Round Up of Hard Rock Books

[Editor’s Note: The round up in this post was updated on October 17, 2023]

Yesterday, we discussed the deluge of books related to hard rock and heavy metal. Whereas the prevailing attitude used to be that rockers don’t read, it now appears that anyone with a Marshall amp stack can get a book deal. And even if you don’t have a massive stack of amplifiers, you can still sell one of these books.

[In the interest of full disclosure, it should be noted that my own book Power Chord: One Man’s Ear-Splitting Quest to Find His Guitar Heroes focuses on musicians within the hard rock and heavy metal genre.]

The list below is by no means a comprehensive, all-inclusive compilation of hard rock books. These are just the texts that pop into my head. This list doesn’t go back forever and it doesn’t include super-small fanzines and those kinds of publications. Some of these are by band members and primary musicians. Other books are by peripheral people to the groups or journalists. Some are bestsellers while some are self-published. The point is to give a simple off-the-cuff indicator of the size of this market.

If you’re a headbanger and you can think of other books that I’ve left off this list, feel free to add the title and author in the Comments section. And if you are interested in this form of music, then you should definitely check out Blabbermouth on a regular basis. Sort of the headline news of hard rock, Blabbermouth provides frequent updates that allude to books and musicians’ literary ventures.

[Editorial Note: This post will be updated whenever news of a hard rock book is announced.]

Rockers and Rollers: A Full-Throttle Memoir by vocalist Brian Johnson
Why AC/DC Matters by journalist Anthony Bozza

Walk This Way: The Autobiography of Aerosmith by Aerosmith and Stephen Davis
Hit Hard: A Story of Hitting Rock Bottom at the Top by drummer Joey Kramer
Does the Noise in My Head Bother You: A Rock and Roll Memoir by vocalist Steven Tyler
–Bass player Tom Hamilton quoted in the press as working on a book
Rocks: My Life In and Out of Aerosmith by guitarist Joe Perry

I’m the Man: The Story of that Guy from Anthrax by guitarist Scott Ian
All Access: Stories from a Hard Rock Life by guitarist Scott Ian

–Guitarist and vocalist Adam “Nergal” Darski released his autobiography Sacrum Profanum

Black Sabbath
Iron Man: My Life in Black Sabbath and Beyond by Tony Iommi
Deep Purple and Beyond: Scenes from the Life of a Rock Star by Glenn Hughes (who also sang with Black Sabbath and others)
–Geezer Butler quoted in press as working on a book
Black Sabbath and Philosophy: Mastering Reality via the Blackwell Philosophy and Pop Culture Series

Broken Hope
–Media reports that Jeremy Wagner is publishing fiction with kRP Publishing

Def Leppard
Def Leppard: The Definitive Visual History by rock photographer Ross Halfin
Adrenalized: Life, Def Leppard and Beyond by guitarist Phil Collen with Chris Epting

Dio, Ronnie James
Rainbow in the Dark: The Autobiography of Ronnie James Dio, posthumously, by vocalist Ronnie James Dio, forthcoming

–Vocalist David Draiman spoke in media outlets about his book to be published by HarperCollins

Five Finger Death Punch
Death Punch’d: Surviving Five Finger Death Punch’s Metal Mayhem by drummer Jeremy Spencer

Ford, Lita
Living Like a Runaway by former member of the Runaways and solo artist Lita Ford

Juke Box Hero by former vocalist Lou Gramm

Guns N’ Roses
Slash by Slash
My Appetite for Destruction by Steven Adler
It’s So Easy (And Other Lies) by Duff McKagan
–How to Be a Man: (And Other Illusions) by Duff McKagan
Watch You Bleed: The Saga of Guns N’ Roses by journalist Stephen Davis
W.A.R.: The Unauthorized Biography of William Axl Rose by journalist Mick Wall
Reckless Road: Guns N’ Roses and the Making of Appetite for Destruction by longtime band associate and photographer Marc Canter
Sweet Child of Mine: How I Lost My Son to Guns N’ Roses by Deanna Adler
Last Living Slut: Born in Iran, Bred Backstage by Roxanna Shirazi, romantic partner of several musicians, most notably to the book Dizzy Reed, a keyboard player for GnR
Double Talkin’ Jive: True Rock ‘n’ Roll Stories from the Drummer of Guns N’ Roses, The Cult, and Velvet Revolver by Matt Sorum

