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Track Two Side One Led Zeppelin 3 / Inspirations / Silver Linings

12 January 2009 3,183 views No Comment

Dave Lewis“The greatest thing you ever can do now is trade a smile with someone who’s blue now”

That sentiment from the second track on Led Zeppelin 3 has certainly been in evidence for me these past few days as more emails of support have come down the line re the Zavvi situation.

“Inspiration is what they are to me” to paraphrase another Zep classic.

Current situation here on that front is that the Milton Keynes store escaped the round of 22 closures last week and we trade-on with potential buyers said to be showing interest, though what that means or looks like we know not at this point.

Elsewhere there’s been plenty to focus on, not least the planning of the next TBL magazine. Inspiration has also been at hand from a variety of friends.

First there was contact from my lifelong fellow Wallbangers Phil and Max, and on Wednesday a visit from Cliff Hilliard – bringing more Zep and solo history into the house via his amazing ticket collection.

Highlight of which this time was the vintage series of mid 60’s handbills featuring Robert’s early bands The Tennessee Teens and Listen. As Cliff viewed the Zep collectables in the TBL office, we listened to radio commentary of the last five minutes of Derby’s surprise victory over Man United.

Cliff being an Arsenal fan was not as excited as Adam and I were, as if Spurs hold onto their 4-1 lead over Burnley, it’ll be Spurs v United or Derby at Wembley in the Carling Cup Final.

More soccer inspiration came via the excellent Big Match Revisited programme on TV. This was pure nostalgic heaven for me as they showed the edition from January 7 1979 thirty years ago. Checked my diary for that year and sure enough I’d watched it on that day back in Dents Road – in fact the diary also reveals I had spent that day hand stapling the just received hand written and photo copied TBL 1. 

The main match back then was the third round cup tie between Sheffield Wednesday and Arsenal on a snow bound pitch that would never be announced fit to play on today. Back then men were men, not least goalkeeper Pat Jennings who got showered with snowballs as he came out for the second half. Ah those were the days.

Also finally got around to investigating some of the Christmas presents I was lucky enough to receive. Hadn’t really had the heart to get into that before now and there’s some lovely stuff, including the exquisite Miles Davis Kind Of Blue box set, the Dennis Wilson Pacific Ocean Blue CD which has been on my wish list for months and an album from early 70’s band Plainsong – the latter pair  were sent to me by Andrew Ricci (thank you sir!) and very good they are too. Also began reading Frank Skinner’s new book On The Road – for all his stand up bravado there lurks a most introspective character which is making for some compelling and laugh out loud reading.

Then there’s been the respective birthdays of JPJ and Jimmy to acknowledge, which has been done via a good helping of live No Quarter’s and the CDR compilation Gary Foy compiled for me a while back titled Lord Of The Strings – which of course he still is, though the latest conflicting ‘Will they or won’t they’ reports that came through this week indicate that his next move musically remains unclear.

The week was rounded off last night with a very nice Chinese takeaway for Sam’s farewell before she goes back to Uni in Norwich today (Sunday). Sam also received an award for outstanding excellence at her former school’s annual end of year review night which made us very proud indeed. This afternoon I watched the boy Adam deftly threading through some defence splitting passes in his team Brickhill Wanderers 4-1 victory.

And that’s 2009 so far… still much uncertainty ahead on the job front… but plenty of silver linings and inspirations which as Robert once sang prove that “You gotta a friend you ain’t lonely…”                      

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