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STAIRWAY TO HEAVEN AT 52 – TBL ANNIVERSARY SPECIAL/ SIMPLY LED BACK TO BELFAST 22 YEARS GONE/LZ NEWS/ZEP LA FORUM 1977 BOOTLEG LP SET DUE/ DL DIARY BLOG UPDATE

9 March 2023 1,123 views 3 Comments

STAIRWAY TO HEAVEN AT 52 –  TBL  52nd ANNIVERSARY SPECIAL:

52 years ago this month on March 5 1971 Jimmy Page strapped on a newly acquired Gibson double neck guitar and played the first chords of a new lengthy composition in front of an audience for the first time.

The occasion was Led Zeppelin’s opening date on their UK tour at the Ulster Hall Belfast.

The song was Stairway To Heaven…

So here’s a celebration of this 52nd anniversary of a special song.

TBL Archive Special Part 1:

Belfast and Stairway To Heaven -it was 52 years ago…

March 5 marked the 52nd anniversary of the milestone Led Zeppelin performance at the Ulster Hall Belfast

Here’s a review from TBL 15 of the then newly surfaced Belfast March 5th 1971 tape:

March 5th tape ensures this historic night will never be forgotten

Led Zeppelin on stage at the Ulster Hall Belfast, March 5th 1971. Photo G. Irwin.

Led Zeppelin’s decision to visit Belfast as part of their spring 1971 UK tour was heralded as a very brave move back in 1971. Few rock artists included it on their intinery due to the escalating political situation and threat of rioting. Earlier in the year T.Rex had pulled out of a planned appearance in Belfast. The Zeppelin concert itself was played out to the background of far off Friday night disturbances in the troubled parts of the city.

Until recently the only recorded remnant of that Irish visit was their March 6th date at Dublin’s Boxing Stadium. Now in a perfect piece of timing, a very rare recording has emerged of the Belfast Ulster Hall show. It was captured by one Norman Hanna – 20 years old at the time. He smuggled-in a newly purchased Phillips cassette recorder and taped the show some two thirds of the way back with the cassette machine positioned on the floor.

Unsurprisingly this newly discovered tape has been negotiated into the hands of the ever enterprising Japanese label Empress Valley and will probably have emerged by the time you are reading this as a deluxe four CD set containing the Belfast and Dublin shows.

The set will include a fourteen page booklet with photos and press cuttings from their Irish shows. This includes reproduction extracts from the review of the show featured in the Northern Ireland newspaper City Week.

Of the fifteen UK dates that comprised the Spring ’71 Back to the clubs tour only the aforementioned Dublin show and the officially released April 1 BBC In Concert recordings have emerged until now. This Belfast recording is therefore most welcome.

The tape recording quality is fair to good for the time – a little distorted and with occasional interference but mostly very listenable.

The most striking aspect of hearing it is the sheer force and determination in their playing. This opening night of their ’71 campaign was their first gig in over five months -the longest lay off so far in their career. It followed an eight week period of intensive recording sessions for their fourth album conducted at Island Studios and on location at Headley Grange.

It’s evident they were itching to air the newly recorded material in a live setting. Before those historic premieres we hear them storm through the then customary Immigrant Song/Heartbreaker opening.

Witnessing this in the Ulster Hall must have been extraordinary. Plant extends the vocal shrieks and the Page solo is just completely out there. Off mic you can occasionally hear the excited babble of Irish accents from the crowd. Then it’s a relaxed run through of Since I’ve Been Loving You. Plant on absolute peak form attaining the high pitched notes with ease. Black Dog is the first of the new songs employing the opening riff of Out On The Tiles. It’s back to the greatest hits for a no-nonsense, compact, Dazed And Confused.

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More history making follows: Stairway To Heaven live performance number one. A straight rendering slightly tentative with Page playing the unfamiliar, but soon to become more than familiar, tune on the newly acquired Gibson double neck guitar. It suffers slightly here due to cuts and a high pitched sound from the original recording.

