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17 October 2014 5,997 views 7 Comments

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The Guardian Live presents:

 A Life In Music – jimmy Page

Cadogan Hall London – October 15th, 2014.

When I interviewed Jimmy Page recently he was keen to point out that the reissue programme was for the fans – as he explained ‘’its about the people who have listened, not just heard, but listened to Led Zeppelin’’

That thought process has also been applied to the compiling of his book Jimmy Page by Jimmy Page. This is a volume that will thrill countless fans across the globe In the confines of the very plush Cadogan Hall on Wednesday, it was a joy to be amongst such fans at the question and answer event staged by the Guardian Live in conjunction with Genesis Publications.

Jimmy took to the stage to extended rapturous applause. This set the tone for the whole evening, warm and lucid and often humorous – this was a relaxed and informal conversation with the easy style of Guardian music editor Michael Hann allowing Jimmy to speak eloquently and informatively throughout.

The format was simple – over a series of power point images on a large screen backdrop Michael prompted questions linked to the varying images. This allowed for a complete summary of his 50 plus career.

Jimmy of course has become very seasoned in taking the conversation where he wants to lead it during interviews, while there was never going to be any scurrilous revelations (who needs ‘em anyway) – the free flowing style lent itself to the warm atmosphere within the hall.

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Talking about his early years, he noted how the photo of him on dropped knees performing with Neil Christian and the Crusaders was akin to later images on the 77 Zep tour. His affinity with Jackie De Shannon during his session years and with Jeff Beck in The Yardbirds was a reminder how he has constantly surrounded himself with key players. None more so than Robert Plant, John Paul Jones and John Bonham – it was interesting to hear him state how he had the clear blueprint for what he wanted to achieve with the group from the off. There was a touching reference of how important Peter Grant had been in the scheme of things and then on into the post Zep years. The shortcomings of the Live Aid reunion was duly dealt with (‘’it was appalling’’) and there was a humorous moment when he explained the meet with Robert in Boston in late 1993 that sparked their Unledded collaboration ‘’they had four guitarists and I thought I can do that with one guitar!). Jason Bonham’s role in the Outrider era and the later 02 reunion was also acknowledged, as was his enjoyment of linking up with the Black Crowes.

The questions from the floor formed an intelligent mix – it was good to hear Andy Adams question on Jimmy’s ideal amp set up relayed. Jimmy talked with enthusiasm about the various mash-up versions of Whole Lotta Love. Michael also highlighted Jimmy’s key role as a producer. (‘’the sonic perspectives’’). Jimmy informed Michael that he had no intention of revealing the meaning of Zoso with a curt tongue in cheek ‘’No!’’.

‘’Ladies and gentlemen the great Jimmy Page’’


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Jimmy left the stage to more rapturous applause. The warm afterglow throughout the audience was tangible. This one was for the fans – a unique opportunity to hear the story of the book Jimmy Page by Jimmy Page as told by Jimmy Page…it was an absolute privilege to be in attendance.


In addition to all that, this event was the calling card for the best UK fan gathering in years – with fans travelling in from far and wide…proof again that as well as being the best band, Led Zeppelin also have the best fans. That was clearly apparent on the night in every way – making for a fantastic atmosphere both in the hall and pub afterwards… thanks to everyone who took time to say hi – for me personally it was a real TBL comes alive occasion and hugely inspiring.

In short – what a night…what a man…

Dave Lewis – October 17th, 2014. (pics by DL, Richard Grubb top and Andreas Stocker left) There’s more pics and coverage on the TBL Facebook.


Jimmy Page Event:

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Very good measured piece here on the Jimmy Page event by ex Melody Maker scribe and Omnibus editor in chief Chris Charlesworth who I have had the pleasure of working on a fair few projects with over the years

…………pic by jeremy Attwood

Jimmy Page on Chris Evans Breakfast Show:

Jimmy was on the Chris Evans breakfast show this morning:

Chris gets that Friday feeling going with BBC TV and Radio 2 host Graham Norton, Led Zep legend Jimmy Page, English actress Gemma Arterton and jazz genius Jamie Cullum plays live in the studio:


Jimmy Page in Japan: 

Here’s an on the spot report from Jimmy’s Tokyo promotional appearances via TBL Japanese correspondent Takemi:

I was lucky enough to be able to attend three of Jimmy Page events held in Tokyo: the “meet & greet” event held on 9 October at Kinokuniya Book Store in Shinjuku (for the 200 limited buyers of his photo book that were able to get tickets for the event on a “first come, first served” basis), and the afternoon session (for the press) and the evening session (for the 200 members of the general public selected by Warner Japan) of “Led Zeppelin Listening Party ” held at the EX Theatre in Roppongi on 10 October.

