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12 November 2020 3,051 views 12 Comments

Led Zeppelin Berkeley Daze 1st Night 4 LP bootleg box set: 

Here’s my thoughts on the recently released Berkeley Daze 1st Night 4 LP bootleg box set… 

48 years ago this month I purchased my first ever Led Zeppelin bootleg. It was the famous Live On Blueberry Hill on the Trade Mark of Quality label on colored vinyl. I paid £6 for it via a postal order to a mail order outlet I saw advertising in Sounds music paper. It’s arrival on Thursday December 14 1972 was a red letter day for sure.

Thus began a never ending quest to unlock the live archive of Led Zeppelin via the bootleg medium.

In January 1973 I invested in the Going To California double album bootleg from the same source. To be precise it arrived on January 19 1973 – these dates are important and all logged in the diary. This has remained one of my all time fave Zep albums. Come the bootleg CD explosion I subsequently picked up various versions on CD.

In 2017 I was well pleased when the Casino Records label produced a two LP vinyl reissue. The packaging and content of Berkeley Daze 2nd Night was first class.

The news that the first night of this two night run at the Berkeley Theater was due in a 4LP box set was a mouthwatering prospect

So last Friday November 5 I took receipt of this limited 4 LP bootleg box set Led Zeppelin Berkeley Daze 1st Night.

Here are my thoughts on it all…

My copy is the Blue Aquamarine vinyl edition number 72 of 200 only

There’s also a crystal vinyl version again 200 only.

It’s packaged in a sturdy outer box set

Inside there’s a four page 12 inch size insert with two live 1971 live shots and a familiar 1972 shot of Jimmy and Bonzo in a limo – minor nitpick here – shame they could have not kept to the 1971 era. There’s an informative sleeve note and on the reverse the 1971 group promo shot from the time and a pleasing reproof the Bill Graham presents advert for these shows and others.

Also in the box is an insert card with the famous Wm Stout artwork with a signed signature

The sound quality:

This is the complete recording spread over eight sides as featured on the 2 CD sets that appeared on the Godfatherecords label.

Whilst not as clear as the stereo audience recorded second night immortalised on the Going To California bootleg and issued via this label in 2017 as a 2 LP vinyl set Berkeley Daze 2nd Night, this is still a very acceptable audience recording – slightly distant but with plenty of top end vitality -as used on previous CD releases.

The music: This night has always been overshadowed by the high profile availability of the second night. This new release will redress the balance as it’s an absolute stellar performance with plenty of set list delights.

I am so familiar with the second night’s performance via the various Going To California and like many reading, this can recite all the Plant in between song comments.

I do own the 2 CD Berkeley Days 1st Night presentation on the Godfatherecords label – this new vinyl version provides the opportunity for a fresh analysis and there is much to be thrilled by…

It all begins with band introductions by promoter Bill Graham.

As expected Jimmy’s name receives the biggest response – there’s no doubt that his Yardbirds pedigree had established his name on the West Coast.

Immigrant Song is of course a blistering opening

Robert’s shrill quintessential rock howl dominates – at this point in their career, the power of his vocal delivery was simply unstoppable. Jimmy takes on the extended solo and there’s shades of the riff work he applied to The Yardbirds live delivery of Mister You’re a Better man Than I. Plant’s enthusiasm is evident as he comes in with an ‘ooh year alright’ squeal as they hit the home straight.

The opening riff Heartbreaker is greeted by mass applause and off they rattle with surging gusto.

It’s worth noting that the crowd reaction can be clearly heard on this tape as opposed to the September 14 Going To California recording.

Long time TBL contributor Hiroshi noted a few weeks back that he felt these Berkeley nights were hampered by a lack of crowd reaction. This recording challenges that notion. The audience are boisterous and noisy throughout.

Jimmy’s solo an amazingly fluid piece of guitar mastery –complete with that customary delightful sidestep into the 59th Street Bridge Song and Bouree. The moment they come back in for the final verse is pure electric magic –Robert’s echo drenched vocal screeching it all to a halt.

Since I’ve Been Loving You is driven by John Bonham all the way and the tape captures the clarity of his booming bass drum and snare.

‘’We got a new album coming out in about three weeks time. There’s been so much messing around, trying to get a cover.’

Following a rampant Black Dog,a suitably on the edge Dazed and Confused clocks in at 21 minutes and is a similar arrangement to the next night.

A tentative Stairway to Heaven is given prime mid set space. It’s always interesting to hear the song in a less than reverent setting – the crown perhaps slightly baffled by it’s meandering intro – by the song’s climax though they are totally won over as the crown reaction is warm and receptive.

Jimmy’s newly acquired double neck guitar stays on for a thundering Celebration Day – though the tape here is a little overloaded.

‘This is where we sit down’’ explains Robert getting into some banter with the crowd.