 

Evidence that the softer side of their playing as deployed on Zep 3 would still be present on their forthcoming album was duly demonstrated by the performance of the new Page/ Plant composition Going To California.

The more familiar Zep 2 standards What Is And What Should Never Be and a powerful Moby Dick take us into the finale – the now expected Whole Lotta Love medley including Let That Boy Boogie, Honey Bee and The Lemon Song.

The encores are just plain shattering. A thrashing Communication Breakdown followed by the debut live performance of Rock And Roll – then known as It’s Been A Long Time. A final welcomed bonus brings this historic recording to an end. There’s quite a delay before they get around to performing and it’s evident they are trying to work out what to play. They opt for a rarely played post 1970 version of Bring It On Home performed in a unique delivery sans vocals and harp in the final section.

“If everybody was like this to each other every day there would be no problems,” Plant can be heard to inform the audience just before the second encore. A nostalgic and relevant comment of the times.

Which is exactly what this Belfast discovery represents. It’s a true document of the band at a crucial moment.

Flushed with the massive success of the past, fresh from a welcomed lay off and enthused by the studio sessions that provided yet more new on stage impetus, this is prime 1971 Led Zeppelin.

In short, this tape is a brilliant reminder of how good they were at that stage of their career. Freeze-framing a period when they were receiving deserved mass popularity and acclaim at a time when they were also producing some of their most powerful and vital work.

Incredibly it all happened 30 years ago. The Belfast people haven’t forgotten. Thankfully, the emergence of this tape will make sure they never do.

Remembering Led Zeppelin at  the Ulster Hall 1971: Recalled by those that were there…

“The concert was absolutely unbelievable, I was 15 years old and so close to my idols. I was in the seats behind the stage. It is just a moment of great posterity for me in terms of the age I was and seeing the band I loved. I also saw Zeppelin at Earl’s Court but it could never match the intimacy of that night in the Ulster Hall.” Noel Thompson, now a BBC Newsnight reporter.

“It was brilliant. In those days nobody played Belfast unless they were Irish like Taste or Thin Lizzy. To see Led Zeppelin was so enjoyable. It put Belfast-on the map. Stairway To Heaven did not stand out on the night, but I later saw them perform it to 100,000 fans at Knebworth. A lot different to the 1,500 who saw it in 1971.” Mervyn Jones, now a Belfast Councillor.

“When I heard Stairway performed that night I knew it was something special. We were in the front row of the balcony. Whenever I hear that song the memories of that night in Belfast come flooding back to me.” Trevor Haslett, Killinchy

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The way we were…March 1971

Here are some of the events that were happening 51 years ago as Led Zeppelin toured arund the UK….

LED ZEPPELIN 3 WAS STILL IN THE UK TOP 30 ALBUM CHART.

GEORGE HARRISON WAS AT NUMBER ONE ON BOTH THE SINGLES AND ALBUM CHARTS WITH MY SWEET LORD AND ALL THINGS MUST PASS

THE ROLLING STONES KICKED OFF WHAT MANY CONSIDERED WOULD BE THEIR FINAL UK TOUR AT BRISTOL’S COLSTON HALL

IRON BUTTERFLY, THE BAND ZEPPELIN SUPPORTED ON THEIR FIRST US TOUR, ANNOUNCED THEY WERE DISBANDING

THE UK WAS EXPERIENCING ITS FIRST MONTH OF DECIMILISATION AND STILL IN THE THROES OF A GENERAL POSTAL STRIKE

NEWLY RELEASED ALBUMS INCLUDED NICK DRAKE’S BRYTER LATER, THE FACES’ LONG PLAYER AND SOFT MACHINE FOUR. NEW SINGLES JUST OUT INCLUDED JOHN LENNON’S POWER TO THE PEOPLE, DEEP PURPLE WITH STRANGE KINDA WOMAN AND BOB DYLAN’S IF NOT FOR YOU

CHOICE GIGS OF THE MONTH INCLUDED CURVED AIR AND GENESIS AT THE UNIVERSITY OF ESSEX FOR 62 NEW PENCE AND HAWKWIND AND THE PINK FARIES AT THE UNIVERSITY COLLEGE LONDON.