At the “meet & greet” event, each of the 200 buyers of his photo book, including myself, was given a chance to say hello to Jimmy and shake hands with him for about 30 seconds. The event which started at 18:30 continued slightly more than for two hours.

First, a short video promoting the photo book and including a recent interview with Jimmy, was shown on the screen. Then, Jimmy showed up with a guy of Genesis Publication and a Japanese female interpreter.   The Genesis guy made a brief speech celebrating the publication of the photo book, and then Jimmy also made a brief statement, thanking the publisher for having closely worked with him to create the photo book.   Then, the “meet & greet” sessions started.

Since my ticket number was close to #200, I had to wait for nearly two hours, watching other buyers personally meet and greet with him.   However, I was not bored at all but was rather spending the waiting time in an enjoyable manner, especially because Jimmy kindly allowed us to take photos of him from our seats throughout the first one hour.   He was surprisingly generous at the event.


At last, my turn came to personally meet and greet with him. My heart was beating!  My conversations with him were as follows:

Takemi (T): Hello, Jimmy! Welcome back to Tokyo!  [Firmly shaking hands with him.]   I met you before.

Jimmy (J): Yeah, I KNOW YOU.

T: This is the photo I took with you then.

J: Yeah, I look a bit younger.

T: Yes, a little bit. It was several years ago…  I have brought a small present for you.  This is a (large-size) photo I took at O2.  My best shot!

J: Oh, thank you. [Carefully affixing the original “Zoso” symbol mark stamp to the photo book to be given to me.]

T: [Showing the back of the photo,] Here’s my message for you: “I have been loving you for 40 years!”  And here’s my name, too.

J: Okay. [Still working to affix the stamp to the photo book.]

T: You are the most beautiful guitarist in the world and my ultimate idol.

J: Okay, thank you so much.

T: I’m pleased to see you again. Thank YOU!

I was deeply impressed by the fact that Jimmy remembered my face! It showed that he truly has a great ability to memorize things. Despite his hard schedules preceding for that day, he continued to be friendly and smiley throughout the event.  I am sure that all the lucky attendees, including myself, spent one of the best days of their lives (and, certainly, mine)!

On the following day, Warner Japan held the “Led Zeppelin Listening Party” promoting the release of the remastered IV and V.

In the afternoon session held for the press, I took a seat in the middle of the front row. Introduced by a Japanese TV talent, Chris Peppler, Jimmy came up on stage briefly before the promotional presentation started.  Then, a sampler from the two companion discs was played loudly from the speakers for about 30 minutes while a visual slide presentation was shown on a large screen put up on stage.  I was especially impressed by the intro version of “The Song Remains The Same,” which included Jimmy’s guitar solos different from those in the final studio version.

Then, Jimmy showed up on stage again with Chris and a Japanese female interpreter. Thanks to the great seating, I was able to take a great number of close-up shots of Jimmy while he talked about the remastered versions, followed by a Q&A session with members of the audience.   It was a marvelous time for me, which continued about half an hour.

In the evening session held for the general public, Jimmy did not come up before the promotional presentation started. Only after the presentation finished, being introduced by Chris Peppler again, Jimmy first showed up by himself. He then allowed us to take photos of him with our smart phones, et al.  It was just for a few minutes this time. However, the attendees still got excited and pleased since they did not expect that they would be able to take any photos.  All of us invitees were required by the event organizer to put our smart phones and any other recording devices in an envelope kept by them, numbered for each of us, when we checked in at the venue.  Those devices were returned to us immediately before Jimmy showed up.  Accordingly, the purpose of the requirement turned out to strictly prohibit any recording of the promotional presentation.

