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14 November 2018 2,534 views 2 Comments

Here’s some very good news:


A one day music event held in Redditch town centre, Worcestershire has raised £21,000 for Teenage Cancer Trust. The John Bonham A Celebration Festival, held on 22nd September 2018 was created to celebrate the life and legacy of the legendary Led Zeppelin drummer’s on his 70th birthday year.

A stellar line-up of Rock/Blues artists and special guests, all with a connection to the Led Zeppelin family, took to the stage as part of a full day of live music. This included an epic performance from John’s sister Debbie, an established blues and rock vocalist, fresh back from a US tour with Paul Rodgers. During Debbie’s set, she shared video messages sent in support of the event from Robert Plant, Roger Daltrey, Paul Rodgers, Mick Fleetwood and John’s son Jason Bonham who due to being on tour, was unable to attend the event.

Amongst the mix of well-known stars, ELO’s drummer Bev Bevan, who joined various members of the Bonham family on stage for an emotional rendition of the Beatles classic ‘With a Little Help from My Friends’.

Monies raised from this event will help to fund vital services for young people before, during and after cancer treatment across the West Midlands region. Young people with cancer require specialised nursing and emotional support. Teenage Cancer Trust meet this critical need.

John Bonham a Celebration Festival aims to continue to help the Teenage Cancer Trust, alongside the charities patron and friend of John Bonham, front man of The Who, Roger Daltrey.

The John Bonham Memorial Friends are pleased to donate this £21,000 as part of John Bonham’s legacy and look forward to next year’s event which promises to be even bigger in 2019.

The photo here shows co organiser Ros Sidaway handing over the cheque to Deborah Bonham at her recent gig in Worcestershire.

Photo of the Deborah Bonham band above by Jonathan Barry.

Stop Press: next year’s John Bonham A Celebration event will run over two days on September 20 and 21, 2019. More details to follow in the coming months.  


Led Zeppelin News Update:

In conjunction with the Led Zep news site, each week I will be re- producing highlights from their weekly email update news summary. This goes out every Sunday. Sign up details are below. Many thanks to James Cook.

Led Zeppelin

Robert Plant

Upcoming events:

November 20 – The Japanese edition of the official Led Zeppelin photo book will be released.
November 29 – “Geddy Lee’s Big Beautiful Book of Bass”, which features an interview with John Paul Jones, will be released.
January 2019 – The four new models of Jimmy Page’s recreated Fender Dragon Telecaster will be revealed.
January 31, 2019 – The UK Americana Awards will be held in London. Robert Plant has been nominated for artist of the year.
February 24, 2019 – The Tate Britain’s Edward Burne-Jones exhibition, which features two tapestries owned by Jimmy Page, closes.

Many thanks to James Cook.

The complete Led Zeppelin News email goes out every weekend. To receive it each week sign up here:

Led Zeppelin News Website: Check out the Led Zeppelin news website at


Evenings With Led Zeppelin book latest:

It’s always going to be a thrill to see the book we’ve been beavering away on for so long arrive on the book shelves…that moment occurred on Tuesday when while on TBL business, I called in to the excellent Foyles book shop in London’s Charring Cross Road ..and there it was ”Evenings With Led Zeppelin” by Dave Lewis and Mike Tremaglio…on sale here in London now – a sweet moment indeed

Never one to miss a sale opportunity,when I spotted the Evenings With Led Zeppelin book I offered to sign them. The nice people behind the counter were only pleased for me to do so – so an impromptu book signing took place and they duly stickered them ‘’Signed by the Author’ . Only one in this case of course as Mike Tremaglio is over in America (wish you had been here mate!).

There are currently four signed copies of the book ready to be snapped up at Foyles in London – get down there quick before they go!

Evenings With Led Zeppelin distribution latest:

The 100 limited edition signed and individually numbered books have now sold out.

However, the book is readily available in a standard edition – all copies are personally signed by Dave Lewis

Here is the link to order:


My thoughts on…

The Beatles White Album remastered – reissued…

I was 12 years old when The Beatles released a double album simply called ”The Beatles” – I was vaguely aware of it as we had the NME every week in our house. At the time music was not a big passion for me but that would all change with the release of The Beatles next single Get Back. Issued the following April, it was the record that took me back to music after an initial burst of interest following The Dave Clark Five when I was aged seven.

I do very much remember the events of that year of 1968. In terms of the White Album timeline – On May 29 I was at our school sports day in the afternoon and in the evening watched Manchester United beat Benfica in the European Cup Final – all this occurred on the day before they entered Abbey Road Studios to begin the White Album sessions.  I know I was on holiday in Wales when Hey Jude was released at the end of August and about to celebrate my 12th birthday the day after they shot the Hey Jude & Revolution promo films at Twickenham Studios. On my actual birthday the next day (September 5), they were in the studio working on While My Guitar Gently Weeps. it’s also worth mentioning  that in late July, Paul McCartney was in the Bedfordshire vicinity – calling in to a pub in the nearby village of Harrold. Not only that, he took to the piano for an impromptu delivery of Hey Jude. Oh to be in the pub for a drink that night!

