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4 July 2014 6,102 views 3 Comments


Knebworth House celebrates 40 years of concerts with Knebworth Concerts Exhibition – July 1st to August 31st:  

40 years ago this month on Saturday July 20th 1974 , Knebworth House staged their first ever rock concert at the picturesque Hertfordshire park. The Allman Brothers topped a bill that included  The Van Morrison Show, The Doobie Brothers, Mahavishnu Orchestra, The Sensational Alex Harvey Band and Tim Buckley.

Led Zeppelin were originally named as headliners on that 1974 bill but it was not to be. Four years later of course, they did stage two memorable shows at Knebworth – their last in the UK. Eleven years later on June 30th 1990, Robert Plant was reunited with Jimmy Page for the Knebworth Silver Clef event.

Over the past four decades Knebworth has been the scene of many iconic performances ranging from Led Zeppelin and Pink Floyd to Oasis and Robbie Williams – this weekend it plays host to the Sonisphere Festival with Iron Maiden and Metallica headlining.

To celebrate 40 years of concerts, throughout July and August, Kenbworth House will be staging a unique exhibition of Knebworth Concert memorabilia – featuring posters, tickets, t-shirts and never-before-seen photos and video footage from every show since 1974 on display in Knebworth House. There is no extra charge to view the exhibition, which is included in the House admission ticket.

More details at:


Led Zeppelin then As It Was – At Knebworth 1979  – the much acclaimed book at a special bargain price for a limited period:

To mark the 40th anniversary of the Knebworth concerts, and the 35th anniversary of Led Zeppelin’s appearances , I am offering the Led Zeppelin Then As It Was – At Knebworth 1979 book at a special bargin price.

Throughout July and August the book will be available at a price of £15 plus postage and packing – a saving of £10 on the cover price!

Led Zeppelin Then As It Was – At Knebworth 1979 is the latest in the TBL publishing series that analyses the concert history of Led Zeppelin in greater detail than ever before.

If you were there back in 1979 …you will revel in reliving the memories…if you weren’t lucky enough to be…this is the opportunity to discover the full story surrounding the final remarkable on stage performances in their homeland of Led Zeppelin with John Bonham…

Suffice to say, the book will also make great summer reading during the Knebworth anniversary period and beyond…

Led Zeppelin Then As It Was – At Knebworth 1979 is the book that will take you back to that field just outside Knebworth during an English summer of 1979…

The concerts…the crowds…the music…the memories…the legacy…

And this time there are no sleeping bags required…

Don’t miss out – order now!

Order now at a bargain price from this link :


Robert Plant – Glastonbury Appearance Feedback:

Here’s a couple of reviews from Robert’s very well received Glastonbury appearance:

‘A whole lotta love for Robert Plant’ On the evidence of Glastonbury 2014 –

Robert Plant’s still got the vocal chops as well as the stadium charisma. By Neil McCormick

There was a whole lotta love for Robert Plant earlier on Saturday evening, although I suspect more than a few were secretly wishing he’d turned up with former compatriots Led Zeppelin, who never played Glastonbury.

His new band, the Sensational Space Shifters, concoct a fascinating hybrid of dub, jazz, afrobeat and blues well suited to such an eclectic festival, and an appreciative audience swayed in the setting sun to blissful world grooves. Still, it’s when they hit those familiar power chords and Jimmy Page riffs at the end of the set that everyone got to their feet.

It may have been a long, lonely, lonely, lonely, lonely time since he rock and rolled, but on this evidence Plant’s still got the vocal chops and stadium charisma, even with Gambian musician Juldeh Camara unconventionally soloing on a single string African fiddle.

 Robert Plant at Glastonbury 2014 review – no Stairway, but storm-summoning moods from rock hero

Plant balances his own swampy blues with a handful of Zep classics for an affecting set from a man remoulding his history by mark Beaumont

glasto pic 1

Where and when: Pyramid stage, 5.30pm, Saturday.

Dress code: Guru shirts and wizardly beards

What happened: For a second, it really feels like he might do it. As the opening flamenco flurries of Joan Baez’s Babe, I’m Gonna Leave You – covered by Led Zeppelin on their 1969 debut – give way to a burst of pastoral arpeggios, a field full of blues-rock space cadets psychically will it as one: “make it Stairway …” Even Robert Plant himself, staring reverently at the whirling fingers of Liam “Skin” Tyson – a man with a beard James Hetfield might hunt – seems to want it to happen so he can forget all the mystical world-blues guff and pile into a full-throttle Zep-only set that would upend the Tor.