Then, the same Japanese female interpreter appeared and a talk show started. This time, Jimmy did not take any question from the floor but rather answered several questions selected in advance out of those posed by the attending audience when they applied for the entry to the event.  Most interestingly,  Jimmy expressly declared that some time next year, he would return to Japan to play live with his new band!  I very much hope that he will be able to keep his words.

Many thanks Takemi for that report and photo (DL)


Jimmy in Paris event October 30th:

The promotional trail now moves to Paris:


My thoughts on the Jimmy Page by Jimmy Page book…

Jimmy Page by Jimmy Page: 50 years of visual magnificence…

It commences with a photo of the young Jimmy Page as a choir boy with the caption ‘’It might get loud’’ and ends some 500 pages and 50 years later with a shot of the elder wistful guitarist with the caption ‘’It might get louder…’’

In between there’s what can only be described as a simply remarkable pictorial autobiography or as Jimmy modestly puts it ‘’A visual documentary to reflect my contribution to music’’. And what a contribution it has been. The book successfully chronicles every step of Jimmy’s remarkable journey with artful intelligence throughout..

Previously available as a super deluxe high value edition that sold out on pre orders alone, Genesis Publications have now published a much welcomed considerably less budget breaking ‘Open Edition’. Back in 2010, the intensely private Page opened his own archives and with help from consultant editor renowned rock photographer Ross Halfin, searched out countless images, many of them unseen and then oversaw the development process of the book from beginning to end.

Rather than go down the rock star autobiography route of Ronnie Wood, Clapton and Keith Richard , Jimmy has let the photos do the talking. It’s a wise move as thereis little to add to the already overwrought sex drugs and groupies tales that have graced a fair few unauthorized Zep books.

The early pre Zep years yield some astonishing period photos from his early days beginning with Red E Lewis & The Redcaps. As Jimmy explains early on in the book, when the Page family moved to Epsom in Surrey a guitar had been left in the house by a previous owner. ‘’One day a guy at school called Rod Wyatt was playing and singing a Lonnie Donegan song. ‘’I have a guitar at home’’ I told him and he said ‘’Well bring it to school and Ill show you how to tune it and play a few chords’’

Genesis second book

The adventure had begun. Jimmy began playing in local bands such as The Paramounts. It was while supporting Red E Lewis and The Redcaps in Epsom that Jimmy was spotted by their manager Chris Tidmarsh. Fronted by Billy Stubbs who called himself Red E. Lewis, they were a semi professional rock’n’roll outfit from North London. Tidmarsh asked Jimmy to join the band when their guitarist Johnny Oates quit. He had to get the permission of Page’s parents as he was still at school and initially could only work with the band at weekends. Later Tidmarsh decided to try his hand at singing and changed his name to Neil Christian and Jimmy would go on to join his back band The Crusaders.

Alongside his spell with Neil Christian & the Crusaders, Jimmy also did some work backing beat poet Royston Ellis. He also enrolled at Sutton art collage but kept up his guitar interest jamming in the London area clubs. While jamming at London’s Marquee club Page and invited to play on sessions. One of the first records he contributed to was Diamonds by Jet Harris & Tony Meehan. Coincidentally their backing band featured John Baldwin, a young bassist who Page would become more associated with when he changed his name to John Paul Jones. Very quickly Page established a reputation as one of the most sought after session guitarists and he appeared on countless records of the era. The Who, The Kinks, The Rolling Stones, Lulu, Donovan, Petula Clark, Kathy Kirby, Dusty Springfield, Joe Cocker, Dave Berry, The pretty Things, Them Tom Jones, Everly Brothers, Al Stewart, and David Bowie being just a handful of his many clients.

There are some remarkable photos in the book from that period including Jimmy using the violin bow on a 1966 session working with Brian Jones on the A Degree of Murder soundtrack, and playing the Danelectro guitar on a Decca session for arranger Mike Leander. Eventually he found the session scene stifling and in June 1966 Page joined The Yardbirds, initially replacing Paul Samwell Smith on bass. There was a short lived spell as dual guitarist with Jeff Beck but after Beck quit, Page became the driving force of the band. Though The Yardbirds hits dried up, as a live act they broke onto the US psychedelic scene that would later embrace Zeppelin.