1969 would be the breakthrough year for my lasting musical obsession and passion – greatly inspired by the weekly watching of Top Of The Pops, reading the NME, the juke box in a local café, school friends beginning to buy singles and listening to Alan Freeman’s Pick of The Pops every Sunday afternoon. It was on Alan’s radio show in late 1969 when I first heard Led Zeppelin.

By then, I had already heard bits of The Beatles double album forever tagged The White Album with that distinctive sleeve. An older friend we played Subbuteo table football with, was an album buyer and on one occasion when we visited his house, he had both the Blind Faith album and The Beatles White Album on top of the family radiogram. I remember we were intrigued by the title Why Don’t We Do it In the Road.

I was fascinated with both these albums – but especially The Beatles. The package alone was striking. That plain laminated white sleeve, the block title, the individual number, the black inner sleeves, the remarkable poster (we gawped at the pic of Macca naked but for a strategic pole in front of him) and the record labels depicting the green Apple on the front and the Apple core on the reverse side. I had previously marvelled at the Hey Jude, Get Back and Ballad of John and Yoko  single labels – seeing that distinctive design on a full size LP was awe inspiring. In fact everything about being a Beatles fan was awe inspiring. It still is.

From then on, I intensively followed their every move – the Let It Be single, album and film, the sad break up, the early solo careers. When I began working at British Home stores in June 1972, I now had some income to buy albums. In early 1973, I purchased The Beatles White Album from Carlows record shop in Bedford.

At last, I had the full 30 tracks and four sides at my disposal. An embarrassment of riches then…and now. in fact it’s amazing to think that on this 50th anniversary, that when I finally got hold of a copy of The White Album it was a mere five years old.

It kick started a long running love affair I have with this two record set.

The Beatles White album was one of the first albums I purchased when I got a CD player in 1988. I have the mono CD pressing that came as part of The Beatles Mono Box set, I’ve searched out an original mono pressing which has some slightly differing mixes, I have an import  version on the Odeon label – in all I must have around 15 different pressings.

As for the bootlegs, I have a brilliant 3 CD set The Alternate White Album with outtakes and demos, I have the legendary Esher demos CD , the so called Peter Sellers tape comprising of early mixes Ringo handed to Peter Sellers prior to the albums original release. I have the nostalgic 1968 WABC FM US broadcast of an advance acetate of the album, I have the free Mojo CD The White Album Recovered that has modern artist covering songs from the White Album.

I have a stack of original NMEs, Melody Makers, Disc music papers covering The White Album’s development in 1968. I have many a magazine feature on the subject. Tony Palmer’s Observer review as featured on the back of the Yellow Submarine soundtrack album is amongst my favourite Beatles writings.

One of my party pieces when I worked at Our Price and Virgin anytime the White album was delivered to the shop was to name the thirty tracks that make up the album in quick succession. I knew them by heart of course.

My favourite tracks on The Beatles Anthology releases are the White Album outtakes that feature on the Anthology 3 set.

As a collector of singles featuring Beatles cover versions I have picked up a fair few cover versions  of songs from the White Album. The release of any new Beatles album always saw a spate of artists keen to cover Lennon/McCartney songs for potential hit singles – The White Album was no exception – indeed The Marmalade took their version of Ob- La De, Ob -La Da to number one in late December.

The cover versions  from the White Album I have are as follows:

Everybody’ Got Something To Hide Except For Me And My Monkey – Fats Domino (Reprise)

Issued in 1969, this finds Fats applying his familiar New Orleans boogie woogie style to the Lennon rocker. Produced by Richard Perry who went on to work with the likes of Carly Simon, Harry Nilsson, Barbra Streisand, Carly Simon, Art Garfunkel, Diana Ross and Ringo Starr.

Blackbird by Danny McCulluch  (Captiol)

An interesting arrangement – McCulluch a former bassist with The Animals and Eric Burden band, he brings a rasping Rod Stewart like vocal to this rock soul soup up with upfront percussion.

The Continuing Story Of Bungalow Bill/I Will by Youngblood (Pye)

Two sides of White Album covers issued in February 1969.The A side is a faithful chorus led outing that omits Lennon’s ad-libbed ”All the children sing” The B side version of I Will is a dreamy pleasingly whimsical affair with multi layered vocals. Youngblood were a Birmingham based band with Cozy Powell featuring in their line up until late 1968.