Instead, Plant grabs a shallow drum and announces “a jam of country and eastern music”, but one with enough twists to stop it being banished forthwith to the West Holts stage. On exotic instruments strung, bowed, plucked and thumped, Plant and his Sensational Space Shifters build storm-summoning moods on Tin Pan Valley, carve out affecting Afrobeat pop on the new track Rainbow and tinker with a handful of Zep classics. Black Dog becomes a dark, hippy vision of Glastos of yore, Going to California a mandolin meander, and What Is and What Should Never Be fracks directly into the ley line and syphons off the stone circle’s elemental charge. And just as the swampy blues numbers, played on guitars encrusted in actual moss, are getting to be too much, Plant ploughs into Whole Lotta Love – mashed into an Afrobeat Who Do You Love? – like a man at one with remoulding his own history to suit his whims. Hero.

High point: The crowd chant Plant back onstage for “One! Last! Song!” only for him to announce they’ll do an “old English folk song”. It’s Rock and Roll. The cad.

Low point: When Plant launches into a precise and pretentious handclap solo, as if his palms were hand-carved by Stradivarius.

In a tweet: No Stairway!

Thanks to


Led Zeppelin Reissues Feedback:

Here’s my thoughts on the reissued Led Zeppelin III album which concludes my feedback on the first three reissues:  

Led Zeppelin III: Solid gas then… Solid gold now…


Led Zeppelin III was my first experience of the anticipation and waiting that would often be required leading up to the release of a new Zep album.

The waiting began in early 1970 and would last a period of ten months.

This anticipation was played out via the pages of the NME music paper as that was my prime source of Zep info. We had the NME delivered to our house and each week I would devour it religiously to seek out any info out on the band. I also looked in the newsagents to keep up with the other weekly music papers namely Melody Maker, Disc and Music Echo and Record Mirror. If there was a good story in any of those, again I’d snap that up.

As 1970 unfolded there was a fair bit of activity to track with reports of the Royal Albert Hall show, that Goldrush Record Mirror colour cover as they flew out to the US, the early reports of them turning down TV offers and then accepting the opportunity to top the Bath Festival, the subsequent Bath Festival rave reviews and then the news stories building up to the release of the third album.

All of this was against a backdrop of many other events that year that had a huge impression on this particular then 13 year old – on March 21st I attended one of my first ever big league football match watching Chelsea beat Man Utd 2-1,  there was the breakup of The Beatles, the World Cup in Mexico which saw England lose to West Germany and the magnificent Brazil side triumph, nearer to home Deep Purple and Chicken Shack topped a one day festival at Bedford Town football club ground – I had to be content with hearing it from my bedroom as back then the 25 shilling asking price was way out of my league.

Then there was the voting in of the Edward Heath’s Conservative government – on that Election day (June 18th) I went to see The Beatles Let It Be film.In the autumn the deaths of Jimi Hendrix and Janis Joplin occurred within weeks of each other and the Sounds music paper was launched (I still have the first issues). Just before the release of Zep III, I watched with some awe Ernie Hunt’s donkey kick free kick goal for Coventry v Everton on Match of The day (you tube it – its amazing!).

All of these events added to a very memorable year and acted as a rites of passage to my maturing as a teenager – oh and I also began developing an interest in the female form – the singer Julie Driscoll ( who had a big hit with Wheels On Fire) being an early pin up fave.

Back to the initiation of this third Zep album. It was down to Radio One DJ Alan Freeman to supply the initial thrills – on two Sunday afternoons in late September during his Pick of The Pops top 40 chart run down, he aired  previews from Zep III namely Immigrant Song and Out On the Tiles. I taped these on my reel to reel tape recorder, so even before the album was issued in the UK I had some fresh Led Zeppelin music to play… And boy did I love that album – oh did I ever.

Finally in early October came the day when I clapped eyes on the incredible sleeve. I can still quite verbatim from the NME review of the album by Nick Logan which stated in the headline ‘’Zeppelin Solid Gas, Solid Gold.’’

review zep III

Suffice to say, Led Zeppelin III was top of my playlist for the next six months – along with the subsequent Zep 1 and II acquisitions – eventually they were slightly edged out by my reel to reel recording of the BBC In Concert broadest of April 1971.

There is one other anecdote surrounding the arrival of Led Zep III –I distinctly  remember being amongst some friends attending a Luton Town match in the autumn of 1970 – when we were discussing our favourite music outside the ground before the match, I enthusiastically talked up the new Zep album only for an acquaintance amongst us to retort ‘’Led Zeppelin? They’re a bit pathetic aren’t they?’’