Eventually they settle into a delicate delivery of That’s The Way which is followed by an equally fragile rendering of Going To California.  John Paul Jones’ mandolin playing to the fore.

A strident romp through What Is And What Should Never Be leads to the percussive stampede that is Moby Dick.

Whole Lotta Love is preceded by a short ad hoc jam on a riff that might well have been something they were working on at the time – it has a Walters Walk feel about it.

The Whole Lotta Love medley is in keeping with the arrangement of the time as they channel the spirit of Ricky Nelson and Elvis and later Willie Dixon respectively on Hello Mary Lou,Mess of Blues and You Shook Me.

A ramshackle encore of Communication Breakdown that includes a snippet of Gallows Pole closes proceedings

‘’Good night San Francisco.’’



This release on vinyl is a welcomed vinyl record package – and collectors of vinyl Zep bootlegs will be keen to seek it out.

I will say there is a lot of getting up to change sides and this way of listening to a compete Led Zep performance is quite fragmented.

There’s of course no doubting the quality of the performance. I personally love this era as it brings back vivid memories of my first in concert experience of Zep when I witnessed the second night of the Electric Magic on the night of November 21 1971 – a couple of months after the US tour and their first Japanese visit. Those dates in late September saw them stretch out their sets with all sorts of playful covers.

This then is Led Zeppelin live on stage in 1971 at the top of their game as presented on 4 vinyl records -and the collector novelty of that will be more than enough attraction to draw in 400 potential recipients of this very nicely packaged limited box set.

Dave Lewis – November 12, 2020


More Berkeley 1971:

Here’s the Berkeley 1971 entries in the Evenings With Led Zeppelin book -via Mike Tremaglio’s research…

September 13 & 14, 1971 – Community Theatre – Berkeley, California, USA


September 13, 1971:

Immigrant Song, Heartbreaker, Since I’ve Been Loving You, Out On The Tiles (Intro)/ Black Dog, Dazed And Confused, Stairway To Heaven, Celebration Day, That’s The Way, Going To California, What Is And What Should Never Be, Moby Dick, Whole Lotta Love Medley (inc. Boogie Chillun’, Hello Mary Lou, Mess O’ Blues, You Shook Me, Gee, Baby Ain’t I Good To You, Kind Hearted Woman Blues), Communication Breakdown (inc. It’s Your Thing, Gallows Pole)

September 14, 1971:

Immigrant Song, Heartbreaker (inc. The 59th Street Bridge Song (Feelin’ Groovy)), Since I’ve Been Loving You, Out On The Tiles (Intro)/ Black Dog, Dazed And Confused (inc. Back In The USA), Stairway To Heaven, That’s The Way, Going To California, Whole Lotta Love Medley (inc. It’s Your Thing, Just A Little Bit, Boogie Chillun’, Hello Mary Lou, My Baby Left Me, Mess O’ Blues, You Shook Me, The Lemon Song)

Background Info:

The band bypassed nearby San Francisco on this tour again as they had the previous year when promoter Bill Graham booked them to play in Oakland at the Coliseum Arena. This time their Bay Area appearance was at the Berkeley Community Theatre for two gigs (once again presented by Graham).

Press Reaction:

It is very apparent from the Oakland Tribune (September 22, 1971) concert review that critic Doris G. Worsham was not prepared for the volume level at a Led Zeppelin concert. In her review, titled “Led Zeppelin bows in with a roar”, Worsham continually harped on the band’s volume.

She opened the review by stating “Led Zeppelin, tabbed a supergroup by many rock critics, proved only to be loud, boisterous and very deafening at their first Bay Area appearance in over a year last week.”

But she didn’t stop there. She said the sound projection was “almost unbelievable, and often unbearable”. ‘Since I’ve Been Loving You’ was considered “moving, dramatic, and gutsy, but absolutely too loud”. ‘Celebration Day’ was considered “a hard, driving number that was unbelievably loud, shook the auditorium and the people in it”.

Volume issues aside, Worsham did state that “it is well know that Led Zeppelin is a talented group. Jimmy Page is without a doubt one of the best guitarists in the musical world. John Bonham is a great drummer, bassist John Paul Jones is an above-average performer and Robert Plant, well, he has been called a male Janis Joplin.”

Ironically enough, highest praise was given to Bonham, as he presented “one of the most phenomenal drum solos this reporter has ever witnessed. The half-hour solo had the crowd in a frenzy and they roared its approval until his conclusion.”

The show was also reviewed in the Hayward Daily Review (September 30, 1971) by Kathie Staska and George Mangrum. Once again, John Bonham’s solo was called out as being exceptional: “The best thing that happened in the gig was an over 30-minute drum solo by John Bonham. If it wasn’t the best solo on the skins we have seen it was one

of the very best and we have seen an awful lot. John just did not keep up a tremendous beat on the solo, but he used his hands as well. We have heard some drummers’ hands but he was beating the drums as hard and with as much energy as one cat could. He received the loudest applause of the night and several standing ovations during and after his solo performance.”