Back In The USSR – Cliff Bennett and his Band (Parlophone ) Cliff’s band at one time included the late Chas Hodges who went on to be part of Chas and Dave. Cliff’s cover version of Got To Get You Into My Life ( produced by McCartney) was a top ten hit in 1966. This is a rather frantic fuzz guitar dominated delivery sans the airplane effects.

Ob -La -Di Ob -La -Da by The Bedrocks (Columbia) – slightly more Caribbean sounding renditions that made the lower regions of the UK chart in late 1968. Produced by Norman Smith who worked on the early Beatles hits as an engineer and went on to produce the early Pink Floyd.

Ob -La Di  Ob – La -Da by The Marmalade (CBS) – the more commercial arrangement that scored them a number one single in the UK.

I also have…

Hey Jude by Wilson Pickett (Atlantic) – brilliant funked up delivery from the soul man with Duane Allman guesting. One of the best ever Beatles covers.

Hey Jude/Those Were The Days by The Larry Page Orchestra (Page One) – well produced orchestral arrangements.

One other White Album covers curio I have is the 1968 album by Ramsey Lewis titled Mother Nature’s Son recorded and released in December 1968.  This album features cover versions of ten tracks from The White Album expertly re imagined by the legendary jazz pianist. It has some pioneering use of the Moog synthesizer – an instrument The Beatles would make copious use of on the Abbey Road album in 1969.

This is all leading to one clear fact: The Beatles’ White album  is my second favourite album of all time behind Physical Graffiti by Led Zeppelin.

For this is much more than a mere record – it’s been a lifelong companion to me through ups and downs. Not just a mere record but for me a way of life.

So what is it that so enthralls me about this two record set?

For a start the sequencing of the 30 tracks is just perfect. The cross fades, the abrupt endings, the off -mic chat, the count ins – it all fits so perfectly. My familiarity with it’s contents is such that I know every nook and cranny of it’s sequencing. Jimmy Page was also a deft hand when it came to the sequencing of the Zep albums.

It’s a true song cycle. A kaleidoscope of stories, characters, dreams and magic.

The quality of the songwriting is just immense – much has been made in the past about the disharmony among the four at the time. Whilst there were obvious tensions there were many moments of pure Beatles fun – a fact emphasised by producer of the new remaster Giles Martin in various recent interviews.

Now we have so much more of it to enjoy with the arrival of The Beatles White Album remastered reissue.

Back in 1988, I purchased Mark Lewisohn’s superb The Beatles Recording Sessions -The Official Story of The Abbey Road Years.  This book chronicled every Beatles recording session and in collating the book, Mark was given total access to listen to every last cough and splutter as The Beatles were at work. For the time it was an incredibly illuminating book. On September 26 1988, I was lucky enough to attend the launch of the book inside Abbey Road Studios number 2 one of four occasions I’ve been lucky enough to be inside those hallowed walls. For the record, the other occasions – August 1983 for The Beatles At Abbey Road show, October 1992 for the Mark Lewishon  Compete Beatles book launch – a very memorable day as David Coverdale and Jimmy Page were in the studio that day working on their album – I spoke to David briefly. Then in February 2010 to see amongst others, Robert Plant at the Sound & Vision Event for Cancer Research UK.

I’ve since spoken to Mark about that book and his later massive Beatles Chronicle publication. Indeed his books have provided much inspiration as to how I have gone about my own Zep chronicling over the years.

Reading his descriptions in that Recording Sessions book of the multiple takes that survive in the archive was absolutely fascinating – and none more so that the expansive coverage of the recording of what would become the White Album. At the time of reading the book, I marveled at how privileged Mark had been to hear all that amazing music being made as it happened.

Now, through the wonder of Giles Martin and the EMI team, we can all be privy to such Beatles studio recording insights – for as they did for Sgt Pepper, we now have a vastly expanded reissue of that illustrious double album – with an array of previously unheard demos and outtakes.

Last Friday, it was a joy to invest in The Beatles White Album Giles Martin new stereo mix on vinyl on the day of release  at the excellent Slide Record shop in Bedford…93 minutes of musical heaven awaited.

And what a 93 minute experience it is. It sounds incredible – so warm and precise, the instrumentation so well defined. Giles Martin has made a great iconic work even greater… 50 years on there are still new revelations in to be heard in this work of genius…

Alongside that new stereo remaster of The White Album on vinyl, I also have invested in the ultimate super deluxe package that includes:

CDs 1 & 2: The BEATLES (‘White Album’) 2018 stereo album mix

CD3: Esher Demos

– Esher Demo tracks 1 through 19 sequenced in order of the finished song’s placement on ‘The White Album.’ Tracks 20-27 were not included on the album.

CDs 4, 5 & 6: Sessions

– 50 additional recordings, most previously unreleased, from ‘White Album’ studio sessions; all newly mixed from the four-track and eight-track session tapes, sequenced in order of their recording start dates.


