3.01 The Trivia Remains
3.02 Electric Green Tennis Courts And Other Cover Art
3.03 Plantations And Other Onstage Musings
3.04 Trivia Of Illegitimate Origin
3.05 Meet The Press
3.06 Zeppelin Miscellania
3.07 Shaking The Tree
3.09 Like Father Like Son
3.10 The Led And How To Get It Out
3.11 Jimmy And The Beast
3.12 Zeppelin Mediawatch
3.13 Breaking Up Is Hard To Do
3.14 Pezed Pellni Anagrams
3.15 Nevaeh Ot yawriatS
Regrettably at this time, "The Song Remains The Same" is
the only official live concert released. Despite being underrated by
most followers of the band, the surreal atmosphere and bizarre twists
the movie takes make it quite intriguing, but as more of a curiosity
than a blistering performance by the band.
o The shootout sequence at the beginning, with it's mafia overtones
is meant to symbolise Zeppelin taking it's revenge on the
"faceless" critics. Two of the people involved are band manager
Peter Grant, and the road manager, Richard Cole.
o At the beginning of the movie...
- Peter Grant answers the phone, and and after receiving some news
heads out for a drive with his wife in his vintage Bentley
sports car, which is of course, British racing green.
- Plant, his wife Maureen, and their two children Karac and
Carmen, are fooling around beside a mountain stream before the
messenger arrives on bicycle to pass on the tour dates.
- Jones is reading a bedtime story to his children, "Jack and the
- The first clip of Bonzo has him on a tractor indulging his
passion for adopting the guise of a gentelman farmer. A short
time later he is driving his "Blown Model T" hot rod to a nearby
- Jimmy is in the garden of his manor, previously owned by
Aleister Crowley, sitting on a blanket with an acoustic guitar
handy, cranking the handle of a hurdy-gurdy. The music sounds
o The fantasy sequences are...
Plant: Sailing in a small boat with an enormous welsh flag on it,
and then a swordfighting scene with several knights, with
the goal of saving a rather attractive princess. This is
in "The Rain Song." The sailing sequence was filmed at
Aberystwyth in Wales.
Page : Climbing a mountain, at the top of which he meets a
somewhat older version of himself, several hundred years
older quite possibly, whois dressed in a white cloak.
This is in "Dazed and Confused." The sequence was filmed
at Loch Ness on December 10 and 11, 1973.
Bonzo: Driving a dragster, happens during his solo. Filmed at
Santa Pod. Bonzo also shows off his uncanny ability to
ride at a motorcycle in a variety of seating positions and
remain upright. There is also footage of him at home with
his wife Pat and son Jason belting out a rhtyhm on a custom
made miniature drum kit.
Jones: Travelling on horseback through graveyards and back to his
house dressed in black wearing a mask. This is in "No
o Also in the movie...
- Driving from the airport to the concert venue in a fleet of
black limousines with some surrealistic shots of the city
skyscrapers. These scenes were taken from before the July 24
show in Pittsburgh.
- A scene where Peter Grant confronts promoters over a man selling
unauthorised Zep memorabilia at the Civic Centre, Baltimore.
- Several very lucky punters getting in for nothing thanks to some
- Footage from various press reports and press conferences with
Peter Grant regarding the theft of money from a deposit box in a
hotel Led Zeppelin were staying in during the U.S. tour. The
last shot is of Peter Grant being taken downtown by the Police
for questioning. The police apparently suspected Richard Cole
as being responsible. The amount stolen was us$200,000 and the
disappearance of a bellboy a few days after the event provided
a rough scenario of what might have happened. The money was
never recovered, and neither Peter Grant or Richard Cole, or
anyone associated with Zeppelin was ever charged. The persons
involved have also been claimed to be, at various times, a
manager or desk clerk, who resigned under a cloud of mystery.
o A few points to note...
- Page uses the violin bow in his solo.
- Page uses the famed red double neck for "Stairway to Heaven".
- Page uses the theramin during "Whole Lotta Love."
- Plant's short sleeved demin waistcoat defies good taste.
- Plant sings his famous added line in "Stairway to Heaven".
- Jones performs the solo to No Quarter surrounded by dry ice.
- Bonzo tosses away his drumsticks at one point and begins playing
the drums with his hands during his "Moby Dick" solo.
o The concert footage was filmed over three days at Madison Square
o There is an alternate version of Plant's fantasy sequence in which
his wife plays a much larger role.
o At the beginning of Jones' fantasy sequence there is a scene where
several men are being pursued down a foggy road by several other
men on horseback. If you look closely at the road you can see the
double continuous lane markings down the middle of it, meaning of
course the horses were overtaking the pedestrians illegally...
o There appear to be two version of the film out on video, which can
be distinguished by the endings. One has "Stairway To Heaven"
playing as the screen fades to black, while the other has the
Starship taxi-ing and taking off while "Stairway To Heaven" is
being played. The latter was the original ending in the movie
version shown in cinemas.
o The song "Autumn Lake" which is listed on the video cover, but was
never actually recorded by Zeppelin is the song Page is playing on
a hurdy-gurdy beside the lake as the camera approaches him through
o The film is rife with editing and continuity errors. One of the
most obvious is Jones's changing shirt during "Whole Lotta Love".
Jones also takes off his bass twice at the end of the show.
Jimmy's hair changes it sweat content half way through one song,
and the gong is lit at the end, yet in the next frame it's not.
o Jones was the only member of the band unwilling to wear the same
clothes at each of the Madison Square Garden gigs.
o Contrary to the official word, the film and soundtrack do feature
overdubs, probably mainly patches for glitches, in the guitar and
keyboard work. One such edit occurs in the middle of the violin
bow solo, which is either an overdub or a snippet from another
night's performance. The music on the film does not match that on
the album, nor that on an unedited bootleg from one of the shows,
whilst Page had a studio installed in his home and spent months
working on the soundtrack, all of which support the theory that
the music was retouched. The album version of "Dazed And
Confused", for example, is from one night, while the movie version
is from multiple nights. The movie version of "No Quarter"
deletes at least one guitar solo.
o The actual filming took place over three nights at Madison Square
Garden in New York, 27-29/7/73, with the additional backstage
footage shot the previous three nights at Pittsburgh, Boston and
o The complexity of filming such a show with multiple cameras was
not helped by the crew who managed to miss a few bits and pieces,
which meant that Zeppelin had to go to a soundstage in late 1975
and early 1976 to act out the missing parts. The easy way to tell
these lip-synched sections is to look at Plant's teeth, he had
them straightened between the original filming and the additions.
o The caste used for Plant's fantasy sequence can also be seen in
"Irish Tour '74" with Rory Gallagher, where he spends some time
exploring and talking about that particular castle, Raglan castle.
o A video came out in 1990 called "The First Cuts". This exists in
both bootleg and extremely rare official versions. It is mainly
comprised of outtakes from the film, minaly dealing with the band
member's fantasy scenes, and also footage of "Moby Dick", "Dazed
And Confused", "Whole Lotta Love", and "The Song Remains The
From the simple cover of the first album to the multiple covers
for "In Through The Out Door" Led Zeppelin always came up with a
cover that was individual and could be easily identified with the
band. Although Page says none of their covers were intended to be
part of some sort of concept for the album, they still make some
striking visual statements.
o "Led Zeppelin"
- The cover of the debut album, was a simple print chosen by Jimmy
of the Hindenburg airship disaster. One of the largest airships
ever built, the Hindenburg was 245 metres long, 41 metres wide,
had a volume of 199,980 cubic metres, and a cruising speed of
125 kilometres per hour. The picture was taken on May 6, 1937
as the Hindenburg approached its mooring mast at Lakehurst, New
Jersey. At this point the hydrogen gas inside the airship
somehow ignited. The exact cause of this has ever been
established. Of the 97 passengers on board at the time, 35
perished in the ensuing explosion. This disaster was the end of
an era where huge dirigible airships such as the Hindenburg made
regular crossings between the USA and Europe, mainly
- The picture of the band on the back cover was taken by musician
turned photographer Chris Dreja, a former bandmate of Page in
- To begin with the band name on the cover was printed in
turquoise, but this was soon changed to orange, creating a much
sought after rarity.
- The overall design was co-ordinated by George Hardie.
o "Led Zeppelin II"
- The group of men on the front cover is a photgraph of the Jasta
Division of the German airforce with the band members faces
inserted in place of those of the pilots. The faces of band
manager Peter Grant and Richard Cole were also added. The woman
in the picture is Glynis Johns, the mother from "Mary Poppins".
Her presence in the photo is an obvious play on the name of
recording engineer Glyn Johns. The other face added was that of
bluesman Blind Willie Johnson.
- The silhouette of the Zeppelin airship surrounded in brown gave
this album it's nickname of "The Brown Bomber."
- The centre spread is a lavish celebration of imagery and the
- David Juniper is credited as having come up with the artwork.
o "Led Zeppelin III"
- After the somewhat conservative covers of the first two albums,
the cover of III is a major departure. Liberally splattered
with various bits and pieces of psychedelia and hippie imagery,
and with its rotating wheel and cutouts, the overall feel does
not appeal to Page.
"I knew the artist and described what we wanted ... But
he got very personal with this artwork and disappeared off
with it. ... I wasn't happy with the final result - I
thought it looked teeny-bopperish. ... There are some
silly bits - little chunks of corn and nonsense like that."
- The man responsible for the art is only identified as Zacron,
which may be fortunate for his business reputation given the
lambasting from Page.
- Original pressings of III have a quote from Aleister Crowley
inscribed on the runoff matrix, "Do what thou wilt shall be the
whole of the law." The quote however, may not necessarily be
somewhat older than that. The Crowley version comes frim his
work "The Book Of The Law" which was dictated to him between
the 8th and 10th of April 1904. Crowley actually lost this
manuscript for five years in the attic of Boleskine House,
eventually finding it again in 1909. It was pointed out on the
list that the phrase was the motto of the Abbe de Theleme in
Rabelais' "Gargantua And Pantagruel," `Fay ce vouldra.' Crowley
actually founded an Abbey of Thelema in Cefalu, Sicily in 1920
before being expelled from the country by Mussolini. It was
also adopted by the Hellfire club as it's motto several hundred
years ago. An interview with Page available on vinyl apparently
has some details regarding this quote on the it's sleeve. The
Crowleyian meaning is somewhat complex, suffice to say it does
not mean `Do what you want' as it may imply.
- "So mote it be" is not a quote from Aleister Crowley, it is the
last line of a passage used to bind a spell.
- It would seem that there was an inscription on the runoff matrix
of every issue of "III" right up until pressing ceased, with the
sole exception of the mono white label promo version of the
o The first issue, Atlantic SD 7201, issued in November 1970
has "So Mote Be It" inscribed on both sides.
o The first issue a short time later with a "Gold Record
Award" sticker has "Do What Thou Wilt" inscribed on both
o The white label promo, stereo version, has "Do What Thou
Wilt" inscribed on both sides.
o The white label promo, mono version, as previously stated
has no inscription on either side.
o The second issue, Atlantic SD 19128, in around 1972 has "Do
What Thou Wilt" on one side, side two, only.
o The second issue a "Gold Record Award" has "Do What Thou
Wilt" inscribed on side one only.
o During the 1980s this continued with the "Do What Thou Wilt"
quote only inscribed on one side.
- Jimmy apparently had the quotes from Crowley inscribed on the
runoff matrix without telling the rest of the band, who only
found out about it after the album had been released.
- The first few thousand UK pressings of "III" were reportedly
impregnated with a "cannbis-smelling" resin.
- The brief credit to Bron-Y-Aur was later to resurface almost
verbatim on Page & Plant's "No Quarter".
- The artwork for the fourth album is much more in keeping with
the band's image. In the words of Jimmy Page.
"Robert and I came up with the design of IV together.
Robert had actually bought the print that is on the cover
from a junk shop in Reading. We then came up with the
idea of having the picture - the man with the sticks -
represent the old way on a demolished building, with the
new way coming up behind it. The illustration on the
inside was my idea. It is the Hermit character from the
Tarot, a symbol of self-reliance and wisdom, and it was
drawn by Barrington Colby.
The typeface for the lyrics to "Stairway To Heaven"
was also my contribution. I found it in a really old arts
and crafts magazine called `Studio,' which started in the
late 1800's. I thought the lettering was so interesting I
got someone to work up a whole alphabet."
- This album also saw the debut of the four symbols, one for each
band member, which were used extensively to promote the album,
which bore no artist identification anywhere on the sleeve. In
deference to the rubbishing the band received from the critics
they left their name off to show that Led Zeppelin was more than
just a name.
- The four symbols are arranged in a typical magical formation,
with the two strongest symbols, Page and Plant's, on the outside
protecting the weaker symbols on the inside.
- The picture of the man in white on top of a mountain with a
lantern, was drawn in pencil and gold paint by Barrington Colby
and is titled, `View in Half or Varying Light.' The original
was auctioned in a sale of rock'n'roll art in 1981. This
imagery was reprised for Page's fantasy sequence in "The Song
Remains The Same." If you hold this image perpendicular to a
mirror, the face of a black dog or dragon becomes apparent in
the mountain the man is standing on, or is if you believe some
- On one of the buildings pictured on the rear of the sleeve, a
bareley legibile Oxfam poster bearing the sloagn "Someone dies
from hunger everyday", can be seen. Page intended the picture
to be clearer bu the negatives let him down.
o "Houses Of The Holy"
- Led Zeppelin's most exotic album cover has to be the one for
this album. And according to Page, the cover should look even
better if it were not for some problems translating the colours
onto the album cover.
"When the proofs for the album came back, they didn't look
anything like the original artwork. Again, we were on a
deadline and there wasn't much to be done. I suppose it
doesn't matter now. But back then it was a problem."
- The photograph on the cover was taken by Aubrey Powell, who
trekked to the Giant's causeway in Ireland, Peru was considered
as an alternative, with two children to try and fulfil the idea
that Jimmy, Robert and Peter Grant came up with. Dave Lewis
provides more details,
"This time they chose a collage print depicting a group of
children mysteriously scaling the top of a mountain, which,
according to Page, denoted the feeling of expectancy for
the music contained within."
- Powell used a science fiction book "Childhood's End" as a
basis for the cover, although some have pointed out a
resemblance to the pscyhedelic art of 1970's artists such as
- The children were originally meant to be silver, not purple.
- This is the only Led Zeppelin album to feature song lyrics.