ON TV ATOMIC ROOSTER AND LEON RUSSELL WERE GUESTS ON BBC2’S DISCO 2 WHILE THE ANDY WILLIAMS SHOW INCLUDED RAY CHARLES, ELTON JOHN AND CASS ELLIOT

NEW FILMS AT THE CINEMA INCLUDED LOVE STORY STARRING RYAN O’NEAL AND ALI MACGRAW AND BARBARA STREISAND IN THE OWL AND THE PUSSYCAT.

IN FOOTBALL, FOLLOWING THEIR GIANT KILLING FIFTH ROUND 3-2 VICTORY OVER LEEDS IN THE FA CUP, COLCHESTER WERE BEATEN 5-0 BY EVERTON IN THE SIXTH ROUND. IN THE SAME ROUND ARSENAL DEFEATED LEICESTER 1-0 IN A REPLAY ON THEIR WAY TO SECURING THEIR CUP AND LEAGUE DOUBLE.

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STAIRWAY TO HEAVEN AT 52

Back in 2011 I conducted a poll amongst TBL readers to determine the favourite live version version of Stairway To Heaven…here’s the results:

STAIRWAY TO HEAVEN: THE TBL 40th ANNIVERSARY POLL:

Today we celebrate what is arguably their greatest song by announcing the results of the TBL Stairway To Heaven 40th Anniversary Poll

And the winner is….

Many thanks for the great response to the Stairway To Heaven At 40 Poll.

We can reveal that the fans choice for the greatest version live version of their greatest song is……..

Earls Court May 25th, 1975 – the DVD version

This is the version that was produced by Jimmy Page and can be seen and heard on the 2003 official Led Zeppelin DVD

In second place…

Madison Square Garden July, 1973 – the Song Remains The Same soundtrack version

Fans have displayed great loyalty for the official original live version as produced by Jimmy Page for The Song Remains The Same soundtrack album.

In third place…

Knebworth August 4th, 1979

More lasting affection for one of the most celebrated of Zep appearances.

In fourth place…

Long Beach June 27th 1972 – as produced by Jimmy Page for the How The West Was Won live album released in 2003.

In fifth place…

BBC Paris Theatre In Concert April 1st 1971 – officially released on the BBC Sessions album in 1997

Here is the complete Top 20 listing of the favourite live versions of Stairway To Heaven as voted by readers of the TBL website

1: Stairway To Heaven – Earls Court May 1975 DVD version

2: Stairway To Heaven – Madison Square Garden July 1973 –

From The Song Remains The Same soundtrack album

3: Stairway To Heaven – Knebworth August 4th 1979

4: Stairway To Heaven – Long Beach June 27th 1972 as released officially on

How The West Was Won

5: Stairway To Heaven – BBC In Concert April 1st, 1971 – as released officially on the BBC Sessions set in 1997.

6: Stairway To Heaven – Earls Court May 24th, 1975

7: Stairway To Heaven – 02 Arena December 10th 2007

8: Stairway To Heaven – Berkeley September 14th 1971 – from the Going To California bootleg.