This era is documented by amongst others some striking colour shots from an August 1966 appearance in Santa Barbara, rare photos with Jeff Beck and Any Warhol and an impressive backstage and rehearsal sequence from their last TV appearance in Paris.

From then of course, it’s full on Led Zeppelin. The 289 pages devoted to a band that as he comments was ‘’A mix of acoustic, electric, rock, blues, avant-garde and experimental music performed with vision, improvisation, attitude and a bullet proof blueprint’’ has all bases covered. Highlights and there are just so many, include the historic Jorgen Angel black and white images of their first gig together in Denmark and some rare images from their initial Marquee club appearances taken in December 1968.

The entire 1969 coverage is just plain awe inspiring. From early dates at the Fillmore East and West and Three Images club Miami, Olympic Studio shots recording Led Zeppelin II , Newport Jazz Festival and Amsterdam Concertgebouw appearances through to superb photos of their Carnegie hall shows, this is a true visual record of a band conquering every audience they encountered – as it happened.

Then it’s on to the glory years: Colour fish eye lens photos from the Bron-Yr -Aur cottage, quite stunning behind the band shots of them on stage at Bath, plenty of shots from the Back to the clubs ’71 tour and the nights of Electric Magic, Eddie Kramer’s out in the garden Headley Grange shoot, and then the audiences get bigger. Kooyong Staduim Melbourne, Kezar Stadium San Francisco etc, guesting with Bad Company in 1974. Then we are into the madness and mania of being the biggest band on the planet. The 1975 US tour, bigger stages and bigger light shows, plenty of Earls Court images and then 1977 with Page at his most enigmatic -there’s a lovely shot of Page with Bonzo who has picked up Jonesy’s Alembic bass on stage at the Silverdome Pontiac. Finally to the last hurrah of Knebworth 1979 and Over Europe 1980 – it’s all here.

From this latter era a fair proportion of photos have appeared elsewhere though generally not in this quality or size. However Page has searched out plenty of rarely or previously unseen material –including a remarkable shot from1975 that will stop readers in their tracks. (Clue: It’s a group shot taken in the fall)

Beyond Zeppelin, the book does an admirable job in bringing some pictorial cohesion to the twists and turns Jimmy experienced in trying to carve a life after Zep. There are some great shots from the Arms tour (including one literally on the plane in LA), a lovely Cambridge Festival with Roy Harper spread, and a good sprinkling of Firm and Outrider era shots. Then it moves on through Coverdale Page to the Page & Plant Unledded and Clarksdale tours. Page’s brief liaison with The Black Crowes in 1999 makes way for the finale where the Led Zeppelin 02 Reunion provides the suitable happy ending alongside some fantastic images of Page and Leona Lewis bringing the Beijing Olympic Games to a close in 2008.

Some additional neat touches: There’s a complete ongoing detailed tour itinerary running from the Yardbirds era through Zeppelin and post Zep chronicling every Page performance from 1966 to the present. Various programmes and posters from the Zep era are also reproduced alongside passport photos and visa stamps documenting the many on the road journeys made. Page’s own annotations and comments are overall illuminating, particularly in the early days though they are spasmodically spread and sometimes short on description.

The new edition also brings things up to date with photos from the Kennedy Honours award ceremony in December 2012 and Jimmy’s Honorary Doctorate from Berkeley Collage earlier this year.

The final photo in the book depicting a recent shot of the wistful looking Page is accompanied by the caption ‘’It Might Get louder’’. Indication that this story is far from over – given the recent comments Jimmy has made in declaring his desire to be seen to be playing again .

Summary: This is no mere coffee table volume quickly scanned to be forgotten and left to languish on the bookshelf.

Jimmy Page By Jimmy Page is a living breathing testament to the man’s greatness – to be viewed time and time again against the appropriate soundtrack. I for one will have great fun selecting a Page packed playlist from all quarters of his catalogue to play as I read and re-read the book’s historical content.