- The sleeve is the first one commisioned by the band from
Hipgnosis, the firm founded by Storm Thorgerson responsible for
a lot of the Pink Floyd album covers. However according to Page
it was not a collaboration that got off to a good start,
"We had commisioned them to design "Houses of the Holy" and
this guy Storm came in carrying this picture of an electric
green tennis court with a tennis raquet on it. I said,
`What the hell does that have to do with anything?' And he
said, `Racket - don't you get it?' I said, `Are you trying
to imply our music is a `racket'? Get out!' We never saw
him again. We ended up dealing with one of the other
artists. [laughs] That was a total insult - racket. He
had some balls! Imagine. On a first meeting with a
- Rumour has it that one of the children on the cover is former
page three and centrefold model, and occasional singer, Samantha
- The album was originally sold with a paper ring around it with
the name of the band and the album title on it, since this
wasn't listed elsewhere. This was crudely reproduced by
Atlantic on the future cd release by stamping the name and album
title slightly askew across the cover of the album. This is the
only piece of cover art not reproduced in "The Complete Studio
Recordings" (with the exception of the "In Through The Out Door"
sleeve that changed colour when you added hot water to it).
- The most ambiguous piece of artwork on this album is the picture
of an adult holding up what looks like a small child in front of
a castle. One theory is that it is some sort of offering to the
Gods - which is very prophetic regarding the death of Plant's
son. The children on the cover do look a bit like Plant's kids,
especially after seeing them in "The Song Remains The Same".
_Q_ magazine disputes this, however, saying the girl is the same
one as on the back of "Presence", which is somewhat unlikely.
o "Physical Graffiti"
- As with III, cutouts on the album cover allowed the record buyer
to look inside the windows of the building at the various goings
- A similar concept is employed on the Rolling Stones "Some Girls"
album. It is also identical in concept to Jose Feliciano's
"Compartments", including the pull-out card and the "hidden"
- The building featured on the cover is at 97 St. Mark's Place in
New York City. There is currently a used clothing store in the
basement appropriately called Physical Graffiti.
- Down the middle right side of the fourth sleeve is a Marilyn
Monroe look-a-like getting undressed, doing what looks like a
- Of the many pictures inside, quite a few are quite easy to see
who they are while others a re pretty obscure. The following
list lists the images from left to right in each row, top to
o Sleeve 1.
A nun, ?, ?, ?, Charles Atlas, ?, Elizabeth Taylor as
Cleopatra, ? , Jimmy Page, A Zeppelin blimp, ?, ?, ?, John
Bonham & Robert Plant, Jerry Lee Lewis, The Queen.
o Sleeve 2.
King Kong, Robert Plant, ?, ?, ?, Some indians or Aztecs, Lee
Harvey Oswald, John Bonham, ?, Jimmy Page, An old lady, ?,
Someone and an ape (!), A lady in her kitchen, A group of what
appears to be naked Bonzo look-a-likes..., The Queen.
o Sleeve 3.
Planes, Peter Grant, Marlene Dietrich, ?, Neil Armstrong, ?,
John Bonham, ?, ?, A horse, An indian guru of some sort?, A
religious looking painting, ?, Two children, Scene from an
old movie?, John Bonham, The Queen.
o Sleeve 4.
?, A cat, A foot on a doll, ?, John Paul Jones, ?, John
Bonham, I dread to think, A cowboy, Robert Plant, The Virgin
Mary, a medieval looking painting, An angel, A woman putting
on stockings, Jimmy Page with someone who is obviously a
buddhist, Jimmy Page & John Paul Jones, The Queen.
- Roy Harper gets a credit for photography although which photos
he took is unclear. Also credited is the band's publicist at
the time, B.P. Fallon, most recently the "vibemaster" on U2's
Zoo TV Tour. He has written a highly entertaining account of
that tour, "U2 Faraway So Close".
- The identity of the figure sitting on the right hand set of
stairs is said by some to resemble John Bonham. Those who
like to indulge in the sort of speculation that Beatles fans do
regarding the cover of "Abbey Road", interpret the presence of
Bonham as symbolic. The two doors symbolize "There are two
paths you can go by" from "Stairway To Heaven", light and shade,
two opposites, heaven and hell, a choice? It's a big stretch
at any rate. What makes the building look a bit odd is the
seemingly unnecessary jumble of ladders, balconies and windows
which cover the facade of the building. The person sitting on
the steps has what looks like two black dogs in their arms. A
further twist on the door theory can be seen on the back cover
where one door is brightly illuminated and shut, while the door
inside the darkened doorway is open.
- The artwork for Presence is dominated by "the object." In the
past it has been associated with the black slab-like object in
2010. In _Q_ Magazine in December 1992, Storm Thorgerson of
Hipgnosis had the following to say,
"I like pictures that don't necessarily have an
explanation off pat," Storm Thorgerson says of the
beguiling sleeves that cemented the reputation of
Hipgnosis, the design group he co-founded in 1968. "I
remember the idea for Led Zeppelin's Prescence which was
to Tamper with nostalgic pictures of the '30s and '40s
with an object from the future, which was basically a
funny shaped black hole. To me, it represented Zeppelin
power, which people at home, or school, would have to
have a blast of every few hours, like the ultimate drug.
So the design was related to the band, yet extremely
tenuous, just as what makes music so rewarding is that it
gives you your own pictures."
- A similar concept, having an object in various strange
locations, is employed on the "Coverdale/Page" album cover.
- "The Object" was actually copyrighted by Swan Song Inc. in 1976.
o "The Song Remains The Same"
- The details of the album cover are provided by Dave Lewis in
"The movie poster and sleeve design depicted a run down
picture house, which was based on Old Street Studios, a
London rehearsal theatre they used to perfect the 1973 US
stage act prior to the tour."
- An interesting contrast to the run-down building in the
foreground is what looks like a skyscraper or at least a
somewhat more modern and well maintained building in the picture
that is behind the main scene.
o "In Through The Out Door"
- The cover for this album came in six different configurations,
all photos of the same bar room scene but each taken from the
perspective of a different person in the bar. Each of the
photos shows the view that person had of a man at the bar
dressed in white, who bears a passing resemblance to Jimmy Page,
setting fire to a small white piece of paper.
- Perhaps the most curious feature of the scene is the thousands
of small pieces of white paper that are hanging from the walls
and ceiling, all very similar to the one the man at the bar is
about to set alight.
- The whole scene has a Caribbean feel to it, in keeping with some
of the tracks on the album like "Fool In The Rain" and "South
- One out of every two pictures that made up the album's front and
back covers featured a smear which reveals the colours of the
photo under the greyish tint the photos have.
- When released the album covers were prepared so that if exposed
to warm water, their colours changed.
- A final touch was added by Peter Grant who insisted the albums
be sold in shrink wrapped paper bags so none of the buyers could
see which cover they were getting out of the six, which were
labelled A to F on the spine of the cover. Dave Lewis estimates
a full set of six original record covers in good condition is
worth around one hundred pounds.
- Some vinyl versions of the album have the word `strawberry'
carved into the runoff matrix.
- The bar that Aubrey Powell may have been trying to recreate for
the cover picture is the Old Absinthe Bar, at 400 Bourbon
Street, just around the corner from the Royal Orleans hotel in
- This album of unreleased material and out-takes which was
released in 1982 is pretty plain compared to some of the other
bands efforts. The spartan and stark cover and packaging for
the album may be a reflection of the enormous loss the band
members still undoubtedly felt about the death of John Bonham.
- A coda can be defined as, "The closing section of a movement..."
- The black discs on the front are in fact records.
- However, another school of thought has it that the discs are
crop circles created by sprinkler systems. If this is true,
then the re-appearance of crop circles on the box set covers is
most intriguing. Further details on this are that is when crops
need to be irrigated they might be planted around a well, with
the sprinkler attached to the well. This would account for the
"dry" ground surrounding the crop circles on the album cover.
- Led Zeppelin guru Dave Lewis was consulted by the band during
the design process.
o "Box Set : The Collection"
- This deluxe 4 compact disc box set has a picture of a crop
circle with the shadow of Zeppelin blimp on it, as if the blimp
was flying overhead.
- At the four corners of the box set there is a number. The
numbers and what they represent are:
o 54 : The number of songs on the box set.
o 69 : (19)69, the year the first studio album was released.
o 79 : (19)79, the year the last studio album was released.
o (X) : The sideways '8' is the mathematical symbol for
infinity, representing of course, how long the music
- Given the `mysterious' origins of crop cricles the cover picture
was a perfect choice in keeping with the mystery and intrigue
the band had cultivated around itself during its career.
- This two compact disc set set features the same picture of the
crop circle used for the 4CD box cover, except that it is viewed
from the opposite end.
o "Box Set 2"
- The now familiar blimp and crop circle theme with a psychedelic
twist to it.
o "The Complete Studio Recordings"
- The numerous attractions for buying this box set, all the
albums, all the original artwork and so on tend to ignore what
at first seems to be a chaotic haze of grey shades on the
outside of the box. The picture is in fact the scaffolding and
beams and so on that support the exterior skin of a Zeppelin
blimp and maintained the shape. Each of the ten compact discs
also has a picture of the inside of a zeppelin on it, with no
two the same, or coinciding with the picture on the exterior of
the box set. A feature unique to this box set is the "garage
door" style flip top.
The heading for this section is the term sometimes used to
describe Robert Plant's onstage utterances. These ranged from simple
introductions to songs to humourous anecdotes and stories depending
on the circumstances.
o From the 21 June 1977 performance at the L.A. Forum (on the
"Listen To This Eddie" 3CD bootleg). Bonham was about to do his
solo, entitled "Over The Top" in those days, but apparently had
a problem with his drum hardware. So Plant filled the time:
"That was called Kashmir...let me take you there. Bit of
trouble with the musical equipment here. Right now, the
man who fought against the elements. The man who fought
food poisoning. The man who drinks Heineken. The man who
doesn't get out of bed. The man who hasn't got a cymbal.
The man who's having a chat with this man who knows the man
who tunes Jimmy's guitar and comes from Scotland and doesn't
know the man they call Tim... but does know Audrey from
Dallas (thank you). The man who now learns to construct
his own drum kit. The man who's _not_ very professional.
(Shuddup, wait a minute!) The man who said he could go back
to a building site anytime (and we all agreed). The man
who's holding up the show... the Rhinestone Cowgirl. C'mon
Bonzo, get on with it! The man who played the Los Angeles
Aztecs and beat them 10-1 by himself. C'mon, you silly
fucker! The man one wonders: is he worth waiting for? ...
and doesn't realize there's a curfew here. A childhood
friend, a man who many people once said...`never 'eard of
him,' John Bonham Over The Top!!!!"
o From the Earl's Court 75 shows and the bootleg "Rock and Roll"
after the band performs Tangerine, Plant makes the interesting
"That is the first time the four of us have sung together
on stage, or on record."
o At a performance in Dallas on March 4, 1975 before "In My Time Of
Dying" Plant goes some way to explaining whether Zeppelin were
more influenced by the traditional version or Bob Dylan's cover.
"This is a tune that goes way back to the roots from which
all English people took their notes from, many, many years
ago; and strangely enough, it's called In My Time Of Dying."
o Before the band performed "The Battle of Evermore" at the June
10 show in New York, Plant introduces the song by way of the
"When we recorded this song we got a girl to help sing the
vocals and we are pleased to have her with us tonight.
Ladies and gentlemen, John Paul Jones on vocals. John Paul
Jones on vocals!?"
o From the "Silver Coated Rails" bootleg of the Earls Court show on
May 23, 1975, is a peculiar recital from the song "Cats In The
Cradle" by Cat Stevens. At one point between songs Plant whines,
"Old man take a look at my life, I'm a lot like you."
o At the 25/3/71 show at the Paris Theatre, which was taped for the
BBC, Robert opens the show with the following preamble.
"First of all, I'd like to say sorry about last week. We did
about 18 dates in 6 days, no at least 20 days. And uh, my
voice kind of gave up altogether. And we hope it's in better
condition tonight, but if it's not, cheer because you're on
o The following spiel from Plant preceeded the performance of "Over
The Hills And Far Away" at the March 29, 1973 show at Madison
Square Garden, New York.
"We had a really good one last night, I don't know whether
anybody was here. But, ah, what we intend to do try and
get it better every night. So with your - only with your
co-operation can we do that. And you know what I'm talking
The rendition of "Misty Mountain Hop" at the same show was
preceeded by another dose of Plant verbosity, this time directed
at a person in the crowd misusing firecrackers. Plant points out
that they are "no longer clever".
"Now don't forget that will ya. You up there with the
Yet more dialogue from the same concert. this time towards the
end of the show.
"At the end of my career, I should be able to give a
television programme on how to keep roses... but as that's
about a kiss away, it's out of the question..."
o The bootleg entitled "From Boleskine To The Alamo" of the 1973
Fort Worth show has Plant providing a confusing introduction to
"Dazed And Confused".
"We like to uh... in fact it's nothing to we it's something
to do with me... I'd like to dedicate this next one to an old
friend... if she's about, the Butter Queen"
o On the 1980 tour Jimmy Page did some of the song introductions,
which was unusual for him, and the following proceeded the
performance of "Black Dog" at the Zurich concert.
"We're gonna do a number it's called Strangers in the night
or fantasy dog town. This is an old one... I don't know if
you can remember it or not because it's quite an old one...
it's called Black... Dog."
o The L.A. Forum show of 27/3/75 saw the following humourous intro
for "Trampled Underfoot" from Plant.
"I guess instead of a lemon song, this is a quart of oil
song... it's called Trampled Underfoot..."
o At a show in Japan in 1971, John Bonham's suspicious departure
from the stage was accompanied by the following Plantation.
"Bonzo gone bye, bye. Bonzo gone for bath with Geisha, yes".
o The following reminiscence from Plant is from Earl's Court in
"The last time we played at Cardiff at the Lacarno the
equipment was set up but they wouldn't let us in cuz we
didn't have a tie on. It was really, those were the days,
but have things changed that much? ... This song is really
for our family and friends... It's a song of love in its
most (Page mumbles something) in its most innocent stages.
It's called Tangerine."
o The plethora of soundboard recordings from the 1980 tour suggests
that there were some corrupted sound people behind the mixing
desk. In fact, this may not be the case at all. When Jimmy's
home was burgled prior to "Outrider" a large quantity of tapes
were stolen, including professionally recorded shows. Tt is not
unusual for a band to record themselves to see how well their
performance went, and this may have been done with a view to one
day releasing the much talked about Live Retrospective. Also,
over the years it is possible that other members of the band's
associates may have had tapes stolen from the. It has also been
suggested that some of the tapes come from roadies who got ahold
of them "legitimately" and re-sold them later for large sums of
money. But, getting back to the mixing board operators, with an
appropriate sum of money it may not have been hard at all to be
able to persuade someone to tape the show for you. Ironically,
Zeppelin and their management seemed to think they were stemming
the flow of bootlegs throughout their career.
o At the Dallas Pop Festival on 31/8/69 Zeppelin put in an amazing
performance. However, due to time constraints they could only do
one more song after "You Shook me" on the setlist, so they made
"How Many More Times" stretch out to twenty minutes in length!
