She’s stayed mum for over a year as fans have speculated and rumors have swirled, but now that she’s making the publicity rounds for her new album, Patty Griffin’s coming clean about whether or not she and Robert Plant are really married.
The CBS “60 Minutes Overtime” webcast reported Monday that the former president was enlisted to ask the British rock gods to get back together last year for the Superstorm Sandy benefit concert in New York City. He asked, they said no.
David Saltzman of the Robin Hood Foundation says he and film executive Harvey Weinstein flew to Washington to ask Clinton to make the plea. Led Zeppelin’s surviving members Robert Plant, John Paul Jones and Jimmy Page were in Washington just before the Sandy concert for the Kennedy Center Honors.
Led Zeppelin last played publicly at a one-night reunion in London in 2007.
From: The Washington Post
Led Zeppelin legend Robert Plant has been forced to hire a security team and obtain a restraining order against a dangerous stalker for his own safety.
Led Zeppelin: Sound and Fury by Neal Preston is an in-depth, illustrated digital book created and designed especially for iBooks. It provides an unprecedented and comprehensive glimpse into the world of Led Zeppelin through the lens of famed photographer Neal Preston. Blending images, interviews, and information to allow readers inside access into some of the greatest moments in rock history, Sound and Fury features hundreds of photos of the band from throughout their career (including over 100 that have never been seen before), audio introductions, written pieces, hi-definition video interviews, ephemera, commentary from contemporary artists, technical camera info, band discography, and more. Features include: - Over 250 photographs of Led Zeppelin onstage and behind the scenes (over 100 previously unpublished) - 80 expandable contact sheets - 25 audio commentaries - 11 video interviews - 44 samples of ephemera and memorabilia - 24 Led Zeppelin set lists - 23,000 words of text - Written introduction by Stevie Nicks.
Photo by SEWilco
I've heard of various things named after Led Zeppelin-related items. The Zeppelin Loach fish, planet Jimmypage, to name a few.
The song, Ohio, is an historical piece about slaves escaping via the underground railroad. Robert Plant sings a harmony vocal throughout the haunting, evocative song.
Griffin first premiered the song at a Sensational Space Shifters show in London last July.
From: Ramble On Radio
From: Ramble On Radio
Robert Plant Presents the Sensational Space Shifters has announced its first North American tour dates. This dynamic and powerful new incarnation of Plant’s musical vision has been touring the world, most recently in Australia and New Zealand. The Brisbane Times said “What’s going on is further proof that Plant is far more imaginative, playful and adventurous than any cliche, a man who’s absorbed all the music he’s loved and played and sought out the musicians to explore that,” while Adelaide Now hailed, “The Sensational Space Shifters are everything their name suggests.”
The dates begin June 20 at the Dallas, TX, Palladium and end July 27 in Brooklyn, NY’s Prospect Park. The band will be playing five festival dates, including Britt in Jacksonville, OR, High Sierra in Quincy, CA, Jambase in George, WA, Portland Blues in Portland, OR, and Forecastle in Louisville, KY.
One of a generation of British kids, drawn without rhyme or reason, to sounds from a far away world. A world of field holler, despair, Levee camp and chain- gang moans; of Saturday night fish-fry and Juke Joint foot stomp. A million miles lay between the brooding pulse of Mississippi Delta life and the sanitized shelter of the timid English boy, circa 1962.
Fifty years on — drawing from a lifetime of adventures, tracking the dark, beautiful resonator, Plant follows his heart and lifts his voice higher and joyous ever away. A voice of experience and learning from the sounds of Southside Chicago Electric Blues; of Griot mantras from West Africa; from Louisiana Dance Halls; Greenwich Village Folk hangover; Haight Ashbury indulgences; Moroccan medina breakbeat; the early English radical techno materials, Texas two-step and Bristol Dubstep.
Before his recent projects in Nashville with Alison Krauss and Band of Joy, Plant worked alongside the very interesting force, “Strange Sensation”, recording the critically acclaimed, multi-Grammy nominated albums – Dreamland and Mighty Rearranger. From this platform, Sensational Space Shifters has developed. Now together these confederates and conspirators dig deeper and more intensely, always twisting and turning, bringing the past into a brilliant technicolour present.
The band is:
Justin Adams – guitar, bendir, vocals
John Baggott – keyboards
Juldeh Camara – ritti (one stringed African violin), kologo (African Banjo), talking drum, vocals
Billy Fuller – bass guitar, vocals
Dave Smith – drums and percussion
Liam “Skin” Tyson – guitar, vocals
Justin Adams- a childhood in the Middle East and teenage years with a soundtrack of UK punk set the tone for Adams ‘ musical adventures. He has produced Grammy winning Desert poets Tinariwen and Algerian Rai rebel Rachid Taha, as well as playing guitar and writing with Jah Wobble, Sinead O’ Connor , Natasha Atlas and many more. Three award winning albums with Juldeh Camara for Peter Gabriel’s Real World label have been the latest in a series of collaborations with Master Musicians from North and West Africa.
John Baggott- one of the originators of the Bristol Trip hop sound, Baggott cut his teeth as a teenage piano prodigy playing with visiting US legends like Jimmy Witherspoon and Charlie Feathers. He contributed to seminal work by Portishead, combining musicality with cutting edge sonic texturing and sampling, which led him to become a member of the Massive Attack team. He has also composed film and tv music for Emmy award winning documentaries and most recently worked with songstress Anna Calvi on a new album.
Juldeh Camara- Juldeh was taught the Ritti ( one- string African Violin) by his blind Griot father , who was reputedly taught himself by the forest spirits of Gambia who took his eyesight in return for the gift . A traditional Fulani village musician , Juldeh’s exceptional talent and charisma took him first to Banjul , Gambia’s capital and then around the world with Ifang Bondi . Hearing Adams’ Desert inflected Blues he decided the two should collaborate , which led to the groundbreaking Juju records, and in turn to his work with Plant ,where the connections between the Blues and Mother Africa turn full circle.
Billy Fuller – Fuller has been exceptionally creative in the past few years, as a founder member of post rock trio Beak , together with Portishead’s Geoff Barrow, he has made two albums and played at the ultra- cool All Tomorrow’s Parties Festival amongst many others. He has contributed to albums by Massive Attack , the soundtrack for the Banksy movie “Exit via the Gift Shop”, guested with Portishead, and toured with Adams and Camara in JuJu. A rock solid bassist he is a vinyl junkie with consummate taste.
Dave Smith – originally trained as a jazz drummer and orchestral percussionist, a chance encounter with West African music led Smith to study sabar drumming in Gambia over a ten year period. He is the hub of a scene of Jazz and electronic improvisers based around the Vortex club in London, where he leads groups such as Fofoulah and Ruhabi , incorporating polyrhythmic African drive into their music. Headhunted by Adams and Camara , he brought a Ginger Baker like energy to their music which now moves to another level in the context of the Sensational Space Shifters.
Liam “Skin” Tyson- a surreal Scouser ( Liverpudlian ) who now lives in the Misty Mountains of North Wales, his combination of Pastoral acoustic open tuned guitars and electric 21st century psychedelia make him a perfect foil for Plant’s balladry and fire. He made a massive impact with Brit Pop group Cast in the 90s who had a succession of chart hits, mentored by figures like producer John Leckie. He built a studio in his Barn where he recorded his Men from Mars project and from where he nurtures local bands in between surfing and touring.
Plant revels in the excitement generated by the collision of these remarkably powerful forces. Though his contribution to Pop Culture began with his work with Led Zeppelin, his path since has been uncompromising: keep it fresh, spin the bottle, dig deep, embrace the past – visit it – celebrate it – but don’t build a home in it.
The confirmed tour dates are below:
June 20: Dallas, TX – Palladium
June 21: Houston, TX – Bayou Music Center
June 23: Austin, TX – Moody Theater
June 26: Los Angeles, CA – Shrine Auditorium
June 28: Santa Barbara, CA – County Bowl
June 29: Berkeley, CA – Berkeley Greek
July 2: Jacksonville, OR – Britt Festival
July 4: Quincy, CA – High Sierra Festival
July 6: George, WA – Jambase Festival
July 7: Portland, OR – Portland Blues Festival
July 10: Morrison, CO – Red Rocks
July 12: Chicago, IL – Grant Park
July 13: Memphis, TN – Live In The Garden
July 14: Louisville, KY – Forecastle Festival
July 17: New Orleans, LA – Mahalia Jackson Theater
July 19: Atlanta, GA – Verizon Amphitheatre
July 20: Cary, NC – Koka Booth Amphitheatre
July 22: Vienna, VA – Wolftrap
July 24: Uncasville, CT – Mohegan Sun
July 25: Boston, MA – B of A Pavilion
July 27: Brooklyn, NY – Prospect Park
Among the revelations in the AMA:
-- A Led Zeppelin reunion is unlikely. " Does your gut tell you if Zeppelin will ever reunite and tour or play another show ever again?" one person asked. "Honestly, my gut tells me they won't," Q Prime replied.
-- Led Zeppelin guitarist Jimmy Page is busy finding never-before-heard recordings for an upcoming Led Zeppelin box sets and has made "no progress" on his forthcoming solo album. Each album's cover art will be the original cover art. Artist Shepard Fairy, who created the artwork for Led Zeppelin's recent Celebration Day release, "is not involved." Some of the box sets "will come out later this year" but "time is a fungible thing" with Led Zeppelin.
-- The addition of Led Zeppelin's catalog to on-demand subscription services is "up for discussion." Earlier this year Q Prime was said to have been shopping exclusive rights to Led Zeppelin's catalog to various on-demand services. Sources told Billboard they expect the band's music to available for streaming early this year but apparently no deal has been reached months later.
English graphic designer Storm Thorgerson, whose eye-popping album art for Pink Floyd and Led Zeppelin encapsulated the spirit of 1970s psychedelia, died Thursday. He was 69. In a statement, Thorgerson's family said that his death "was peaceful and he was surrounded by family and friends." The statement gave few further details but said that the artist, who suffered a stroke in 2003, had been ill for some time.
