Email This Post Email This Post
Home » Featured, TBL News


31 December 2012 8,964 views 10 Comments

That was the year that was and in Zep terms…well there has never been one quite like it.

The announcement of Celebration Day, the long awaited visual record of the 2007 Led Zeppelin reunion concert, kick started a wave of activity – the UK press conference, the US press conference and premiere screening, the UK premiere at the Hammersmith Apollo, JPJ at the European premiere in Germany, Jimmy likewise in Japan, the incredible October 17 Celebration Day itself with worldwide simultaneous screenings, the You Tube clips, the Mojo, Rolling Stone and Guitar World cover stories and interviews,  the Kashmir preview on BBC Radio 2, the November 19th official release of the DVD and Blu ray, the extra disc of rehearsal footage, the BBC 2 one hour screening….what a ball we have all had.

And if that wasn’t enough….there’s the accolade of the Kennedy Honors – the simply awe inspiring speech from President Obama, the reception in the White House, the incredibly emotional spectacle of the three of them being visibly moved by the tributes from Jack Black, Kid Rock, The Foo Fighters, Lenny Kravitz and the glorious finale of Anne and Nancy Wilson with Jason…

The incredibly poignant footage of the Kenney Honors Gala can take it’s rightful place up there with other emotional moments such as Tangerine at Earls Court, You’ll never walk alone at Knebworth, the ending of All My Love in Muncich ‘80 and the camera panning out to the crowd as Robert sang the final line of Stairway to Heaven at Live Aid.

Outside of all the Celebration Day frenzy…Robert Plant hooked back up with the nucleus of Strange Sensation for some highly enjoyable performances under the Sensational Space Shifters banner… and John Paul Jones flitted from project to project with grace and style be in on stage with Seasick Steve, Robin Hitchcock, Minibus Pimps or Supersilent – not to mention the ongoing composing of an opera.

Jason Bonham made another sold contribution to Black Country Communion on the Afterglow album and continued to delight audiences with  his Jason Bonham Led Zeppelin Experience gigs.

Jimmy Page provided a welcomed vinyl release of the much maligned Lucifer Rising soundtrack and in being at the forefront of the Celebration Day media buzz, he must surely have been aware of the outpouring of affection countless fans have for him around the world…

That show of affection will surely act as an added inspiration for the long promised return to performing –which if recent comments are anything to go by could well develop in 2013.

Add to that the planned re-mastering and re issuing of the Led Zeppelin catalogue with unreleased material… well there is a lot to look forward to in the coming months.

Robert Plant has already lined up an Australian tour for the Sensational Space Shifters  and he has various recording options not least a return to his collaboration with Buddy Miller for which new material has already been logged. There’s also been talk of Jason bringing over his Led Zeppelin Experience for UK dates which I for one would very much welcome. Deborah Bonham is also going to be active in 2013 with a new album lined up for March release.


Whilst it has been a vintage year for Zep activity, on a personal level closer to home it’s been a bit of a struggle. Without sounding like some moaning old fart, this past 12 months has presented various health challenges amongst us here and it does feel like I am getting older. The sad passing of our friend Alan Johnson early in the year, my diabetes type 2 diagnosed, Gary not being too well , Janet’s mum etc – there did seem to be health issues all around and now I am in my mid 50s I guess that’s to be expected. But as a good friend said to me recently –its life and it’s how you deal with it.

Like any year there were ups and downs though this one seemed to swing between differing emptions in the space of days…as Charles Dickens observed  ‘’It was the best of times…it was the worst of times…

What becomes more than evident as we get older, is how important friendships become and as track two side one of Led Zeppelin 3 puts it

‘’ The greatest thing you ever can do now, is trade a smile with someone who’s blue now, It’s very easy just…’’

That has been a bit of mantra this past year –as I’ve often noted – I’m more than blessed in that department –in fact the whole Celebration Day saga has cemented many a long time friendship as we all communally shared the excitement of the film.

