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17 May 2010 5,482 views 3 Comments

Turning the clock back:  Saturday May 17th 1975:

Ticket: Gallery Block 72 Row L Seat 34

Ticker price £1

May 17th a dull rainy Saturday. Left Bedford around 4pm on the train and met then girlfriend Fiona in London for the long awaited return. I’d been counting the days down since March and now here we were hours from seeing and believing. We were inside the arena from around 7pm and the next hour was a slow one – I’d brought a programme and t.shirt.The programme with the illuminating text from Tony Palmer really whetted the appetite and had some amazing photos.

Finally when the stage burst into action following Bob Harris’s intro just after 8pm, well it was the moment my life switched into colour after the previous 18 years had been viewed in grainy black and white.

We had a good view high up to the right looking down towards Jimmy’s side. They were a little nervous and it was evident Jimmy was having lead trouble in Rock And Roll, but once they settled in it was all and more I’d hoped for. The video screen high above the stage was something I’d never seen at a gig before and I found myself gazing in awe at the memorable images flashing on screen- and wishing it was being broadcast on TV.  I’d played Physical Gaffitti non stop since it had come out so seeing In My Time, Kashmir and Trampled played live was just awe inspiring. Tangerine was an unexpected treat as was the whole acoustic interlude. Having no idea what the set list would be  only added to the pure wonderment of seeing Led Zeppelin live before my very eyes.

Initial opening night impressions: Bonzo’s incredible drum sound, Robert’s warm rapport with the crowd and the way he totally dominated the stage. The marathon Dazed and the laser lights shooting through Jimmy’s violin bow.

We got back to Bedford at 2am and I was already counting down the hours to when we would be back in their company again.  There were just 18 hours to tick off.

The Earls Court experience was underway…and boy life was good…

Dave Lewis – May 17th  2010.

To be continued….

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  • Norman Wilson said:

    That would make a great 35 year comemorative image. Cheers.

  • Dave Lewis (author) said:

    Great days indeed – that shot of Jimmy by Pennie Smith is one of the best ever – I’ll try and search it out.

  • Norman Wilson said:

    Many many great memories of these Earls Court days – I hadn’t seen them since 2/1/73 @ Sheffield City Hall, on the barrier in front of the stage (Pagey) and the seats at Earls Court were next to back row way way at the back unfortunately.
    One of the memories is of the front cover of NME the next week – Pennie Smith’s shot of a rampant page with double neck. Never seen that print anywhere since except in one of your TBL specials I think. Can you put it up on here?


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