Former Led Zeppelin guitarist Jimmy Page is a hero to many rock musicians, but few of Page’s axe-slinging fans have gone to the trouble of writing a song named after him.
KISS bassist Gene Simmons has shared a photo and story of running into Led Zeppelin guitar legend Jimmy Page in New York City.
As part of Brighton Fringe (starting on 4th May 2013) the Airfix Lounge celebrates Andie Airfix's art and design work with an exhibition and 11 ticketed Talks inspired by the huge success of Airfix's blog ‘B*B G€LD*F STOLE MY SUNGLASSES' www.andieairfix.wordpress.com.
If anyone has been there, done that and got the t-shirt it's 'legendary graphic designer' (thank you Popbitch) Andie Airfix. In fact he designed the t-shirt, the album sleeve, the singles, the posters, the tour programme - everything!
Highly entertaining, often hilarious and possibly libellous, the AIRFIX LOUNGE is an inspiration to both designers and music fans alike.
The free exhibition (May 6th - 25th) will feature iconic Airfix designs, unpublished work, original art, roughs, typography & logo designs and will evolve and expand over the three weeks as we delve deeper and deeper into the Airfix Archives.
Also available – LIMITED EDITION PRINTS signed by Andie Airfix (including 2 NEW Metallica editions), vintage Airfix t-shirts and original gift items for Rock'n'Rollers.
Andie Airfix will be talking about working with Robert Plant and Jimmy Page. He has designed the covers for Page/Plant's Unledded, Led Zeppelin's BBC Sessions, Early Days, Latter Days and 2003's DVD. plus Robert Plant's Dreamleand and Sixty Six to Timbuktu.
MUSIC DESIGN 2 - 'Latter Days. Expanding Horizons' (May 8/15/22/25) BOOK TICKETS HERE
Double catastrophe at opening night of ROLLING STONES tour • Invaluable lessons from PAUL McCARTNEY • Photography • The ZEPPELIN challenge • Airfix tackles World Tours – AC/DC, GUNS'N'ROSES, PAGE & PLANT • Computers • A Royal Commission • MORE • Q&A's
Ann Wilson promises fans an incredibly special event. "Nancy and I and the rest of Heart are thrilled to be playing with Jason and his band this summer. Awesome rock n roll music every night...miracles apt to happen any old time." Nancy adds, "It's not a tribute as we have the blessings of the gods themselves."
Jason adds, "What a great night it was for us at the Kennedy Center awards, and now to be able to do it again on the road with Ann and Nancy is such an honor for me. I am really looking forward to taking my Led Zep Experience show out this summer with Heart and to join them in a Zep-a-thon closing the show as well. Just fantastic!"
Tickets for the tour will go on sale beginning on March 23. View the tour dates here
"John Bonham is one of my all time biggest drum heroes, in fact I have his cymbal tattooed on my leg. He's influenced every drummer that picked up a pair of sticks beyond the '70s."
Portnoy sang praises of the late Led Zeppelin drummer, addressing his sound and the influence he had on other drummers. "The reason John Bonham sounded that way is because he was John Bonham. It was him that made those grooves sound the way they did. I don't know if there's ever been a drummer that really duplicated his feel."
Current Adrenaline Mob drummer also took some time to play his favorite Bonham grooves, including the intro to Led Zeppelin track When The Levee Breaks. You can check out the full video below.
From: Ultimate Guitar
At the present time, there are no other American dates Plant's official site. Could this bode well for planning a 2014 Led Zeppelin reunion? Only time will tell.
Plant has been busy as of late, contributing vocals to partner Patty Griffin's upcoming record while also making plans with Griffin for a new Band of Joy album.
The singer has also thrown his support behind the Bell Community Buyout, which is raising money to rescue a Bath, UK venue called the Bell that is under the threat of closure. The public is being encouraged to buy shares ranging from £500 to £20,000 to help the venue remain open.
"For the last ten years or so many of my musical adventures have been with friends from Bristol and Bath, so I'm fully aware of the Bell and its legacy and its contribution to the musicians and audience in the surrounding area," Plant says.
"To me, the Bell is a crucial and integral venue and a great window into the world of music and entertainment in the West Country."
From: Ultimate Classic Rock
Robert Plant: A Life is written by former Q and Kerrang! editor Paul Rees, and is based on in-depth interviews with those closest to to the Led Zeppelin frontman as well as access to the singer himself.
Natalie Jerome, publishing director at Harper Non-Fiction UK, and Denise Oswald, senior editor for It Books/HarperCollins US, bought the rights from Matthew Hamilton at Aitken Alexander and Matthew Elblonk at DeFiore and Company. The book will be released in the UK in October 2013, and appear in the US in January 2014.
It will follow Plant's career from early folk gigs in the 1960s in the Black Country, to his globe-spanning success with rock pioneers Led Zeppelin, as well as his recent Grammy-winning career working alongside bluegrass singer Alison Krauss.
Jerome said: "Robert Plant's stature as one of the greatest frontmen of all time is without question and as fans of his music from Led Zep to present, we have long wanted to publish his story. This book is as close to Plant telling his own story in his own words as we've seen or heard to date.
"Paul's close professional relationship with Robert is going to make for a revealing read and we can't wait to bring one of the greatest untold rock n' roll stories to the world."
From: The Bookseller
The musicians fell out after Hughes expressed his frustration that Bonamassa wouldn't go on the road to support the record with live shows - one of a series of outbursts that led to the cancellation of a one-off concert in the UK planned for January.
Now the blues guitarist tells PremierGuitar: "As far as I'm concerned my involvement is pretty much done.
"Originally I did it for the same reasons I did the stuff with Beth Hart and Rock Candy Funk Party: it was an excessive to play a different kind of music that I don't get to play normally.
"So I did it and did a nine-week tour in 2011 that really, by the end of it, wasn't fun for me. It wasn't because I didn't like the cats in the band, but it was just too much - too much involved in getting people from place to place and getting the band onstage.
"Everybody seemed to be very tense, and it made my crew very tense, and it's not the way I like to tour. I run a family. I have 21 people who go on the road with me all the time, and if you asked them who was the cause of the least of their problems, they would say me."
But Bonamassa remains proud of his work with the band, also featuring Jason Bonham, Derek Sherinian and producer Kevin Shirley.
"The first two records were a blast," he says. "The band is fantastic when the Ritalin kicks in, the ADD goes away, and everyone's focused. It's a devastatingly good rock band of the early-1970s type, and Glenn is a fantastic singer - just one of the best ever.
"It just wasn't fun for me any more. All the stuff that Glenn says in the media, essentially pinning it on me, that I was the reason for the band's lack of touring and the band's lack of future. It became rapidly not fun at all. It would be dishonest of me to get onstage and pretend like I'm having fun to please the band."
He's previously given his blessing for BCC to continue without him, a move that both Hughes and Bonham have hinted at in the past. "I'm just not the guitar player for that band," he says. "Unfortunately, there doesn't seem to be any out-of-work guitar players in LA that they can get. There are so many guys that can fill that role and I would be the first guy to queue up and buy a ticket.
"I'm happily not involved any more - but I'm happy with the legacy that I left with that band and happy with the records we made. It was a great three years for me."
From: Classic Rock Magazine
There were six tapestries depicting the Quest for the Holy Grail, which were commissioned from Morris & Co. They were was designed by both William Morris and Edward Burne-Jones in 1890 for the Australian mining engineer William Knox D'Arcy for the dining-room of his house, Stanmore Hall in Middlesex, England.
This is the actual tapestry in black and white as they orginally hung in Stanmore Hall.
This is titled The Vision of The Holy Grail
Pre-Raphaelites: Victorian Art and Design, 1848-1900 will be on exhibit through May 19, 2013 in the West Building of the National Gallery of Art, Main Floor.
Thanks to RS Milford
His next project, producer Buddy Miller confirms, will be all original.Robert Plant has been in a reminiscent mood lately, releasing old Led Zeppelin material and offering two consecutive albums dominated by cover tunes.
When the album will arrive, however, remains up in the air. Miller says it's "just about done," save for a few small edits. The rest, he admits, is up to Zep's erstwhile frontman.Robert Plant has been in a reminiscent mood lately, releasing old Led Zeppelin material and offering two consecutive albums dominated by cover tunes.
Plant helped oversee the release last year of Led Zeppelin's Celebration Day, focusing on the band's most recent reunion. His most recent studio efforts include 2010's Band of Joy, and 2007's Raising Sand with Alison Krauss.
He is also set to appear on three tracks from the forthcoming album by Patty Griffin, his band mate in Band of Joy.
But what about something from Plant himself?
Miller, in a talk with Radio.com, says the two got together with drummer Marco Giovino (who works with both Jim Lauderdale, and with Miller), and composed some new tracks in loose, improvisational session.
"So the three of us set up in my room," Miller remembers, "and I thought, 'Y'know, if we're gonna write, let me stick up some mics, and record it.' I'm glad I did: it actually sounded really good. It's exciting: I'd say it rocks harder than what we did before. We recorded most of it without a bass; I played baritone guitar, or six-string bass. It's stripped down and tribal and rocking."
While he waits, Miller also completed a new duo recording with Lauderdale, titled Buddy and Jim. Not that there's any friction over the elongated time table.
"He's Robert Plant, man," Miller enthuses. "He can do whatever he wants to do!"
From: Something Else!
The duo gave a preview of their new work last December, performing Ohio and Gonna Miss You When You're Gone - a pair of tracks now scheduled for inclusion on American Kid - during a joint appearance at a benefit show in Austin.
Griffin's newest album, her seventh, was produced by Craig Ross - perhaps best known for his guitar work with Lisa Germano, 1980s-era violinist with John Mellencamp. Ross also helmed Griffin's 2004 album Impossible Dream. Recorded in Memphis, American Kid is due on May 7 via New West.
Plant said in published reports last year that he had eloped to Texas with Griffin, but that quote was later denied by his representatives. Whatever their living arrangements, they remain one busy couple: Plant and Griffin toured in the summer of 2012 with a group called the Sensational Shape Shifters, and have already announced a new Band of Joy album for later in 2013, as well.
