I am often asked what artists and songs inspired me to write songs and pick up the guitar. This is the fifth in the series of posts and features How Many More Times by Led Zeppelin live in Denmarks Radio (17 March 1969)
A Monday morning is perfect to feature one of my most influential bands, Led Zeppelin Official. I was born on the same date as Jimmy Page, albeit 14 years before and he is still one of my favourite guitar players, not for his accuracy (or lack of), tone or licks, but for his ability to orchestrate the instrument.
I was given my first introduction through an older lad (I would love to know who this is - I remember him telling me at a lunch break when at Scarisbrick Hall School) who gave me his vinyl copy of Led Zeppelin III (which I still have) saying that he didn't like it...
As I mentioned in an earlier edition, when I started playing I learned every note of the first five Zep albums by recording the vinyl onto reel to reel and slowing the speed from 7.5 ips (inches per second - tape speed) to 3.75 ips which of course dropped the tuning by an octave and slowed it down so I could work it out. Of course some of it was quite wrong as I didn't understand that open tuning existed (remember this is 1974).
I know they started by essentially nicking blues standards and branding them as their own; but what's new, Elvis and The Stones had been doing it for years. Jimmy took credit for production which was really a combination of Glyn Johns and his brother Andy, but I don't care. They gave me the horn and gave the world some of the finest rock music ever produced...
The unsung hero of this band is of course John Paul Jones Official, who is (in my opinion) by far the best musician out of the lot of them. As my wife Suzy will testify, a fearful bass player.
The band (as if you didn't know)
The video attached is from the first tour, prior to the recording of Led Zeppelin I (and you can hear the songs in development) that they stepped into following the split of The Yardbirds.
Remember this was the late 60's - Lennon and McCartney had difficulty saying 'Turn You On' in 'A Day In The Life' and here Plant is fake orgasming in this track on TV - ace...
I was going to play Communication Breakdown (really a punk tune) which is also a part of this YouTube series of videos, but I thought this was more representative of the band at this time; listen to them all smile emoticon
Finally, we were talking in detail about all things 'Led' in our recent podcast with the Led-addict Claude Robillard. Subscribe on iTunes and listen at your leisure.
[EDITOR'S NOTE: In January 2016, we recorded a podcast talking in detail about this track and all the others in the series. Take a listen!]
Blues at the Bay, 718 Yarm Road, Eaglescliffe TS16 0JE Stockton-on-tees, UK
Saltburn Blues Club, Markse Mill Lane, Saltburn-by-the-Sea, TS12 1QA, UK