With the crowd screaming for more they tossed in "Communication
Breakdown" to finish their set.
o On the "Destroyer" bootleg at the 8:37 mark in "Stairway To
Heaven" just as Plant has sung "And as we wind on down the road"
the guitar sound suddenly disappears, and the remainder of the
song is totally devoid of guitar, just keyboards, bass, and drums.
The absence is really noticeable as Page was really howling up
that point. The guitar sound is picked up for the next song
though, "Rock And Roll".
o An album is available in America called "Bootleg Zeppelin :
Performed By John Vearity, Whole Lotta Love". The album features
the aformentioned individual playing covers of 16 Zeppelin tunes.
o The performance of "Misty Mountain Hop" on the 17/7/73 Seattle
show, on the "Trouble In Vancouver" bootleg, is dedicated by Plant
to the people who drove the buses from Vancouver to Seattle. This
refers to the cancellation of the scheduled Vancouver show, and
how the people had to come from there by bus to see the band in
Seattle. The Vancouver concert was cancelled after rioting broke
out while people were queuing for tickets.
o An instrumental outtake of "Carouselambra" appears on the bootleg
"In Through The Back Door".
o The unreleased "Tribute To Bert Berns" is very similar to "Baby
Come On Home" except that it is longer and has more of an organ
presence. This can be found on the bootleg "Strange Tales From
The Road" which also contains the 1971 Bombay Symphony Orchestra
recordings made by Page and Plant of "Four Sticks" and "Friends".
o On the well known "Destroyer" bootleg at one point Plant says,
'...and the doctor was played by Larry Badgely.' Larry Badgely
M.D. is a real person and was the doctor on that particular tour
as well as being a doctor for the Rolling Stones on their 1972
tour. Relations between the band and Badgely were not particulary
good with at least one claim that Page and Bonham were known to
dip into the good doctor's supply of painkillers. Badgely is
known to have accused Page of pilfering qualudes from his medical
bag while on tour once.
o The bootleg cd "Stockholm '69" features the band running down a
version of Otis Rush's "I Gotta Move" while Jimmy changes a string
he broke on his guitar. The song is listed on the cd, however, as
"I Fought My Way Out Of Darkness" though, another Otis Rush song.
o "Hiawatha Express" has, amongst other things, three songs from
Plant's pre-Zeppelin band, The Band Of Joy, a cover of "Hey Joe",
"Got To Find My Baby", and "For What It's Worth".
o There is a bootleg interview available from Japan on the CGI
label, identifiable by the picture on the cover of the band with
some Japanese women. The band's name is misspellt as Led Zeppelin
in the accompanying liner notes.
o A bootleg entitled "Rare Tracks Vol.1", a Greek import, contains
several interesting demo tracks of "Stairway To Heaven" amongst
other things. Sources for this material are probably the thieves
who broke into Page's house and made off with a variety of his
o Both the versions of "The Girl I Love" on the bootlegs "Shenadoah"
and "Radio Session" fade out at about the same spot, during the
second guitar solo. The version on "Radio Sessions" has better
o Only a handful of performances of "As Long As I Have You" have
been captured on bootlegs. The January 9, 1969 performance at the
Fillmore West sounds like the band is still learning the song, as
Jones plays a few bad notes, while the April version is much
better realised, with several guitar solos and guitar/vocal unison
transitions. Other performances were on March 13, and May 19,
1969. The song was originally performed by Garnett Mimms but was
written by B. Elgin and J. Ragavoy.
o The recordings with the Bombay Symphony Orchestra of "Four Sticks"
and "Friends" can be found on the bootlegs "Tangible Vandalism",
and the appropriately titled "Bombay Symphony Orchestra", which
also several takes of each, along with Page acoustic material.
The "Tangible Vandalism" bootleg also contains "Physical Graffiti"
outtakes, third album session material, and recordings from
o "Poles And Sticks" is a notable bootleg. It contains the only
complete version of "Gallows Pole" and the only live version of
"Four Sticks", from a performance at Copenhagen in 1971. There is
also the first live version of "Celebration Day", a 20 minute
version of "Dazed And Confused", and a 21 minute "Whole Lotta
Love" medley. Plant introduces "Four Sticks" as a new song there
isn't a title for yet, and "Rock And Roll" as "It's Been A Long
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
FROM: BOB ROLONTZ
ATLANTIC RECORDS SIGNS ENGLAND'S HOT NEW GROUP, LED ZEPPELIN,
IN ONE OF THE BIGGEST DEALS OF THE YEAR
Atlantic Records has signed the hot new English group, Led
Zeppelin, to a long term, exclusive recording contract. Although the
exact terms of the deal are secret, it can be disclosed that it is
one of the most substantial deals Atlantic has ever made. Agreement
for the group's services was made between Jerry Wexler, Executive
Vice President of Atlantic Records, and Peter Grant, manager of the
Led Zeppelin consists of four of the most exciting musicians
performing in Britain today. They are Jimmy Page, leader of the
group and lead guitarist; John Paul Jones, bassist, pianist,
organist, arranger; John Bonham, drums; and Robert Plant, lead vocal
Jimmy Page is a former member of the Yardbirds, the group that
spawned the careers of two other great musicians, Eric Clapton and
Jeff Beck. Page joined the Yardbirds in 1966 and stayed with the
group until it disbanded in the summer of 1968. Prior to joining
the Yardbirds he was one of the busiest session men in London.
John Paul Jones is considered one of England's finest arrangers
as well as an outstanding bass player. He is the arranger of
Donovan's "Mellow Yellow", "Sunshine Superman", and "Hurdy Gurdy
Man", and of the Rolling Stones' "She's A Rainbow." Drummer John
Bonham created a sensation with his drum solos while accompanying
Tim Rose on his British tour in early 1968. Vocalist Robert Plant
is considered one of England's outstanding young blues singers, and
has been involved in singing blues since he was 15. All of the
members of the group are in their early 20's.
The pulsations surrounding Led Zeppelin have intensified ever
since the group recorded its first (and as yet unreleased) album,
which was produced by Jimmy Page, just a month ago in London. Top
English and American rock musicians who have heard the tracks have
compared the LP to the best of Cream and Jimi Hendrix, and have
called Led Zeppelin the next group to reach the heights achieved by
Cream and Hendrix. This Led Zeppelin LP will be released by Atlantic
early in January.
Led Zeppelin is the eighth British group to be singed by
Atlantic during the past 24 months. The others are Cream, Bee Gees,
Julie Driscoll-Brian Auger & The Trinity, The Crazy World of Arthur
Brown, The Marbles, The Magic Lanterns, and Jimmy James & The
o The debut album was recorded in 30 hours spread over two weeks.
The MTV Rockumentary though, claims it was 36 hours, while the
original quote pertaining to this was something along the lines of
"A little over 30 hours."
o At a February 21, 1970 gig in Copenhagen the band was billed as
"The Nobs" as a result of a threat of legal action from aristocrat
Eva von Zeppelin. She is reported to have said, "They may be
world famous, but a couple of shrieking monkeys are not going to
use a priveleged family name without permission."
o Road manager and band associate Richard Cole was relieved of his
duties for the band's last tour by Peter Grant because of a
chronic cocaine addiction. Sent to Italy to detox, Cole somehow
ended up being mistaken for a terrorist involved in a bombing and
was imprisoned temporarily.
o On stage the band worked like this; Jimmy usually led the band
unless Robert came up with a good lyrical segue, Bonham watched
Jimmy for cues while Jones listened to Jimmy for cues. When Jones
and Bonham figured out where Page was heading, quite often in some
very bizarre directions, notably during "Dazed and Confused", they
were right there. An example of Plant trying to direct the band
were his attempts to get the band to segue into "Gallows Pole"
from "Whole Lotta Love." Something he never quite managed. These
details were provided by Jones.
o The title than band had in mind for the studio album to follow
the 1977 tour was "Tight But Loose" but this ended up not being
used as Plant's son Karac died mid-tour throwing the band's plans
into chaos and resulting in everything being put on hold.
o Led Zeppelin played to a total of 1,388,729 people on their 1977
o The way the songs were selected for the 1990 box set was,
according to Page, that Page got Jones and Plant to write down
what they didn't want to be on the set and he went from there.
o Peter Grant's frustration with the efforts of bootleggers to rip
off his act is manifested in many incidents such as the one in the
film "The Song Remains The Same", Grant destroying copies of the
bootleg "Blueberry Hill" he happened to find in record stores, his
rapid dissassembly and dispersal of any unauthorised recording
equipment he came across at concerts such as at the Bath festival,
and an infamous incident when he spotted a guy in the front row of
the audience with a microphone. Grant marched out and proceeded
to destroy the equipment only to later find the man was a
government employee monitoring noise levels. This last incident
occurred in Vancouver, and Grant apparently, according to Richard
Cole, a phrase which seemingly guarantess inaccuracy, had to give
Canada a wide berth until the arrest warrant for him was finally
o When a show at Tampa, Florida in 1977 was rained out a riot broke
out amongst the crowd.
o From the May 1993 issue of "Guitar World", page 15.
"In 1972 Jimmy Page flew to Washington D.C. to hear bluesman
Bobby Parker perform, with the intent of signing him to Led
Zeppelin's nascent Swan Song label. The two guitarists
jammed and Page gave Parker $2,000 to buy a tape deck and
record a demo. But Parker never completed the tape, and his
great opportunity fizzled."
Plant acknowledges Parker as an influence, and the interest of
Page is also some indication of a similar feeling. Parker was at
the forefront of the British blues craze with his 1961 single
"Watch Your Step" and in 1968 was brought to England and hailed as
the new Hendrix. Somehow it never quite worked out. Parker
released a new album in 1993, "Bent Out Of Shape" and must surely
regret his failure to cut a demo for Jimmy. "Moby Dick" is
apparently very derivative of one of Parker's early songs.
o Former tour manager Richard Cole has claimed he was only paid
$1250 by Stephen Davis for his revelations which make up a large
proportion of Davis' notorious book "Hammer of the Gods."
o Rap group the Beastie Boys sampled Zeppelin at least twice, their
song "Rhymin' & Stealin'" uses the drum track from "When The Levee
Breaks," and "She's Crafty" uses guitar samples from "The Ocean."
Both these songs are on their first album. At one stage the
Beastie Boys were sued by the group for their use of these
samples. One song "License To Ill" samples "Custard Pie", while
on Paul's Boutique there are samples from "Moby Dick" and "The
Ocean". The Beastie also used a sample from "Rock And Roll".
o The "Screaming Lord Sutch And Heavy Friends" album from 1970 which
features Jimmy Page and John Bonham has also been released under
the title "Smoke And Fire." Jeff Beck, Noel Redding and Nicky
Hopkins also appear on the album.
o A song by Jeff Beck called "Cathouse" on the soundtrack to
"Frankie's House" apparently bears some similarities to Zeppelin's
o The film "Sea Of Love" does not feature the cover of that song by
the Honeydrippers, on which Plant sang and Page played guitar.
It features the original version, and a cover by Tom Waits.
o All the songs on Aerosmith's "Get A Grip" album are copyrighted to
Swag Song Music Inc. The band are noted Zeppelin fans, regularly
doing great covers of the Yardbirds' "Train Kept A Rollin'" Bass
player Tom Hamilton has said Aerosmith wanted to be the American
equivalent of the great English bands like Led Zeppelin and Cream.
Guitarist Joe Perry thinks Aerosmith was more influenced by the
Yardbirds though. Jimmy Page jammed with Aerosmith at the 1990
Donnington festival, and again at a Marquee Club show on August
20, where they played five songs, one of which was "Immigrant
Song." Anyway, the copyright name may well be some sort of
humourous name the band came up with in light of all this.
o The band is known to have declined an invitation from Cynthia
Plaster Caster to have their more private parts immortalized in
stone. Other artists such as Hendrix did have casts made.
o One of the few occasions when Zeppelin allowed one of their songs
to be used during a film was in the film "Fast Time At Ridgemont
High." The reason being that the director was Cameron Crowe,
Zeppelin devotee, and a journalist who was popular with the band
during their heyday, as he tended to write reasonable articles
about them. The song that is featured in the film is "Kashmir",
and is accompanied with some interesting comments about the
aphrodisiac-like effect of the fourth album, "And when it comes
time to make out, pop in side one of Led Zeppelin IV." Cameron
Crowe's wife, Nancy Wilson of the Canadian rock group Heart, makes
a guest appearance in the film, as the blonde girl in the sports
car who flirts with Judge Reinhold.
o An example of the attitudes from the music press in general and
music critics to Led Zeppelin is shown by this extract from an
essay written in 1969 by Jon Landau, "Rock 1970 - It's Too Late
To Stop Now."
"Led Zeppelin has now become the most popular of all the late
sixties British bands. Like their predecessors, they build
their style on doubling bass and guitar figures, thereby
creating a distored emphasis on the bottom sound range. It is
a completely physical approach to sound that usually works
better live than on records. Zeppelin's demeanor, like that of
most of these groups, was loud, impersonal, exhibitionistic,
violent and often insane. Watching them at a recent concert I
saw little more than Robert Plant's imitations of sexuality and
Jimmy Page's unwillingness to sustain a musical idea for more
than a few measures.
"I got a sense that the real mood of the band is ennui. I sat
there thinking that rock could not go on like this. There are
those who are prepared to buy it now, but there is no future in
it, and that is why groups like Led Zeppelin take it all now.
They have no place to go, no place to grow into, no roots
anywhere. And so there they were in front of 15,000 people,
going through the motions- their `act'- in order to pick up a
paycheck. Fifteen thousand people sat through it all hoping
that somehow their expectations would be fulfilled. They
weren't because in the words of a fine Bob Dylan song, `nothing
o An issue of "Time" magazine in October 1993 featured an article
categorizing various bands from the 1960's to the 1990's. Led
Zeppelin was classified by them as a "60's Hard Rock Band." In
keeping with this rather unusual interpretation of musical history
Pink Floyd was categorized as an "80's Acid Rock Band."
o Of all the strange places for Zeppelin to pop up, an episode of
"Beavis & Butthead" has to rank up there. The conversation that
preceeded the airing of "Over The Hills And Far Away" went:
Beavis : This sucks! It sounds like folk music!