From: Ultimate Classic Rock
The honorees will be divided into five groups: innovative artists, influential artists, icons, unsung heroes and music industry heavies, and the inductees will be selected from a worldwide pool - not just Brits.
Music Walk Of Fame founder Lee Bennett approached The Hollywood Chamber Of Commerce, which runs the Hollywood Walk Of Fame, to propose the partnership. He promises that each round of inductions will be accompanied by performances, tributes to posthumous artists and reunions of since-disbanded groups.
A committee of global industry figures and local community members are working on shortlist of nominations for the first 30 plaques.
The list will go to a decisive public vote on the Music Walk Of Fame web site in May.
Steve's new album is going to be released on April 29th. It's called Hubcap Music - as some of the guitars that feature on the record are made out of old hubcaps. The album features Dan on drums as usual, plus friends John Paul Jones, Jack White and Luther Dickensen. Here's a sneak preview of one of the new tracks.
Music and fashion have always merged seamlessly with no shortage of pop-starry collaborations. Pop's greatest chameleons from David Bowie's Ziggy Stardust–era glam to the Sex Pistols' edgy no-frills anti-fashion continue to rule the catwalks and styling generations. British music legend Jimmy Page follows Iggy Pop, Slash, Paul Weller and Jane's Addiction Perry Farrell as the latest rock god to front American menswear designer John Varvatos' spring campaign.
White-haired and elegant, the Led Zeppelin guitarist is pictured posing moodily alongside the 28-year-old surging Texan blues star Gary Clark Jr in a series of gorgeously stark black-and-white ads called The Master & The Young Guitar Slinger. "Jimmy Page has been a music and fashion hero of mine since 1970," enthuses Varvatos, a self-professed music junkie who recently opened a lifestyle boutique on the site of the former New York punk-rock Mecca CBGB's and built up his $80-million clothing and accessories empire by playing into the greatest of all male obsessions: the rock 'n' roll fantasy. "The first time I heard Led Zeppelin, I think I was 14 or 15, it changed my life. He has been a major influence and I'm honored to call Jimmy a friend. Gary Clark Jr. is the real deal – amazing guitar player and songwriter. And having them together in our campaign is a dream come true."
Shot by photographer and documentary filmmaker, Danny Clinch at south London's shabbily grand Rivoli Ballroom – itself the setting for many music greats down the years, including Paul McCartney, Tina Turner and Kings of Leon – the portraits are accompanied by a short black-and-white film, which is already clocking up impressive Youtube hits. The video shows Clark Jr, recently described as ‘the next Hendrix' by the New York Times, singing and strumming on the guitar in the empty ballroom interspersed with shots of Page, looking mysterious and wistful in black, cruising the London streets in the back of a black cab.
Few consider Page a style icon regular, but whenever designers dabble in 1970s retro, they inevitably name-check Zeppelin, the band who with their fancy clasp of crushed-velvet flares, sheer Regency shirts and silk scarves helped define the decade's flamboyant peacock style.
New York indie rapper and international scenester Theophilus London – known for mixing hip-hop with high-fashion and raking up countless big-name collaborations of his own – thinks the new campaign with Page positively rocks. "Varvatos' brand of grungy urban tailoring has a real attitude and youthful vibe. The slim-cut suits, vintage T-shirts, scuffed biker jackets, mohair sweaters and 1970s-era Mick Jagger flowing shirts have a timeless cool that never goes out of fashion. And Jimmy Page, the star of the all-time greatest rock band, demonstrates the easy elegance of this aesthetic."
"Jimmy Page virtually created the classic trashy rock-star look," says Pogues star Shane MacGowan who knew Page in his Led Zeppelin heyday. "At the time, he had brilliant fashion sense, the band looked like Cream who always had the best clothes. Jimmy usually wore black leather trousers and black tops slashed to the waist. Then they started getting into cloaks with runes on them – that looked pretty stupid. Obviously I preferred the black leather."
As Pamela Des Barres, the super-groupie who slept and partied with everyone from Mick Jagger to Jim Morrison, amusingly recalls in her sex-drugs-and-rock'n'roll tell-all I'm With the Band: Confessions of a Groupie, Jimmy Page "was always in the mirror, shirtless and in skin-tight leather, primping his splendid image, and putting perfect waves in his long black hair with a little crimping machine. He used Pantene products, and whenever I smelled them, for years afterwards, I remember being buried in his hair."
"I used to go and see him in 1971 when Zeppelin were the biggest band in the world," remembers MacGowan, back in the day, when music fans came to gigs and they moshed, smoked, got smashed on the head with beer bottles. "They used to do an incredibly long and very loud set. Jimmy had this thing, where he would stop in the middle of Dazed and Confused and for half an hour he would bugger around on the guitar with a cello bow, really loud. It was very clever, that was the thing people talked about, it made an amazing noise. He's a great guitar player; rock had finally become a classical art form. Victoria and I met him recently at a restaurant in Chelsea after our hotel set on fire. We were evacuated and had to go have breakfast. Jimmy spotted me, came over and said hello and we had a long chat about all kinds of stuff, drugs, black magic. I reminded him that I used to steal his food in a lesbian club called Louise's that we both went to in Soho in the 70s. I thought he looked great and he hasn't gotten fat or anything."
MacGowan, a legendary hell-raiser in his own right, says Page embodied all the excess of the 1970s. "They used to chop up hotel rooms with samurai swords and get mud sharks to have sex with groupies in LA; Frank Zappa did a whole album about that," he says of Led Zeppelin's dissolute lifestyle, which set the virtually unattainable standards of mindless depravity for the bands that followed them. "Jimmy bought Aleister Crowley's castle, the one where he raised the devil, for millions and that is when the bad luck started for him. Various kids died and then John Bonham died. The thing was Jimmy got into black magic in America and Crowley was the grand wizard. Crowley always needed money because he was a junkie, but he didn't tell Jimmy that he had raised up the devil in this castle and then ran away because he was scared shitless and left the devil there halfway between heaven and hell. Crowley got pangs of conscience and said: ‘I don't think I can sell you the castle, because the devil's in there, in a really bad mood' and then Jimmy Page doubled his offer. He was so into the occult he had the mark of the Beast on his trousers." It just goes to show that the devil doesn't just have all the best tunes – he has all the best clothes too.
L'Uomo Vogue, February 2013 (n. 438)
Photo by Danny Clinch
Jason Bonham, son of the band's legendary late sticksman John wrote on his Facebook page (via Stereogum): "I just watched Robert's interview, where he says he's free in 2014!!!!!! Not sure how to read it? What do you think? JB"
Last week, Plant said he was waiting on his bandmates Jimmy Page and John Paul Jones in order to kick off the reunion, blaming their silence on the fact that they are Capricorns. "They don't say a word," he said. "They're quite contained in their own worlds and they leave it to me. I'm not the bad guy... You need to see the Capricorns – I've got nothing to do in 2014."
Led Zeppelin's last proper show was at London's O2 Arena in December 2007, where they were joined by Jason Bonham on drums. However, a full tour following the one-off gig was nixed by Plant.
Led Zeppelin are currently in talks to stream their back catalogue online. The band are looking at giving at various music services including Spotify, Rdio and Rhapsody the right to put their music online. A deal would be a rare digital leap forward for Zeppelin, who waited until 2007 before they made their albums available through iTunes.
Meanwhile, Zeppelin guitarist Jimmy Page is working on remastering a number of the band's albums. Page, who oversaw the DVD release of Celebration Day, the concert film of Led Zeppelin's O2 Arena gig, revealed that he is working on extra material for each album the band recorded and that they will see the light of day in a series of boxset releases, starting this year.
So when rumors of a Led Zeppelin tour get tossed around - as they were this week - the weight of the situation is not to be taken lightly. Take the mad-dash for Rolling Stones tickets last year - when they played a mere five shows for the first time in five years - and multiply that by the largest number your brain can comprehend, then just stop thinking because multiplying levels of human excitement makes no sense whatsoever. A lot of people would be very, very, very happy if Led Zeppelin reunited and toured.
But let's be clear, we don't think it's going to happen. How much finger-pointing will this take before this matter gets put to bed? Page explained the Zep reunion situation late last year in his Rolling Stone cover story: "Some of us thought we would be continuing [after the O2 show], that there were going to be more concerts in the not-too-distant-future... He [Robert Plant] was busy."
Plant fired back this week with a segment on Australia's 60 Minutes, blaming Zeppelin's lack of reunion on astrological signs, of all things. "[Jimmy Page and John Paul Jones] are Capricorns," he said. "They don't say a word. They're quite contained in their own worlds and they leave it to me. I'm not the bad guy… You need to see the Capricorns - I've got nothing to do in 2014."
The he-said/he-said doesn't instill much confidence in the odds, but let's think in hypotheticals for a second. How much could a Led Zeppelin reunion tour gross? The potential is pretty much endless - 20 million people applied for 16,000 tickets priced at £125 each in September 2007, with proceeds reportedly going to charity (the Ahmet Ertegun Education Fund). According to 2007 exchange rates, that's about $250 per ticket before inflation - a standard, possibly even fair price for a show of that magnitude. Assuming nothing has changed regarding the demand (the concert's live album, Celebration Day, has sold 366,715 copies after a couple months - trust us, there's still demand), there's a potential to make $5 billion - IF and only if Zeppelin played shows for each and every one of those 20 million people, who would all pay the flat ticket price of $250. But like we said, that would take hundreds, possibly thousands of concerts, so that's not happening.
