Stairway to Heaven by Richard Cole

Stairway to Heaven

No one knew Led Zeppelin like Richard Cole. The band's tour manager for more than a decade, Cole was there when they burst onto the music scene, achieved cult status, cut platinum records, and transformed popular music. Second only to the Beatles in sales for years, Led Zeppelin was rock's premier group. But unlike the boys from Liverpool, the excitement of this band"s music was matched by the fever pitch of their antics on and off the stage....I...

Details Stairway to Heaven

TitleStairway to Heaven
Release DateJan 8th, 2002
PublisherIt Books
GenreMusic, Biography, Nonfiction

Reviews Stairway to Heaven

  • Scott Holstad
    This book was a quick and easy read, and quite entertaining at times. But I've got one word to say: debauchery. I thought I had heard/read it all, but I was wrong. These hedonistic, narcissistic, thoroughly debauched drug addled alcoholics were disgusting human beings, and the author, their road manager for 12 years, is no better, and perhaps even worse. The book is told from his perspective, and I've heard that Robert Plant really hated the book...
  • Lukasz Pruski
    "[...] they never allowed their offstage antics to overshadow their craftsmanship onstage and in the studio. They never lost sight of their fans and the debt they owed them. In nearly three decades in the music business, I have never seen anyone else like Led Zeppelin. They were indisputably the greatest rock and roll band in the world."Indisputably the greatest? Well, maybe... Led Zeppelin was certainly one the most famous and influential bands ...
  • The Super Moop
    I bought this expecting it to be an in-depth song-by-song analysis of the world famous folk singing father-and-daughter duo from Kiltimagh. Instead it turned out to be a biography of sorts of some tin pot band of the same name who sold a handful of home made tapes out of a garage in the Home Counties, written in his free time by a friend of the drummer's.Most of the stories deal with the growth pangs of the four lads who took to doing leaden, lum...
  • Jim
    The book is competently crafted and easy to read; you won't need a dictionary or your notebook to puzzle out any difficult passages. Having established that, I have to say that the book left me a little hot under the collar, having been written by a man who has essentially confessed to kidnapping, drug trafficking, assault, sexual assault, and destruction of property. This particular manuscript should have been written deep inside a penitentiary....
  • John
    This was an amazing book on many levels and any Led Zeppelin fan will love it. First, it was a very well written memoir of Richard Cole whose life paralleled the skyrocketing career of Led Zeppelin from nobodies to untouchable rock Gods. He was their right-hand man for more than a decade and had incredible insight into the day-to-day operations.It was also amazing that the entire band wasn't put in prison for their antics - all of the violent tre...
  • Leslie D. Soule
    The book seems less a biography of Led Zeppelin than a biography of Richard Cole - drug addict sleazeball/dirtbag tour manager. The author states on page 119 that "...the rush of the drugs themselves - would blind me to any risks we were assuming."As a cautionary tale, it shows just how much trouble a group of adolescent-minded guys can get into, when left to their own devices, or pushed to it. The one good thing I can say about this book is that...
  • Jibralta
    I got an yellowed, old copy from the library, which didn't help. I just couldn't get into this book. It jumped all over the place. First chapter Bonzo had died & Cole doesn't know how to tell Plant. Next chapter about his early life. WHO CARES? Next chapter life before Zeppelin, how they met. Next it glosses over Jimmy Page's life w/ The Yardbirds, then he forms Zeppelin. They record & Atlantic signs them for big money. Album doesn't sell in UK. ...
  • Carolyn
    Being a big Led Zeppelin fan, I wanted to hear about stuff I didn't know. That is more about the band. This book, although entertaining at times, is very centered on two characters: Richard Cole (the road manager and author) and John Bonham (who among the band probably has had the most written about him). I really wanted to learn more about the other band members, but I didn't get much in that regard. I don't care about Cole and I wanted to under...
  • Cindy Nix
    I liked the book, however since I read it, there has been much dispute about some of the events he speaks of by others who worked with the band and the band themselves. Some of the goings on I have read in other books, while others I do question. I did appreciate the honesty of the account of his life with the band, the highs and the lows and what become of him after the untimely death of John Bonham. It was an interesting read.
  • Darryl Walker
    Like Richard Cole or not, fans and readers MUST give him credence. The interviews he did for Stephen Davis made up the lion's share of Davis' trashy book HAMMER OF THE GODS, moreso than Lori Maddox's memories. After Cole saw the money Davis made on his inside stories, one can hardly fault Cole for cashing in with a book of his own, and a far better one at that. He didn't need to pore over old issues of CREEM and Circus magazine for material like ...
  • KB
    When I finally got into Zeppelin earlier this year, I was hesitant about reading a book about them. I didn't really want to know if they were terrible people. Granted, I had heard some of the stories and rumours. But at some point recently, I thought, 'screw it, give me the dirt!'So here we are with Stairway to Heaven. I don't know if this book is quite as infamous as Hammer of the Gods, which I haven't read, but it does promise Led Zeppelin unce...
  • Cindy J.
    I liked the book, however since I read it, there has been much dispute about some of the events he speaks of by others who worked with the band and the band themselves. Some of the goings on I have read in their books, while others I do question. I did appreciated the honesty of the account of his life with the band, the highs and lows and what became of him after the untimely death of John Bonham. It was an interesting read.
  • John Lyman