Of course the year 2102 will for ever more be defined by the staging of the London Olympics and Paralympics– as last week’s Sports Personality of the Year review emphasised – how fitting then that Saturday August 4th and August 11th have become memorable dates for 2012 Olympian endeavours (Super Saturday when Team GB won three golds in 45 minutes and Mo’s amazing gold in the 5,000 m) as well as key occasions in the Zep calendar being the dates of their final UK gigs in 1979 at Knebworth in with Bonzo.

While we are on the Olympics…   – It was pleasing to see Bradley Wiggins get a knighthood but what about Mo? Surely he should have been knighted too. Great too for Kate Bush to receive an CBE but what about John Paul Jones?…again unrecognised – maybe next time…

Within all that was going on, I feel I can look back on the achievements of 2012 with some measure of pride. I’ve racked up three TBL magazines, the From a Whisper to a Scream book, various contributions to Classic Rock and the Rod Stewart feature in Record Collector. All that and the constant updating of the TBL web site and TBL Facebook and Twitter pages. it has been a very busy year for sure.

Looking ahead…

There are some mighty challenges here – my work load is already looking a little daunting with various projects to get underway and I am not quite sure how I’ll fit it all in –while of course it’s great to be busy the other concern is that these projects bring in the necessary revenue to keep everything on track.

There has been some great support for the TBL products this year and its essential that continues.

Talking of which – the forthcoming issue of the TBL magazine (issue 34) is in progress and due early Feb – this will signify the end of the 2012 subscription and current subscribers will need to re-subscribe for 2013. Subscriptions are the lifeblood of the whole TBL operation – by investing in the TBL magazine you are ensuring the future of the TBL website –and hey 32 pages of essential Zep reading –what’s not to like!  I thank you in advance for your on going support.

Here’s the 2013 TBL subscription ordering link:

Other projects ahead include the writing and compiling of the 02 book, the Knebworth book reprint. More on all this as it unfolds.

Massive thanks are due in the direction of Gary Foy, Mike Tremaglio, Nick Anderson, Stephen Humphries,  Gerard Sparaco and Jeff Strawman for their invaluable contributions to the TBL magazine.

The TBL magazine remains a true collectable to be stored and re –read and it is my continued objective to ensure it’s an essential read for all fans of the band. I intend to make the next batch of issues to as higher standard as possible –putting in the leg work and research that will make the Tight But Loose magazine worthy of your support and investment.

Similarly with assistance from the esteemed Gary Foy, we intend to maintain this web site as a central hub of TBL spreading the news, views and product offers that are central to the existence of this operation. In terms of appreciation I must also offer sincere thanks to the Mick Lowe who has applied his immense design skills to bring manyTBL projects alive in 2012

Here’s some of my raving faves of 2012

Best live gigs: Robert Plant Presents The Sensational Space Sifters  Gloucester Guildhall May 8th , John Paul Jones Kettle’s Yard Cambridge May 20th , John Paul Jones Minibus Pimps Café OTO July 13th, John Paul Jones with Supersilent Village Underground London November 18th.

Best things I heard in 2012: Led Zeppelin Celebration Day, Led Zeppelin Berkeley Days First Night, Led Zeppelin Snowblind Van couver 75, Led Zeppelin Quick Diet San Diego 73, Led Zeppelin Assentation In The Wane 73 UK soundboards, Bob Dylan Abandoned Desire, Elvis Presley Prince From Another Planet plus a variety of vinyl re discoveries searched out at wonderful outlets such as JB’s, Hitchin Market,Spitefields, Olympia Record Fair etc.

Other memorable 2012 events: Interviewing John Paul Jones at the London Bass Guitar show  on March 4th, The arrival of the Lucifer Rising LP on April 5th,World Record Day April 21st, attending the Olympics on August 1st,the Celebration Day UK press conference Sept 21st, Celebration Day UK London premiere Oct 12th, Celebration Day screenings in Bedford Oct 17th and Westfield White City London Oct 22nd. The interviews I conducted with Warren Grant on February 25th and Barney Hoskyns on August 8th and Glenn Hughes Sept 7th. Meeting Charles Shaar Murray at Barney Hoskyns book launch London october 1st.