9: Stairway To Heaven – LA Forum June 23rd 1977 – from the For BadgeHolders Only bootleg

10: Stairway To Heaven – Berlin July 7th 1980

11: Stairway To Heaven – Knebworth August 11th 1979

12: Stairway To Heaven –Madison Square Garden February 12th 1975

13: Stairway To Heaven – Vienna March 16th 1973

14: Stairway To Heaven – Jimmy Page ARMS Royal Albert Hall September 1983

15: Sairway To Heaven – Seattle Kingdome July 17th 1977

16: Stairway To Heaven – Belfast Ulster Hall March 5th 1971

17: Stairway To Heaven – LA Forum June 3rd 1973 from the Three Days After bootleg

18: Stairway To Heaven – LA Forum June 21st 1977 from the Listen To This Eddie bootleg

19: Stairway To Heaven – Zurich June 29th 1980

20: Stairway To Heaven – Budokan Japan, September 23rd 1971

And here is the winning choice: Stairway To Heaven as performed by Led Zeppelin at Earls Court – May 25th 1975

I recommend you take 10 minutes and 27 seconds of your time to marvel in the glory of this astonishing performance on YouTube:

View it at:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CxfniXCwrJA

Clock the genius at:

00.36: The camera pans on to Jonesy as he plays the plaintive keyboard opening.

At 3 minutes 18 – and Robert’s ‘’Baby baby’’ pleading.

At 4. 06 – Robert’s spontaneous ‘’Priceless’’ after the ‘’Do you remember laughter’’ line.

4.30 – Bonzo’s timely entry.

5.23 – the line ‘’You head is humming and it won’t go –in case you don’t know’’ accented by Bozo’s bass drum.

5.31 – Robert’s moving ‘’Dear PEOPLE can you hear the wind blow and did you know – OUR stairway lies on the whispering wind’.

5.48 – the first crescendo as Jimmy hoists the Gibson double neck high

and then on into what must be one of the finest pieces of live performance in their history.

6.14 – as Plant clusters around Jimmy as he switches necks for the scintillating solo.

7.22 – as the pictures crossfades to Robert banging the tambourine totally lost in the world of Led Zeppelin.

7.51 through to 8.59 as Page delivers a sublimely lyrical solo that again has Plant lost in the music and John Bonham…dear John, behind it all totally on the groove – this sequence brings a lump to my throat every time.

9.00 – the final glorious run in.

9.38 ‘’Never roll people …please don’t make me roll’’.

9.49 – the camera captures Jonesy in that Spanish jacket…

10.02 –   Robert’s sings the final line we all know so well and it echoes across the eerie wastes of Earls Court…and into eternity…

Led Zeppelin – Stairway to To Heaven  Earls Court

…And that is the greatest live performance  of a song that has been now been enthralling us for 40 years – as voted by TBL web readers.

Postscript 2022:

Stairway To Heaven  – still the pure essence of Led Zeppelin

Long may it reign…

Dave Lewis –  March 6, 2023


TBL Archive 2:

SIMPLEY LED BACK TO BELFAST – 22 YEARS GONE:

This TBL Archive feature looks back to the events that took place on the 30th anniversary of that first airing of Stairway To Heaven.

22 years ago popular tribute band Simply Led came up with a very clever idea – they decided to book the Ulster Hall in Belfast to perform a special anniversary concert 30 years ago to the very day Led Zeppelin had staged that opening night of their UK tour when Stairway To Heaven was first played – and in the very hall that first echoed to the sounds of what would become such an iconic composition.

I was invited to go over to cover the event for TBL – it was a fantastic success. There was a genuine sense of history in being in the vicinity where Led Zeppelin had performed all those years ago. Simply Led played superbly and the people of the city were incredibly friendly and receptive. The comment from one fan afterwards  ‘’Thanks for bringing Led Zeppelin’s music back to Belfast’’ said it all.

There’s always a poignancy about reflecting on this occasion as sadly, Simply Led’s drummer Paul Kelvie passed away in 2006 and last year Andy Adams also sadly passed away.