Butt-head : Shut up, ass wipe! It gets cool. Just wait...
o The film "Bad Lieutenant," starring Harvey Keitel, features a song
by rapper Schooly D. called "Signifying Rapper" which is basically
"Kashmir" with a lot of rapping about violence over the top of it.
o The Toshiba phone company in the October 4, 1993 issue of
MacLean's magazine published an advertisment which purported to
show a single of "Stairway To Heaven" and had the following
"Stairway to Heaven. You're in high school. It's late.
You've got your arms around someone. It's playing. A few
years later you hear it on an elevator and can't wait until
it stops. But you find yourself admiring it for its
durability. And hope other things might wear that well.
(Further claims about the durability of their phones)."
o "Travelling Riverside Blues" - In addition to the Rosedale
mentioned in the song, it has been pointed out that Roseale is
also an upmarket suburb in Toronto and a shopping mall outside St.
Paul, MN. It is however exceedingly unlikely Robert Johnson was
referring to either of these, as his Rosedale is the one on
Mississippi Highway 1, which is also known as the River Road, 45
miles from Friars Point, which Johnson also mentions in the
original version of the song.
o There is an amusing parody of "Stairway To Heaven" called "Buying
A Slurpee At 7-Eleven." One of the verses begins, `There's a sign
on the door, that says "Slippery Wet Floor", but you know those
signs have no meaning.' The parody was written and performed by
Mark Davis, althoug very likely not the Mark Davis who was one of
my lecturers in first year, and Rob "Iceman" Izenberg. Another
parody is "Elevator To Menswear."
o The famous Swan Song symbol that Zeppelin adopted as the logo for
their record label was borrowed from an 1851 oil-on-canvas
painting by William Rimmer entitled "Evening Fall Of Day." The
figure in the painting is the Greek sun god Apollo. The painting
is not, as some people would have you believe, of Icarus or
Daedalus. These two are also figures from Greek mythology.
Daedalus is, according to legend, supposed to have crafted a set
of wings from feathers and wax for himself and Icarus which they
could use to escape from their prison on Crete to freedom in
Greece. Unfortunately, Icarus being the younger of the two
thought it might be a lark to fly a little higher, and flew too
close to the sun which melted his wings and he plunged to his
death in a sea, which is still known as the Icarian sea. Icarus'
first flight was also his swan song. Daedalus also designed the
labyrinth on Crete for King Mino's minotaur, which was the reason
for his imprisonment, because he alone knew the secrets of the
o The Swan Song label came into being in 1974 after Zeppelin's
contract with Atlantic came up for renegotiation. Peter Grant
negotiated a deal whereby all the band's business affairs and his
management of them would be handled by a separate label. Dave
Lewis lists some rumoured names as Eclipse, Slut, Slag, Deluxe,
Stairway, and the name of their publishing company, Superhype.
Lewis also writes that a sub-company owned by the band,
Cullderstead, was registered for Swan Song as a business name.
The name is taken from the title of an unfinished band
composition, an instrumental, which Page had tagged as "Swan
Song." The song was another piece built around an exotic guitar
tuning from Page. Although the song was never finished, it most
likely, according to Christopher Crowe, evolved into the Firm song
"Midnight Moonlight." Dave Lewis writes that "Swan Song" may have
been an early version of "Ten Years Gone."
o The "Wayne's World" and "Wayne's World 2" films feature a number
of Zeppelin references. In the first film when Wayne goes to a
guitar store to buy himself his dream white Fender Stratocaster
he starts to play "Stairway To Heaven" only to be interrupted by
the store attendant who points to a sign in the store that says
"No Stairway To Heaven". Wayne is understandably aghast. This
sign is apparently quite common in music stores. In the second
film when Garth meets Kim Basinger's character in a laundromat he
is wearing a t-shirt with the cover of the first album, the
Hindenburg disaster, on it. A quote from Wayne from the first
film, "Look at Led Zeppelin, they didn't make songs people liked,
they left that to the Beegees." The mirthmobile, is, by the way,
an AMC Pacer not a Pinto. The actor who plays Garth, Dana Carvey,
is apparently a huge Zeppelin fan, which might explain the
plethora of Zeppelin references. In the second movie when Wayne
and Garth visit the home of the legendary roadie, they pick up a
photo album of him and the bands he had toured with and a touched
up photo of the roadie, Page and Plant is shown. Wayne states the
bleeding obvious by asking, "Hey, is this you with Led Zeppelin?"
On all video and cable releases of the first "Wayne's World"
movie, to "Stairway To Heaven" that Wayne is supposed to be
playing in the music store are overdubbed with random, distorted
guitar as the film-makers didn't have permission to use the real
o _Rolling_Stone_ magazine, in an unsubtle attempt to rewrite
history, and create the impression that they loved all the
Zeppelin albums to death when they were first released,
re-assessed all of them for their recently released Album Guide.
When first released, _Rolling_Stone_ was particularly dissmissive
and scathing of most of Zeppelin's output. This institutional
bias has now been dissipated with the addition of Zeppelin fans
such as David Fricke to the writing staff. The revised ratings
are on a scale of one to five stars.
"Led Zeppelin" ****
"Led Zeppelin II" ****
"Led Zeppelin III" ****
"Houses of the Holy" **** 1/2
"Physical Grafitti" ****
"Presence" *** 1/2
"The Song Remains the Same" ** 1/2
"In Through the Out Door" ***
"Coda" ** 1/2
"Led Zeppelin" (Box Set) **** 1/2
o Similarities have been noticed between the riff in the
introduction to "Under The Bridge" by the Red Hot Chilli Peppers
and the intro riff in "Achilles Last Stand."
o Several Zeppelin songs contain drug references, whether directly
or indirectly through slang terms. Probably the most widely used
drug by the band, Plant admits this, was marijuana, which is
referred to in "Over The Hills And Far Away" in it's "Acapulco
Gold" incarnation. `I live for my dream and a pocket full of
gold'. Plant added the "Acapulco" during live versions.
"Stairway To Heaven" also contains a line, `..all that glitters is
gold' although this is probbably not a drug reference. "Misty
Mountain Hop" has the aura of some drug induced haze and when
discussing the origins of the song Plant has hinted at the
presence of drugs at a London sleep-in busted up by the Police.
"Dazed And Confused" originally known as "I'm Confused" when
performed by Jake Holmes was about an acid trip, but the lyrics
were changed for the Zeppelin version, although a few lines hint
at its prior lyrical theme. Harder drugs such as cocaine were
used by the band later in its career and are mentioned in "For
Your Life" where Plant even makes snorting noises. Another song
about the band's overindulgences, "The Rover" also contains drug
references amongst other things.
o During an appearance on "The Tonight Show" in America Plant
claimed that Zeppelin used to try and sound like black guys from
Chicago, a claim supported by their choice of covers, several from
Chicago bluesmen. The Chicago blues style itself is markedly
different from other dominant blues styles, such as Delta, Texas
and Memphis. It relies less on acoustisc instruments than these
others, and can cover more traditional band elements in the form
of extra musicians. Some notable exponents of Chicago blues as
Buddy Guy and Robert Cray. Chicago blues was also the first blues
variety to gain a major following among young British musicians in
the 1960's, although some of the leading musicians of the time
such as Page, Clapton and Richards moved on from Chicago quickly
to other more sparse styles such as Delta. However, Zeppelin
probably sounds closer to the Memphis style which incorporates
electric and acoustic elements. A Delta blues influence is also
present with both Page and Plant readily proclaiming their
admiration for Robert Johnson the acknowledged "King Of The Delta
Blues". Memphis is in turn a derivative of the Delta style.
o The whole issue of whether or not "Stairway To Heaven" contains a
backmasked message is surrounded by emotive and irrational
arguments. One of the foremost sleaze expeditions on Zeppelin is
Stephen Davis's "Hammer Of The Gods". Within this illustrious
tome, he asserts the common theory that the message is "Here's to
my sweet Satan" on page 9 of the book. Yet on page 309 he asserts
that when "Stairway" is played backwards at a slower speed the
message is "I live for Satan". Additional sources for this debate
include the christianmentary "Hell's Bells : The Dangers Of Rock
And Roll" wherein the theory is espoused that the message is "My
sweet Satan. No other made a path for it makes me sad whose power
is Satan." Next up is renowned religious freak Monty Python who
claimed to hear the message "Spam spam spam" over and over
throughout the entire duration of the song. Of a slightly more
factual nature, Henry T.F. Rhodes has claimed that in black masses
prayers are sometimes said backwards, although presumably this
only affects the word arrangements.
o Another persistent claim is that the bandmembers, often with the
claimed exclusion of Jones, sold their souls to the devil. This
helps to explain Plant's car crash, his son's death, Bonham's
death and a multitude of other unfortunate occurrences. A slight
twist on it is that Pagey was very close to the devil because his
daughter was not injured in Plant's car crash, although the devil
must not have liked one of his houses as it fell into the sea. No
such public misfortunes befell Jones and so it logically follows
he didn't sell his soul to the devil. But the whole idea of
someone selling their soul to the devil for their success and fame
seems to be a recurrent theme with celebrities dating back to
the nineteenth century. One example was Paganini who had to get
his mother to write a letter stating his father was not the devil
in order to appease a French town. Musicians seem to feature
prominently on the list of celebrities well-acquantined with the
devil, such as Jim Morrison, Eric Clapton (who is also God), John
Lennon, Ozzy Osbourne, Alice Cooper and Kiss, which is of course
stands for "Knights In Satan's Service". Outside the field of
music others include Walt Disney (check out Fantasia), Carol
Lombard, and even corporations such as Proctor & Gamble. From
these examples, it appears that when people cannot find a rational
explanation for the talent some people possess they begin to look
for unusual explanations, hence the eventual claim that the person
in question is in league with the devil, which is a quick, and
easy way to get back at them I guess.
o Along with the recurring number 54 in relation to Plant and
Zeppelin, the number 10 seems to pop up quite frequently as well.
In "How Many More Times", `I've got ten children of my own', in
"Heartbreaker", `It's been ten years and maybe more since I first
laid eyes on you', in "Ramble On", `Been this way ten years to the
day', and in "Ten Years Gone", `Ten years gone, holding on'. A
slightly tenuous extension of this theme is that the number 10 is
sacred to the ancient Cail Li'n cult of gaelic origin in a similar
way that 7 recurs in the bible. Plant may have been trying to
invoke some sort of mystic power or magical influence by repeating
the number in the lyrics to songs. A comparison is that in the
bible many things are grouped in sevens, the days of creation,
seven plagues in Egypt, and the number of apocalyptic horsemen.
Much more likely is that it seemed a suitable timespan for the
o One of the bands formed out of the ashes of the Yardbirds was
Together. This featured Keith Relf and Jim McCarty but not Page.
The band's style could be said to be soft acoustic rock.
o Led Zeppelin's first five album were released on reel to reel
format. According to Rick Barrett the first three albums are
numbered with roman numerals on the spines of the boxes while the
fourth album just has the band member's four symbols. However,
Barrett in an impressive display of attention to detail notes that
there is a second version of "Led Zeppelin II" on this format,
which features the roman numerals on the spine as the normal
version does, but also the phrase "The only way to fly". This is
apparently very rare and would be worth a quite considerable
amount of money to a collector, such as Barrett.
o Zeppelin are rumoured to have performed some christmas carols at a
show during the early seventies.
o The Bombay Orchestra with which Plant and Page recorded version
of "Friends" and "Four Sticks" in 1971 features along with western
style instruments, native Indian ones such as tabla drums and
sitars. While an interesting experiment, the recordings were
never released offically and are only available on bootlegs. The
project is said to have run into problems because Page complained
that the orchestra members didn't keep time in the Western style
and some of them drank rather a lot.
o When last mentioned, sales of "The Complete Studio Recordings" in
the USA had been certified "Gold", meaning sales of 500,000 units.
Sales of the first Box Set have reached one million, four times
o Rehearsals for "In Through The Out Door" took place at Clearwell
Castle in May, 1978.
o The working title for "Coda" was "Early Days And Latter Days".
o Another Zep clone band in the style of Kingdom Come were an outfit
that went by the name of Zebra, who supposedly did a cover of "The
Ocean". Another group lumped into the Zep clone category, and
unfairly so according to some, is Canadian group The Tea Party.
On their "Splendor Solis" album is a song called "Sun Going Down"
which features the following lyric, `I think my wings have fallen
below, Jesus I need another pair, St. Peter at the gates of heaven
won't you let me in?' Random coincidence? The singer, in all
fairness, sounds more Jim Morrison than anyone else. Yet another
Zeppelin clone band is The White. The singer from this outfit,
Michael White, is apparently so good at reproducing Plant's voice
that it's eerie. Interestingly, Michael White is the mananger of
The Tea Party, and The White and The Tea Party both use the same
studio, in Vermont. A gig by The White in the U.K. was attended
by Plant's bass player Charlie Jones, and his wife, Plant's
daughter Carmen. It was suggested to Plant himself that he check
out the band and he has, although his thoughts on their
performance are not recorded. The Tea Party recently played on
the same bill as Page and Plant.
o In the gap between tracks 8 and 9 on Van Morrison's "Tupelo Honey"
album ("When That Evening Sun Goes Down" and "Moonshine Whiskey")
there is the sound of someone exhaling that is reportedly a dead
ringer for Plant's exhale at the beginning of "Whole Lotta Love".
"Tupelo Honey" was released in 1971 as a follow-up to the very
successful "Moondance" album. The question of whether or not this
is sampled is a major stretch of the imagination however, so it
can be classed as random coincidence.
o The Spanish seaside town of Malgrat de Mar has a bar called
"Zeppelin" which is run by a group of Zeppelin fans and
enthusiasts. The bar also sells a t-shirt with it's logo on it
for tourists, the logo being a picture of "Mr. Zeppelin".
o The Rock And Roll Cafe in New York City, situated at 149 Bleeker
Street, at one point several years ago featured a Zeppelin tribute
band called Four Sticks every Monday night. The tribute band was
preceeded by a Hendrix tribute band.
o Peter Grant's bathrobe from the cancelled 1980 U.S. tour with "Led
Zeppelin The 80's, Part One" emblazoned on the back was spotted by
a listmember for sale in a Boston store for around US$700.