So let's be slightly realistic instead, despite the fact that this entire pursuit is not. Let's say Page, Plant and Jones (with Jason Bonham on drums) launch a 10-date tour in major arenas around the world. It could easily be more, a lot more - when Page and Plant toured in 1995 and 1996 as a duo, they played nearly 125 shows on four continents. But let's consider the fact that the guys are older and it was tough enough to get them in the room to play one show in honor of their beloved Atlantic Records boss, Ahmet Ertegun. We'll just go with 10 shows. Let's assume Zeppelin's ticket prices are generally comparable with those of the Rolling Stones, who charged anywhere from $145 to $1500 (for VIP) for tickets to their 2012 shows, according to Reuters. Zeppelin could easily fill the same size venues at the Stones, so logic and history suggests they would. The Stones' 144-concert A Bigger Bang Tour, the second-highest-grossing tour of all-time, grossed $558,255,524, according to Billboard. With inflation considered, that sum is equivalent to $625,719,239 in 2013. Divide that by 144 (the number of shows): $4,345,272 gross per show, on average, with inflation considered. Multiply that by ten shows: $43,452,720. With that few number of shows, Zeppelin likely wouldn't crack even the top 100 highest-grossing concert tours. Would they play 100-some shows like U2 (who would the highest-grossing-tour honor) and the Stones? Ha!
Of course, this isn't a reflection of how much the members of Zeppelin would stand to make. Zeppelin's booking agent would more than likely negotiate a flat fee of millions for each performance. For example, inside sources told Billboard that the Rolling Stones would earn $25 million from four arena concerts - two in London, Newark, NJ - in late 2012. That's a little more than $6 million for each show, and a little over $1.5 for each core member per show. Not bad for a night spent jamming with your mates.
Long before tickets would go on sale, each member would know how much they would walk away with. Hell, they'd probably have a ballpark idea of how much they'd make before their agent even approached concert promoters (or one big promoter, like Live Nation). So if Led Zeppelin wants $7 million for each performance, Led Zeppelin would get $7 million for each performance. It's a simple matter of supply, demand and the biggest rock band on the planet.
Listeners of the award winning radio station Planet Rock have named Led Zeppelin as the most influential rock band of all time.
Planet Rock asked listeners to vote for the artist or band that they thought were the most influential in the world of rock. With thousands of votes cast over the first three weeks of February, Led Zeppelin topped the poll, taking a massive one fifth of all the votes. In second place was Queen, with Black Sabbath taking up third position.
Planet Rock will be paying homage to these groundbreaking influential heroes on Saturday 23rd February at 7pm with Darren Redick.
Here’s the top ten:
1. Led Zeppelin
3. Black Sabbath
4. Pink Floyd
5. Deep Purple
6. Jimi Hendrix
7. The Rolling Stones
8. The Who
10. David Bowie
Former Webheath resident Andrew Hatcher has restarted his campaign to have a statue made in honour of the legendary skinsman, after Redditch Borough Council asked for residents' views on how the Church Green area could be used.
He told the Standard he first set-up a Facebook group around six years ago which attracted more than 100 members.
"I originally envisaged this tribute as a life-sized bronze statue of the man himself, with drums going hell for leather positioned in the centre of town, but the bandstand would be perfect," he said.
"Outside of Redditch all it's known for is roundabouts and disgraced former MPs, maybe springs and needles if you're old enough. Let's celebrate our hippest export, this is our chance to shine and rock.
"John Bonham was an integral part of one of biggest rock'n'roll bands of all time, and something of a legend in the world of music, and indeed wider pop culture - Redditch should celebrate its cultural heritage."
Bonham was born in the borough on May 31, 1948 and the family lived in Hunt End. At the age of 11 he attended Lodge Park County Secondary School before leaving in 1964.
John tragically lost his life on September 25, 1980 following a day of heavy drinking.
His brother Michael died suddenly in 2000 but his sister Deborah still returns to the town to visit family.
John Bonham's name has been put on the council's list of potential future street names but has yet to be used.
A council spokeswoman confirmed they had received a request for a John Bonham statue to be incorporated into the bandstand area.
"This will be taken into account when the consultation ends and officers will collate the responses and present them to the portfolio holder," she said.
From: Redditch Standard
This obviously won't work well for every song out there — on the playlist uploaded by creator Paul Lamere, "Intro" by The XX and "Rolling in the Deep" by Adele work great, while Radiohead's "Karma Police" and "Such Great Heights" by The Postal Service feel particularly awkward. (However, speeding up "Such Great Heights" with the "double time shuffle" drum beat yields some pretty hilarious results). In addition to Lamere's hand-picked list of 13 Bonhamized songs, the site also offers you a look at recent uploads so you can see what other twisted mashups the internet has given birth to.
From: The Verge
"Don't forget to check out Jimmy Page official firstname.lastname@example.org .I'll be back working on it next week with Matt'the wonder boy' and promise you there will be some exciting new posts and announcements..."
No word on what this could mean, but speculation has run rampant for quite some time that Jimmy has been working on a new album. Could this tidbit be the forerunner to something even bigger?
From: Finding Zoso: Discovering the Music of Jimmy Page
The rocker and his former bandmates Jimmy Page and John Paul Jones have been trying to play down talk of another get together ever since they regrouped for a one-off gig in 2007, which was released on Dvd in 2012, and now Plant has hinted that he's open to a Led Zeppelin reunion next year.
In an interview filmed for Australian news show 60 Minutes, the singer insisted he's not the reason for the band's lack of activity, despite reports suggesting otherwise. He said, "They (Page and Jones) are Capricorns. They don't say a word. They're quite contained in their own worlds and they leave it to me. I'm not the bad guy... You need to see the Capricorns."
He then added, "I've got nothing to do in 2014."
His remarks contradict comments Page made in a Rolling Stone article last year, when he suggested his former frontman "was busy" as the band tried to plan a reunion tour after its 2007 show.
From: Contact Music
Said Scream guitarist Andrew Innes to the Daily Record, "Robert has a house near our studio [and] we see him in the post office all the time." He continued, "It is weird to think, 'Here's the hammer of the gods coming.' But you don't want to be at the back of the post office queue with Robert Plant on pension day."
Nevertheless, it was during one of these random encounters that Plant apparently offered his services to Innes and Primal Scream vocalist, Bobby Gillespie, who readily took him up on it.
As a result, Plant is said to have traded lines with Gillespie on a song named Elimination Blues, from the band's forthcoming album. Said album is presently scheduled for released in May 2013 under the working title of More Light, and while no preview of the track is available, as yet, we will of course share it with readers on these same pages as soon as it emerges.
From: Ultimate Classic Rock
Producer: Steven Burling
They were the biggest rock group on the planet - knocking off the Beatles and the Rolling Stones.
Everything about Led Zeppelin was bigger, their sound, their bad boy reputation and that voice of lead singer Robert Plant.
He was the self-proclaimed "Golden God" of Rock.
And 40 years on, still singing and touring, he continues to inspire awe in his devotees, musicians and fans alike.
Some of his antics have mellowed, but his voice is still sublime, and there's still a twinkle in his eye.
Robert Plant will perform a series of headline shows along with his band the Sensational Space Shifters.
Dates are as follows:
Adelaide Entertainment Centre on Tuesday, March 26
Sydney Entertainment Centre on Thursday, March 28
Melbourne's Rod Laver Arena on Wednesday, April 3
Launceston's Silverdome on Friday, April 5.
Tickets are on sale now via westcoastbluesnroots.com.au and Bluesfest, Byron Bay: bluesfest.com.au.
And in the Hunter Valley NSW:
Sunday, March 31
ROBERT PLANT and the Sensational Space Shifters
Special Guests: Blind Boys of Alabama and Playing For Change.
From: 60 Minutes
Robert Plant is appearing on a new season of 60 Minutes (Australia TV). It is airing on Sunday Feb 17th, Channel Nine at 7:30 PM (Australia time). The interview was filmed on February 2 in England.
"Could 2014 see a Led Zeppelin comeback?"
Primrose Hill Community Library was packed to capacity as around 90 shopkeepers and residents attended the meeting to discuss the future of shops in Regent's Park Road, last Thursday.
Ways to maintain the vibrancy of the shopping parade in a tough economic climate was top of the agenda, after recent rent increases are understood to have left many shops struggling to stay open.
As businesses have started to leave, shop units are being left vacant and the community feels something should be done.
Led Zeppelin singer Robert Plant's suggestion that a men's clothing shop would be a valuable addition, was one of many contributions to the debate.
Phil Cowan, 46, owner of Primrose Hill Interiors, Regent's Park Road, said: "Primrose Hill is not immune to the recession. If we want to keep our shops open, we need to reinvent our business association and broaden its remit."
A survey revealed people were keen to turn one of the empty shops into a community-run store – perhaps a butchers or greengrocers. It was also suggested that "pop-up shops" should take residence in the empty units to brighten the area. None of the landlords of the empty properties attended.
Another meeting will be held next month.
We entered by the front door, where the sign is the old Massey Hall sign, the one that’s been there since my parents took me to see the Irish Rovers - which would be not long before Rush recorded All The Worlds a Stage, one of the great live albums - there. Our seats are right beside the sound board, the best seats in the house. Jason Bonham’s Led Zeppelin Experience is an audio/video rock and roll concert and the tone of the show is set immediately. The show starts with the night’s first video clip before the band comes on and kicks off with Rock and Roll. Jason, the son, paying tribute to his father John with his dad’s most recognizable drum part. At the songs conclusion Bonham rips into the final drum fill, less like the father, now playing it like Jason himself, as we’ve come to know the song from Celebration Day. Your reminded of the moment in the film and can almost picture Jimmy Page, Robert Plant and John Paul Jones smiling over the drum kit at him as he nails it, the iconic 2007 concert’s final moment, the beginning on this evening. Celebration Day looms large at the Jason Bonham’s Led Zeppelin Experience shows this time around. It is mentioned in one of Jason’s monologues: the dream of a Led Zeppelin album in stores bearing his name, and adjustments have been made to some of the songs because of Celebration Day.
“I was sick last week, so I never got a chance to rehearse that song,” James Dylan is explaining to me. The back stage area in Massey Hall is more like an apartment, with a number of adjoining rooms, a balcony and a kitchen area. We are walking up the stairs as he continues: “That’s the first time I have sung that song with the band. Ironic, huh?” he asks. He’s talking about Sick Again, the set’s second song, adjoined to Rock and Roll as Led Zeppelin did it in 1975: Bonham has apparently been listening to the old bootlegs again. It’s a great start to what is going to be a great show.
