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What You Want Is in the Limo: On the Road with Led Zeppelin, Alice Cooper, and the Who in 1973, the Year the Sixties Died and the Modern Rock Star Was Born Hardcover – July 23, 2013


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What You Want Is in the Limo: On the Road with Led Zeppelin, Alice Cooper, and the Who in 1973, the Year the Sixties Died and the Modern Rock Star Was Born + Laurel Canyon: The Inside Story of Rock-and-Roll's Legendary Neighborhood + I'm with the Band: Confessions of a Groupie
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 256 pages
  • Publisher: Spiegel & Grau (July 23, 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0812992881
  • ISBN-13: 978-0812992885
  • Product Dimensions: 6.3 x 1 x 9.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (91 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #159,772 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

“Required reading . . . 1973 is a turning point in popular music—the border between hippie-ethos ’60s rock ’n’ roll and conspicuous-consumption excess ’70s rock.”New York Post
 
“Loud and boisterous . . . Like a good vinyl-era single, it’s over before it wears out its welcome. You may even want to flip it over and start again when you’re finished.”Fort Worth Star-Telegram
 
“You don’t have to love the music or personas of the three bands highlighted here . . . to appreciate the vital roles that all three played in creating the modern rock star. . . . [Walker] is convincing and entertaining in explaining why 1973 was a seminal year in rock.”The Daily Beast
 
“[There’s] so much rock n' roll history packed inside.”GQ
 
“Very well written . . . It gives an intellectual immersion into these bands’ lives.”Led-Zeppelin.org
 
“[Walker] argues for [1973] as a tipping point, when big tours—and bigger money—became a defining ethos in rock music.”NPR

About the Author

Michael Walker is the author of the national bestseller Laurel Canyon: The Inside Story of Rock-and-Roll’s Legendary Neighborhood. His writing has appeared in The New York Times, the Los Angeles Times, The Washington Post, and Rolling Stone, among other publications. He lives in Los Angeles.

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Customer Reviews

Good read for any rock fan or fan of these bands and their music.
Amy Lynn
Its written in a rather dry, scholarly, clinical style that simply doesn't match up well with its salacious title or subject matter.
jazmaan
This is good as the albums were indeed great ones as was the entire period of early and mid 1970's for rock music.
MGN

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

29 of 29 people found the following review helpful By A. Reid VINE VOICE on July 13, 2013
Format: Hardcover Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
To me, a litmus test of a good nonfiction book is how much of it I wind up sharing aloud - and with whom. Family and friends heard major portions of this and factoids are still appearing, days after I finished reading.

I found this book utterly fascinating. I was around in 1973 and really just starting to get into music, and I was a major fan in my adolescence of two of these bands (and had a healthy respect for the third). This book was filled with details about the career arcs of all three, placing them solidly in the evolving rock and roll landscape. I'm sure that there are points in here that are debatable - I know there were a few claims that prompted skepticism and disagreement in me - but that's going to happen when any historian goes beyond relating bare fact and tries to draw critical conclusions about impact and influence. And in spite of those moments, I felt confident enough in Walker's research that they didn't make me question his conclusions entirely.

This does bring me to another point - I see from existing reviews that this book is divisive, with opinions all along the spectrum. Some people seem to be unhappy that Walker was not actually "on the road" with these bands, expecting more of a memoir than an academic treatise. I can understand, if that's what they were expecting, why this might have disappointed. My academic background is in history - and not recent history, either - so Walker's methods of reviewing sources from the period and interviewing experts (in this case, people who actually were there) is very comfortable to me. I was not expecting a memoir, so I was not disappointed. If you know what you're in for, it can help you better select (or not) this book.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Jeffrey Strawman on July 24, 2013
Format: Hardcover
"The year 1973 distills a decade's worth of decadence into twelve awesome months and resets the clock for the rest of the seventies and all that they imply. It's a year that, by any measure, ought to be its own decade." - Michael Walker

What You Want Is In The Limo: On the Road with Led Zeppelin, Alice Cooper and the Who in 1973, the year that the Sixties Died and the Modern Rock Star Was Born is a very thorough look at the year in which three bands, Led Zeppelin, Alice Cooper and The Who became megahits, superstars, ultra sensations and every adjective in between. From skyrocketing album sales, to publicity (both good and bad), tickets sales, fans (and groupies) and the hype, if ever there was a formula for bands on how to succeed, these three bands figured it out.

What this book succeeded in what truly laying down the blueprints for this formula: how the bands formed, what the state the world was in at this time, what outside influences there were, and how the bands catapulted from the rest of the musical crowds. This all formed the catalyst, the tinder for the explosive fire that was what the bands experienced in 1973.

The book is very well written. It gives an intellectual immersion into these bands' lives, not necessarily in a day-by-day basis, but selected important events that allows any reader to understand how they became as ridiculously popular as they were without over-stimulation.

My attention was definitely kept to the stories contained within this book from start to finish. Some of the information was sourced from existing interviews, which as a self-proclaimed superfan, I've read before, however, it is how the information was sewn together, molded and formed, was how it was made into such an enjoyable read.
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10 of 11 people found the following review helpful By Robert Haven VINE VOICE on July 30, 2013
Format: Hardcover Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
This short book is pretty interesting and is a fairly fun read. The author does a good job showing how 1973 was a pivotal year in the evolution of rock concerts.

I was hoping to read an account of life on the road with the three bands, with lots of scandalous details of debauchery. There really isn't all that much of that. The first half of the book mostly covers a brief history of Alice Cooper, The Who, and Led Zeppelin leading up to 1973, the albums they created, and the people around the bands (managers, promoters, etc.). It's not until around page 100 that we get out on the road and start to experience life on tour with the bands. There are some great stories here (like when an audience member took over the drums for an unconscious Keith Moon), but many of them I've heard before.

All in all, the book was interesting and fun, but somewhat disappointing.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Danno VINE VOICE on July 10, 2013
Format: Hardcover Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
Michael Walker's "What You Want Is In The Limo" is a fairly short read that mainly chronicles the American tours of three major rock acts from 1973 - The Who, Led Zeppelin, and Alice Cooper - in support of a then-new album. If you're a casual fan of any of these groups, you're going to enjoy this book a lot, because Walker takes an easy-to-follow chronological approach and makes ample use of contemporary published reports about each of the artists. (Much of the book, in fact, draws on secondary source material from previously published books and mainstream magazine articles.)While Walker isn't able to make any of the rockers he writes about come to life on the page the way, say, that Philip Norman did in his books, Walker uses the three parallel American tours to draw generalizations about what the 'typical' rock tour in 1973 was like, and how those tours influenced what the standard rock tour would become by the end of the decade. Walker draws not only on changes in fandom, but also the rise of savvy and ruthless managers to ensure that rockers' profit margins were healthier than ever before, the adoption of a Hollywood-style star system within rock, and vastly improved technology in stage lighting and PA systems. To Walker, 1973 marks the beginning of the modern rock era's emphasis on flash, materialism, and showbiz.

It was an era in which rockstars engaged in such glorious excess and overkill that they made Ric Flair and Joe Namath look humble by comparison.

Given that 1973 was literally a goldmine of well-remembered and innovative rock albums made by a broad spectrum of exceptionally skilled musicians, Walker's choice of bands to profile is puzzling.
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What You Want Is in the Limo: On the Road with Led Zeppelin, Alice Cooper, and the Who in 1973, the Year the Sixties Died and the Modern Rock Star Was Born
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