As for new year resolutions – well there’s a fair few – one of them is to stop worrying as much as I do about what might be or could have been… and to enjoy the right now a whole lot more…

New Year’s Eve beckons before us and then we can all return to some sort of normality.

Tonight when the clock strikes 12 midnight, there will be a number of people in my thoughts,  I will raise a glass and take a cup of kindness for auld lang syne to the many people (and I’m sure they know who they are) who one way or another, have been an inspiration to me in 2012.

From then it really will be down to the serious business of kick starting the TBL 2013 campaign. As noted ,there are some exciting plans ahead.

As ever, as much as I look back and chronicle the heritage of this great, great band, the usual mantra remains…as the singer once put it, the present and future are of paramount importance. It’s still today’s work and tomorrow’s plans that give all of us a reason for being…rather than a reason for having been. In effect it’s ever onward.

 Thanks for your continued support of all things TBL and on behalf of Gary, may I wish you all a happy, healthy and prosperous new year.

Dave Lewis – December  2012

And as 2012 slips away…here’s some of my personal pictorial memories from the year:

Robert Plant Guildhall Gloucester May 8th

with Juldeh Camara of the Sensational Space Shifters and Lorraine Robertson – Guildhall Gloucester May 8th

JPJ Kettle Yard Cambridge May 20th

With JPJ Kettle Yard Cambridge May 20th

Led Zeppelin Whisper to a Scream book publication June 27th

With the good lady Janet and Adam Olympic Park August 1st

With Mick Lowe Studio Mix Bedford May


With Mark Harrison,Warren Grant, Tom Locke and Phil Harris -Hats Off To Led Zeppelin gig Stables Milton Keynes August 18th

Celebration Day Press Conference London September 21st

Celebration Day UK premiere London October 12th

Jimmy Page Celebration Day London Premeire October 12th

with Sam and the good lady Janet Celebration Day screening Bedford October 17th 

with Gary Foy after the Celebration Day Westfield screening October 22nd

with Tom Locke, Phil Harris, TBL web founder Dave Linwood and Krys Jantzen after the Celebration Day Westfield screening October 22nd

With Michaela,Charlie,Tom,Dec,and Dan -December 24th Bedford

With the good lady Janet December 24th



Considering that it all ended 32 years ago this has been an amazing year to be a Zeppelin fan to say the least… with the three remaining members as busy as ever throughout this year culminating in possibly the highest of high profile events, excepting an award from the President Of The United States in The White House, oh and there was a release of a certain DVD that got us all mildly excited.

Robert Plant spent the year continuing to push himself and his musical boundaries further and further with The Space Shifters. Not wanting to rest on his laurels, Robert has shown the world how it should be done, not churning out the old hits in huge unfriendly arenas but to bring his experiences from his travels back to the people, whether it be a hall in Gloucester, a dark North London venue or way out in South America, rewarding the much missed fans in Brazil, Argentina etc. All done with finesse, style and pure class. All this was met with, in particular in South America, with much enthusiastism and in Buenos Aires, one fans maybe a little to enthusiastically.

Mixing his set with Strange Sensations numbers, blues standards and radically reworked Zeppelin numbers, Robert, backed by the majority of the Sensation’s with Dave Smith on drums and Judah on a variety of African instruments and vocals, presented an evening of colour and emotion mixed with an incredible back beat that twisted and turned, taking you from Chicago to Nashville and through the exotic Sahara desert all with a healthy hint of the old Black Country. Not as polished as The Band Of Joy and more restrained than the Strange Sensations, the Space Shifters nether the less presented an edgy performance that, although not everyone’s favourite, scored high in my opinion and left me wanting more and hoping that Robert returns in the new year with this heady mix of entertainment. Check out the reworked Four Sticks or Ramble On to sample just how Robert sees how the classics from the Zeppelin catalogue should be viewed. have all the South American tour dates plus the London date available for download ($10 each show) and an excellent way to relieve this magic shows. ITunes are now also offering the same dates for download.

