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EARLS COURT WEEK ON TBL WEB: MAY 18TH 1975- 35 YEARS GONE /DL RETRO DIARY

18 May 2010 3,530 views One Comment

TURNING THE CLOCK BACK  35  YEARS AGO:

SUNDAY MAY 18 1975

Ticket: Gallery Block 70 Row E Seat 17

Ticket Price £1

Woke up around 10am with the prospect of the second Zep gig ahead.  In the morning I brought the Sunday Observer with the colour suppelment magazine that carried a major Tony Palmer feature –parts of which were in the official Earls Court programme.

”Led Zeppelin bigger than The Beatles?” proclaimed the front cover. What a compliment.

On the train at 5 in the afternoon with fellow fan/Wallbanger player Nic and his girlfriend.  My eldest brother Mervyn attended this night with his wife -he was most impressed but suffered what he describes as psychedelic nightmares for days after! Hung outside Earls Court amongst the programme sellers and poster stalls before the show -bought a bootleg badge which was as nearly as big as a dinner plate. Wore it with pride for years.

Improved view tonight lower down -same (Jimmy’s) side.  Three performances stood out -a chugging Over The Hills with that meandering Page solo, an intensive and incessant In My Time Of Dying (Robert’s pleading ”I believe I did somebody some good ‘’ line resounded in my ears all the way home) and a wonderfully relaxed No Quarter led by Jonesy’s virtuoso piano. That performance made me realize how important he was to it all. No major changes in the set list but that did not seem to matter. Each song was welcomed like an old friend by the appreciative audience. There was a real sense that Zep were coming home as true champions.

We just managed to get the last train back and in for 2.30am. I was off work on the Monday and it was a lovely sunny day. We sat by the river reading various national newspaper reviews and the Observer supplement again.

‘’Statistics are always misleading’’ wrote Tony Palmer. ‘’With Led Zeppelin, statistics are irrelevant – except that they are truly astonishing.  Last night they gave the first of five concerts at London’s Earls Court, total seats around 85,000.  The 51,000 seats for the first three concerts originally planned sold out within two hours of going on sale.  The 34,000 seats for the extra two concerts sold out over a weekend.  No pop group in history, no entertainer, no film star, no opera singer has ever attracted such an audience’’

That was the quote I memorized word for word to relay the lovely elderly ladies I worked with at WH Smith or anyone else for that matter!. The Sun newspaper also did a fantastic spread on them.  Suddenly Led Zeppelin were being talked about outside of the rock media.

I felt a real sense of pride – and throughout the week  I kept smiling to myself – safe in the knowledge that though we were two gigs down, incredibly…there was three still to go!

Dave Lewis  May 18th 2010

To be continued

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One Comment »

  • Nic Crawley said:

    Just read this again it brings memories flooding back of us on th train together the expectation of what was to be a monster gig something that will always be with me

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