Judging by the size of Grant at the time you certainly get your
money's worth though!
o Punk "Musicians", a term I use with some trepidation, were
renowned for bucketing Zeppelin. Johnny Rotten who once labelled
the band, "boring old farts", was reported in _Q_ magazine as
having contacted Plant recently to get the lyrics for "Kashmir" so
PIL could cover it. An even more derisive quote, is Paul Simonon
of the Clash's, "I don't even have to hear the music, just looking
at one of their album covers makes me want to throw up".
o The street that the building depicted on the cover of "Physical
Graffiti" is on is St. Marks Place, New York City. The street
runs right through Greenwich Village.
o The punk band Unsane does a cover of "Four Sticks".
o Led Zeppelin are the only band to have had all their albums reach
the Billboard Top 10. Of these ten albums, six went to number
o During his drum solo on their 1994 tour, Aerosmith drummer Joey
Kramer would sometimes incorporate a section from "Poor Tom".
o A song by Soundgarden, title unknown, uses the "Killing Floor"
riff from 1969. This is the riff where an E is played twice,
count out a measure, and a "Boom Boom" style riff is then
played, at about half the speed John Lee Hooker plays it.
o The riff from "In The Light" was borrowed by the guitarist from
Stone Temple Pilots, sped up, made heavier and simplified and
incorporated into either "Sex Type Thing" or "Wicked Garden".
o On the 1994 Aerosmith tour, guitarist Joe Perry was known to play
a bit of "Dazed And Confused" during his solo which usually led
into "Sweet Emotion". He did this at Aerosmith's Woodstock 1994
appearance. This seems to be a common trend among guitarists,
with Slash also doing this with Guns 'n Roses. On the Metallica
box set "Live Shit: Binge & Purge" during one of the concerts on
video bass player Jason Newsted begins playing the start of "Dazed
And Confused" at the end of his bass solo. Guitarist Kirk Hammett
then chips in with the psychedelic guitar chords from the song.
They also play a snippet from "Moby Dick" later in the concert.
o The band Brother Cane have a song called "Make Your Play" which
features some slide work reminiscent of that in "In My Time Of
o Kristin Hersh's "Your Ghost" cd single features a cover of "When
The Levee Breaks". This can be on the "Strings" album.
o Duran Duran's cover of "Thank You" appears on the soundtrack to
the film _With_Honors_.
o The CBC show "This Hour Has 22 Minutes" uses the same burning
Zeppelin footage in the beginning of their show as appears on
the cover of the first album.
o The Powder Monkey's album "Smashed On A Knee" features a similar
picture to that on the first Zeppelin album, except that is was
taken a few moments later.
o Heart is a band that wears its Zeppelin influences on its sleeves,
but in places it does sound a bit too derivative. Two examples
are the songs "Barracuda" and "Magic Man" which imitate "Achilles
Last Stand" and "Immigrant Song" respectively. Also, the end of
"Straight On" is a lift from "The Crunge".
o Unlike during "The Song Remains The Same", for the two Knebworth
1979 dates, the band dressed identically on both occasions.
o A radio station in Florida found out the hard way that an all
Zeppelin format was not a viable idea when it kicked off its
transmissions by playing "Stairway To Heaven" fifty times in a
row. Within two weeks the station had gone broke and had had to
resort to the usual dull and unvaried commercial format.
o At a Minneapolis date on his 1994 tour Billy Joel and his band ran
down a cover of "Good Times Bad Times" with the introduction "This
is one of my all time favourite songs". Before that he had
instructed the band to "Let's do that one we were fooling around
with before". Billy played rhythm guitar for this song.
o In the first story, _The_Langoliers_, in Stephen King's _Four_
_Past_Midnight_, one of the characters says the following,
"Sometimes, when I'm sure my music teacher isn't around, I play
old Led Zeppelin songs," he said. "That stuff _really_ cooks on
the violin. You'd be suprised."
o The programme for Zeppelin's 1979 Knebworth gigs was a little
ahead of their record company. It listed the new, at the time,
album, "In Through The Out Door", as being "Available now on
Swansong records and tapes". In fact, the album was not available
at the time of the concerts, and was delayed for some time. An
advertisement for HMV records also in the programme was more
accurate, in that it listed all the previous Zep albums, showing
sleeves and prices, but not "In Through The Out Door".
o A music convention in Toronto, Canada, in early 1994 featured
Peter Grant as a keynote speaker.
o A classical guitar recital at the Berklee College of Music
attended by a member of the list in early 1994 included a song
listed on the programme as "Bob Pix On Lead - Jimmy Page and
o Rapper Ice-T has been known to use Zeppelin samples such as the
drum beat from "When The Levee Breaks", commonly used in rap and
dance music anyway, and the bass riff in "Heartbreaker".
o On March 29, 1975 Led Zeppelin made music history by becoming the
first band to feature their entire back catalogue, all six albums,
on the album charts at the same time. That was the first and so
far, last time that has happened with that quantity of albums.
o The 1969 Sony Super Show film features Zeppelin along with Eric
Clapton and Steven Stills, amongst other.
o The shows that Zeppelin recorded for the BBC have been rebroadcast
in recent years on the syndicated shows "In Concert" and
"Superstars In Concert" on American radio. Some of the material
may no longer exist in BBC archives, and these radio broadcasts
are the ones that turn up most frequently as bootlegs.
o The Kentucky Headhunters, an American group obviously, are noted
Zeppelin fans. Some members of this band claimed to have been
signed to Sawn Song at one point, as mentioned in the FAQL.
o Yorke's book on Zeppelin contains the following illuminating
statistics regarding album sales in the USA.
1st. The Beatles = 56 million albums sold.
2nd. Led Zeppelin = 45 million albums sold.
These figures do not include the sales of either of the box sets
or "The Complete Studio Recordings".
o An unknown Soundgarden song reputedly features the riff, or a
very similar one from "Friends".
o The organist who played during Rangers home hockey games at
Madison Square Gardens in the early 1990's had a repertoire which
o Richard Cole, possibly not the well known one among Zeppelin fans,
manages the Zeppelin tribute band Physical Graffiti.
o An interesting Zep legend relates to their 1968 show at Denver,
26/12/68, which was the first date from their first US tour.
There was a snowstorm in Denver at the time and Zeppelin were
stuck there without their equipment and expected to do a show at
the Coliseum. Using borrowed equipment Zep went ahead with the
show and whilst Plant was singing at some point the microphone
went dead. Plant, reputedly, tossed it aside and continued
singing without it.
o In June 1994, WHJY-FM in Providence broadcast the statistic that
74% of the members of President Clinton's administration believed
that Led Zeppelin was a fuel additive.
o At the 1994 Zeppelin convention, some newly unearthed footage of
Page and Plant at an Australian press conference was shown. Only
about 10 minutes long, the piece is an interesting curiosity.
o The film "The Client" features several references to Led Zeppelin.
The kid in the film who witnessed the murder is seen wearing a
Zeppelin t-shirt, and the lawyer asks the rather rhetorical
question of whether the kid likes Zeppelin. The kid is under the
impression that the lawyer has no idea about Zeppelin and is just
trying to worm her way into his trust. He asks her what her
favourite Zeppelin song is, and she replies, in a rather unusual
response, the live version of "Moby Dick". The kid then asks her
to name the first four albums, which she does, even explaining
that the fourth album is officially untitled but is commonly
referred to as "IV". The film incidentally is based on a John
o A series of comics entitled "The Led Zeppelin Experience" were
published in 1993 by Revolutionary Comics in California. As with
Australian bootlegs in recent years, the covers loudly proclaim
their unofficial nature. However, the comics are content just to
rip off Richard Cole's tired old road stories, doing little but
translating them into pictorial form. However, one issue does
get a little more interesting with an exceprt from Aleister
Crowley's "Magick In Theory And Practice" printed on the inside
o A song was released in 1993 called "She Likes To Make Love To Led
Zeppelin" which had a lyrics that touched on various album and
o A 1994 song by Bomb The Bass contained several references to Jimmy
Page and how "The song remains the same".
o The exact pronunciantion of Bron-Y-Aur, the cottage in Snowdonia,
Wales, where Page and Plant retreated to to write the songs for
"Led Zeppelin III", is unclear. Welsh being one of the hardest
languages to understand, it is obviously not pronounced as it
appears. The word apparently originated in old Welsh dialects,
and one school of thought has it that it is pronounced brom-rar.
However, Robert has been heard to pronounce it bron-rar.
o In a section of Alice In Chain's "I'll Stay Away" where the
acoustic part ascends, then descends, it sounds similar to the
guitar in Zeppelin's cover of "Travelling Riverside Blues".
o Legend has it that after their August 18, 1969, show at the
Rockpile in Toronto, Zeppelin carried on playing acoustically
outside the venue on the street for an hour or so. Nobody paid
much attention to them as they were not well known at the time.
o The band members major influences could be stated as follows:
Jimmy Page - Early rock 'n roll, electric blues, Carnatic
(Indian), Celtic folk, and Arabic music.
Robert Plant - folk rock (Californian bands), psychedelia,
acoustic blues, Arabic, and Indian later in life.
John Paul Jones - Motown, Jazz, Rock, and Classical arrangements
for non-standard instruments.
John Bonham - Jazz, Rock, and Funk.
o Led Zeppelin's admiration of The Beatles is an established fact.
The famous "Blueberry Hill" bootleg features them inserting a
quick nod to "I Saw Her Standing There" during a "Communication
Breakdown" medley. They also played "Please Please Me", in
parody, on at least one occasion, and on the 1980 tour played
"Money", with Phil Carson, at some shows.
o Stephen Davis, author of the notorious "Hammer Of The Gods", has
claimed that Zeppelin performed "Purple Haze" during concerts on
their 1973 tour. This is uncertain, but during "The Song Remains
The Same" just after the bowing section and as Robert is saying
"Do it!" Jimmy plays what sounds like a snatch of "Foxy Lady".
o Frank Hannon, guitarist from the band Tesla, has a red Gibson
double-neck guitar like Page's which he uses for the Zeppelin-
influenced "Love Song".
o Boston band Fury And The Slaughterhouse, a local band from Boston
appear to be adept Zeppelin thieves, with one of their songs
featuring a direct sample from the beginning of "D'Yer Mak'er",
and the drums from "When The Levee Breaks".
o "The Ten Legendary Singles" a special New Zealand-only release
features the standard ten Zeppelin singles in a seven-inch box
set with a picture of a Zeppelin over Berlin during World War II
on the cover. This is an official release, although a printing
error results in the A and B sides being reversed on the singles
for "Whole Lotta Love", "D'Yer Mak'er" and "Candy Store Rock".
o The Australian release of "Led Zeppelin II" featured the band on
the inside front cover instead of the bomber on some pressings.
o The hilarious rock-spoof-pseudo-documentary "This Is Spinal Tap"
features more than a few digs at Zeppelin. The most obvious is
guitarist Nigel Tufnell's "bowing" solo where he plays his guitar
with a violin, as opposed to Page using the bow. The band's
manager also appears to be modelled on Peter Grant, and one of
their many previous drummers choked on vomit, although it was
someone else's, and as someone in the film points out "You can't
really dust for vomit". The film also takes swipes at most
obviously Black Sabbath, although the Stonehenge gag may also be
a poke at Zeppelin's "Stonehenge" theme at their Oakland show in
o The slogan for Zeppelin's 1980 tour was "Cut The Waffle", which
meant trimming down the hour-long-jams and endless solo, with the
exception of the drum solo, making Zeppelin a far leaner outfit
than for years.
o Mention has been made of a resemblance between the Soundgarden
song "Superunknown" and "Misty Mountain Hop".
o Zeppelin's last show was at Eissporthalle, Berlin, Germany, on
July 7, 1980.
o Phish has been known to cover "Good Times Bad Times" in concert,
one such occasion being 24/7/93 at Greatwoods, Massachusetts.
o The appalling quality of the sound and video footage of the 1979
Knebworth show available on various bootlegs, may be for a reason.
The footage was originally stolen from Jimmy's house, and while
the thieves most likely didn't get the master tapes, they may have
purposely denigrated the quality to enhance the value of their
o Japanese Zeppelin tribute band Cinnamon take the whole idea of a
concept band to its extreme. They have been playing together
since 1979, and are so obsessed with accuracy that they introduce
each number by title, tour, venue and date, playing the song
exactly as it was performed that night. Hailing from Nagoya, they
go under the names of Robart, Jimy Page, John-G, and Bonzow. An
album of their original material is, for some reason, entitled
"Led Zeppelin", while their latest work, "Cinnamon III", which
features a parody of the "II" cover, is a 58 song medley of
Zeppelin classics performed in 56 minutes. Jimy Page when he is
not reproducing the performance of the other Page owns and works
in a drugstore, while Robart runs a Nagoya language school named
o On a Red Hot Chilli Peppers bootleg the band segues momentarily
into "Dazed And Confused".
o On October 21, 1994 _The_Guardian_ printed the following comment,
"Robert Plant and Jimmy Page confirmed that they turned down an
offer of $100 million to reform Led Zeppelin. So there is a
o A standup comedian, whose name is not known, does a sketch about
what old rock stars are doing these days. He says he pulled into
a gas station where Robert Plant was working, and Plant walked
over, popped the hood, had a look around underneath and wailed
"You need coolant..."
o There is a golf video avilable called "Fairways To Heaven" which
has the title emblazoned on the cover in the font Zeppelin used
for "The Song Remains The Same".
o At an early 1972 concert at Mohawk College in Hamilton Ontario,
Rush is reported to have played "Stairway To Heaven" as part of
o "How Many More Times" has appeared on the soundtrack of at least
one film, who's title is not widely known, but also includes at
least one song by Steve Miller. This film is "Homer", from 1969.
The catalogue number for this album is Cotillion SD 9037 (US)/
Atlantic 2400 137 (UK). This is mentioned in Robert Godwin's
"The Illustrated Collectors Guide To Led Zeppelin (3rd Edition)".
o Television advertisements for the film "Deer Hunter" and maybe
also the film itself used "Dazed And Confused" as background
o There exists a musak version of "Tangerine" that can be heard in
o The Swan Song label was dissolved several years after Zeppelin
ended, but not before "Coda" and Robert Plant's first solo album,
"Pictures At Eleven" were released on it. The other artists on
Swan Song mostly resigned with Atlantic, with a few exceptions.
Bad Company soldiered on minus Paul Rodgers, while Dave Edmunds
switched labels. A recent retrospective of his work contains all
his Swan Song material. Other artists simply lost their recording
deals thanks to Swan Song's demise. Jimmy Page's soundtrack to
"Deathwish II" also appeared on Swan Song.
o The publishing companies used throughout the Zeppelin years were
Superhype and Flames Of Albion, both set up by Jimmy but also used
by the other bandmembers to administer their rights. For those
unfamiliar with how this works, these companies then sign with one
of the major administrators such as ASCAP or BMI. These companies
are reponsible for collecting the royalties generated by other
people using the songs, such as companies publishing music books.