Our first stop is the Massey Hall box office. Going past the large main doors, we can faintly hear music coming from inside. I put my ear to the door and can hear Dylan singing:
Lyin’, cheatin’, hurtin, that’s all you seem to do.I pull my ear away having heard all I need to for now. At dinner I message Dylan: “sound checking Your Time is Gonna Come, eh? Sounds good” (the eh? is added to remind him he’s in Canada now). Later he tells me it’s a new addition to the setlist so they needed to play it through.
At soundcheck in Kitchener the next day I’m sitting in the front row, the only person there not traveling with the band. As they go through Houses of the Holy, stopping it a couple of times to get something right, even going so far as to play a recording when indecision rears it’s head, I assume it’s going to be added to the setlist. It isn’t and neither is Trampled Underfoot, which they also soundchecked. Pity, both sound great. But Bonham shows himself in soundcheck to be a bit of a perfectionist, and besides, what song should they remove to add those two in? That was always the dilemma the originals faced, and it’s one Bonham has too. When you have more than 80 quality songs, what do you leave out?
I’ve heard before that Jason Bonham is a good singer. Robert Plant, introducing Misty Mountain Hop during the O2 show in 2007 said, “Jason’s a pretty cool singer…” I hear first hand just how good a singer Jason is when he and keyboardist Stephen LeBlanc do a Ray Charles soundalike rendition of Georgia on my Mind. Later, he belts out the ending of Babe I’m Gonna Leave You, giving a good Robert with his lemon thoroughly squeezed imitation. Yes, Jason Bonham is a good singer.
Babe I’m Gonna Leave You may be the highlight of the show. At Massey Hall, guitarist Tony Catania’s acoustic guitar, set on a Steve Howe-like guitar stand, had a patch problem. It wasn’t working is the short version, and it was an obvious problem, not like say, they skipped a verse in Kashmir. Even Jason was peering over his drum kit, the look of a boss, worried that something is going awry, on his face. For Catania it was just a day at the office, however, and he stepped away and began the song on his Les Paul - just as Jimmy Page played it the few times Zeppelin played this song live. By the second time through the verse, the problem was solved and Catania finished the song moving between the two guitars as the arrangement was designed to do. The dynamics of the song, Catania’s acoustic to electric, Steve LeBlanc moving between his lap steel and acoustic guitar, singer Dylan simply nailing it with every note, electrified the crowd. This isn’t good, this is great and the Toronto crowd gives the night’s first, but hardly last, standing ovation. In Kitchener the crowd is more vocal, and throughout the song are cheering and whooping. I am not the only one who gets chills when these guys play this song, and I know what Jimmy Page envisioned for Led Zeppelin back in 1968 was this: exactly this.
Playing slide and playing the harmonica have certain things in common: both are staples of the blues, both are easy to play, difficult to play well. Catania follows up his expressive playing onBabe I’m Gonna Leave You with some excellent slide work for You Shook Me. He hits those first few notes with such authority, clean tone and impeccable tuning there’s just no doubting, this guy can play slide. Standing beside him on stage, almost in the wings, his childhood friend is playing the harp.
“This is Gary Hood,” James introduces us, “the hardest working man on the show.” Hood is tall with long blond hair which he wears in a ponytail. Onstage, he adds a fedora and looks the part of a blues player perfectly. I offer a compliment on his playing, and he accepts it quietly, almost embarrassed that anybody noticed. On the first tour, bassist Michael Devin handled the harp duties as necessary. When Devin left the band, “they told me, I guess you’re doing it, you’re the singer,” Dylan says. “But I’ve never played harp before.” As Catania’s guitar tech, they overheard Hood playing the harp one day and he got the job. Hood plays the harp on You Shook Me and When the Levee Breaks. “We’re going to start working on Nobody’s Fault But Mine,” Dylan jokes, “to give him another song.” Just one more thing for the busiest guy on the tour to do.
Gary Hood may be the busiest guy on the tour, but Stephen LeBlanc is the busiest guy on the stage. “I have my own tech this tour,” he tells me over dinner. “It helps a lot to make those quick changes.” The quick changes he is talking about are when he moves between lap steel and keyboards, or guitar and keyboards. For What is and What Should Never Be he uses his electric, a telecaster deluxe with two humbucker pickups, four volume/tone controls and the oddest pick-guard. “That guitar rocks,” he tells me when I ask him about it.
LeBlanc keeps his hair long and when he plays keyboard he hunches over them like a madman from the old horror movies (or Garth Hudson, take your pick). As he bobs his head, the hair flies around, creating a dynamic visual effect. On guitar, he does much the same. The hair, he’ll tell you, is too long. “It’s a mess,” he says specifically, but he understands that the longer hair adds to his stage presence.
But LeBlanc brings more to the band than just flying hair. “I’m not sure I would have made this band if I had to audition for it,” he says. We are talking about Brian Titchy’s Bonzo Bash, in which he is a member of the backing band, The Moby Dicks, and Sass Jordan’s name comes up. I tell him my old story about maybe, just maybe, auditioning for Sass’s band way back in 1982. “Fortunately, I’ve never had to do an audition,” he says. “With this band we just all got together and jammed. When it was over Jason said, ‘well that was good.’”
James Dylan is holding court after the Kitchener show and tells the story of how LeBlanc made his way into the band. “We had all got together, and Jason said, ‘I guess all we need now is someone who plays keyboards, guitar and lap steel. Anyone know anybody?’” The question is presented as if they are looking for a needle in a haystack, but Michael Devin knew LeBlanc and Devin’s recommendation was good enough for Bonham, no audition required.
During soundcheck, LeBlanc turns on the Clavinet sample and starts a funky line. Jason picks it up and they settle into a groove that would remind Bonham of The Who’s Eminence Front. Tony Catania joins in on the theremin with a low scratching sound. It’s a really cool groove, and you can’t help hope somebody captured it on tape. As the band are talking about an album, about some really great originals, I think to myself I’d love to hear this idea developed.
LeBlanc turns back to his keyboards for Thank You, the big organ sound suiting his Phantom of the Opera stage persona, while Dylan picks up his Ovation acoustic guitar for the first time. “This one is for my Dad,” Jason says before they begin the lovely ballad. A slide show and old home movies of John Bonham play on the screen behind Jason.
One thing everybody mentions about James Dylan is that he is spot on with every note. He’ll tell you he had a very little training when he was 18, then promptly forgot it all. A professional singing teacher back stage asks him about it, and then refuses to believe his answer. During soundcheck Jason and he have a discussion about the opening note in Houses of the Holy. It matters, to both of them that he gets the it just right. His ability to hit the notes is evident in Immigrant Song, notes Robert Plant himself stopped trying to hit before his 25th birthday. But James, at 46, can still wail like a rampaging viking. “Singing like Robert takes its toll. You could hear changes in Robert’s voice over the course of only a few years.” James tells the vocal teacher. “If my voice remains as it is for a while longer, I figure I’m very fortunate”.
There’s changes in the Jason Bonham camp this time around. Bonham has changed managers and backstage there’s a buzz around the band, they’re all quietly excited about something. I ask about a possible album, and am told that it’s happening - it’s even suggested I get a listen of some of the new material, but that never happens. It’s suggested more dates are coming in the summer, possibly bigger dates. But there’s more, something bigger, and on three different occasions I am almost told what it is. Each band member is keeping their own counsel on the big news, but each was having a hard time not telling, biting their lips before saying, “I can’t.” Stephen LeBlanc tells me, when I mention his keyboard work on Since I’ve Been Loving You, “I’ve always wanted a real hammond organ on tour. Maybe this summer I’ll get one.” Whatever it is, it’s big and according to the rumour mill, while the band is trying to hold it in, Jason is holding court elsewhere telling his guests what is up.
There’s also a new sound and video crew for this tour. “They’re the best in the business,” I’m told, but none the less, two shows in, there’s kinks. First and foremost among them is Moby Dick. Since the beginning of The Led Zeppelin Experience Jason has done the drum solo onMoby Dickalongside a video sequence of his father from The Song Remains the Same. As of the Toronto show, they hadn’t had time to work out the video synching with the new crew, so Moby Dick has been noticeably absent from the show. At sound check the day after Toronto, it’s the biggest concern, and a lot of conversation goes on between Jason and the crew. He’s determined it has to be there, and almost an hour is spent on figuring out the process.
“Do we go straight into it from Immigrant Song?” the crew asks. “No, I need a minute. It’s a lot of work,” Jason answers. Later, he wonders if they can shorten Moby Dick a bit. “It comes in at two minutes,” Jason tells them. “Can we make it happen at a minute and a half?” I’m not sure exactly what is two minutes, but assume it’s the time from the start of the drum solo to the start of the video. For reasons unclear to me, this couldn’t be done, so they do a run through at two minutes.
“That’s the best I’ve ever done it,” Jason says when it’s done. “Tonight I’ll be all…” and he starts playing a series of apparently embarrassingly pedestrian tom fills, but I can’t hear that they are any worse than what he did. If he played the pedestrian version of the solo that evening, which finally makes it’s appearance in the set in Kitchener, neither I nor anybody else in the crowd complained.
When he first called James Dylan to ask him to sing in his band, Dylan didn’t believe it was Jason Bonham. He thought it was his friends playing a joke. When Bonham finally convinced him he was the real Jason Bonham, and began explaining his concept for the show, one thought worried Dylan the whole time. “Will I have to wear the wig?” he asked when Bonham finished his spiel. “The wig,” Dylan, who is a graphic artist when not touring with Jason Bonham, says now “was a deal breaker.”
“No wig,” Bonham replied. “We want to do this with some dignity.”
How then to explain the video after the intermission? It is of Jason and his parents, circa mid-1970’s: Jason, a wad of gum in his mouth, drumming; Jason wearing a silly nose making faces for the camera while his dad drums to Dr. John’s Right Place Wrong Time; Jason dancing to Gary Glitter’s I’m The Leader Of The Gang (I Am!), a silly dance that’s embarrassing for Jason and amusing to everybody else in the theatre.