So this piece is dedicated to the much missed Paul who 22 years ago along with Eddie Edwards, Keith Lambert and Phil Eldridge reunited the Led Zeppelin fans of Belfast in fitting style –all in the very place where Stairway To Heaven was first performed live. It was a unique occasion and I feel so privileged to have been in attendance…and this is also dedicated to the late equally much missed Andy Adams…

Remembering Led Zeppelin at the Ulster Hall

Belfast Re-unites Under Simply Led

March 5th 2001: Another cold Monday. Another journey. Today I’m bound for Belfast to celebrate a very special Zeppelin related anniversary. For 30 years ago on this very day Led Zeppelin took a Trident Hovercraft across the Irish sea to perform what would be their only concerts in the Emerald Isle. On the evening of Friday March 5TH 1971 they performed their opening show of the so called “Back to the clubs tour” at the Ulster Hall, Belfast. During their set that night they unveiled a new composition due to appear on their forthcoming fourth album. It was called Stairway To Heaven. Five million radio plays later…

 

30 years on the London-based tribute band Simply Led have hit upon a very novel and ambitious idea. Tonight they will perform a special anniversary tribute concert at the Ulster Hall – scene of that history making evening for Led Zeppelin back in 1971. Particularly ambitious when you consider this is only their second gig together.

Tribute bands of course are now an accepted part of the live gig scene. Any half renowned or much missed ex-mega group has anything up to half dozen would be copyists trouping up and down the pub circuit. Zeppelin are well served and I have immense respect for the likes of Fred Zeppelin, Whole Lotta Led, Boot Led Zeppelin  Let’s Zep who pack ’em in week in week out.

Simply Led’s Belfast plan, as I said, is massively ambitious, and they have done their homework. Singer Keith Lambert had come over a month back to launch the idea at a press conference which garnered much local coverage. Ticket sales have been brisk with already 600 sold. Bass and keyboardist Eddie Edwards assures me they have rehearsed intensely to do the real thing justice on the night. For my part it’s an opportunity to support Eddie, a long-term TBL associate (notably his Song Remains dissection in TBL 13) and spread the TBL word in a new territory. Despite the foot and mouth scare and the freezing weather, the flight out of Luton goes to plan and I meet up with the band around mid day. It’s great to see Andy Adams  (pictured here with Eddie) is in tow to lend them a hand and we walk down with Eddie to view the Ulster Hall in the afternoon. Morale is well high by this time – ticket sales have exceeded all expectations with a good chance of over 1,000 likely to witness the show.

 

As we walk around the balcony of the grand hall it begins to get exciting. There is a genuine sense of history about the place which is smaller than I expected and one of the most impressive venues I’ve ever seen. The vantage point over the stage up on the balcony is superb and you can’t help thinking how incredible it must have been to have viewed the original 1971 show from up here.

 

 

 

 

Eddie and his boys are understandably more than nervous as they arrive for the soundcheck and run down extremely competent versions of Heartbreaker and The Wanton Song amongst others. Paul let me get behind the drum kit and it was a big thrill to look out at the view John Bonham himself would have had on that night of 30 years ago.

Andy and I set up a display and stall in the foyer and head over to the pub for some pre -gig banter with the local Irish contingent already in. Everyone is really friendly and so keen to witness tonight’s celebration. Over at the Ulster Hall a couple of hundred fans are snaking their way around the hall eager for the doors to open.

 

 

There’s already  a great sense of occasion in the air. Original 1971 promoter Jim Aiken comes over to view the scene. “This is so special to be witnessing this again,” he tells me. “I can remember how excited we all were to get them here at the time. Nobody apart from Rory of course and a few others bothered to play Belfast. We still talk about the night Zeppelin came…”

 

 

 

 

It’s a wonderful cross section of fans who mill around the foyer. The elders who remember that momentous night 30 years ago, some bringing their off-spring’s to hear the songs that made such a troubled place at one with itself all those years back. There’s also lots of younger fans in attendance not even born when Zeppelin played their final gig in 1980. It makes for a very boisterous atmosphere and from the moment Simply Led take the stage and chug into the Immigrant Song/ Heartbreaker double whammy that was a staple part of the ’71 Zep set, well that sense of occasion is duly shared by band and audience alike.