Fees generated from radio and video broadcasts and live covers are
also administered by these companies, usually at a standard rate
regardless of the artist. However, depending on the band's status
in the industry, their management may take it into their hands to
see that the various fees are paid. These companies also handle
such things as songwriter disputes, and disputed credits for song
authorship, such as the recent Michael Bolton/Isley Brothers
dispute, which bypassed this mechanism and ended up in court.
o Led Zeppelin were one of the few 1970's bands, big bands that is,
who did not deliberately experiment with some sort of deliberately
vague bisexual imagery.
o At one particular Primus gig, Les Claypool, the bass player, put
on an unusually shaped bass and the band started to play the
introduction to "Kashmir".
o A duet by Neneh Cherry and Michael Stipe has a stab at recreating
the Bonham sound. The title of the song is not apparent, but can
be distinguished by a chorus of "Round and round and round..."
o Various things such as Tolkien influenced lyrics and some album
art suggest that Zeppelin, most notably Plant, had some sort of
interest in, fixation with subreality, such as that explored by
o There are quite a few things that a band might do that could hint
to a Zeppelin influence. Probably the most obvious is repeating
a blues-based or pentatonic riff over and over again. Zeppelin
didn't invent this, but some of their most well known songs such
as "Whole Lotta Love" use it. Additionally, backwards echo,
multi-tracked guitars, choruses guitars, and open and Indian
tunings all point to Zeppelin and Jimmy Page. Stylistically, a
song that stars off with acoustic guitar and really soft sections,
then builds up to a much louder, quite often electric, climax,
are Zeppelin trademarks. A recent example being Van Halen's
"Take Me Back (Deja Vu)". Zeppelin was again, not the inventor of
this, but songs such as "Babe I'm Gonna Leave You" used it to
great effect. The influence of Zeppelin in rap is also quite
important, Frankie Goes To Hollywood sampled Bonham for "Relax",
and The Beastie Boys with Rick Rubin sampled a number of Zeppelin
riffs and drumbeats. The interest in World Music also exhibits a
Zeppelin influence with their dabbling in Carnatic, Arabic,
Celtic, Caribbean and Moroccan music. The preponderance of a huge
reverb/gating effect of drum sounds of people such as Phil Collins
and by producer Mutt Lange with artists such as Bryan Adams is a
clear attempt to replicate Bonham's sound. Also, the guitar hero
with the low-slung Les Paul and the cigarette dangling from the
lips is not a trademark of Slash, but rather, Jimmy Page, who can
be seen in various photos and footage leaning back into the riffs,
in a much imitated pose. The influence of Zeppelin has been very
pervasive, leap-frogging acorss genres and generations and is very
likely to continue for some time to come.
o The name Zeppelin first sprang to public prominence thanks to
Count Ferdinand von Zeppelin (1838-1971) who was a German airship
designed who developed the dirigible balloon, named after him,
which was used in World War I. He developed the airship between
o The Zeppelin bursting into flames on the cover of the first album
is The Hindenburg, named after Paul von Hindenburg (1847-1934), a
German general and statesman. He succeeded Falkenhayn as chief of
the High Command during World War I and served as President of the
Weimar Republic (1925-1934). In 1933 he was forced to make Hitler
o Led Zeppelin did four seperate tours of the USA in the space of
one year during 1969, 26/12/68-08/11/69.
o Headley Grange, a recording venue for Zeppelin during the 1970's,
was a converted poorhouse.
o The search for the master tapes for the remastering process took
Page to all manner of strange locations, such as a now-abandoned
Underground Subway Station in North London.
o The Jeff Buckley song "Mojo Pin" features a very Zeppelin-ish
section around the 3:50 mark, and again later in the song, which
sounds like "Achilles Last Stand".
o The plane featured in "The Song Remains The Same" is a Boeing
720B, a scaled down model of a 707 that was formerly owned by
United Airlines. United Airlines sold the plane to a company
called Temporary Entertainer's Services which leased the plane
out to various groups and performers for their tours. The plane
was also used by at various times, The Rolling Stones, Deep Purple
and Elton John. The man who ran this company was the manager of
singer Bobby Sherman, who derived his fame from the tv show "Here
Comes The Bride." For the use of Led Zeppelin the plane was
repainted in brown and gold and a logo added to the fuselage.
This paint scheme was later changed by Elton John to a stars and
stripes design. In turn, each group or person leasing the plane
changed the paint scheme to give the impression that the current
occupant owned it. In 1973 the plane was leased at $2500 a day
plus a mileage charge. It was used by the group to travel to and
from gigs and back to the major cities such as New York, Chicago
or Los Angeles where they would "base" themselves for part of a
tour. The plane was nicknamed "The Starship" or alternately
o At a gig in September 1970 at the L.A. Trouabdour where Fairport
Covention were recording a live album, they were joined onstage
by a previously unheard of band called the Birmingham Water
Buffalo Society, who turned out to be Led Zeppelin.
o The reason for Eddie Kramer's non-involvement between the second
and fifth albums was a dispute that broke out in Electric
Ladyland studios in New York, where Kramer was the director of
engineering. One of Zeppelin's roadies spilled some Indian food
on a new rug, and when asked to clean it up by Kramer, harsh
words were exchanged. Zeppelin sided with their roadie and thus
something of a wedge was driven into their relationship with
o While Woodstock was happening, Zeppelin was performing in Asbury
Park, new Jersey.
o The completion of "Presence" just prior to Thanksgiving, prompted
Jimmy to suggest "Thanksgiving" as an album title.
o The rumoured title for "In Through The Out Door" prior to its
release was "Look".
People have interpreted Jimmy Page's brief alliance with former
Whitesnake and Deep Purple singer, and alleged Plant clone, David
Coverdale as an act of revenge for Plant not agreeing to do a
reunion. Whether Jimmy really set out to annoy Plant, or mush more
plausible he was dying to get back in the studio and Coverdale came
along at just the right time, they did come up with an album,
"Coverdale/Page," that has drawn mixed reactions from Zeppelin fans.
o At the end of the recording process, there were a handful of tunes
left over that didn't make the album, one of which is known to be
called "Saccharine." In the words of Coverdale, `There's a song
called "Saccharine" that is going to make you shit. The riff is
absolutely obscene, as are the lyrics.' Another unreleased song
is a mix of "Shake My Tree" with a `wild assortment of crunch
guitars' according to Coverdale.
o On the "Coverdale/Page" album Page uses a guitar tuning device
made by TransPerformance that apparently works by automatically
winding the string until the correct pitch is reached after the
string is struck. The device fits over the tunings keys. Page
had the device installed on one of his Les Pauls, and he says it
can store up to two hundred different tunings. This may well be
the guitar he uses in the "Pride And Joy" video, as it looks to
have some sort of custom parts added to it. It is also the
guitar Jimmy uses for "Kashmir" on "No Quarter", which is how he
can segue into "Black Dog" which is in a completely different
o The "Coverdale/Page" album was the first time Jimmy had played
harp since on his solo single "She Just Satisfies" in 1965. Jimmy
plays a dulcimer during "Pride And Joy", something he hasn't done
on record since "That's The Way" on "Led Zeppelin III."
o Coverdale's explanation for his screaming on the "Coverdale/Page"
was that Page was writing songs that made him sing `...up with the
o The song "Take Me For A Little While" is apparently about the
losses both Page and Coverdale have had to deal with in their
lives, Bonham in the case of Page, and Tommy Bolin in the case of
Coverdale. Coverdale has said he pictures the song as being about
old buddies huddling around the fire for comfort. Page says
he wrote the song while looking at his young son, while they were
in Tahoe, Nevada. The solo of this song sounds reminiscent of the
one from "Stairway To Heaven" being played slower.
o The idea to work with Coverdale did not come from David Geffen
according to both page and Coverdale, but from Page's management.
At the time Page had been sifting through lots of demo tapes of
young singers and found nothing of interest.
o The initial writing for the "Coverdale/Page" album was done with
the aid of a $50 Radio Shack cassette recorder and some backing
tapes of drum tracks. Coverdale jokingly says they thought about
donating it to the Smithsonian.
o In the Kerrang interview with Page, Coverdale made a somewhat
confusing comment, "... walking the fine line between Pagan and
Christian, essential and superfluous." This is what he says at
the end of the song "For The Love of God" on Steve Vai's album,
"Passion And Warfare."
o The opening riff for "Shake My Tree" from the "Coverdale/Page"
album was something Page had come up with at the time of the
sessions for "In Through The Out Door" but discarded because
no-one but Bonham had any idea what to do with it. It was also
later ignored by Paul Rodgers when he and Page were in The Firm.
o "Pride and Joy", another "Coverdale/Page" track was originally
conceived by Coverdale as a Dr. John style, laid back song called
"Barbados Boogie." Coverdale notes, "...and then, of course, he
[Page] had to put in this enormous...you know... gutter,
digusting, churning, malevolent, _sucking_ riff." A riff from
Sammy Hagar's turgid song "Heavy Metal" sounds reminiscent to the
riff before the drum intro in "Pride And Joy."
o The cover of the "Coverdale/Page" album with it's traffic merging
sign, meant to symbolise the musical merging of Coverdale and
Page, was designed by Hugh Syme who has in the past been
responsible for album covers for Whitesnake, "1987" and "Slip Of
The Tongue", and every Rush cover since "Caress Of Steel", even
playing on the latter's albums. The sign from the "Coverdale/
Page" album appears in a variety of locations, similar to the way
the `object' appears on the cover of "Presence." The locations of
the road sign are:
- Among some clouds in a blue sky. (Front Cover)
- On the moon. (Rear Cover)
- Between two piles of felled trees.
- In a field with cattle.
- In the desert with pyramids in the background.
- In front of a pile of crushed cars.
- In shallow tropical water. (The Great Barrier Reef?)
- In a breaking wave in a stormy sea.
Hugh Syme is reported to have a very quirky sense of humour so
there may well be a meaning for each of these scenes. A photo
of the same pyramids, from slightly to the left and closer, is
included in the "The Dark Side Of The Moon Twentieth Anniversary
Edition" of the classic Pink Floyd album.
o "Coverdale/Page" session players Ricky Phillips (Bass) and Denny
Carmassi (Drums) have made mention of the nearly impossible
rhythmic patterns Page wanted them ot play throughout the album.
In several places on the album Page modulates the chord up a
half-step, which has been suggested as a joking reference to
Bonham's "Wait For You."
o The much rumoured US tour never happened, although at one stage
they got as far as lining up Extreme as the opening act. Instead
they played a handful of dates in Japan, with some vintage
performances from Page, and then split amicably. Page is now
back with Plant, while Coverdale is trying to reform an early
incarnation of his previous band, Whitesnake.
o The solo for "Don't Leave Me This Way" was done in one take while
Page had a 102 degree temperature!
o The slides in "Waiting On You" are not done with a slide, but with
a whammy pedal.
o The main riff from "Don't Leave Me This Way bears some resemblance
to the Beatles song "I Want You (She's So Heavy)."
o The credit John Kalodner : John Kalodner refers to one of the
promotional people at Geffen, who is possibly best known for his
excessive hyping of lame bands. Kalodner is also the bearded man
wearing the wedding dress in Aerosmith's "Dude (Looks Like A
Lady)" video. Kalodner recently left Geffen.
o David Coverdale's mother died while the album was being recorded
and her name appears in the credits for that reason.
o The bass player for Coverdale/Page's shows in Japan was Guy
Pratt. He would have been unable to continue touring with the
band if any additional dates had been added, as he was already
committed for the rest of 1994 to an obscure group named after
two even more obscure Mississippi Delta bluesmen.
o In the same way he had Durban LaVerde overdub all of ex-The Firm
bass player Tony Franklin's parts on "Outrider", Page had studio
player, also from Miami Sound Machine, Jorge Casas overdub nearly
all of Ricky Phillips bass parts on "Coverdale/Page".
o In the video for "Take Me For A Little While" Jimmy is playing a
very rare and expensive instrument called a Gibson Harp-Guitar.
These were built sometime during the 1920's and feature 12 extra
ass strings, one for each key, as well as the standard six guitar
o "Shake My Tree" features Page's backwards echo effect.
The war of words between Robert Plant and David Coverdale that
erupted in the music media during Coverdale's alliance with Jimmy
Page for the "Coverdale/Page" album is merely the latest salvoes in
the debate over whether Whitesnake is a Zeppelin clone band.
o Ever since Whitesnake released its "1987" album with the
"Still Of The Night" on it David Coverdale has been incessantly
bashed in the popular music media as a "Plant Wannabee" and "Plant
o What this ignores is Coverdale's pedigree as an established singer
long before Whitesnake. Coverdale was the singer for Deep Purple
Mark IV, after Ian Gillan left, and recorded several albums with
the band which featured until his death, the late Tommy Bolin.
o The similarites between Plant and Coverdale are surpericial to say
- Both are English, both are singers, both have worked with Jimmy
Page, both have king sized egos, both seem obsessed with the
opposite sex, both have blond hair - although you have to wonder
whether Plant uses dye these days, and Coverdale certainly does.
So does dying you hair and working with Jimmy Page consist of
blatant plagiarism? Given that they both emerged on the scene at
around the same time with a similar base in the blues the
comparions would appear to be unfair to both of them.
o The crux of the problem is the video for "Still Of The Night"
where Whitesnake guitarist Adrian Vandenberg picked up a violen
bow and in a manner reminiscent of another guitarist began to play
his guitar with it. From a headline hungry media it was a logical
progression that Coverdale was imitating Plant. At any rate,
Coverdale was not the main musical writer behind Whitesnake, he
wrote the lyrics mainly and Vandenberg's bow exploits are by the
guitarists admission not Coverdale's idea.
o The part of "Still Of The Night" which resembles "Immigrant Song"
most closely is when the band are playing octaves and Coverdale is
singing "Ooooh... Baby..."
o Coverdale has claimed in recent interviews that the riff from
"Still Of The Night" which sounds reminiscent of the one from
"Black Dog" was something that Richie Blackmore had come up with
during Coverdale's days with Deep Purple. According to Coverdale,
John Sykes and himself tidied it up a bit for the song.
o Another source of discontent was a remark Coverdale offhandedly
made about his "good friend" Robert Plant and and how, "He and I
like to sit down and discuss the current events in music." Since
then it has been pretty much open-season from both camps. Plant
contended that he did not know Coverdale, unlikely, and that the
aforementioned events never took place. Page has remarked that,
"When I saw that guy pick up the bow I just about fell out of my
chair laughing." Coverdale countered with, "You can hear
`Kashmir' on Moroccan radio 24 hours a day."
o Since then, the Coverdale/Page union has come and gone and left
little other trace than their album. At the time, the feud seemed
to change focus a little, Coverdale expressing his regret things
had got so out of hand.