– 2018 album mix in high resolution PCM stereo

– 2018 DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 album mix

– 2018 Dolby True HD 5.1 album mix

– 2018 direct transfer of the album’s original mono mix


This one I could not resist and I had to invest as an early Christmas present.

Over the next few days and weeks (however long it takes!) I will be intensely listening to this ultimate White Album experience.

Like I said  – it’s not just an album…its a way of life…being re acquainted with this incredible new remastered reissue has been quite life affirming

It’s The Beatles…

It’s The White Album…

It’s brilliant…

Dave Lewis – November 12,2018.


Led Zeppelin 1 Rarity in Bedford:

At Slide Records in Bedford last Friday, shop owner Warren Alsop showed me a copy they have to sell of the very rare Led Zeppelin I turquoise sleeve UK pressing. I was lucky enough to get one of these some years back. This copy is the Atlantic 588 171 matrix A1 B1 first pressing. It’s in near mint condition – the sleeve is all intact –this is certainly one of the best copies I’ve seen. Minimum bids on this would start at £500 and go upwards so it’s for serious collectors only – but it’s a great opportunity to invest in a rare Led Zep pressing in great condition
More details at

It’s a Happy 70th Birthday to HRH Prince Charles – here’s a pic of myself and Tom Locke meeting him after the Princes Trust concert which featured Robert Plant at the Domination theatre on July 21 1982. ”One publishes a splendid Led Zeppelin magazine doesn’t one” might be the caption here! Happy 70th Sir!


DL Diary Blog Update:

Friday treats at the Vinyl Barn: at the always excellent Vinyl Barn last Friday morning I was well pleased to find a copy of the Nova label sampler album complete with original 19 shillings and eleven sticker – featuring many a rare progressive rock act of the day such as Egg, Pacific Drift and Bill Fay. The sort of album I would have looked at in wonder at the long gone Carousel Records in Bedford back in 1970. – top stuff – thanks Darren.

I ahd a very enjoyable hours catch up chat on the phone with Andy Adams on Wednesday. Inevitably our conversation included our memories of that glorious first UK Led Zeppelin Convention we staged in 1992. Here’s a pic of us around 3am in the morning setting up before Friday’s launch. What a weekend that was..all these years later Andy’s enthusiasm for all things Zep is so admirable – and mind hasn’t wavered much either!

On Tuesday night  it was great to see Bedford’s number one musicologist Pete Burridge at his excellent monthly Record Club at The Castle – he also gave me a late Birthday/early Christmas present namely the BB King single Hummingbird –written by Leon Russell and covered by Jimmy Page on his Outrider album) –this copy a UK demo on the Stateside label – vinyl gold! Thanks Pete! While at Pete’s Record Club I took along those Beatles White Album related cover version singles and The Ramsey Lewis Mother Nature’s Son album – all of which went down very well with those in attendance.

Surprise of the week came while watching the BBC 4 live concert featuring Boy George and Culture Club. For at the finale they did a version of Zep’s Heartbreaker -mainly the riff. Yu gotta love the Boy – and you can’t keep a good song or riff down – see below…

Busy here on a prep for projects ahead including the schedule for the next TBL magazine 44 which I am now looking to publish early in 2019 – there’s already some great material lined up for this. More on all this soon…right I’m off to enjoy more of The Beatles White album remastered reissue – and sounding simply magnificent…


Dave Lewis –  November 14, 2018

Until next time, have a great weekend

Website updates written and compiled by Dave Lewis

with thanks to Gary Foy, Mike Tremaglio and James Cook

Follow TBL/DL on Facebook:

The TBL/DL Facebook page has regular updates and photos – be sure to check it out

YouTube clip:

Boy George and Culture Club perform at Stir Concert Cove, ending with a snippet of Zep’s Heartbreaker:


1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (2 votes, average: 5.00 out of 5)


  • Hiroshi said:

    “The White Album” is also my favorite Beatles album, along with Sgt Pepper. While these two albums show a stark contrast between them in their outcomes — the diversity and the cohesiveness, in short — they have something in common in that they strongly reflect the times that produced them; i.e., the euphoric 1967 (Pepper) and the chaotic 1968 (The Beatles). That’s why I like them because together they represent the Sixties, those magical times often encapsulated by the group’s very existence, more graphically than any other Beatles albums, perhaps.

  • Andy A said:

    Was great to catch up and share our common enthusiasm for all current events my friend! Not to mention looking back on those remarkable Days in May ’92 at the Royal National Hotel. A stellar time without doubt and our own little piece of Zeppelin history and folklore…. Your continued enthusiasm, love and commitment to all of this remains a true inspiration Dave… Eye Thank Yew!

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