“I bought it with lawnmowing money!” Tool’s Danny Carey reflects on the first album he ever paid for himself

Danny Carey of Tool playing drums in 2016
(Image credit: Lloyd Bishop/NBCU Photo Bank/NBCUniversal via Getty Images via Getty Images)

Tool drummer Danny Carey has named the first album that he ever bought with his own money, and it’s a stone-cold classic of the hard rock genre.

The 62-year-old made the revelation during a new interview with Youtuber Rick Beato, when Beato asked the drummer to name his earliest influences for pursuing music.

“When I started off, I had an older brother, so it was whatever he was listening to, trying to keep up,” Carey answered (transcribed by Metal Hammer).

The Beatles was the first thing when I was a really little kid. But, I think when I first heard [Led] Zeppelin with one of my friends, his older brother had a Zeppelin record and we listened to that, and I was like, ‘Man, this is my…’”

The drummer continued: “This wasn’t like Beatles, like older people’s music it felt like. I got my first drum kit around that same time, too; I was probably nine or 10 years old.”

Carey then revealed that the first album he ever bought with his own money was Led Zeppelin IV, the band’s seminal 1971 album, which contains such classic songs as Black Dog and Stairway To Heaven.

“The first record I ever bought was the fourth record, with lawnmowing money, my own money!” he says.

Led Zeppelin IV came out on November 8, 1971, and was an instant critical success, despite the mixed reviews all of Led Zeppelin’s previous albums received when first released. A December 1971 Rolling Stone review deemed Led Zeppelin IV the “most consistently good” thing the band had put out at that point.

Led Zeppelin IV was also a commercial hit, reaching number one in the UK charts in its second week. As of 2014, more than 37 million copies had been sold, making it one of the most bought albums of all time.

Danny Carey co-founded Tool in 1990 and has been part of the lineup ever since, performing on all five of the California progressive metal band’s albums: Undertow (1993), Ænima (1996), Lateralus (2001), 10,000 Days (2006) and Fear Inoculum (2019).

Tool are the cover stars on the brand-new issue of Metal Hammer. Singer Maynard James Keenan and guitarist Adam Jones are interviewed ahead of the band’s blockbuster European tour taking place this summer (dates below).

The magazine also contains interviews with Avenged Sevenfold and Volbeat, plus a breakdown of the 20 most metal video games of all time.

Order your copy now and get it delivered straight to your door.

Tool 2024 tour dates:

May 25: Hannover ZAG Arena, Germany
May 27: Amsterdam Ziggo Dome, Netherlands
May 30: Birmingham Resorts World Arena, UK
Jun 01: Manchester AO Arena, UK
Jun 03: London O2 Arena, UK
Jun 05: Paris Accor Arena, France
Jun 08: Berlin Parkbühne Wuhlheide, Germany
Jun 10: Vienna Wiener Stadthalle, Austria
Jun 11: Kraków Tauron Arena, Poland
Jun 13: Budapest Aréna, Hungary
Jun 14: Köln Lanxess Arena, Germany
Jun 20: Dessel Graspop Metal Meeting, Belgium
Jun 22: Copenhagen CopenHell, Denmark
Jun 25: Stockholm Tele2 Arena, Sweden
Jun 27: Oslo Tons Of Rock, Norway

Get tickets here.

Matt Mills
Contributing Editor, Metal Hammer

Louder’s resident Gojira obsessive was still at uni when he joined the team in 2017. Since then, Matt’s become a regular in Prog and Metal Hammer, at his happiest when interviewing the most forward-thinking artists heavy music can muster. He’s got bylines in The Guardian, The Telegraph, NME, Guitar and many others, too. When he’s not writing, you’ll probably find him skydiving, scuba diving or coasteering.