I must say that in the weeks leading up to the gig 1 had my doubts that they could pull this off convincingly. It’s a pleasure to be proved so wrong. A combination of this being the right anniversary at the right time in exactly the right place makes the next couple of hours an absolute joy.

This is no mere tribute concert. This is an event and Simply Led rise to the occasion.

Highlights: Guitarist Phil Eldridge’s fluid Gibson work during Over The Hills, Keith Lambert’s pleasing ad-libs (“Acapulco gold”) and pre-’73 high vocal register, Paul Kelvie’s drumming superb throughout the show – as good a Bonham-inspired performance you will see this side of Michael Lee. Eddie Edwards strong feel for Jonesy’s musicianship evident in a compact No Quarter and an ambitious and suitably emotional Stairway. Finally a rousing Whole Lotta Love and Rock And Roll brings to a close a striking performance. Throughout it all I couldn’t help thinking that right here in this very hall exactly 30 years to the, moment Led Zeppelin were making history. I’m sure it was an emotion shared by many in attendance. The atmosphere as the crowd spill into the foyer is a joy to be part of. It’s more than evident that Simply Led have captured the spirit of Zeppelin very well indeed.

Back stage the band themselves are justifiably triumphant. “They’ll never believe this back home,” says Eddie. And I guess unless I’d witnessed it myself I’d probably have been of the same opinion.

As I mentioned earlier the fundamental reason this all came together was the location and timing. Coupled of course with Simply Led’s enthusiasm, musical prowess and sheer determination to pull it off.

Belfast was a very special gig for any band back in those troubled times of ’71. For a band of Led Zeppelin’s stature to come and perform here was a real event. On tonight’s turnout that gesture way back in ’71 has obviously not been forgotten by the people of Belfast.

The whole evening is wonderfully summed up by the excited comment of one of the elder generation of Zep fans here tonight.

“Thanks for bringing Led Zeppelin’s music back to Belfast,” he tells Andy on the way out. It’s an accolade echoing throughout this historic venue. And that’s some accolade for a tribute band playing only their second gig,

Simply Led have every reason to feel very proud of themselves because tonight in Belfast they paid homage to a very special concert in Led Zeppelin’s history.

And in doing so they reunited the people of Belfast just as the real thing had done on a similar cold Irish night 30 years ago. It was simply remarkable.

Dave Lewis, March 6 2001

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Simply Led  Belfast March 5th 2001 -Paul Kelvie, Eddie Edwards, Keith Lambert, Phil Eldridge

With thanks to Eddie Edwards and Keith Lambert

Dedicated to Paul Kelvie 1961 – 2006 and Andy Adams 1961 – 2021

Check out  Eddie Edward’s superb dissection of various Led Zeppelin releases at

http://www.thegardentapes.co.uk/

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LZ News:

Led Zeppelin News Update:

Here’s the latest round up from LZ News:

Upcoming events:

