man". I was wrong on one of 2 of those.

This book was great insight to not only how Zep operated, but how the whole music industry operated back in the 70s. I have a whole new respect for Zep as musicians, but the stories of debauchery is what makes this book.

Everyone has heard of the fish incide
Hammer Of the Gods Led Zeppelin Unauthorised by
Stephen Davis.

Well with Led Zeppelin about to play there first
gig in eons it seemed the time was right to read
this book that tells the tale in all it's gory
details of one of the biggest rock bands ever,
and one that I don't own any albums by. But am
certainly more than familiar with, how could you
not be!!
It is incredible to think of how many hit records
both Jimmy Page and John Paul Jones had played on
before they decided to put together a new
I must say that the Led Zeppelin 'family', mainly the manager, Peter Grant, Richard Cole and their road crew behaved more like a violent mob at times than a rock and roll entourage. The fact is they were bullies. They bullied their way on and off of stages, beat onlookers up for little or no reason, etc.

Luckily, this author does focus on the music somewhat and does offer some balance between the mayhem and the artistry of the band.

It was a rather quick read. I enjoyed most of it. My favorite p
Jun 08, 2008 Meen rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Meen by: Must've been some rock-n-roll magazine...
The book I have is from 1985, but I won't bother adding it to the database since it's just a mass-market paperback with the same cover shown here.

OH MY GAWD, I read this book literally to PIECES in high school!!!! And I have carried it around with me all these years b/c it was just such an obsession for me then, along with my first soulmate, Laura Puffer. (In fact, it was "Led Zepplin #1" written on my shoe that first brought her to my desk in our 10th grade study hall!) I even made notes of all
Mar 03, 2008 Marie rated it 2 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Led Zeppelin fans
It turns out, at least for me, reading about the rowdiest rock band ever wasn't that exciting. I enjoyed reading about how songs came together, bandmember roots/influences and how the band and it's management shaped music industry standards in regards to touring and promotion. But I really didn't enjoy reading about all the drugs and groupies; it's not that I was uaware of it before, I just didn't care about reading about's just a sad reality of fame, fortune and being adored by millions ...more
Una biografia é sempre difficile da classificare in base a mere stelline, ma questa mi pone più in difficoltà delle altre. E' la prima volta che mi capita una biografia che merita sia tre che quattro stelline; le diaboliche, insomma, tre stelline e mezzo.
Come potete vedere, hanno prevalso le quattro. Pollice su per l'autore: tanto di cappello per la monumentale documentazione fatta per dare alla biografia la veridicità meritata. Non a caso, il lavoro é infatti ottimo: il ritmo é un po' lento, sp
Wray Finks
Ate this book up in just a few days. Haven't read something that quickly in awhile.

Sure, you don't really get into the heads of most of the musicians and this is why the book doesn't get five stars. You never feel you're getting all the dirt from the people in the band itself. Most of the information is from secondary sources who worked for the band or were on the fringes (groupies, managers, roadies, etc). Therefore, one is never really certain about its accuracy.

Sure, the book is just a bunch
Hammer of the Gods is libelous, slanderous, scandalous, scurrilous, scrofulous, probably fattening and utterly devoid of redeeming social value. As soon as I finished it, I went back to the first page and started over. In fact, I'm going to re-read it as soon as I finish this post. Led Zeppelin did everything in a larger than life way, and the author follows their example: where other celeb bios dish dirt, Stephen Davis marshals a squadron of bulldozers to create a Himalayan mountain range of it ...more
This is the first of the "tell all" books on the greatest rock band ever. Stephen Davis uses most of the hangers on as well as their road manager, Richard Cole, to recreate the feel of Zeppelin in the 70's. There are more technical as well as fan driven books on Zeppelin. However, for your average Zeppelin fan, this is a good entry level book.
Matt Briggs
A middling rock biography of a band that really requires some careful insight. The best part of the entire thing is a quote from William Burroughs. It does cover the rise and fall of Zeppelin, but it is just too poorly written and too worshipful of its subject.
Growing up in the 70s, I never liked Led Zeppelin. Now in middle age, I have a begrudging respect for some of their work (although Stairway remains one that I can't tolerate more than 3-4 seconds).

This book really seems to crystalize what is awful about them. And maybe what is good about them. They creative appropriated vast tracts of the musical past into something pretty good and all were pretty talented. However, as this book makes clear, their excesses on the road were legendary.

Yes, there
I'm a little bit confused if it comes to rating this book. The perfect one would be 3.5, but let's stop talking about the rating and focus on what you can find here and why this book is worth reading.

"Hammer of the Gods" is a nice biography book of one of the most influential rock bands ever - Led Zeppelin. It's more like chronicle than non-fiction book - you can find here a lot of information about the beginnings, years before Led Zeppelin and also few years after. Concert tours, historical bac
Brian Foley
Kind of a let down. Mostly about banging groupies & drinking fizzy tide. I wanted to hear about mysticism and black majik.

Why does no one every talk about Led Zepplin 3?
Its the best one!
I love Led Zeppelin, but this is so poorly written that I could not make it all the way through it. I would love to read a better Zeppelin biography, if anyone has any recommendations...
An absolutely trashy account of Led Zeppelin thats worth a read if you're into the sleazy rumors that plagued the band as they toured the States during the 70s.
Кремена Михайлова
ALL relevant details are in there.
Epic music! Epic lives!
Led Zeppelin - no match in the world of Rock'n'Roll!
Dave Hill
Probably not very true, but still totally awesome.
Neil Kernohan
This is widely regarded as the best book about Zeppelin although there have been comparatively few others and the band themselves have never gone into print to set the record straight. When it was originally published, Page and Plant were reportedly annoyed by a few factual inaccuracies and because Davis's accounts of the band's wilder exploits were largely based on conversations with Richard Cole, their roughneck tour manager (who went on to write an even more lurid account entitled "Stairway t ...more
Led fucking Zeppelin.
Pebbles & Bam-Bam In Alphaville

"If you put the germ of an idea in someone's head, then you've not done your job."

Chapter 1
Other than creature comfort books and magazines, hula hoops, and the home version of Match Game, everyone treadmills out their lives in a cathode palsy of day-to-day nullness.

Chapter 2
Grim-globed hippies of the future, or not, get bogged down in their own stray dogma. Never shortchange becomes a battlecry.

Chapter 3
Riding the crest of the American market we find someon
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American music journalist and historian
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“While the sound mixing was underway, Bonzo was on the loose, taking care of buisness his own way. One night he showed up backstage at a Deep Purple concert at the Nassau Coliseum on Long Island. Bonzo was drunk and in very high spirits, and was wobbling on his feet in the wings when he noticed a free microphone during a lull in the music. Staggering forward, Bonzo walked out onto the stage before the Deep Purple roadies could grab him. The group stopped playing, amazed, as Bonzo grabbed the mike and shouted, 'My name is John Bonham of Led Zeppelin, and I just wanna tell ya that we got a new album comin' out and that it's fuckin' great!!' Then Bonzo turned to leave, but before he went he turned back and gratuitously insulted Deep Purple's guitarist. 'And as far as Tommy Bolin is concerned, he can't play for shit!!” 7 likes
“Неземните ултратънки лазерни лъчи разсичат въздуха, докато трае шоуто на Джими с лъка, а Плант вкарва откъси от "Woodstock". Представлението завършва със "Stairway to Heaven", последвана от бисовете "Whole Lotta Love" и "Black Dog". И така - пет поредни вечери.” 0 likes
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