“That dancing wouldn’t be so bad,” Jason says after the video, “if it was once. But it wasn’t,” he laughs. Then the count in for the second set:
We’ve done four alreadyMy own band plays The Ocean and a trouble spot in it for our guitar player, i.e. me, is coming out of the solo and hitting on the verse section. Catania nails this, and I notice night to night an adjustment: in Toronto he plays the solo straight, in Kitchener he kicks in the wah-wah pedal. “The one thing Robert told Jason,” Catania tells me at soundcheck, “is do your own thing with the music.” So Jason gives the guys some leeway with the arrangements, to wah or not to wah is one of these times.
After The Ocean Dylan picks up his Ovation while LeBlanc is handed his Martin acoustic. Catania starts Over the Hills and Far Away off on his Les Paul, and he’s soon being doubled by Dylan. Over the Hills is a complicated song to play and these guys handle it with ease. It’s indicative of how good they are, how good they’ve become that they make Over the Hills and Far Away seem so easy.
“Jason’s a great blues drummer.” Dorian Heartsong is leaning against the doorway, his long black curly hair framing his face. Backstage he is casual and easygoing, he speaks softly and has what my mother would say is ‘a nice smile.’ (Of course, she would also say he needs a haircut.) ”A slow blues is hard for drummers to play, and Jason nails it,” he continues, having been asked about playing with Jason, and the conversation has turned to Since I’ve Been Loving You.
“Dorian is the new guy in the band,” is an oft heard joke. He has, in fact, played more Led Zeppelin Experience shows than his predecessor, Michael Devin. Having come to the band on Devin’s recommendation after Devin moved on to Whitesnake, however, Heartsong will likely always be the new guy. For James Dylan, he calls him the yin to his yang: “We have long talks on the bus,” Dylan says of Heartsong. “We talk about space and stuff,” to which they both laugh.
Jason Bonham is the real front man for this show and Since I’ve Been Loving You is Dylan’s first chance to speak to the audience: “It’s the Jason Bonham Led Zeppelin Experience, not the James Dylan Led Zeppelin Experience,” he said when I interviewed him in 2011. At both shows he mentions his cottage in Algonquin Park, a few hours north of Toronto. It is, along with his wife and family, his favourite topic of conversation. The cottage has been in his family 3 generations and he’s been going there since he was a boy. Of his wife, he rarely mentions her without referring to her as beautiful, as in “my beautiful wife Averelle,” or “the beautiful…” So much so that someone learning English around the band might think Beautiful is her given name.
While introducing Since I’ve Been Loving You, Dylan mentions it is the first song Catania and Bonham ever played together. And while it’s true that yes, it’s a slow blues and yes, Bonham is great in it and yes, Stephen LeBlanc shines on the keys and yes, James Dylan wails and moans and flat out sings his ass off, Since I’ve Been Loving You is a guitarists song, and Catania shines.
The same applies to The Song Remains the Same. In the last year I attempted to learn this song for a band tryout, and I can confirm, it’s a complex song musically as well as technically. The band was flawless and carried the song with energy, exactly the way it should be played.
For soundcheck in Kitchener, the band worked on Moby Dick andHouses of the Holy then played through Trampled Underfoot andWhen the Levee Breaks. As well, partial versions of Kashmir, Over the Hills and Far Away and Rock and Roll are played and they jammed Stephen LeBlanc’s Clavinet jam, Georgia on My Mind and Earth Wind and Fire’s After the Love is Gone.
After When the Levee Breaks, there’s much discussion about Catania’s sound. He is using 2 Marshall amplifier heads and 1 Orange head, each fed through it’s own speaker cabinet and then miked separately. “Can you turn down the Orange and increase the Marshalls?” Jason asks the soundcrew. They want the sound softened, and Catania takes over on the mic, looking for the perfect tone.
Kashmir gets a partial run-through because there was problems the night before. It was almost a disaster I was told, and did I notice? Not at all, is the answer. In fact, it sounded powerful. This is partly because Catania has switched from his Danelectro guitar to a brown Les Paul Studio. I track him down after soundcheck and ask him about the switch. “Jason wanted me to go to the Les Paul,” he tells me, “to get a big, thick sound, like how they played it on Celebration Day.”
He’s also got a new pedal board, and he’s looking to Celebration Day to provide some inspiration there. “I was at that concert,” he says, “and watched Jimmy using his pedals and thought ‘Ohhh.’ Now I’m starting to do the same in some spots.” He a serious, thoughtful musician who approaches guitar playing like a thorough professional. If he came of age in the 60’s or 70’s it seems likely he would have been a big name guitarist, and in truth, the entire band have the talent and dedication to be stars, if only their era wasn’t the 90’s and the 00’s.
“Jimmy was very interested when he heard I was using the acoustic stand on Stairway,” Catania continues talking about equipment. He had seen Yes’s Steve Howe use a stand in the 70’s and always remembered it. When Jason Bonham’s Led Zeppelin Experience was forming and Robert Plant told Jason, “do your own thing with the music,” Catania knew he wanted to use the stand, and get a studio/live mix on Stairway to Heaven. When Stephen LeBlanc joins us, he mentions he could add some slide in Babe, I’m Gonna Leave You and I suggest he add the slide part in theStairway solo. LeBlanc, however, says he’s busy on keyboards and Catania protests he can play that part no problem. Watching them knock Stairway to Heaven out of the park a few hours later, I note they are both right.
I never meet Jason Bonham. He has his own room backstage and stays in there with selected friends and family. At the soundcheck he enters and exits by the rear of the stage, the stage being the one place I don’t have access to. In Toronto, Dylan takes someone’s Celebration Day CD to Jason to be signed, and asks if we have anything we need signed. I bought the Celebration Day LP before the show, but stored it in the car. It occurs to me as he’s asking, I should have brought it in with me.
Dylan does, however, want me to meet Sam, and goes into Bonham’s lair to get him. He is gone about five minutes and comes back without Sam. “Jason’s telling stories back there and I didn’t want to interrupt,” he tells us. Sam emerges a minute later, and we meet.
Sam is a legend in Led Zeppelin fan circles: he owned the LedZeppelin.com domain and ran a fan site on it. When the band decided to do their own website, Sam got asked to run it. He also runs Robert Plant’s website, and travels with Jason on these tours, although this is his last night with this tour as he has another tour to do. Sam is so tight with Jason that the last time I saw them in Orillia, Ontario, Sam’s hometown, I met James and Stephen out by the stage. The only fans who got backstage were pals of Sam: hey, I only know the singer, you want to meet Jason, you need to know the web guy. Sam and I exchange a few pleasantries, but he’s on his way out the door and detailed discussions of our websites or how he hooked up with the band will have to wait for another day.
The backstage atmosphere is different on each of the two night’s I am there. At Massey Hall the guys are lingering around, guests are comfortable in the apartment like backstage area. Stephen LeBlanc is having a beer and slipping out to the balcony for a smoke. James Dylan is talking and moving around. Dorian Heartsong chats with a guest for a while and takes time to talk to us as well. Tony Catania slips out for a couple of beers: Toronto is apparently an old stomping ground for him and Jason. Jason’s 16-year old rapper son, Jager Bonham, is running in and out of the rooms, being chased by someone unknown. The band is staying in town, and the atmosphere is relaxed. No one is in a hurry, and some form of one-on-one conversation is possible.
In Kitchener, the bus is leaving about an hour and a half after the show. They are traveling through the night and have a border to cross. The bulk of the backstage guests are James’, so he spends half an hour chatting to the group of us. But around us, the scene is more frantic. We are standing in a hallway just beside the stage and occasionally have to move because the tear down crew is pushing equipment past us. Stephen LeBlanc joins us, then runs off to get a drink, disappears again, later is back. At one point we can hear a piano from one of the side rooms: LeBlanc is teaching Jager how to play Motley Crue’s Home Sweet Home. Dorian stops and says hello, but quickly moves on to change and pack. Later he passes us as he heads towards the bus, pulling his suitcase behind him.
Tony Catania joins the group. I’ve met Tony three times previously, and other than a specific conversation about his guitars earlier in the day, he’s said very little. Tonight he’s in a more expansive mood, and he’s telling us a story about seeing Zoe Bonham in New York. He’s still wearing his stage clothes and he’s animated and funny.
“We’re like a family,” Dylan says to me backstage at Massey Hall. “We all get along great together. We all look out for each other. I love these guys.” That they look out for each other I know from experience, having in the past received an email from one in defence of another. Stephen LeBlanc echoes the sentiment as we head out for dinner in Kitchener. “I get along great with all these guys,” he says. “There’s never any fights or drama.”
The band finishes up with a rollicking, uptempo version of Whole Lotta Love, complete with a Tony Catania Theremin solo and James Dylan getting the crowd to belt out “Way down inside…” As we are escorted to the front door of Kitchener’s Center in the Square, no stage door exit on this night, we leave the way we came in, the power of Whole Lotta Love seems somehow to echo through the auditorium still.
Massey Hall Toronto, Ontario - Jan 31, 2013
Rock and Roll
Your Time Is Gonna Come
Babe, I’m Gonna Leave You
You Shook Me
What Is and What Should Never Be
Over the Hills and Far Away
Since I’ve Been Loving You
The Song Remains the Same
When the Levee Breaks
Stairway to Heaven
Whole Lotta Love
Centre in the Square, Kitchener, Ontario - Feb 1, 2013
Rock and Roll
Your Time Is Gonna Come
Babe, I’m Gonna Leave You
You Shook Me
What Is and What Should Never Be
Over the Hills and Far Away
Since I’ve Been Loving You
The Song Remains the Same
When the Levee Breaks
Stairway to Heaven
Whole Lotta Love
From: Ramble On Radio
TBL ISSUE 34 OUT NOW
HUNTERSVILLE, N.C. -- They are little voices, but they are belting out some big songs.