–Vocalist Dave Brockie was said to be working on a book, however the status of this is unclear after Brockie’s untimely death

Hagar, Sammy
Red: My Uncensored Life in Rock by vocalist Sammy Hagar
–Hagar’s sister Bobbi Hagar Harrell released Blinds, Patches, and Twine through Strategic Book Publishing

The Haunted
–Media reports state that Peter Dolving is working on fiction

Iron Maiden
The Beast: Singing with Iron Maiden – the Drugs, the Groupies… the Whole Story by former vocalist Paul Di’Anno
Run to the Hills: Iron Maiden: The Authorized Biography by journalist Mick Wall
–A photobook is reported to be in the works
What Does this Button Do?: An Autobiography by vocalist Bruce Dickinson

Judas Priest
Dawn of the Metal Gods: My Life in Judas Priest and Heavy Metal by former vocalist Al Atkins

Rock Star 101: A Rock Star’s Guide to Survival and Success in the Music Business by guitarist Marc Ferrari
Even Keel: Life on the Streets of Rock and Roll by lead vocalist Ron Keel.

Kiss and Make Up by bassist Gene Simmons
Sex Money Kiss by bassist Gene Simmons
Ladies of the Night: A Historical and Personal Perspective on the Oldest Profession in the World by bassist Gene Simmons
No Regrets by original lead guitarist Ace Frehley
Makeup to Breakup by original drummer Peter Criss
KISS: Behind the Mask – The Official Authorized Biography by David Leaf and Ken Sharp
Sealed with a Kiss by Lydia Criss, former wife of drummer Peter Criss
Kiss & Tell by Gordon G. G. Gebert, Bob McAdams, Danny Galgano, and Ellin Van Leeuwen
Kiss and Sell: The Making of a Supergroup by former band associate C.K. Lendt
KISS Alive Forever: The Complete Touring History by journalists Curt Gooch and Jeff Suhs
The Eric Carr Story by journalist Greg Prato
Kiss and Tell by Shannon Tweed, longtime romantic partner of Gene Simmons
Into the Void… with Ace Frehley by alleged romantic partner Wendy Moore
Nothing to Lose: The Making of Kiss 1972 – 1975 by Ken Sharp, with Paul Stanley and Gene Simmons
Face the Music by Paul Stanley

Got the Life: My Journey of Addiction, Faith, Recovery, and Korn by bassist Fieldy
Save Me from Myself: How I Found God, Quit Korn, Kicked Drugs, and Lived to Tell My Story by former guitarist Brian Welch
Washed by Blood: Lessons from My Time with Korn and My Journey to Christ by former guitar player Brian Welch
Stronger: Forty Days of Metal and Spirituality by former guitar player Brian Welch

L.A. Guns
Snake Eyes: Confessions of a Replacement Rockstar by guitarist Stacey Blades
–Guitarist Tracii Guns has been quoted in the press as working on a book

Lamb of God
–Chris Adler is reported to be working on a book that is a combination of nonfiction with musical tablature
Dark Days: My Tribulations and Trials</u> by vocalist Randy Blythe

Malmsteen, Yngwie
Relentless: The Memoir by Yngwie Malmsteen
–An unauthorized biography was released in the virtuoso’s home country of Sweden

Manson, Marilyn
The Long Hard Road Out of Hell by Marilyn Manson
–Manson has been quoted in the press as working on a new authorized biography

My Life with Deth: Discovering Meaning in a Life of Rock & Roll
Mustaine: A Heavy Metal Memoir by guitarist and vocalist Dave Mustaine

Too Much Horror Business by guitarist Kirk Hammett
Enter Night: A Biography of Metallica by journalist Mick Wall