2023 – The second Band Of Joy album titled “Band Of Joy Volume 2” will be released, an expanded edition of the Honeydrippers album “The Honeydrippers: Volume One” will be released and the remastered and expanded thirtieth anniversary edition of “Coverdale–Page” may be released.
April 25 – Robert Plant and Alison Krauss will perform in Shreveport, Louisiana.
April 26 – Robert Plant and Alison Krauss will perform in The Woodlands, Texas.
April 28 – Robert Plant and Alison Krauss will perform at the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival in New Orleans, Louisiana.
April 29 – Robert Plant and Alison Krauss will perform in Pelham, Alabama.
April 30 – Robert Plant and Alison Krauss will perform in Huntsville, Alabama.
May 2 – Robert Plant and Alison Krauss will perform in Louisville, Kentucky.
May 3 – Robert Plant and Alison Krauss will perform in Huber Heights, Ohio.
May 5 – Robert Plant and Alison Krauss will perform in Kansas City, Missouri.
May 9 – Robert Plant and Alison Krauss will perform in Asheville, North Carolina.
May 10 – Robert Plant and Alison Krauss will perform in Wilmington, North Carolina.
May 11/12 – Robert Plant and Alison Krauss will perform at the Echoland Music Festival in Live Oak, Florida.
May 13 – Robert Plant and Alison Krauss will perform in Chattanooga, Tennessee.
May 15 – Robert Plant and Alison Krauss will perform in Charlotte, North Carolina.
May 18 – Robert Plant and Alison Krauss will perform in Charlottesville, Virginia.
June 14 – Robert Plant and Alison Krauss will perform in Las Vegas, Nevada.
June 15 – Robert Plant and Alison Krauss will perform in Tucson, Arizona.
June 17 – Robert Plant and Alison Krauss will perform in Taos, New Mexico.
June 18 – Robert Plant and Alison Krauss will perform at the Telluride Bluegrass Festival in Telluride, Colorado.
June 20 – Robert Plant and Alison Krauss will perform in Bonner, Montana.
June 28 – Robert Plant and Alison Krauss will perform in Cuyahoga Falls, Ohio.
June 29 – Robert Plant and Alison Krauss will perform in Vienna, Virginia.
July 1 – Robert Plant and Alison Krauss will perform in Bethel, New York.
July 2 – Robert Plant and Alison Krauss will perform in Lenox, Massachusetts.
July 3 – Robert Plant and Alison Krauss will perform in Portland, Maine.
July 5 – Robert Plant and Alison Krauss will perform in Toronto, Ontario.

Many thanks to James Cook

For all the latest Zep and related news check out the Led Zeppelin news website at:

http://ledzepnews.com/

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A new Led Zeppelin LP bootleg release is due out in the next few weeks…
This 4LP set on the Iron Eagle label features their performance at the Inglewood Forum in LA on June 27 1977.
This was the sixth and final show of this legendary run of shows in LA in June 1977. The source will be the Mike Millard audience tape which has appeared on various CD releases. This was the final occasion Mike taped the band. The performance included a rare acoustic work out of Dancing Days –
It comes as a limited numbered edition available in three different colour vinyl pressings, More on this soon…

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DL Diary Blog Update:

Thursday March 2
On World Book Day here’s a fair few of the Led Zeppelin titles I’ve written or been involved with spanning the last 40 years.
I’ve included some of the foreign editions plus outtake and work in progress cover designs that were under consideration at the time…
It’s been a privilege and a pleasure…
Saturday March 4:
Saturday is platterday – reading Mark Blake’s excellent Us And Them the authorised story of Hipgnosis has inspired a look back at some of their famous works so on the player Pink Floyd Wish You Were Here and original pressing with the black outer covering – great Hipgnosis designed package – great Pink Floyd album…
Saturday March 4:
At the always excellent Empire Records in the fair city of St Albans earlier today where various 45 RPM records were purchased…
I was well pleased to find a copy of the The Beatles’ Baby It’s You EP taken from the 1995 Live at The BBC release – I’ve been looking out for this one – another one off the list..
Tuesday March 7:
It was 53 years ago today:
Loading up the excellent Led Zeppelin Feel All Right Live In Montreux a superbly packaged 4 CD set on the Eat a Peach label – as recorded 53 years ago on March 7 1970 at the Casino Montreux.
Update here:
March is here and with it, some rather cold snow and rainy weather.
Here’s state of play round up:

I have to say I am already missing the Tight But Loose mag and everything that went with it. The planning, the editing, the production, working with Mick on the layout and design, over seeing the printing, the distribution and reaction. A process I have been involved in for many a year.

Though there had not been an issue for a good while, I had a lot of stuff backlogged to use and had already sorted a cover mock up and a page plan for the next issue. The plan was to work on it around this period.

When I decided to call time on the TBL magazine last December it was done with much soul searching and was by no means an easy decision.