The fourth graders at Huntersville Elementary School are learning to rock out, rehearsing for their upcoming concert.
"It feels pretty good. You get to picture yourself being like a rock star," said Jackson Kmieciak.
Music teacher Mike Salvatore says inspiration struck when he saw a perfect teaching opportunity.
"When a fifth grader asked me--I have a picture of John Lennon and Yoko over there--they asked me who's that and nobody in the class knew. I was like, this is wrong. I need to do something about this," Salvatore said.
He wrote all of the arrangements himself.
"I was questioning-did my dad know this or something?" asked Peter Alperi.
"Led Zeppelin could arguably be called the biggest rock band of the 70's," Salvatore said. "I was a little anxious to see how they were going to receive the music. It’s obviously much different than today’s music."
"My dad thought it was pretty awesome because he grew up listening to (them) so he thought it would be pretty cool for me to have the experience," Kmieciak said.
Fourth grader Acadia Dubiel said, "I didn't really know them much but now I love their songs."
Although their efforts were spun as an attempt to continue Zeppelin without Plant, Page and Jones were actually serious about creating something new - in fact, they'd written a substantial amount of material before bringing in any singers. "It seemed the right thing to go in and start playing new material," Page told Classic Rock Magazine (via Blabbermouth). "I thought we really should play to our strengths here, which was the music. But there were a lot of movements to bring in singers and do this, that and the other. And that would've changed the character too early from what we were doing. I won't say there was pressure, but there was a lot of hinting about this singer and that singer. For me it was more a question of, let's see what we can really do. And I don't think we got a chance to do that."
Calling the 'Zeppelin with a new singer' rumors "a total misunderstanding," Jones recalled, "I said, 'Of course, if we go out (on the road), we're going to have to do some Zeppelin numbers.' And there's nothing wrong with that. In fact, we rehearsed 'Carouselambra,' which we've never done live before, and we had a bunch of new material done. But Jimmy and I couldn't agree on singers."
Of the vocalists they worked with, Jones said, "I quite liked Myles Kennedy. He's got the range, but his voice is completely different than Robert's. Which was fine by me, because it was going to be a completely different band. But it didn't work out and we all moved on."
From: Ultimate Classic Rock
Some say Boleskines Lodge Aleister Crowley, born Edward Alexander Crowley, (12 October 1875 – 1 December 1947; was a British occultist, writer and mystic's former home and Jimmy Pages from Led Zepllin is very haunted by ghosts demons, angles and Crowley himself. Boleskine House was the estate of Aleister Crowley from 1899 to 1913. It is located on the South-Eastern shore of Loch Ness in Scotland. It was built in the late 18th century by Archibald Fraser.
Crowley eventually sold the manor in order to fund the publication of The Equinox, Vol. III. However, he later alleged that the funds were stolen by the Grand Treasurer General of the Order, George MacNie Cowie. (The extensive mortgaging of the house by that time may in fact have left little funds to steal.)
From the early 1970s to well into the 1980s, Boleskine was owned by famed Led Zeppelin guitarist and Aleister Crowley enthusiast, Jimmy Page. Sections of Page's fantasy sequence in the Led Zeppelin concert film, The Song Remains the Same were filmed at night on the mountain side directly behind Boleskine House.
Boleskines Lodge Cemetery facing North, with view of Loch Ness is said to harbour man a restless soul.
From: Haunted America Tours
The event, which has been held in Los Angeles on the anniversary of Bonham's birthday in the past, shifted venues this year to take place as part of the NAMM Convention weekend in Anaheim, allowing for more participants to join in. The 2013 Bonzo Bash was held at the Observatory in Anaheim Thursday night (Jan. 24) with a star-studded lineup rocking out for those in attendance.
For instance, Adrenaline Mob's Mike Portnoy came out to rock the crowd with the assistance of former Megadeth bassist James Lomenzo on Zeppelin's 'How Many More Times.' Iron Maiden's Nicko McBrain pounded away on a cover of 'Immigrant Song' and Slayer's Dave Lombardo provided a more swinging drum sound on Zeppelin's 'Down by the Seaside.' Fan-shot video of all three 'Bonzo Bash' performances can be seen below.
The evening also featured such top drummers as Steven Adler, Anthrax's Charlie Benante, Testament's Gene Hoglan, Korn's Ray Luzier, Buckcherry's Xavier Muriel, Jane's Addiction's Stephen Perkins, Poison's Rikki Rockett and more. In addition, fellow musicians like the previously mentioned Lomenzo, Tesla's Frank Hannon, Great White's Jack Russell, Black Country Communion's Derek Sherinian, Mr. Big's Billy Sheehan, Warrant's Robert Mason, Whitesnake's Doug Aldrich and S.U.N.'s Sass Jordan also joined in the jam.
The first cover is by Beth Hart, solo artist and recent collaborator with Joe Bonamassa, has had Whole Lotta Love in her live repertoire for a long time. This version was recorded on May 7, 2004 at Amsterdam's Paradiso Theater.
The second cover is led by Linda Perry, former singer of 4 Non Blondes, who performed the track Misty Mountain Hop on the 1995 tribute Encomium, as well as a great list of musicians, including Slash.
So....which do you think is the better version?
Available February. Prices start at £105 for clothing and £138 for sunglasses. johnvarvatos.com
We're celebrating 25 years of making music with Soundbeam in 2013 and in order to mark the occasion we're inviting our global family of over 4,000 users to submit video examples of their Soundbeam work, to YouTube, with cash prizes for the best entries.I know one person that isn't doing much of late that has experience in transforming movement into sound.
Photo by Derek de Jager
Led Zeppelin's John 'Bonzo' Bonham was a simple soul. Not for him the mysteries of the tarot pack or Aleister Crowley's Magick, Book 4. When at home at his Worcestershire farm, a few pints of beer and his close family nearby were enough to keep the band's powerhouse drummer more than happy. He also liked cars and bikes. So much so that, in the band's 1976 film The Song Remains the Same, while Plant, Page and Jones choose mystical adventures for their 'fantasy' sequences, Bonham is seen content to be at home on his Harley, playing snooker and running an AA Fueler dragster to 260mph at Santa Pod. The background music to this pastoral scene is Bonham's 'own' Zeppelin number, Moby Dick.
Photo by Derek de Jager
In 1974, Bonham had been the prime mover in the band's famous Zeppelin image appearing on British driver Kaye Griffiths' McLaren M8E/D (chassis 80-08). The car had already been running in the usually undersupported Interserie series in 1971-72, when it was owned by the Belgian VDS team. Griffiths bought it in November 1972 - minus the fearsome twin-turbocharged Chevrolet engine - and, for the following two years, entered it in several Interserie and British Formula Libre events. The car appeared in 'Led Zeppelin' livery for the May 1974 Martini International Trophy Supersports event at Silverstone, a round of the Interserie. An occasional chart-topper in Formula Libre, Griffiths spun out of contention in the big race at Silverstone.
Photo by Derek de Jager
The car's dark blue with white stars and grey 'airship' paint scheme looked stunning – seemingly straight from the airbrushes of the Hipgnosis design agency. (It was, in fact, designed by Richard Evans Design & Art Direction, Hay-on-Wye, Herefordshire – not far from the drummer's home.) In recent years, the 'Led Zeppelin McLaren' has been seen in historic motor racing, in the hands of its current owners, the Moritz family in the USA.
From: Classic Driver
Led Zeppelin took the stage at London's O2 Arena on December 10, 2007 to headline a tribute concert for dear friend and Atlantic Records founder Ahmet Ertegun. What followed was a two-hour-plus tour de force of the band's signature blues-infused rock 'n' roll that instantly became part of the legend of Led Zeppelin. Although 20 million people applied for tickets, the band's first headline show in 27 years was seen only by the 18,000 ticket holders who were fortunate enough to have secured seats through the worldwide lottery.
Noisecreep got its hands on a lithograph of the Celebration Day cover signed by its artist, the one and only Shepard Fairey, and we're giving it away to one of you!
All you have to do to enter is head to this post on Noisecreep's Facebook page and tell us what your favorite Led Zeppelin song is. You have to "Like" us on Facebook to be eligible. We'll pick a random suggestion and announce the winner on our Facebook page on Monday, Jan. 21.
We'll give two other winners a copy of the CD/DVD... enter now!
Celebration Day is available in multiple video and audio formats on Amazon.
The audio version of Celebration Day won the Best Live Album competition by capturing 41% of all filed ballots. That beat out both the mighty AC/DC - whose Live at River Plate earned 25% of the vote - and Ozzy Osbourne, whose archival Ozzy Live set notched 9%.
On the visual side, the set also took home the prize for DVD of the Year with 37% of the vote, good enough to surpass fellow contenders such as Iron Maiden (who scored 11% for En Vivo) and Osbourne for the long-awaited DVD release of his Speak of the Devil concert film.
From: Ultimate Classic Rock
The students from the School of Rock Led Zeppelin Tribute Show
P.S. Just in case you would like to attend, we have put you on our guest list for both nights
From: Austin Chronicle
The Blind Boys of Alabama to Join
Robert Plant & Sensational Space Shifters
Following last year's announcement that rock legend Robert Plant will be performing two New Zealand shows with his band the Sensational Space Shifters, Chugg Entertainment are thrilled to announce that The Blind Boys of Alabama will be joining the line-up for both the Wellington and Auckland shows.
The living legends of gospel music will be returning to NZ shores with their glorious meld of gospel, blues and rock n roll. It's harder to find a more joyful sound than their unforgettable shows filled with laughter and packed with emotion that they have finessed over seven decades of touring.
The Blind Boys were formed in the Alabama Institute for the Negro Blind over 70 years ago and they haven't stopped since. Their road has not been easy, but their regard in the industry is unrivalled. Being winners of 5 Grammy Awards and honoured with the Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award in 2009 are just some of their career highlights. The Blind Boys have shared the stage and collaborated with the finest musicians and songwriters including Lou Reed, Bob Dylan, Ben Harper, Mavis Staples, Tom Petty, John Fogerty, Peter Gabriel - to name just a few. Now add to that - Robert Plant and the Sensational Space Shifters!