I was quite stunned by this as it was the first time I’d had experience of the musical snobbery that surrounded my affection for liking rock music. It was not to be the last as the Slade/T. Rex v Zep wars raged on into 1972 and beyond.

Oh and back in 1970 through 1971 there was another challenge. In November 1970 I saw a review of US singles in Record Mirror that revealed that the B side of the US single of Immigrant Song had a track titled Hey Hey What Can I Do as it’s B side. A non-album B side at that – so began the quest to acquire that particular single. I eventually sourced it from the guy who sold me the Whole Lotta Love single for another £1.25 new pence. It arrived in the spring of 1972, ironically just as Hey Hey What Can I Do was issued as a track on the New Age Of Atlantic compilation.

So the fact is, I have massive affinity for the time that Led Zeppelin III arrived in my life.

Along with Physical Graffiti and Presence, it’s my favourite and most played Zep album. I’ve also enjoyed some very memorable live renditions by the principal players of the songs from Led Zeppelin III – that fist blast in my schoolboy ears of Immigrant Song at the Electric Magic Wembley show in 1971, Celebration Day at Knebworth in ‘79 and Robert Plant with Strange Sensation at Hammersmith Odeon 2002 , Gallows Pole, Friends and That’s The Way at the Page & Plant Unledded filming in 1994, a killer P & P delivery of Since I’ve Been Loving You at Sheffield Arena in 1995, Tangerine (‘’This is for our families and friends..’’) and Bron Yr Aur Stomp at Earls Court.

I also love the live renditions of Zep III numbers (Immigrant Song,Out On the Tiles,Since I’ve Been Loving You, That’s The Way,) to be heard on the Live On Blueberry Hill and Going To California TMQ label bootleg albums.

As for the collecting of Led Zeppelin III, I have a fair few pressings including the UK original plum and orange Polydor pressing , a Spanish pressing with the titles on the back and a recently acquired New Zealand pressing which omits the wheel and just has blank spaces on the sleeve. I also have a bootleg pressing said to be a mono mix put out in Uruguay.

Over the years I’ve written extensively about the album, notably for a feature in TBL issue 10 and a major Record Collector piece that appeared in the Christmas edition of 2010 marking the album’s 40th anniversary.

Put simply, Led Zeppelin III is an integral part of my Zep DNA.


So to the newly remastered edition via the super deluxe box set. A very faithful reproduction of the cover and then to the vinyl…as with Zep 1 and 2 the quality is just exceptional – far sprightlier than previous versions.

And it’s the finer detail that really delights : John Paul Jones’ bass runs all through Immigrant Song , the clarity of Robert’s opening vocal on Celebration Day, the crispness of John Bonham’s drumming on Since I’ve Been Living You, the ‘’Keep a coolin’ ‘’ line thrown in at the end of Gallows Pole, the rush of acoustic guitar beauty on the opening of That’s the Way, the maracas on Bbron yr Aur Stomp.. All these unique nuances are heard to greater effect that ever before.

Creatively, well we all know it was a watershed album as they emphatically demonstrated that Led Zeppelin was not going to be just about plugging into Marshall and Orange amplifiers. There is a depth and subtly in these performances that is forever awe inspiring.

companion 3

As for the companion disc well this is a joy from start to finish –there’s so many enlightening moments – the vocal tracking on the line ‘’In spite of all your losing’’ on The Immigrant Song, the hypnotic quality of the instrumental Friends, the looseness of the Celebration Day mix, the Bonham drum assault in Bathroom Sound which is a masterclass of percussive brilliance. The incredible group synergy revealed by the early take of Gallows Pole, the lushness of the dulcimer led That’s The Way, the delightful early attempt at the Page guitar army approach on Jennings Farm Blues backed by some class Bonzo drumming. The sheer pure bluesness of the Key To the Highway/Trouble In Mind performance.

Best of all and worth the price of admission alone, is the take of Since I’ve Been Loving – a quite brilliant snapshot of the sheer creativity of Led Zeppelin that summer of 1970. Again it’s the group synergy at its best. Robert offers up an astounding vocal performance, Jimmy is out of this world and John and JPJ carry it all with effortless aplomb.

To paraphrase my own words in TBL 27: Folks, this version of is what the phrase ‘tight but loose’ was invented for as this take of Since I’ve Been Loving You is fucking incredible. And I use the adjective quite purposely and forcefully. Absolutely fucking incredible.

