Stephen Davis takes you out on the road with Led Zep in 1975. He had access to the band where they weren’t really giving anyone one in the media any. He was invited by a friend who worked with the band to go as a free lance journalist. He wrote the article for Atlantic Review, who didn’t like it and didn’t print it, but he got paid anyway. The story goes that he chronologically wrote his stories of traveling with them from date to date (including on their jet, Starship) of their tour, staying in their hotels etc. He put them into three note books and lost them only to find them and write this book.
There are very few tidbits or great stories in this to tell you about and the book lacks good story telling. I don’t think Davis really got the Zep fans, at least the way he criticized them, and the band’s live shows. You do learn how the band would mix up sets every night, mixing songs in the middle of other songs, changing the set list, etc. That’s pretty cool. Robert Plant’s stage banter and it’s sometimes cryptic meanings aren’t bad either. But really the book doesn’t really enlighten you in anyway. Do you really care that Davis gets laid, or parties with the roadies? I know I don’t. You also learn what he thinks of the band members: Bonham, a violent drunk who the band calls the beast; Page the recluse; Jones the introvert; and Plant, the jovial rock god. But, still nothing new or entertaining.
I really can’t give much more time to this review. I will tell you to save your money and don’t by the book. Maybe you will get lucky and there will be a Cliff Notes version, but that wouldn’t be lucky, that would be torture. Davis really doesn’t tell a good story,he tells you who, what and where, but never the why. Don’t make the same mistake I did and buy it, just take my word for it. Because for a book that had high hopes in the end it was a real Heartbreaker.