Peter Grant was the manager for Led Zeppelin for twelve years.
Peter Grant was born on April 5, 1935 in South Norwood, Surrey, England to Dorothy Grant, a secretary. Before the World War II, Grant attended Sir Walter St. John School and completed his schooling at Charterhouse School afterwards. At the age of thirteen, he became a sheet metal factory worker in Croydon but left to work on Fleet Street weeks afterwards where he delivered photographs for Reuters. He then worked as a stagehad for the Croydon Empire Theatre until 1953, when he was called up fo National Service in th RAOC, reaching the rank of Corporal. He then worked briefly as an entertainment manager at a hotel before working as a bouncer and doorman at London's famous The 2i's Coffee Bar.
Paul Lincoln, a wrestler, suggested that Grant appear on television and wrestle under the names of "Count Massimo" and "Count Brio Alassio of Milan." With enthusiasm for acting, he was hired by film studios as a bit part actor, stuntman, and body double. He appeared on films such as A Night To Remember, Cleopatra, and The Saint. In 1983, he was hired by Don Adren to act as the British tour manager for artists such as The Everly Brothers, Eddie Cochran, and The Animals. In 1964, he began starting to manage his own acts such as Jeff Beck, Terry Reid, and Stone the Crows.
In 1966, Grant took over as manager for The Yardbirds, who were touring, but financially struggling. He began to promote the band and managed to get them money from concerts for the first time. He traveled closely with the band, ensuring that costs were kept to a minimum, the members were paid on time, and that the band retained artistic control.
With Led Zeppelin
Many have speculated if Led Zeppelin would have been successful or not. The band's success in the US can be credit to Grant's keen sense of US audience and the movement that was sweeping the country. Grant ensured that the vast bulk of ticket profits wound up in the hands of the band rather than in the hands of promoters and booking agents, and is reported to have secured 90% of gate money from concerts performed by the band.
Grant was known as a hot head, getting mad at people if a single thing went wrong with the band. An example would be bootleg recordings of live performances. He would demand that all copies be handed over to him when he visited record stories in Lond. In 1971 in Vancouver, he made sure that equipment he saw on the floor was destroyed, only to find out it was city officials testing the volume of the concert. At the Bath Festival in 1971, he threw buckets of water over unauthorized recording equipment. In the film ''The Song Remains The Same'', Grant can be seen demanding an explanation over why there was the sale of illegal posters.
Grant praised the band very much, expressing his faith in them that no other managers of the era had. He always putted their interest before his, respecting their wish not to release the popular songs from Led Zeppelin's albums as singles in the UK.
"Peter trusted us to get the music together," Jones explained, "And then just kept everybody else away, making sure we had the space to do whatever we wanted without interfetence from anybody - press, record company, promoters. He only had us and reckoned that if we were going to do good, then he would do good. He always belived that we would be hugely successful and people became afraid not to go along with his terms in case they missed out."
Grant had set up Led Zeppelin's publishing company, Superhype Music, in 1968, as well as Swan Song Records in 1974. Led Zeppelin was now able to take control over its products artistically and financially. In later years, Grant began to manage other bands assigned to Swan Song Records, such as Bad Company and Maggie Bell. In 1975, he turned down a managing position for Queen. He was even offered to manage Elvis Presley's concert tour of Europe in 1977, but Elvis died that August as the negotiations had commenced.
On July 23, 1977 during a tour of the US at the Oakland Coliseum, secuirty guard John Bindon had allegedly pushed a member of promote Bill Graham's stage crew out of the way as the band entered via a backstage ramp. As Grant and Bindon were exchanging words with stage crew chief Jim Downey, Bindon knocked Downey unconscious. Minutes later, a brawl ensued after Graham's security man Jim Matzorkis was accusd of slapping Grant's eleven year old son Warren over the removal of a dressing room sign. Graham signed a letter of indemnification, allowing Led Zeppelin to perform a second show in Oakland. The next morning, however,a police raid woke up the band after Graham had decided to press charges. Bindon, Col, Grant, and Bonham receivd bail and continued to tour New Orleans on July 26. A suit was filed against them by Graham for $2 million. Led Zeppelin finally offered to settle and all four pleaded nolo contendere, receiving sspended sentences and fines. Bindon had already been dismissed by the band when they returned to England. Grant later stared that aloowing Bindon to be hired was the biggest mistake he had ever made as a manager.
After Led Zeppelin and Death
After the death of John Bonham, as well as having diabetes, a cocaine addiction, and marital problems, Grant's health took a dive. After the Swan Song label was taken down in 1983, he retired from the musices bussines and moved back to his privateestate in East Sussex. His addiction began to increase and he noticeably lost a considerable amount of weight. His first public appearance in years way in 1989 when he and Page attended a Frank Sinta concert at the Royal Albert Hall. He then sold his estate and moved to nearby Eastourne. He was offered the civic position of local magistrate for the town council, but turned in down. In 1992, he appeared in the film Carry On Columbus as a cardinal. He became a keynote speaker at music management conferences such as In The City, where h was lauded by latter-day peers.His final public appearance had been at the final night of the Page and Plant tour at the Wembley Arena in July 1995.
- Gloria (divorced)
- Helen (1964), married to Denny Laine
- Lucianne Laine (1987)