This welcome now widely available edition, offers the opportunity for every self-respecting Jimmy Page fan to be enthralled by the contents and presentation. It captures the visual magnificence of a guitar legend who continues to command a loyalty and respect unrivalled amongst his peers . Jimmy Page By Jimmy Page vividly illustrates how he has earned that status – and as such it’s an indispensable work.

Dave Lewis

 October 13th, 2014.

Jimmy Page by Jimmy Page is out now via Genesis Publications


Rock And Roll alternate mix previews:


John Bonham Memorial Fund Update:

I had this update via the Memorial Fund organiser Ros Sidaway: If you are in the area tomorrow try and get along – it looks excellent.


Drumming up Support at John Bonham Fund Awareness Day

The John Bonham Memorial Fund will be holding an Awareness Day on Saturday 18th October in the Kingfisher Shopping Centre to raise the profile of their campaign amongst local people and visitors to the town.

Set up in August 2013 by Sam and Clem Dallaway, who run Rocktave Music Teaching Studios, and Ros Sidaway of Vintage Trax, the JBMF is aiming to raise £50,000 for the design and installation of a permanent and fitting memorial to the legendary Led Zeppelin drummer who was born and grew up in Redditch, and sadly died at the age of just 32 years on 25th September 1980.

The preferred location for the memorial is on the Church Green, next to the Bandstand and Bartleet Fountain, on land owned by Redditch Borough Council.

So far £5000 has been raised towards the target amount which it is hoped will be reached on or before the 35th anniversary of his death next year. Design concepts are to be commissioned in the coming weeks, and the group want to hear the views of local people and fans as to what style of memorial they would like to see.

Further fundraising events and activities are currently being planned including an auction, a drumathon, and the compilation of a book of memories.

“We are keen to hear from anyone who knew or met John, and who would like to share their recollections of him, or perhaps have photographs that they took of John back in the day“ explained Ros Sidaway “ If people can come along on the day, we can either record their anecdotes there and then or arrange to do so at another time.”

The JBMF stand will be located by H.Samuel Jewellers from 10.30am until 4pm where exclusive JBMF button badges will be on sale at £1 each, and people will also be able to add their names to a register of support. Donations may also be made online via

The project is being supported by Redditch Town Centre Partnership and Redditch Borough Council’s arts and leisure service as well as the Bonham family. In August, John’s younger sister Deborah performed a fundraising concert in St Stephens Church, Redditch.


DL Diary Update:

As mentioned above, Wednesday’s A Life In Music Jimmy Page event prompted the best UK gathering of Zep fans for many a year. The atmosphere in the hall and in the pub afterwards was just incredible.

I’ve mentioned before how working from home for me can be an isolating existence. It was therefore an absolute tonic to be amongst like-minded fans young and older during the evening. This is what the Tight But Loose remit has always been about – linking like-minded enthusiasts by way of the written and tangible word via the magazine, books and meets. On Wednesday, I talked long into the night to various lovely people about this thing we know is not just a band and of course the toast was Jimmy Page …the man who made it all happen and continues to enthral – as he did earlier that evening.

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At the risk of missing off some names who said hi (apologies if I’ve missed you out!) it was great to see and speak to Paul Harper, Juliann Walker, Byron Lewis, Tom Cory, Richard Grubb, Andy Adams, Simon Pallet, Eddie Edwards, Dave Fox, Dave Linwood (the class of ’92 and 94!) , Andreas Stocker, Peter Chow, Kam Assi, Mick Bulow, Mike Lewis, Jonathan Taylor, Mark Harrison (pictured with me left), Cliff (the ticket man) Hilliard ,Michael Finegan, Anne Marsden, Jeremy Attwood,Catherine, Freda Hyatt, Annie, Robin Wealleans, Mark Winslade, John Gunne, Lee Simpson, the Italian contingent and Dimitrise Kazantzis from Athens and the TBL crew of course Gary, Tom and Dec.

It was also great to catch up with BBC producer Amanda Bruckshaw (who made the Jimmy talks about Stairway film) and Catherine Roylance and Bruce from Genesis Publications.


Another life affirming experience.

Back here, there’s no let up as I move into the final stages of TBL 38 text and design – sleep has duly been at a premium with a round of early mornings and late nights going on to keep on top of it all. May I offer huge thanks to Mike Tremaglio for his Skype checking sessions and TBL designer Mick Lowe for bringing it all alive at Studio Mix in Bedford.