    Great book, lots of inside Zep stories. Occasionally cliche-ish. It’s a testament to how autobiographies tend to gloss over the bad stuff, because so many other accounts make Zep, and their touring entourage, seem so more destructive, intimidating, and truly dangerous. Who knows where reality lies?
  • David Loebel
    Imagine being the tour manager for Led_Zeppelin and your job is to make sure they have play money and the toys but you HAVE to make sure that they make it to the Gig. Good luck with that. Cole did it and did it well. .. Well that's who wrote this gem. Gripping, Detailed.
  • Brian Dalton
    Wow. Just wow.
  • Patti Lee
    Kinda boring and repetetive. But the laungage is good.
  • T.W. Huey
    I read this a long time ago. I enjoyed the anecdotes at the time, but since then I've read better biographies of LZ by LZ.
  • Brett
    Led Zeppelin appear to have pretty much invented the rock'n'roll excess lifestyle, no matter how much Richard Cole insists that it was all about only the music. It's certainly true that the members of Zep managed to dedicate themselves entirely to the music & give it their all while they were recording or performing, but off-stage...well, it's amazing how quickly the reader starts thinking, "More booze, more underage girls, more throwing stuff ou...
  • J.C.
    I am not a huge fan of music biographies. Most of the time they feel like they are written by fans, or worshipers who feel the need to describe what its like to “feel the music” so to speak (a perfect example of this would be David Henderson’s biography of Jimi Hendrix called Kiss the Sky; I couldn’t get past page 30 of that book). The music bio’s I really love are the ones written by the guys who supervised the tours, who were there fo...
  • Armand
    "Stairway To Heaven" is former Led Zeppelin road manager Richard Cole's depiction of his recollections of his years on the road with the biggest band of the 1970s. Much of the off stage 'escapades' are related in a smirking 'boys will be boys' style which gets very obnoxious rather quickly. Cole giggles about drummer John Bonham's propensity for violence (usually directed against service workers who are outnumbered). Cole also recalls breathlessl...
  • Alanna Bradley
    I've always enjoyed the music of Led Zeppelin. Widely considered to be one of the most influential rock bands of the 20th century it was easy to be drawn to this memoir. I found it pretty tastefully done and chock full of interesting behind the scenes tidbits on the band members. However, the author's story is pretty interesting as well about is own career as a road manager and how he ended up with Led Zeppelin. I grew a deeper sense of respect f...
  • Melanie
    I read this book in high school, about 10 years ago, and remember not only being incredibly scandalized, but also incredibly intrigued.And also, a little...nauseous.At the same time I was assured by the friend who lent it to me that half of what was written was skeptical at best, so took most of it with a grain of salt or three. on earth did any of the guys get away with even a little of what may have happened?! The excess is over the...
  • C'lestial
    I had heard so many "stories" about LZ that I thought this would be the be all end all book.All in all, it was interesting, but the story was really more about the author's life than with Zeppelin. It was also very strong on Cole's and Bonzo's friendship more than any of the others. It's basically a diary of how much booze and drugs those 2 could take it seems. Many of the stories I had heard , he mentioned, but really didn't go into much detail ...
  • larrytheimp
    Written by longtime Zeppelin tour-manager and running-buddy Richard Cole, this is a decent insider history of Zeppelin. If you like Zeppelin's music this is a worthwhile read - it's fast and breezy, and has lot's of 'cameos' with other artists and musicians and actors. I'd really like to read a more documentary-style Zep book, more like a book equivalent of VH1's classic albums series or something that puts you more inside the studio from the art...
  • Kay
    An excellent book that takes you through the ups and downs of one of the worlds greatest rock bands. In rich detail, it describes their journey from newly formed group, to growing musicians stretching for new sounds, to commercial success. You feel part of the the decadence and over the top 'rock n roll' lifestyle of the 70's. One cannot underestimate the importance of Richard Cole and Peter Grant's roles in Led Zeppelin's huge success. A rock-n-...
  • Victoria Cowden-moyneur
    Richard Cole was a huge member of Led Zeppelin, almost what you'd call 'the fifth member' in that he was with Led Zeppelin for most of their time together. This book is bold, forthright and an honest look into the daily lives of Jimmy Page, Robert Plant, John Bonham and John Paul Jones. He tells the truth about all the rumors surrounding the band and I found it an interesting and exciting read. I highly recommend this novel to anyone who had any ...
  • Tatiana
    I really enjoyed this book, which is by no means a work of literature. But if you've dreamed of the rockstar life, the roadie life, and the 70s rock world, this is the book for you! I'm stoked to finally understand the chronology of Led Zeppelin, how things unfolded, when what song was recorded. Especially interesting because it all happened right before I was born, or very young. This book has a music industry perspective that I found really fas...
  • Tom Bryant
    Richard Cole was the road manager of Led Zeppelin from the band's beginning in 1968 until their breakup upon the death of drummer John Bonham. If anyone knew the band, he did. However, I tend to take such memoirs with a grain of salt simply because they are from the author's perceptions, and thus, the accuracy may be questionable. That doesn't take away from the book's entertainment value. (One memorable moment in the early chapters involves some...
  • L.V. Sage
    This book wasn't great, but it was entertaining. The chapters were very short, so it was easy to zip through several of them in a sitting. What I found to be interesting (for lack of a better word) was how juvenile the antics of the entire band (as well as Cole) were. Granted, these are very young men who had fame & fortune come their way very rapidly, but really?? Not much insight here, just a collection of rather baffling behavior & antics.