John Paul Jones kept us all guessing in which way he’d turn after the success of Them Crooked Vultures a couple of years ago. The answer, of course is in any way he wants to, his ability to swap from the blues based Seasick Steve to the Jazz impromptu performances of the Minibus Pimps, the avant-garde shows by Supersilent or the mandolin playing at various Robyn Hitchcock are a testament to that.

As for Jimmy Page – In recent interviews he has again spoke of his willingness and keenness to return to the performance stage, we wait with baited breath to see what 2013 and Jimmy Page brings us.

2013 will see the release of the Zeppelin catalogue, represented with extras, with promised alternative versions and rare live performances, another exciting prospect.

Of course the main buzz from 2012 has to be the release of the 2007 O2 DVD of Led Zeppelin performance. Five years in the waiting but when it got here It arrived with a fan-fare of media adoration and high profile appearances across the world. Press conferences in London, New York, Tokyo and Berlin and red carpet appearance at New York’s Beacon Theatre was followed by a similar event at London’s Hammersmith Apollo. With the media for once on the bands side it sure felt good to be a Led Zeppelin fan, friends and family would stop bye and say “I saw your band on the news the other day”, yeah it felt good, even a little smug to say I told you so….

This month’s appearance at The White House was also a wonderful moment and the gala at the Kennedy Centre was a moving moment, see Jimmy and John Paul rock in time to Ramble On sitting next to the President and who couldn’t be moved bye the close up of Robert, as Heart plus choir, performed Stairway…cry…we all did…

And the film lived up to all, if not even more than the expectations. Having witnessed the show in 2007 I knew what to expect, emotionally on the night of the O2, I was a wreck, with the greatest band about to come to the stage I had no idea were I stood amongst this life we call Led Zeppelin, I knew then, that it would be just one show and one only but I was unsure how we could continue without the hope of one more night, one more show, without hope, we all need hope. And again at the premiere in London, with the film about to be unleashed, I again was filled with the same emotionally turmoil, would this be the end?… would there be nothing else to look forward to?…

Whatever the answer is, the film is here now and let’s just enjoy it for what it is, a film of one show, one night, one last night to show the world that Led Zeppelin was and will always be the greatest band ever. From the opening blast of Good Times Bad Times to the thumping closing number of Rock and Roll, Celebration Day has captured a magnificent night, by a truly wonderful band for one last unforgettable night. I’m sure you all have your highlights…mine (this week) is The Song Remains The Same, released from the high expectations of Stairway, with that millstone out of the way, the relieve is evident as the band fire on all cylinders, Bonham and Jones lock onto the rhythm and fly leaving Page to weave around the piece with  as Plant steps up a gear to dance the hoochie choo…Stunning!

Away from Zeppelin musically Carrie Underwood, Counting Crows, Eric Bibb, Rory Block, Sandi Thom all had new albums that hit the right spot, I enjoyed getting lost in the Little Feat and Allman Brothers back catalogues, and The Civil Wars came and went far to quick.

No movies this year to get too excited about. T.V this year has been great with Homeland and Touch being truly great TV and Games Of Thrones and Boardwalk Empire being also above the norm. The rear hit for me this year has been catching up with the Nordic-Noir series of Scandinavian crime and political dramas like The Killing (Season 1,2 and 3) featuring the wonderful Sarah Lund and the brilliant The Bridge staring the beautiful Saga Norén. Simply unmissable TV.

Work has been intense for me this year and in particular the last four months… intense work schedule has also meant I’ve spent far to long away from the TBL news desk, however you all have to agree that Dave has soldiered on brilliantly keep the site going with daily updates, particular in the build up to the release of Celebration Day. I’m hoping to be able to get back behind the news desk as soon as possible and to keep up the high standards set by Mr Lewis.

And also try and catch up with as many folk as possible and Dave still owes me a Christmas drink.