Motley Crue
The Dirt: Confessions of the World’s Most Notorious Band by Nikki Sixx, Vince Neil, Tommy Lee, and Mick Mars
Tommyland by Tommy Lee
The Heroin Diaries: A Year in the Life of a Shattered Rock Star by Nikki Sixx
This is Gonna Hurt: Photography and Life Through the Distorted Lens of Nikki Sixx by Nikki Sixx
Tattoos & Tequila: To Hell and Back with One of Rock’s Most Notorious Frontmen by Vince Neil
–Guitarist Mick Mars quoted in press as working on a book
Motley Crue: A Visual History, 1983 – 2005 by noted rock photograph Neil Zlozower

White Line Fever: The Autobiography by bassist and vocalist Lemmy Kilmister
–Guitarist Phil Campbell quoted in press as working on a book

Ozzy Osbourne
I Am Ozzy by singer Ozzy Osbourne
Trust Me, I’m Dr. Ozzy: Advice from Rock’s Ultimate Survivor by singer Ozzy Osbourne
The Wit and Wisdom of Ozzy Osbourne by journalist Dave Thompson
Off the Rails: Aboard the Crazy Train in the Blizzard of Ozz by bassist Rudy Sarzo (who also played with Quiet Riot, Whitesnake, Dio, and others)
Stick It!: My Life of Sex, Drums, and Rock ‘n’ Roll by former drummer Carmine Appice (who also performed with Rod Stewart, King Kobra, Blue Murder, and others)
Bringing Metal to the Children: The Complete Bezerker’s Guide to World Tour Domination by former guitarist Zakk Wylde (who currently helms Black Label Society)
For Fact’s Sake by Bob Daisley

Official Truth, 101 Proof: The Inside Story of Pantera by bassist Rex Brown
“Mouth For War: Pantera And Beyond by vocalist Phil Anselmo
Black Tooth Grin: The High Life, Good Times, and Tragic End of Dimebag Darrell Abbott by journalist Zac Crain

Roses and Thorns by vocalist Bret Michaels, forthcoming
A Shot of Poison: An Insider’s Tales of One of Rock’s Most Outrageous Bands by associate Christopher Long

Quiet Riot
–Original bassist Kelly Garni released Angels with Dirty Faces

Tales of a Ratt by drummer Bobby Blotzer
–Blotzer has said in public he is working on a new book
Sex Drugs Ratt and Roll by vocalist Stephen Pearcy
–Former vocalist Jizzy Pearl (who has also worked with LA Guns and other bands) has released three books

–Media reports state that Dennis Lyxzen is working on a book

–Media reports state that Sigurd Wongraven is working on a nonfiction book about wine

–Graham Oliver has been quoted in press as working on a book

–Former drummer Herman Rarebell quoted in media about completing a memoir

Skid Row
Un-Philtered: Real Life On And Off The Rock ‘N’ Roll Tour Bus by former drummer Phil Varone
18 and Life on Skid Row by former vocalist Sebastian Bach

–Percussionist M. Shawn Crahan told media outlets that he is working on a book called Maggot Bible that will collect artwork submitted by the band’s fan

Slipknot and Stone Sour
The Seven Deadly Sins: Settling the Argument Between Born Bad and Damaged Good by vocalist Corey Taylor
A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to Heaven by vocalist Corey Taylor
America 51: A Probe into the Realities that are Hiding Inside “The Greatest Country in the World” by vocalist Corey Taylor

Honestly by vocalist Michael Sweet

Geek to Guitar Hero by guitarist Alex Skolnick

Van Halen
–The editors of Guitar World put together Van Halen: 40 Years of the Great American Rock Band
–John Scanlan’s Van Halen: Exuberant California, Zen Rock n Roll published by Reaktion Books

Velvet Revolver
Not Dead and Not for Sale by former vocalist Scott Weiland (who also sang for Stone Temple Pilots)
Fall to Pieces: A Memoir of Drugs, Rock ‘n’ Roll, and Mental Illness by Mary Forsberg Weiland, wife of singer
–Also Duff McKagan and Slash, as described above in Guns N’ Roses

White Zombie
I’m in the Band: Backstage Notes from the Chick in White Zombie by bassist Sean Yseult


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