Led Zeppelin III summary:

This is my favourite album of the first three reissues – it holds so many memories from an enlightening period for me as a teenage Zep fan but at the same time, it sounds so contemporary and fresh. It’s just brimming with creativity and set the seal on the path ahead. Falling in love with it all over again this past month has been an absolute joy.

Overall Summary Led Zeppelin Reissues:

Well I guess it wasn’t too much of a predication when I proclaimed that these thrilling insights into the working methods of Led Zeppelin were going to please an awful lot of people across the globe. Given the feedback that has come TBL’s way (and many thanks for the huge response on this subject) well the evidence is plain to see. We have all had a ball soaking up these brilliantly devised reissues.

So in effect thank you very much Jimmy Page: stage one is mission accomplished and countless fans across the world have renewed their Zeppelin vows and partied like its 1969 and 1970.

Now bring on 1971 and 1973…..

DL – July 2nd, 2014


Jose’s story…

Long time TBL contributor and all round top man Jose Manuel Parada has had to wait  longer than most for the Led Zeppelin reissues – residing as he does in Guayaquil in Ecuador. Jose’s enthusiasm for all things Zep is a constant inspiration and is ample evidence of the effect this band have on followers from all parts of the world. I was lucky enough to meet Jose when he came over for the 02 reunion show – whenever his name comes up on an email, I know his passion will shine through and remind me of how much joy can be had from sharing the music…here’s Jose’s comments regarding the arrival of his long awaited coveted super deluxe box sets.. 


Got to open Zep I and II last night like if it was a child’s Christmas. World class quality and packaging. Books inside and other goodies are just stunnig. It’s not only about the music but also the emotions these releases brings and means to most of us.

My very first Zep CD was Zep II that my mom bought for me in the late 1980’s, the case still have a very old accidentally cigarrette burn and I can clearly remember when that happened. As I also remember the day my mom took me to the other side of town to buy it and so my addiction began.

Listened to I and II, overall sound, mix and channel mix is fantastic…, instruments sound brighter than ever (at least in my turntable) and up front in some songs and Robert at the front on some others which give the perfect feeling to the music. These remasters are a major triumph for Jimmy.

Acoustic guitars are a joy to the ears and one of the initial highlights and brilliant example for that is Babe I’m Gonna Leave You. Communication Breakdown sounds killer and so How Many More Times. Whole Lotta Love middle section and onwards, Thank You, Bring it on Home so many delights…!!! Still pending to listen to III and Olympia and Companion albums…Will send more feedback soon.

Jimmy on The Tonight Show: “Other people have done this, other people have remastered their catalogue so let’s see what we can do to make it like really special”….And special they are.., he has more than succeed in the job. Jose Manuel Parada.


Robert Plant Caption:


From this month’s Q magazine…you gotta love it! Thanks Michael Rae for this one. I also liked Steve Shaw’s’ comment on the TBL Facebook page that had Robert saying ‘’ Don’t you start, I’m not doing the bloody tour!’’

Old Empire supporting The Pretty Things:

TBL contributor Simon Cadman is in Old Empire the band supporting The Pretty Things on Friday July 4th at London’s 100 Club.


DL Diary Update:

We had a great night out last Friday watching the Marc Bolan 20th Century Boy Musical at the splendid New Wimbledon Theatre with the good lady Janet and Tom and Jacky. I’m not really a big fan of musicals but this totally won me over. Much more than a mere vehicle for the T.Rex catalogue, the story is intelligently told through a narrative that sees Marc’s son Rolan (excellently played by Luke Bailey) tryining to discover who is dad was and the story behind the myth.
Great performances too by Lucy Sinclair as Marc’s first wife June, Donna Haines as Gloria Jones and ex Coronation Street/Brookside actress Sue Jenkins as Marc’s mum Phyllis. As for the lead role – Warren Sollars is a well convincing Marc Bolan with all the trademark moves intact. The sound, staging and general band performances were superb and I was also very impressed how they interwove the songs into the story with subtly and panache –notably lesser known Marc delights such as London Boys, Dreamy Lady and Light Of Love.
Funny, moving and with a finale that had the enthusiastic crowd up and dancing (including all four of us – me and Tom despite our dodgy knees!) 20th Century Boy is pure entertainment and is deserving of a West End run. It now moves to the Wolverhampton Grand Theatre (June 30 to July 5), Plymouth Theatre Royal (July 7 -12) and Southend Cliffs Pavilion (July 14 -19). Get it in on while you can…
More details at

We didn’t quite have the gathering here I’d envisaged to watch the Robert Plant Glastonbury appearance as the good lady Janet was under par with a sore throat. However it was exciting watching the action unfold live as it happened on the BBC iPlayer.  After a tentative start I though he really got into his stride as did the whole band. Rainbow was the perfect song as the rain cleared and the Whole Lotta Love/Rock And Roll finale hit the mark. All boxes ticked.