As for Robert Plant, the reviewers said: “He did a fine job, especially on ‘Whole Lot Of Love’ (sic) toward the end of the show. But his performance wasn’t anything great, and on long tunes Plant died on the vine. His style was exciting as was his chords, but when he tried to slow things down they lost all momentum.”

Jimmy Page was given praise for keeping “the show going with his excellent guitar playing. He played many guitars and played them very well and often.” John Paul Jones was considered “super at times, not just bass but on organ. He did a solo organ piece for one of the group’s two encores that was great. A big stuffed animal was brought out on stage and Jones played to it.”

Once again, the band were taken to task for their volume level: “Over all, they put on a very loud hard rock performance that was fine considering we have never seen them before … A lot of groups think it is not what you play, or how good you play, but how loud you play. And Led was loud – so loud at times they were unenjoyable. Besides all that Led Zeplin (sic) is cool.”

Bootleg Recordings:

September 13, 1971 (136 min. audience source):

While not nearly as acclaimed as the next night, the first show in Berkeley is also excellent in its own right (though the quality of the bootleg recording is significantly worse).

September 14, 1971 (98 min. audience source):

The September 14 Berkeley concert was immortalized on the Going To California bootleg LP. This Trade Mark of Quality (TMOQ) bootleg was released in 1972 and has been a fan favorite ever since. The performance and quality are bothexceptional.

Chuck Berry’s ‘Back In The USA’ was incorporated into ‘Dazed And Confused’ and the extended ‘Whole Lotta Love’ medley was superb, featuring a litany of rock and roll standards.


LZ News:

Led Zeppelin News Update:

For all the latest Zep and related news check out the Led Zeppelin news website at:


Led Zeppelin Knebworth 1979 and Over Europe 1980 footage:

Detlef Sibbe has been in touch to relay the info that his 8mm film rolls of Led Zeppelin at Knebworth 1979 and Dortmund Over Europe in 1980 have been digitized via LEDZEPFILM on YouTube – here’s the links to view below…





To mark  the 40th Anniversary of Led Zeppelin’s final tour over Europe in 1980 I am making available a strictly limited edition repackage of the Led Zeppelin Feather In The Wind – Over Europe 1980

This 40th anniversary limited edition has a glossy newly designed book jacket my Mick Lowe with exclusives on stage photos from the Over Europe 1980 tour.

Each book includes an additional separate four page insert. This features a new 2,000 word interview with author Dave Lewis conducted with Mike Trmaglio in which he discusses the making of the book and the impact of the events of that final Led Zeppelin in the summer of 1980. Each insert is individually numbered and signed by the author.

Please note the actual book content is the version published in 2011.  There is no additional content to the actual book. The repackage consists of a brand new cover and the limited edition four page interview insert.

It all adds up to another exclusive strictly limited TBL collectors item. If you have yet to invest in the book previously this is an opportunity to do so.

This repackage of the book is being made available in a strictly limited edition of just 65 copies – each book is individually numbered and signed by the author. Please note delivery times will be longer than usual due to the current situation.

These are the last 65 copies of the books print run – once they are gone –they are gone and the book will be out of print.

This is therefore a final opportunity to invest in a unique limited edition package of this highly acclaimed book.

Here’s the order link:


Led Zeppelin Marquee Merchandise:

The London Marquee website has introduced a range of Led Zeppelin marquee associated merchandise  – check it out at the link below – many thanks to Andy Adams for this info;


Jimmy Page interview and feature in new GQ magazine:

There’s an excellent feature and interview with Jimmy Page in the new GQ magazine.

The editor Dylan Jones offers a perceptive overview of the Led Zeppelin phenomenon and puts a few questions to Jimmy regarding the Jimmy Page Anthology book and aspects of his career – refreshingly he comes up with some different angles during the interview and all in all it’s a very interesting read. There’s also extracts and photo spreads from the book. Many thanks to Max Harris for bringing this one to my attention.



I particularly liked this summary from Dylan Jones:

”Their one off reunion gig at London’s 02 arena on 10 December 2007 is justly considered to be one of the greatest concerts of all time. I was there and it was.

Think of the gatefold sleeves, think of the violin bow power chords, think of the head thrown back wail, and think of the most important neanderthal  noise made since Elvis fused country and rhythm and blues.

In their sonic pomp Led Zeppelin were the mothership of motherships; what was extraordinary is how similar they sounded at the 02. It was the gig of gigs, full of expectation and who knew?  satisfactory delivered. To these ears they sounded just like they did in their heyday, perhaps even better. Monstrous, thunderous, Epic.”