That all said, I do stand by that decision as circumstances have changed considerably here in the past three years. There is just not enough time to apply the necessary focus that is needed to produce and sustain an intensive 32 page workload.

There are fresh priorities now and helping out with our grandson Ollie is one of them and a total joy for Janet and I (we have him every Friday and other days when needed.)

It’s been a combination of factors that led to me retiring the TBL magazine. Nobody is getting any younger – I was 22 when I hand wrote the first issue in 1978 and here I am an old age pensioner at 66. With age comes health worries and there are ongoing issues here both physical and mental to navigate through.

However, my enthusiasm to chronicle and share the music I love and write about, goes on unabated. With the TBL mag no more – the platforms of this regular website update and my Facebook page become ever more important.

I love compiling this regular update, keeping up to date with the latest Zep related news and often focusing on key Zep related events from the rich heritage of past TBL content.

Similarly I love my various Facebook posts – the daily posting of musicians Birthday’s with links to You Tube clips, the Saturday is platterday – on the player posts, the Throwback Thursday retro chart and adverts from my paper archive and the reporting of my record and CD finds. All of this defines who I am and what I do – it also serves as an inspiration to fend off the black dog of depression which I am often prone to. In effect I need to do this.

As is well known, I also love collecting records and CDs – amongst them foreign Led Zeppelin pressings, anything Page, Plant and Jones related, 1960s and 70s sampler albums, Beatles and Rolling Stones albums, demo singles, Beatles cover versions, anything interesting on the Swan Song, Apple, Atlantic, Island and Immediate label, eight track cartridges and cassettes, charity shop bargains, visiting record fairs and record shops and more…

As the late great David Crosby sang ”Music is love” and that’s the way it’s been for me from an early age. As mentioned before my current writing focus is chipping away at my own memoirs. Researching my memoirs is an ongoing  process and discovering the roots of my passions is proving to be both cathartic and revealing.

Listening, collecting, chronicling and sharing this great music I and many other like minded people understand is in my DNA.

That very deep connection I have with my favourite artists is as fervent as ever – all this is a reminder of why I do what I do and sometimes it’s good to stop and reflect on it all.

So, the TBL website updates and my Facebook posts are my main outlets to express my passion and enthusiasm – and to do so remains a privilege and a pleasure…

Thanks for listening

Until next time…

Dave  Lewis –  March 9 2023 

TBL website updates written and compiled by Dave Lewis

Follow TBL/DL on Facebook:

https://www.facebook.com/tightbutloose.loose

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3 Comments »

  • Lee said:

    How nice of Clapton to arrange a concert, just like he did for George Harrison. That’s quite a list of performers. Perhaps including Page/ Plant would steal the show? (or maybe not.) Sounds like a good time anyway

  • VHP said:

    Dave,

    I read today that in May there are 2 concerts for Jeff Beck at the Royal Albert Hall. It was interesting to read those who are planning to be performing, but in the initial list of names there was definitely one missing – that of Jimmy Page!

    This is the list from the Royal Albert Halls web site.

    Doyle Bramhall
    Eric Clapton
    Gary Clark Jr
    Johnny Depp
    Billy Gibbons
    Imelda May
    John McLaughlin
    Robert Randolph
    Rod Stewart
    Joss Stone
    Susan Tedeschi
    Derek Trucks

    I do hope that Jimmy straps on his guitar and plays something at these concerts, as if this doesn’t get him playing in public again (despite his promises to do so since the O2 gig) then I honestly don’t know what will?

    Maybe he is “too busy” working on his 3 secret projects he mentioned in April last year?

  • Walter Cooney said:

    As a regular subscriber to the Tight But Loose mag, it was sad to see you retire it from publication, as it gave a physical record of all things Zeppelin in a hard copy.
    But I am glad to see the TBL website every week as it keeps me informed of all things to do with Led Zeppelin.
    Thanks Dave and keep up the good work.

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