"Let's not pull any punches," Coverdale pouts. "There _has_ been
something of a hate campaign conducted by Robert . A lot of the
things discussed by Jimmy and myself are, I'm afraid, very
personal, but there's never, ever been a problem between Mr Page
and myself. The thing that hurt me most of all is Robert saying
that we didn't know each other.
When you asked before if Jimmy and I knew each other, we'd
crossed paths, had maybe three chance meetings throught the 70s;
whereas Robert had brought his daughter to Whitesnake shows when
we played in his neck of the woods, and he'd been given the whole
royal treatment and all that.
I knew Robert back in the 'Purple days, him and Bonzo. I
never knew John Paul Jones. So that was a weird thing for me.
But I'd rather stay out of all that and let the music do the
talking, really. I admire Robert immensely - I'll leave it at
Plant on the other hand is not particularly conciliatory,
describing Coverdale recently as "...a fucking idiot".
o Page at the time had this to say on the infamous violin bow
incident, "That's what it was about. It wasn't anyting to do with
the rest of the song - it was purely the reference to the bow,
which wasn't used on the record, as far as I know."
o Plant's thoughts on Coverdale/Page? "It's a bit limiting,
artistically, to think that's the way it is and that's what is
o With Coverdale/Page achieving only a small amount more succes than
Plant's "Fate of Nations" album and the outward appearance that
Plant had squandered all his chances to get together with Jimmy
sour grapes is an easy accusation to make.
o In recent years the jibes between Plant and Page got so intense,
it wasn't Page and Coverdale that seemed so unlikely, but Page and
o One is left wondering in whose interests the whole thing got
started, it certainly wasn't either Plant or Coverdale and given
that the press has been quite happy to give this prolonged
coverage, some unfortunate conclusions about the character and
quality of music journalism can be drawn.
o As if it wasn't fairly apparent, Jason Bonham is the son of the
late John Bonham and is an established rock drummer in his own
right these days.
o In the words of Jason,
"Most fathers give their four year old children train sets,
toy cars or tricycles - mine gave me a scaled down Ludwig
o At the age of 11, Bonzo is said to have pointed out that in his
opinion Jason was the only person he had heard apart from himself
who could play the drum part of "Trampled Underfoot" just right.
o Jason Bonham can be seen at a very young age in "The Song Remains
The Same" drumming away furiously on his drum kit during Bonzo
Sr.'s fantasy sequence.
o Since then Jason has played in several Zep reunions such as at
the Atlantic Records 40th Anniversary gig, where Jason's drumming
was apparently the only hightlight.
o Another reunion at Carmen Plant's 21st birthday party saw Jason
on drums again for what was apparently a much improved performance
from the other three members.
o The last of these reunions was at Jason's own wedding where the
remaining three members came together and played several numbers
such as "Custard Pie." As with Carmen Plant's birthday, this was
from all reports a great performance.
o Plant was apparently unwilling to consider Jason for his touring
band during the late 80's because of an alcohol problem.
o Jason formed his own group in the late 1980's comprising himself
on drums, Daniel MacMaster (Vocals), Ian Hatton (Guitars) and
John Smithson (Keyboards, Bass, Violin). The band released it's
debut album "The Disregard of Timekeeping" to an encouraging
response in 1989. The band went by the name "Bonham" and even had
a logo that resembled his father's runic symbol from the fourth
Led Zeppelin album. The first album was comprised of,
The Disregard of Timekeeping/Wait For You/Bringing Me Down/
Guilty/Holding On Forever/Dreams/Don't Walk Away/Playing To
Win/Cross Me And See/Just Another Day/Room For Us All
"Wait For You" was released as a single with "Cross Me And See" on
o The cover of the album with it's bar-room sceen brings to
mind the cover of another album... "In Through The Out Door."
o The band was well promoted and toured extensively to a sometimes
favourable and other times disparaging critical response. The
singer bore an unfortunate resemblance to Plant which was a
source of much derision and along with the debut album's Eastern
influences led to the predictable label of "Zep Clone."
o A followup album in 1992, "Mad Hatter" was a huge flop and the
band was dropped from it's label along with several other `metal'
acts and slpit up. Jason also broke his arm jsut before the band
was due to gon on tour at one point.
o Jason most recently appeared on record on Paul Rodger's Muddy
Waters tribute album and Rodgers latest solo effort. When last
heard of he was touring with Rodgers and his band. The Muddy
Waters tribute album features Jeff Beck, Richie Sambora, Neal
Schon, Gary Moore, David Gilmour, Slash, Steve Miller, Trevor
Rabin and Buddy Guy. The guitarist from Jason's group Bonham,
Ian Hatton is credited with playing rhythm guitars on the album.
o Jason is from what he has said, not part of the current "rumoured"
Plant and Page project, Plant instead using the drummer from his
"Fate of Nations" album and last touring band, Michael Lee.
o Jason Bonham can also be found on the soundtrack album for the
Moscow Peace Festival, "Stairway to Heaven, Highway to Hell,"
playing on the track "Moby Dick," as part of an all-star band,
Drum Madness, which also included Tico Torres, Mickey Currie and
o Jason played drums for a set with Paul Rodgers on vocals, and
Slash on guitar, at Woodstock 1994. Amongst other things, they
played a few Bad Company songs.
o The current activities of Jason Bonham are not well-documented,
however it has been reported that he has a new band Metropolis,
basically Bonham with a different singer.
o Jason apparently lost favour with Page when he had his drum kit
made with the Swan Song logo on it. On tour with Bonham the band
always used to make a big thing of covering "Black Dog", which
probably did not endear him to Page either. Rumoured alcohol
problems and the tackiness of involving him in the Page & Plant
reunion have seen him continue his musical career in relative
obscurity in recent years.
o A report in MTV's "Headbanger's Ball" in 1994 reported that
Robert, Charlie Jones, and Michael Lee had been working on around
twelve new songs since the beginning of March. The report also
stated that there was enough material for an album.
o The May 1994 issue of _Q_ magazine in its news section featured a
small piece about the ongoing collaboration and a picture of Page,
dressed rather badly in tie-dyed shirt, black jacket, hideous
scarf and denim jeans, and Plant wearing a black tracksuit,
outside a studio in King's Cross in a strong breeze. The
following text also appeared.
"It's Pagey, it's Planty and it's last month's rumour of an
MTV acoustic rendition entitled Unledded taking a long stride
towards credibility. They were snapped in a windy mews
outside a King's Cross rehearsal studio and, while MTV
spokespersons remain in "schtum" mode, the smart money is on
them recording in June in New York. ... Incidentally, Page
and Plant have also been in litigious tandem to prevent a
Schooly D track, Signifying Rapper, being used in TV
screenings of the Harvey Keitel movie The Bad Lieutenant
because of its "striking similiarity" to their own Kashmir.
Certain ancient bluesmen might regard this news with a degree
of wry scepticism."
o The Zeppelin fanzine "The Only One" was amongst many sources that
reported a scheduled Plant performance at the annual Alexis Korner
Tribute Concert Benefit For Cancer Research on April 17.
o A radio interview with Francis Dunnery in May 1994, the guitarist
for Robert Plant on his "Fate Of Nations" tour, added further fuel
to the rapidly spreading rumours. Dunnery claimed that Page and
Plant really began to think about doing something while they were
in Boston for a Plant show in 1993. Dunnery even referred to the
project as being called "Unledded". However, he would not confirm
or deny their involvement in the Gibson GUitars 100th Anniversary
bash, but did point out that they had played together at the
Alexis Korner benefit gig. Dunnery, who is apparently a good
friend of Plant, repeatedly referred to him as `Planty' throughout
o Part of the impetus for "Unledded" may have come from plans that
Plant had for making a travel documentary where he visited Wales
o A new version of "When The Levee Breaks" was recorded for the
"Unledded" special in Wales. This was the first time the song had
been peformed live by any of the ex-Zeppelin members since the
early shows on their 1975 tour. Even then it only joined the set
briefly, due mainly to the technical problems inherent in lowering
Bonham and his kit into a specially prepared pit onstage.
o The setlist for thw Page and Plant reunion at the Buxton Opera
House for the Alexis Korner Benefit Show was as follows. "Baby
Please Don't Go", "I Can't Quit You Baby"," I've Been Down So
Long", "That's Why I Love You", "Train Kept A-Rollin'".
o WBCN in Boston ran a competition offering free tickets and a trip
to the taping of "Unledded" for their listeners.
o The location "Unledded" was filmed at, was a venue of only 200 -
250 seats capacity, 50 of whom were the lucky winners of a contest
run by MTV. Another 100 were picked at random from a list put
together by Jimmy and Robert's management of known, and various
o The arrangements for transporting the 200 lucky punters to the
Unledded tapings would not seem out of place in a tacky spy movie.
The ticket holders were issued with instructions to turn up at a
certain place in London, from where they would be transported to
the secret location by bus.
o MTV widely publicised "Unledded" before it appeared. One of the
commericals in use featured a cab driver rabbiting on about the
"reunification of Robert Plant and Jimmy Page" before he starts
to sing "Black Dog" and "Stairway To Heaven", badly. The taxi's
passenger in the rear seat looked uncannily like Bonzo in the late
ear of the band. Another commercial had someone pulling lottery
balls out of a machine with the names of people that had upcoming
performances on MTV, two of whom were Page and Plant.
o One American paper greeted the imminent Page and Plant reunion
with the comment "Can lightning strike four or five times in the
o The "Unledded" show was first broadcast on MTV on October 12,
1994, and was preceeded by a Page and Plant press conference at
the Beacon Theatre, in New York City, on October 11.
o Before "Unledded" was broadcast, Jimmy was spotted walking down
Charlotte Street in London, an area abounding in video production
facilities, with a minder, most likely working on the project in
a nearby studio.
o Two of the locations used for "Unledded" were Corris Slate
Quarries, near Bron-Y-Aur, in Wales, on August 15, 1994, and
the London Television Centre. The audience at Corris Slate
Quarries apparently comprised two people and a few sheep. This
location was on land owned by Plant.
o It has been reported that Page and Plant will headline the 1995
Knebworth festival in Hertfordshire, England.
o The meaning of the term "No Quarter" in relation to the album, is
most likely not a shot at John Paul Jones using the title of his
signature song. The meaning is probably close to that of the
term when used in a military sense, that the attacker will not
spare any of the enemy, even if they surrender. This phrase was
used by officer prior to 1700, to both psych up the troop and to
hopefully frighten the enemy into an easy rout, just before the
rival armies engaged, thereby making their intentions known to
the opposing side. Thus, in the Page and Plant sense it could
mean that no effort has been spared, no compromises made, nothing
left to chance in the hope of fully realising the potential of the
o The phenomenal Michael Lee, who before "No Quarter" was a member
of Robert Plant's band also worked with the English band Little
Angels beforehand, featuring on their cd "Don't Prey For Me", a
cd which features a note of thanks to Plant in the liner notes.
Lee is listed as being responsible for drums, percussion and ghost
vibroslap. The cd was released in 1989.
o The meaning of "Yallah", the title of which was changed to "The
Truth Explodes" on the "No Quarter" video is from arabic. The
root of it is "ya-allah", a rough translation of which is "Oh God"
although not in the commonly used way it is in English, to
express one's surprise or amazement. In Arabic the meaning can
vary from "Let's go!" to "Get a hike!" depending on the context.
Interestingly, "Yahweh" is Hebrew for "God".
o Although Atlantic claimed Page and Plant were present at the New
York world premiere screening of "Unledded" but did not think it
was worth making their presence known, a comment by Page at the
Paris Press Conference seemed to indicate that the Paris screening
of "Unledded" was the first time thay had seen it since the actual
taping, which makes Atlantic's claim they were present in New York
sound rather suspicious.
o "Unledded" generated MTV's highest ratings for the "Unplugged"
series, with a rating of 2.4, as opposed to the previous best, 2.3
set in 1992 by Eric Clapton.
o Najma Akhtar, who sings with Plant on "The Battle Of Evermore" is
of Indian nationality, and judging from her name, which is Muslim,
she is most likely from northern India. She has also recorded a
solo album called "Qareeb", which is available on Shanachie
Records, SH64009. While the album was recorded in London, the
content is non-Western, with Najma singing love songs called
ghazals in Urdu, backed by a mix of traditional Indian instruments
and Western ones.
o The phrase "Wah Wah" is an expression of pity and grief, usually
used after hearing some bad news.
o The sparse arrangement of "Nobody's Fault But Mine" was not a
new one, it returns the song, originally by Blind Willie Johnson,
to its white country blues roots. Note that white country blues
as a label is not related to the racial identity of the artist,
but is a reference to the religious or spiritual theme of the
o The "Unledded" special was first broadcast on October 12, 1994,
the one hundred and nineteenth anniversary of the birth of
Aleister Crowley. Rumour had it that Jimmy had stipulated that
this would be the date of broadcast.
o During "Yallah", or "The Truth Explodes" as it had been re-titled,
while Jimmy is manipulating the echoplex unit, one of the crowd
shots shows someone holding up a portable video camera in the
lower left hand area of the screen.
o Rumour has it that the black dog shown several times in "Unledded"
is the black dog that was present at the sessions for the fourth
album and had the song named after it. However, this is fairly
unlikely as that would make it a very old dog. Another rumour was
that it was Plant's dog Strider, although this is not plausible as
it is the wrong breed.
o Several times during the performance, such as in "Gallows Pole",
Plant is seen to be staring down in front of him. The likelihood
of him using a monitor is enhanced by his previous problems
remembering all sorts of lyrics, such as at the Atlantic 40th
Anniversary show and at Live Aid.
o On the topic of tuning and tonality, the original version of "No
Quarter" was Aeolian/Dorian while the new version introduces some
Locrain elements. The locrian mode is easily the most dissonant
of modes, and given Page's frequent use of dissonance in the past
and its place in Middle-Eastern music it seems apprpriate. The
clash in the new version of "No Quarter" is between Plant's vocals
which represent the original tonality, and between the chords that
Page plays, two of them, before he switches back to a standard
o International Creative Management was the booking agency handling
the Page & Plant tour.
o The "No Quarter" album cover features a picture of Page and Plant
which looks very much like it was taken at the Slate Quarry in
Wales where "Nobody's Fault But Mine" and "When The Levee Breaks"
were recorded for "Unledded". The carved wooden door that has
been used extensively, such as on the back of the album and on the
"Gallows Pole" single, is most likely African in origin. The
hands that are shown in the picture in the middle of the cd
booklet are those of an African woman, with the increasing
complexity of the spirals on her fingers as they move closer to
her hands signifying the development of femininity. The spirals'
increasing detail means they are moving closer to the wrist
o Interestingly, the font used in the "No Quarter" liner notes is
based on the handwriting of Leonardo da Vinci, such as on his
noted sketches of a man spreadeagled and drawn with unnerring
anatomical accuracy. The same font is used in the liner notes
for Van Halen's "Balance".