For all the nights out and recent fantastic experiences, fundamentally I am in the business of selling magazines and books, and to that end, I need to sell up TBL 38 big time. And yes it’s the usual mantra – if you are reading this you will love this magazine simple as that. If you have previously subscribed, all subscriptions ended with issue 37. So re-subscribe now – if you are new to TBL,–the forthcoming issue 38 is an excellent time to come on board. Many thanks for your support.

Playlist wise, well it’s been full on Jimmy Page with The Yardbirds Little Games on plus Zep IV and Houses Of The Holy in advance of the new reissues. I am also lining up the Jimmy Page and The Black Crowes Live At The Greek record store day release (thanks Tom!) for the weekend playlist and a couple of vinyl beauties recently acquired (thanks Andrew!) namely Vanilla Fudge on UK Atlantic – and Grace Slick The Great Society original Columbia US fantastic with sleeve notes by the great late Ralph J Gleason who wrote for Rolling Stone. Good to read today that UK vinyl sales have topped 800,00 the best sales since 1997 with three Zep albums in the top ten.

Right it’s back to it with more text to prepare for design. Ahead ,there’s the usual distribution duties that will involve labels stamps and envelopes to prepare and a fair few visits to the post office to ensure the TBL 38 message reaches out to over 35 countries. From Bedford UK to the world – the TBL global phenomenon.

In London on Wednesday there was heart-warming tangible proof of the groundswell of goodwill towards what I and the TBL crew attempt to achieve in assisting the enjoyment of being a Led Zeppelin fan.

Thanks again to all who made it such a wonderful night.

DL – Oct 17th, 2014.  

YouTube clips:

Jimmy Page BBC Breakfast interview:

Jimmy Page on Stairway To Heaven BBC Online:

Jimmy Page A Life In Music Event:

Until next time…

Keep listening, keep reading…

Have a great weekend

Dave Lewis/Gary Foy – October 17th, 2014.

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  • pete leigh said:

    Dave – guess you will never be a able to tel how much your updates keep us all in touch with zeppelin stuff.
    Quite simply you are it these days.its you that keeps us informed.
    Pete leigh

  • Dave M said:

    Jimmy was in good form on Chris Evans’ Radio 2 show last week, rubbing shoulders with Graeme Norton, Jamie Cullum and a Bond girl.

    When I started following Zep in the late 1970s, Jimmy was an utterly enigmatic recluse who almost totally shunned the media. (I don’t think I actually heard his voice on radio or TV until the late 80s/early 90s!)

    Who’d have thought, years later, he’d almost be part of the mainstream?

  • Mark Williams said:

    Great informative stuff – thanks Dave. So the speculation begins to build positively as to ‘ who will constitute Jimmy’s band’ to play Japan,UK,US etc next year.Well let’s hope that JPJ’s Opera commitments are over by then,and presumably with Jason on board that just leaves a vocalist. Let’s hope Jimmy’s upcoming Los Angeles book evening,hosted by a certain Chris Cornell,points towards what would be an allegiance made in heaven.

  • Andrew r said:

    After your recent run in with the Black Dog ,nice to see you back to your best!
    Also nice to see recognition for all you do for the Zeppelin extended family.
    Finally, nice to see JP finally getting treated with the respect he deserves.
    Onwards and upwards Dave, now where is that confounded bridge??

  • Andrew r said:

    After your recent run in with the Black Dog ,nice to see you back to your best!
    Also nice to see recognition for all you do for the Zeppelin extended family.

  • Ian Gould said:

    Hi Dave

    It was great to meet you again at the end of the Cadogan Hall event.

    A very insightful interview with Jimmy – and he was in good form!

    Take care of yourself and thanks for all the work.

    Kind regards


  • Darren Daly said:

    This event was a pleasure to be at to hear jimmy speak about how the music of led zeppelin was created and recorded and came to life live. This was my 40th birthday gift from my wife including the amazing book thanks to Dave Lewis for updating all things zeppelin to the faithfully. Cheers Darren Worcestershire (Bonham and Plant country)

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