Now fans have the extraordinary opportunity to witness a once in a life-time musical experience, a show that ultimately digs deep into the roots of the blues, turns rock on its head, mixes powerful rhythms and gorgeous gospel melodies - all delivered by some of the musical worlds most legendary, talented and unique performers.
"Seeing the Blind Boys of Alabama in concert is part living history, part concert, all uplifting experience...the best moments come when the group joins forces for stirring harmonies... Inspired and relevant...borders on the miraculous" -The Washington Post
"The fusion of the Blind Boys' Deep South Gospel with New Orleans funk, R&B and jazz creates a superweapon of roots-music uplift...will raise goose bumps even on the tatted-up arms of resolutely futurist hipsters"
Brian Hiatt, Rolling Stone
ROBERT PLANT & SENSATIONAL SPACE SHIFTERS
with very special guests
THE BLIND BOYS OF ALABAMA
TICKETS ON SALE NOW
Tuesday 9th April - TSB Bank Arena, Wellington
www.ticketek.co.nz or 0800 842 538
Thursday 11th April - Vector Arena, Auckland
www.ticketmaster.co.nz or 0800 111 999 / (09) 970 9700
In 2007, Led Zeppelin reunited for a single concert in London. One million people tried to get tickets. Only 20,000 succeeded. Demand for a tour has been constant ever since, but members of Led Zeppelin have continually declined.
Considering tens and hundreds of millions of dollars could be generated by even a small tour...
And considering how much awareness for worthy causes could be achieved...
We, the undersigned, petition the members of Led Zeppelin to tour in 2013. Donate the proceeds to charity.
Help and heal the world.
It is, quite possibly, the least you could do.
The track is available at iTunes here.
In Washington, Heart were joined by Jason Bonham, the son of late Zeppelin drummer John; Jason played with Zeppelin at the band's 2007 reunion show in London, released recently as Celebration Day
"I am so happy you all liked our performance of Stairway to Heaven at The Kennedy Center Honors event," posted vocalist Ann Wilson. "It was our honor to be asked to do it before an audience like that. My main goal though was to please Jimmy Page, Robert Plant and John Paul Jones...especially Plant, since all these many years he has taught me so much about singing from the soul and has given me such pleasure in his lyrics. What a high that night was. Never to be forgotten!"
Zeppelin were on hand along with fellow 2012 recipients David Letterman, bluesman Buddy Guy, actor and director Dustin Hoffman, and ballerina Natalia Makarova.
Claude Nobs, the founder and general manager of the Montreux Jazz Festival in Switzerland, has died after spending several weeks in a coma following a skiing accident. He was 76.
According to CNN, Nobs had taken a nasty spill while cross-country skiing in the mountains overlooking Montreux on December 24.
Although he managed to get up and return home on his own, reports say Claude later fainted and had to be flown by helicopter to a hospital in Lausanne, where he underwent surgery and slipped into a coma.
Nobs passed away on Thursday, January 10.
Nicknamed "Funky Claude" by the band Deep Purple, Nobs kicked off the first Montreux Jazz Festival in 1967 while working at the Swiss resort's tourism office, attracting some of the world's biggest stars, including including Miles Davis (who got on particularly well with Nobs), Frank Zappa, Led Zeppelin, Weather Report, John McLaughlin, Santana and Van Morrison, among hundreds of others.
The Guardian notes that despite undergoing heart surgery some six years ago, Nobs stayed on as festival director, a position he shared during the 1990s with American producer Quincy Jones, who returns each year from Los Angeles to introduce new talent.
Following news of Nobs' death, Jones took to Twitter to pay tribute.
"There are no words to express the deep sorrow and hollowness in my heart that comes with news of Claude Nobs," he tweeted.
From: The Inquisitr
At a 28 February 1970 performance in Copenhagen, the band was billed as "The Nobs", a playful pun on the name of their European promoter, Claude Nobs, as the result of a threat of legal action from aristocrat Frau Eva von Zeppelin, descendent of Count Ferdinand von Zeppelin creator of the Zeppelin aircraft, over use of the 'Zeppelin' name.
The band is in negotiations with a number of subscription services for the right to stream Whole Lotta Love, Stairway to Heaven and the rest of the band's classic catalog. If it does reach a deal, the band - one of the biggest-selling acts in history - could help legitimize the subscription market, which has been slow to build a large customer base.
"We're excited about the opportunity to collaborate with Led Zeppelin to activate streaming rights for their catalog," a spokesman for the Warner Music Group, the band's longtime record label, said in a statement. "We're supportive of the band's discussions with W.M.G.'s streaming service partners to create a window of exclusivity to maximize the impact of this launch."
Among the companies in potential competition for the exclusive rights are Spotify, Rhapsody and Rdio, along with Deezer, which began in France and is interested in the American market. Depending on which service gets the deal, the band's presence could tip the competitive scales between them, putting a leader like Spotify far ahead or giving a needed boost to a smaller company like Rdio.
Because their catalogs are largely the same, the major subscription services compete on features like playlists and social integration, and also for exclusive content. Last year, the Red Hot Chili Peppers made an exclusive deal with Spotify, but many of the others now have the band's music as well. Metallica announced an exclusive deal with Spotify last month. These deals often come with marketing commitments as well as royalty advances, which for a band of Led Zeppelin's stature could be substantial.
Led Zeppelin has sold more than 111 million albums in the United States, according to the Recording Industry Association of America, and, with listening to its heavy guitars and whomping drums still a teenage rite, its catalog has held on to strong sales. Last year, the band sold about 840,000 albums in the United States, according to Nielsen SoundScan.
The band was relatively slow to adapt to digital music, holding out until 2007 to sell its music on iTunes. But while few major holdouts remain in the download market - one of the last, AC/DC, finally came to iTunes late last year - streaming services remain frightening territory to some of the music industry's biggest names.
The Beatles, the Eagles, Pink Floyd and AC/DC are among the older stars mostly absent from streaming services. Many younger acts, like Taylor Swift and Adele, have withheld their latest music from streaming - at least for a time - to protect more lucrative download and CD sales.
From: New York Times
A Foggy Day In Vietnam
Most every young studio musician dreams of that one day when they can record their own music. 18 year old Jones recorded this nearly instrumental number in 1964 for Pye Records. Jones played some excellent honky tonk upright piano on this track. It is very reminiscent of songs later in his career, like Hot Dog and Darlene & his 1977 piano solos during No Quarter.
This song starts out with a killer riff, heavy 4-string bass and layers guitar over that. Then it changes into a signature John Paul Jones walking bass run in the pre-chorus. The second half of the pre-chorus has some funky clavinet work. All that plus Jones contributing some backup vocals and mini improv bass solos when performed live.
Jones has never been afraid to stray from traditional rock and roll. This has never been held more true than with the album The Sporting Life with avant-garde singer Diamanda Galás. To most ears, her vocals sound unintelligible, however, Skótoseme (Greek for “kill me”) has some tasty bass work on a Manson 8-string bass, wired in stereo and drums by Pete Thomas, Elvis Costello’s drummer, who later played on Jones’ first solo album in 1999, Zooma.
The Lemon Song
The Lemon Song features exemplary bass runs that many budding bass guitarists have often tried to imitate (including yours truly). Recorded virtually live in Mystic Studios in 1969, Jones is definitely pulling from his roots to pull this song off.
Dazed And Confused
The second that you hear the haunting, descending bass line, you can instantly tell that it’s John Paul Jones in Dazed And Confused from Led Zeppelin. In the first few albums, you can tell that Jones and Jimmy Page were experimenting with different studio tricks and the tone of the bass is a bit muted, lacking some natural echo that you hear in most other tracks. It adds to the overall psychedelic loneliness that creeps over you.
When this song was played live and it stretched to over 30 minutes in length, not once could you tell that Jones was straining to keep up with the guitar or drums. He was perfectly locked within the groove.
Stairway To Heaven
Some may look at Stairway To Heaven and think that it’s a Page track. How untrue? Jones was all over the place on this song. In addition to Fender Rhodes keyboard action that fills in against the beautiful Page guitar work and unreal bass guitar runs, there is no other song that better rocks out on a quartet of bass recorders, all played by Jones. You simply cannot get any more badass than that.
Tidal (Guitar Wars version)
Riding high from the underground success of two solo albums and supporting tours, Jones accepted the invitation to appear at Guitar Wars 2003 in Tokyo, Japan. The JPJ Orchestra was in full force with Nuno Bettencourt on guitar, Jones on 10-string Manson bass, Roger King on keyboards, Mike Szuter who came in later on the track on bass guitar & Paul Mastelotto on drums.
Jones was definitely feeling his oats, switching on some effects and taking on a freaking impressive outro bass guitar solo.
The Song Remains The Same (live version)
While Jimmy Page is busy weaving his guitar magic, John Paul Jones, with assistance from the drums, lays down a heavy foundation. Not satisfied with playing root notes to maintain the beat, Jones is all over the fretboard, finding a way to play some solo-sounding rhythm work.
No Quarter (live version)
John Paul Jones was so much more than a bass guitarist and this track exemplifies this. Originally, in 1970, No Quarter had a faster tempo and patched together several different contrasting parts. When it was time to record No Quarter in the studio in early 1972, it was slowed down and the whole song was dropped a semi-tone in pitch to add to the mysteriousness of the song.
This song was premiered on the second leg of the 1973 Summer US tour up until Led Zeppelin’s last date in 1980. It showcased John Paul Jones’ abilities on the keyboards, with lengthy piano solos added in the middle of the song.
Ice Fishing At Night
Some electronica starts this song off and then a simple piano passage begins. If you thought that John Paul Jones was only an instrumentalist, you were wrong. Jones adds in a very tender set of lyrics that has the aural mysticism of a classic oil painting. The piano continues into a solo passage that has a second piano part overdubbed. This is truly a non-traditional John Paul Jones-sounding masterpiece.
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