o The release of "No Quarter" coincides with the twenty third
anniversary of the release of the untitled fourth album on the
eighth of November 1971.
o The liner notes for "No Quarter" included the dedication,
"Credit must be given to Bron-Y-Aur, a small derelict cottage
in South Snowdonia for painting a somewhat forgotten picture
of true completeness which acted as an incentive to some of
the musical statements. August 1994"
Which is somewhat reminiscent of the dedication on "Led Zeppelin
"Credit must be given to Bron-Y-Aur, a small derelict cottage
in South Snowdonia for painting a somewhat forgotten picture
of true completeness which acted as an incentive to some of
these musical statements - August 1970"
o The end of "Kashmir" where Plant starts wailing "Feel, feel, feel"
is a daring improvisation.
o The versions of "Wonderful One" on the video and the album are
clearly different, the differences ranging from Plant singing them
differently to Page's guitar sounding different.
o A rumour circulating before the Page & Plant tour kicked off was
that several dates were uncertain due to the availability of some
venues due to problems with the American hockey season. This of
course, proved to be unfounded.
o Some translations of what is being sung during "Wah Wah". In
between "wah wah"'s the "leh he heBabi" means "no baby" and the
"lah tin Sani" means "don't forget me". He also sings other words
such as "the thought of your hands" or eyes. The interesting
thing about "Wah Wah" is although the title means "I'm sad", that
isn't necessarily what the song is about.
o The arabic script at the end of the video has been translated as,
"The things we played or the songs they stay the same way".
o Despite their togetherness during the "Unledded" promotional tour,
_NME_ spotted Page and Plant at one of The Black Crowes Albert
Hall gigs, in two separate adjoining boxes.
o The footage for the song "No Quarter" was shot in Dolgoth, Wales,
across the road from Plant's farm. The forest is so dense that it
managed to conceal the fact that it was raining quite heavily at
o While in Morocco Jimmy and Robert were travelling up a mountain by
bus when Plant noticed a kid walking along with a Led Zeppelin
shirt, in literally, the middle of nowhere. Plant promptly jumped
off the bus to say hi.
o According to "Unplugged" producer Alex Coletti, Page and Plant and
the band recorded a version of "Hot Dog" while they were in Wales.
o Plant personally selected Aubrey Powell to work on the project,
based on their previous work together.
o According to Page, they tried out "Bron-Y-Aur Stomp" with the idea
of using it, but it just didn't seem to work.
This section is not intended to try and cover the entire area of
Aleister Crowley and all his work. It is merely intended to give a
brief overview and point those interested to further readings. The
subject of Crowley seems to recur with a rather predictable sort of
regularity thanks to Page's interest in him and his work. There are
many myths and rumours told about Crowley, most of which are most
likely false, as this is a very controversial man, even now, nearly
half a century after his death.
o Aleister Crowley was born in 1875 and died in 1947.
o A few general points.
- Crowley was not a satanist, his obsession with the occult does
not necessarily make him a devil worhsipper, he wasn't.
- He did use drugs, and rather a lot of them. A common claim is
that he died hoplessly addicted to heroin. Half true. In the
early part of the century the prescribed medicine for chronic
asthma, which Crowley had, was, believe it or not, heroin. He
went on to experiment with it, observing its effects on his
mind, and when he died he was still using it. He used a lot
of other dugs too, notably expounded upon on in his essay
"The Psychology Of Hashish".
- Crowley was interested in tantric sex, one of his primary
- Crowley had a notorious sense of humour, and revelled in the
public disdain for him, deliberately cultivaing it to some
extent. His use of the "Beast 666" tag is one example of this.
- Some of Crowley's other interests include mountaineering and
o Some references for further reading on Crowley and his work.
- Crowley, Aleister, _The_Confessions_Of_Aleister_Crowley,_An_
Crowley's autobiography, an autohagiography is the biography
of a saint, which contains lots of interesting details, but,
ends a long time before his death and is thus somewhat
- Crowley, Aleister, _Magick_In_Theory_And_Practice_.
- Crowley, Aleister, _Equinox_, Volumes I & II.
- Crowley, Aleister, _The_Diary_Of_A_Drug_Fiend_, 1922.
- Crowley, Aleister, _Songs_Of_The_Spirit_, 1898.
- Crowley, Aleister, _The_Book_Of_Thoth_.
Crowley's interpretation of Eqyptian tarot.
- Camell, Charles Richard, _Aleister_Crowley,_The_Man,_The_Mage,
- Crowley, Aleister. _The_Complete_Astrological_Writings_, Gerald
Duckworth & Co. Ltd., London, 1974.
This contains Crowley's "Treatise on Astrology: Liber 536",
and two hard to find essays, "Batrachophrenoboocosmomachia",
and, "How Horoscopes Are Faked".
- Maugham, W. Somserset, _The_Magician_, 1908.
This is based pretty much around the life of Crowley, and
gives some idea of his obsession with the occult and his
- Suster, Gerald, _The_Legacy_Of_The_Beast:_The_Life,_Work_ And_
_Influence_Of_Aleister_Crowley_, W.H. Allen 7 Co., London, 1988.
This is a good introduction to Crowley and his work, and is
reasonably objective, and covers most of the major topics he
was interested in and worked on. A few excerpts are included
in this section.
o A small warning though, Crowley's writings are not an easy read
for novices, or those with just a casual interest in the man. A
lot of his material was written specifically for initiates into
the Hermetic Order Of The Golden Gawn, and as such are not meant
to be understood by outsiders. For those with little or no prior
knowledge of the man the best place to start is probably one of
the numerous biographies or books about him and his work.
o Some of the stigma surrounding backmasking in popular music may
in fact come from the whole aura of occultist sin that seems to
surround Crowley in the eyes of many. The predilection to listen
to one's record collection backwards seems most prevalent amongst
christians and may stem from something Crowley wrote, that if a
man wants to practice magick he has to "train himself to think
backwards by external means, as set forth here following,
a) let him learn to write backwards
b) let him learn to walk backwards
c) let him constantly watch, if convenient, films and listen
to records reversed..."
This quote comes from page 417 of Crowley's "Magick In Theory And
o A cd exists called "The Great Beast Speaks" which apparently
features speeches by Aleister Crowley.
o There is a Zeppelin bootleg entitled "From Boleskine To The
o An example of the sort of misinformation surrounding Crowley is
the persistent claim that in the crypt of Boleskine House a
child was sacrificed. Other juicy rumours have it that orgies,
sacrifices, drug taking and other nefarious actitivites all took
place regularly at Boleskine.
o Jimmy Page is known to have sought out rare Crowley manuscripts
and obtained them for his collection. He has been quoted as once
saying that he should have gone to university and done a degree in
theology because he's studied it so much.
o The quote on the runoff matrix of original pressingsof "Led
Zeppelin III" is frequently misinterpreted and misquoted. Here is
an extract from the book by Suster listed in this section which
provides some further details.
"The central doctrines of 'The Book Of The Law' can be stated
simply. First and foremost is the commandment: 'Do what thou
wilt shall be the whole of the Law' - also reiterated as
'thou hast no right but to do thy will'. This does _not_
mean 'Do what you want'. It means that within every man and
every woman there is a True Will- 'The Book Of The Law'
states that 'Every man and every woman is a star' and that
the the only serious business of life is to discover our True
Will and to do it. As the Ancient Greeks put it: Know
thyself; then Be Thyself. 'The word of sin is restriction'
means that everything which inhibits the True Will is evil.
'Love is the law, Love under will' asserts that the
nature of the Law is Love but that this love must be directed
by the True Will. As Crowley states in his Old Comment:
'Love under will - no casual pagan love; nor love under fear,
as the Christians do. But love magically directed, and used
as a spiritual formula.' p. 126.
o A further extract from Suster is enlightening and gives an insight
into what Crowley thought he was doing and how he viewed people
that judged his work. The first paragraph is by Suster, the rest
"Small wonder that Crowley, hailed in 'The Book Of The Law'
as Ankh-f-n-khonsu, priest of the Princes, finally wrote
'The Comment' which is both a challenge to those who have
sufficient courage, and a prohibition upon long, boring
commentaries on commentaries (the fate of most sacred texts)
- and on squabbles, quibbles, and persecution among those
called Thelemites, whose desire is to do their Wills in the
Aeon into which this planet has entered during its spin
through the agony of evolving human consciousness.
Do what thou wilt shall be the whole of the law.
The study of this Book is forbidden. It is wise to
destroy this copy after the first reading.
Whosoever disregards this does so at his own risk and
These are most dire.
Those who discuss the contents of this Book are to be
shunned by all, as centres of pestilence.
All questions of the Law are to be decided only by appeal
to my writings, each for himself.
There is no law beyond Do what thou wilt.
Love is the law, love under will.
The priest of Princes.
Ankh-f-n-khonsu." p. 133-134.
o An interesting anecdote has it that Crowley, whose actitivies
during World War II are the subject of much speculation, gave the
English war department the "V" for victory gesture, as it is the
occult counter to the Swastika.
Locating Zeppelin interviews, or more recent ones with Page,
Plant and Jones can be a time consuimg business. Here then is a list
of some of the many interviews they have done over the years.
o _Circus_, in 1975 had an interview with Jimmy done by Mick
o _Rolling_Stone_, also in 1975, featured one of the best known of
the Zeppelin interviews, with Cameron Crowe interviewing Page and
o _Guitar_World_, 1990, interview with Page.
o _Guitarist_, the French version features and interview with Jimmy
in the November 1994 issue, as well as a cover photo. Robert is
On Tuesday, December 7, 1993, Michael Ayoob posted the results
to a poll he had conducted coinciding with the thirteenth anniversary
of the breakup of the band. For his poll, Michael posed the question
"What would have happened to the band had Bonham not died?" The
results are as follows, and illustrate an interesting variety of
1) New Heavy Album 22% Of The Vote
2) Together, But Fairly Inactive 18%
3) Quit Anyway 16%
4) Popularity Loss 15%
5) Page Overdoses 13%
6) Softer Sound 9%
7) Plant Quits 4%
8) None Of The Above 3%
Interestingly, option five is what Richard Cole thought had
happened when he had heard one of the band had died, based on his
opinion of the amount of drugs Page was doing and his fragile health.
This list of rather amusing anagrams was posted to the list some
time ago by Maurice Maes with additions by others.
Black Mountain Side - "I ask Blunt, demoniac!" (Plant to Page on
Communication Breakdown - Demoniac Bowman Rock Unit (i.e. Led
- Demoniac Wombat Rock in U.N.
What Is and What Should Never Be - When he had but satan's evil
The Lemon Song - The omen's long.
Bring It On Home - Hir'n' big root men
- Bong time, Rhino
Immigrant Song - I'm in Grant's mog
Since I've Been Loving You - Evil being evinces on you.
- Vince, you evil nose being!
Gallows Pole - Allow Gospel (?)
Tangerine - Great Nine (Zep destined to end after nine great albums)
Black Dog - Black God
Rock And Roll - An'l rock lord
Stairway To Heaven - Yow! Satan via Ether
Misty Mountain Hop - Inapt ominous myth
Four Sticks - Rock fits us - Rock sift us - For it sucks
The Song Remains The Same - I'm here: Satan's theme song
The Rain Song - Another sign - Gather on sin - Hit son, Anger!
D'yer Mak'er - Dyke Ream'r
The Ocean - Neat echo - At once: He. (about the phone that rings in
The Rover - Oh, revert!
Trampled Under Foot - Led: demon art up front
Kashmir - His Mark (Whose do you think?)
Down By The Seaside - Bye, death's side won - Death by wine doses
Achilles Last Stand - As Satanchild Tells
- Satan's child: all set!
- Stella, Satan's child
Nobody's Fault But Mine - Built out by Demon's Fan
- O! fun stubby demon tail!
Tea For One - Near To Foe
In The Evening - He in gin event - The nine given (the nine albums)
South Bound Saurez - As due, Bonzo hurt us
Fool In The Rain - Hail To Inferno
Carouselambra - A lamb or a curse
I'm Gonna Crawl - A malign crown.
Ozone Baby - A bye, Bonzo!
Darlene - Led near - real end. (They were at that time)
Bonzo's Montreux - Sex! Not rum, bonzo!
Custard Pie - Dustie crap
Royal Orleans - Eor (donkey noise) or anally
Travelling Riverside Blues - Drugs aren't evil, I.V. beer still
- evil drug blisters aren't evil
In My Time Of Dying & Bonzo's Montreux - Zoso demon! Fit rox in my
bum, entity, ne!
The debate over whether "Stairway To Heaven" contains any
masked messages from the Devil is rather a heated one. In order to
put this debate into perspective here are the full backwards lyrics
to "Stairway To Heaven", as transcribed by listmember Timothy
Lindsey, and posted to the list in December, 1993.
"Stairway to Heaven" - Backwards Version
Oh ask me of the wars of Beelzebub
Oh, I fear it, horrible demon
Ah, shall I go along all right?
I'll make it mine, I'll reach ya
Oh demon, hey do ya feel me?
Oh an eternity with the demon
Ah, it's not over when you die
Ah, the Ultimate Opponent!
Ah, this time there is no winnin'
My holy wand will fail me
Ah, Oh, they won't get me cause I live in church now
Hey look at that football player he attack a lady
When I hear the serpent holler
And as the shaky wall fall falls down ain't much to help
Oh, don't you give me that
Oh, here's to my sweet Satan
There was a little child who wore a great big laugh with
Did you hear me, Lord? I first give to Satan
And, in a little school I shout, in the middle of a show,
"First Power is Satan!"
Wo wo wo
There was cat burglar, bit off my leg
I lay in true struggle, torn up
Another year I dont feel the same
The heater broke down in flame
A long, long crawl lead me to a better place to rest
Ah, I hear it too, "There is no escape, too"
But even God fears the ultimate plan
He hears to soon the the calling to lie down, go down to sleep
The Cosmic TV's gone bad, I lose the Light of any time to leave
Gonna do, I'm Going to do
Favor, Oh Power of all on top mountain hidden under a moment
Look up at me, at me, and thee
After my only wish replenished is all used up, I saw it
Give me an answer, all I see that we moved
Dont thank me, Easter Woman, who although followed me
What's that? I see you - dying
There was an eager picnic towards another demon-loft
Don't you hear me asking?