I had to laugh at a Facebook comment that came in when Justin Adam’s son Joe joined them on stage for some ad hoc dancing…”who’se that little runt!” came the comment rather abrasively. It was only Joe…I reckon Joe stayed on the stage with his dad to form the back drop of fans and friends that surrounded Metallica’s performance. I am not a fan of the latter but I did think they played with a sense of purpose and brought a sense of occasion to the proceedings. On the Sunday afternoon Dolly Parton was on sparkling form. Despite the rather rainy conditions it was a hugely successful festival – watching it all unfold in the comparative dry at home on TV is one of summers delights.

As is this Brazil World Cup which keeps on delivering. The USA v Belgium match was utterly compelling to the end – it was a genuine shame to see USA go down 2-1 despite a valiant effort. The quarter final line up looks set to be a real feast.

I also enjoyed the BBC Imagine documentary on the reformation of the Monty Python line up for their O2 concerts – it’s easy to forget how many great sketches they have stacked up. Back in the day watching it felt genuinely anarchic – as though you were in on a secret joke club such was the absurdity and silliness of it all. It still makes for laugh out loud viewing and I wish now I’d done something about getting tickets. The Python’s were intrinsically  linked with Zep in their hey day – the sketches were often fodder for Plant’s onstage raps (”My brain hurts”) and they helped fund the Holy Grail film.

On the playlist – Led Zeppelin For Badgeholders Only and Burn Like A Candle,  Lovin’ Spoonful Greatest Hits, T-Tex Bolan Boogie, Robert Plant Pictures At Eleven,  Joni Mitchell Court And Spark & Hissing of Summer Lawns (both those Joni ‘s are perennial summer faves) and the Easy Rider soundtrack.

Bit of a tricky week here with one or two unforeseen developments to take on board that have caused some soul searching.  I am hoping to sort the new TBL T-shirt offer soon and work has begun on TBL 38 with the design of  Andy Croft’s excellent Zep tape analysis of their March 1975 US tour performances.

There’s also been the bargain price Knebworth book offer to get up and running – if you have yet to invest now is the time to soak up some prime Zep summer reading. Can’t believe it’s 40 years since that first Knebworth concerts with the Allmans. I am trying to fit in a visit to the Knebworth exhibition at some point before September. A walk in that field is always inspirational – and talking of inspirations …

 There are times when you need to surround yourself with the things that inspire. Here’s a few inspirations from the DL collection…


You Tube clip round up:

Little Maggie at Glastonbury:


Robert Plant and The Sensational Space Shifters Live in Morocco:


Jimmy Page on Absolute Radio:

Until next time…have a great weekend…

Keep listening, keep reading…

Dave Lewis/Gary Foy – July 4th , 2014.

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  • Simon said:

    Thanks for flagging up Old Empire at the 100 Club gig, Dave. Among the originals, we threw in Custard Pie and Celebration Day. People clapped. It was great. For anyone who’s not seen the Pretty Things, get on it. They were very good indeed, playing a set of early R&B then a second from their classic psychedelic period. It was an honour to be their support act. You can see why the Zeppers admired them. The PT’s drummer is astonishing and thrillingly Bonham-esque:
    Go see ’em!!!

  • Stephen said:

    Their Bath performance was definitely filmed, but the film crew didn’t use the right film for night shooting and it was unusable. I’ve often wondered with the new technology available if it could have been brightened and made viewable. I actually think the film was destroyed. Anyway, I’m not sure about the audio, but with The How the West was Won covering some of Zep 2, he probably thought it was just duplication or maybe the Festival owned the rights to the tracks. Mr Lewis probably knows. He always does, thankfully!

  • gerald clothier said:

    regarding the reissues matter,i have somewhere in the loft in one of my led zeppelin scrapbooks an interview with jimmy page where he talks about doing a live album,in the interview he does say that led zeppelin”s appearence at bath 1970 was indeed recorded by the band,now one must ask the question why the hell did”nt he put the performance on led zeppelin two,i am sure i am right about this,perhaps somebody else can find out for sure that they did indeed record at the bath gig……gerald

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