I also managed to get myself a couple of heath scares this year that required hospital visits, at one point Dave and I seemed to comparing illness on a daily phone calls basis. Half way through the year I revaluated my health situation, so now leaner and somewhat slimmer than I was this time last year, I hope to avoid this years hiccups….but don’t mention the cigarettes….

Tight But Loose has again been at the forefront of all things Zeppelin. Dave certainly pulled out all the stops. The Tight But Loose magazine has also grown from strength to strength and with brilliant coverage on all the on-going activity. The cover pic on issue 33 is worth the price of subscription alone. Of course without your subscriptions this site and magazine could not exist so please keep supporting the TBL site and magazine

Here’s to a great 2013…

Love to friends old and new… and remember this is not just a band …it’s more a way of life…

Gary Foy December 31st 2012.

Until next year!!!… keep reading -keep listening

Dave Lewis/Gary Foy

December 31st , 2012.

Don’t forget that you can follow Dave Lewis/TBL on Twitter – LedzeppelinTBL

and view additional photos etc at the Tight But Loose Facebook page (add us as a friend) at!/profile.php?id=1611296783



1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (3 votes, average: 5.00 out of 5)


  • Dave Lewis (author) said:

    Many thanks for those great comments

  • Graeme said:

    A slightly belated but very happy and Zeptastic New Year to Dave and Gary. Thanks as ever for keeping the fires burning. 2012 was a brilliant year for us Zep heads made all the better for your insight, commentary and dedicated enthusiasm. With the proposed studio album reissues, 2013 should also be as enthralling. More power to your elbows lads. Look forward to catching up soon. My very best wishes!

  • Matthew Adams said:

    Happy New Year to one and all. Thanks for everything this year – loved Whisper to a Scream especially. Gutted to miss out on the Kettle’s Yard gig (we’re 20 minutes walk across town, but were too late!). If you’re in Cambridge again, give me a shout and I’ll stand you a beer or two.

  • Michael Sherlock said:

    Happy New Year to you and your family Dave, and to the great team at TBL! You do amazing work keeping the spirit of Zeppelin soaring high for our ‘family’ throughout the year. Best of health and happiness in 2013!

  • Mark Grayson said:

    I just wanted to wish you and your family a very Happy and Safe 2013. Thank you for all that you have done for all of us in 2012. I am excited to see what 2013 brings! God Bless and take care.

  • Jez said:

    Happy New Year Dave, and of course to your family and the extended TBL family around the World.
    What a year, thanks for keeping us all informed and entertained.
    I’ve even managed to recruit some new members to the cause.

    Here’s to 2013 and what it will bring.

  • Pete Leigh said:

    Gary, Dave – BLOODY WELL DONE

  • Ed- Washington DC said:

    Happy New Year to Dave Lewis and staff, and thanks again for documenting a banner year for Zeppelin. There isn’t any place in the media or on the web that contains the information found here, and it is well appreciated from this side of the screen.

  • Bernie said:

    Hello Dave.

    Love your website, just as I love the Zep. Managed to get copies of your Celebration and Celebration II books second-hand and they are a great read.

    It has indeed been a fab year to be a Led Zep fan and I’m sure there’s gonna be more juicy stuff to come in 2013. You just get that feeling, don’t you? That version of ‘Stairway…’ by the Wilsons and Jason was magical. Made me want to hear Rolf’s version again, too!

    Happy new year to you and yours. Diabetes? One response: VEGETABLES. And one more response: CINNAMON. They’ve worked wonders for me.

    Much love and peace…

    Bernie: Worcestershire, England.

  • Paul Humbley said:

    Happy New Year to you and your family Dave. Keep up the good work and you can count on my support during the next 12 months. It’s people like you that make our love of music, not just Zeppelin all the more enjoyable. I look forward to reading the website updates and receiving my Tight But Loose magazines. Best wishes Paul

Leave your response!

Add your comment below, or trackback from your own site. You can also subscribe to these comments via RSS.

Be nice. Keep it clean. Stay on topic. No spam.

This is a Gravatar-enabled weblog. To get your own globally-recognized-avatar, please register at Gravatar.