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Led Zeppelin Zooms For Frenzied Crowd, May 27, 1973

Salt Lake Tribune
by David Proctor
IN music writer

Like four British Caesars Led Zeppelin came, saw and conquered a frenzied, sold-out Salt Palace audience Saturday night.

Easily the most elaborately staged rock performance ever seen in Salt Lake City, it will be remembered for years to come.

Messrs. Page, Plant, Jones and Bonham are in the midst of a $3-million nationwide tour and the 11,000 plus fans here probably will be the smallest crowd they encounter. But it didn't seem to affect Zeppelin in the least. In fact, they seemed to enjoy the audience contact - something you don't encounter before 58,000 people in a baseball stadium.

LIGHTS, MIRRORS

The Salt Palace stage was a collage of lighting scaffolds, spotlights, huge banks of speakers, various light-reflecting devices, 14-foot-high mirrors and, of course, the four stars themselves. Super-singer Robert Plant and Jimmy Page fronted the band and drew most of the attention while the rhythm section of bassist-keyboardist John Paul Jones and drummer John Bonham supplied the music's foundation.

*Rock and Roll* one of Zeppelin's better recent songs opened the two-hour show. It's a song that really moves - but sets a pace that's impossible to maintain. So they slipped into some slower material from their new *Houses of the Holy* album.

PATTERN CONTINUES

The band continued the fast-slow pattern through most of the night - alternating older, familiar tunes with new album cuts. Also in the format were Page's guitar breaks of varying lengths during almost every song. Most of the time, he carried it off admirably, but inevitably he began to repeat himself.

But preciseness wasn't the object. It was the flash...the excitement...the theatrics...the total audience involvement that Zeppelin was after. They succeeded - and then some.

It was remarkable that a concert which generated such advance excitement - and was performed before such an enthusiastic audience - was kept under such control. Most of it was due to restraint on the part of the audience. They were exemplary.

20 MINUTE SHOWCASE

*Dazed and Confused* was stretched out to a 20-minute showcase for Page and the special effects staff. Using a violin bow on his guitar and a delayed-echo system, Page had the sound bouncing from one side of the stage to the other. At times, it circled. When it began to be redundant, they moved quickly into *Stairway to Heaven,* one of the finest songs they've ever written. John Paul Jones' work on the synthesizer was beautiful throughout the concert but especially on this number.
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This Month in
Led Zeppelin History

March 17, 1969 - A four-song performance is filmed for TV Byen in Denmark (aired on May 19, 1969)
March 21, 1969 - Zeppelin’s debut TV appearance on "How It Is"
March 25, 1969 - Filming session for the Supershow
March xx, 1970 - The band turns down many TV offers worth large sums
March 05, 1971 - Led Zeppelin started a 12-date "Thank You" tour for British fans, appearing at the clubs from their early days and charging the same admission prices as in 1968. The first show was at Ulster Hall, Belfast, Northern Ireland where they played songs from their upcoming fourth album, including the first public performances of Black Dog, Stairway To Heaven, Going To California and Rock And Roll.
March 12, 1972 - Page and Plant rehearse some songs with the Bombay Orchestra
March 25, 1973 - Led Zeppelin finally release Houses of the Holy after production issues with the album cover
March 28, 1973 - Led Zeppelin released Houses Of The Holy in the UK. The album title was a dedication by the band to their fans who appeared at venues they dubbed "houses of the holy". Houses Of The Holy has now been certified 11 times Platinum by the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) for US sales in excess of 11 million copies.
March xx, 1974 - The band decide to release a double album due to the amount of left over studio material
March 29, 1975 - Led Zeppelin saw all six of their albums in the US Top 100 chart in the same week, alongside their latest album Physical Graffiti at No.1. Physical Graffiti has now been certified 16 times Platinum by the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) for US sales in excess of 16 million copies.
March 15, 1975 - Tickets for the Earls Court shows sellout within four hours
March xx, 1976 - Jimmy speaks with reporters mentioning the new album due out called Presence
March 31, 1976 - Presence is released
March 28, 1977 - Zeppelin arrive in Dallas, Texas to rehearse before opening the eleventh tour of the US
March xx, 1978 - Robert and John spend some time hanging around the Midlands
March 26, 1979 - Robert takes lead vocal at a Bad Company gig in Birmingham
March 04, 1980 - John Bonham makes a TV appearance on "Alright Now" with Bill Connolly
March 26, 2006 - Readers of Total Guitar magazine voted the guitar solo by Jimmy Page in Led Zeppelin’s Stairway To Heaven as the greatest guitar solo of all time. The 1971 track was voted ahead of tracks by Van Halen, Queen, Jimi Hendrix and The Eagles. On the 20th anniversary of the original release of the song, it was announced via US radio sources that the song had logged up an estimated 2,874,000 radio plays - back to back, that would run for 44 years solid.
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