I’ll go along with those words…

More GQ details at:ant


DL Diary Blog Update:

Wednesday November 11:

Happy 60th Birthday to Mr Billy Fletcher – Led Zep connoisseur, long time friend and TBL supporter, ardent Glasgow Rangers fan and all round top man – have a great day mate!

Wednesday November 11:

It’s a Happy Birthday today to the great Yardbirds member and photographer Chris Dreja.

Back in August 2015, I was lucky to meet and chat with Chris at the Led Zeppelin From The Beginning 1963 – 1975 Photo Exhibition at Proud Gallery in Gallery:

I interviewed Chris for the TBL mag about his group photo that adorns the back cover of the Led Zeppelin 1 sleeve. The pic here shows me with Chris admiring that iconic photo..

Update here…

I took a bad dip mentally at the weekend for various reasons but I have felt better these past few days. I’ve been busy assessing some ideas for next year and sorting out the TBL archive. Janet has been full on at the pre-school – our walks have been ongoing to help strengthen her leg. The news of a potential vaccine is of course encouraging but by all accounts there’s a number of hurdles to get over…with infection rates rising in this second wave, as ever my thoughts are with all of youto stay safe and well…

Some particular inspirations this past week…

Walks with Janet…

A catch up on the phone with Ross Halfin…

Reading the excellent Dylan Jones feature in GQ magazine…

A  catch up on the phone with Andy Adams…

The new issue of Uncut dropping through the door…

Talking record ‘bollocks’ on the phone with my fellow record collecting enthusiast John Parkin…

Thanks for listening – stay safe and well you very lovely people…

Dave  Lewis – November 12, 2020

Until next time, stay safe and stay well…

Website updates written and compiled by Dave Lewis

Follow TBL/DL on Facebook:

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

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  • Larry said:

    Hiroshi thanks for your comments and that’s an interesting quote from Plant that was captured by Mr. Fukuda, and certainly jibes with Page’s quote from his website on same.

    As I’m sure you know, Berkeley was basically the birthplace of the US “hippie” and “counterculture” movement in the 1960s. The Grateful Dead grew up and percolated in that milieu, and along with other SF area bands of renown sort of created the soundtrack of that time and place, and of course much of it resonates to this day.

    I don’t think Zeppelin was ever really embraced in that realm, perhaps they were seen as a “con” or “sellout” by some of the movers and shakers of that area. I recall Plant’s own joke about the band when he called them the “decadent capitalist hippies” onstage in Dallas 1975. I think he was at least partly joking, but at the same time I think that’s how some of the “true believers” saw them, and I’m guessing he and Page (well, Jones and Bonham as well of course) were very well aware of that.

    One other aside, the Berkeley Community Theatre was exactly that, a Theatre. It’s not a huge place by rock concert standards, seating about 3,500. There was no “floor seating” or “standing room” type of situation that sometimes occurred in an arena. There were stationary chairs and everyone was seated. By 1971, Zeppelin were playing and selling out massive venues like Madison Square Garden and The Forum. So the delivery of the music, while I’m sure Zep’s road crew would have been adjusting the sound for the size and acoustics of the respective venue, was likely a bit startling for the SF area crowd.

    The Dead played the hall 26 times over the years, were beloved in the area, and while I’m not an expert on the band, I’ll hazard a guess that they were probably inspired by playing there.

    Long story short, Berkeley wasn’t really “Zeppelin country”, so to speak.

  • Hiroshi said:

    I find your comment very interesting, as Ichiro Fukuda, the music critic who quoted Robert’s comment on the Berkeley crowd, recollected in the same article that he had experienced a similar reaction when he attended one of the Grateful Dead concerts at the same venue not long before (the Dead played at the Berkeley Community Theatre on August 14 and 15, 1971). The way the audience treated Zeppelin, therefore, may have been typical of the area in those times. Also worth consideration is — as Jimmy mentions in his entry of the day — that Berkeley is a renowned university town. It is no surprising some kind of snobbery was observed among the crowd.

    Last but not least; when I posted Robert’s comment on TBL website, Sept 17, I solely relied on my memory to put it in words as I don’t have the magazine at hand, where Fukuda’s original article was published. As I later found the article transcribed on the internet, I translate the comment back into English and post it below to do it justice. It was supposedly given during the welcome party held at Hotel Hilton Tokyo after the press conference, Sept 22, 1971.

    “When we went down to San Francisco and played at the theatre in Berkeley, the attitude of the audience was so poor — in the beginning they were quite inattentive, but once somebody stood up and started shouting, everybody followed, stood up and shouted, “More! More!” in the end. We were so disappointed.”

  • Dave Lewis (author) said:

    Thanks Larry

  • Larry said:

    The Bay Area was, is and probably always will be Dead Country. I like the Dead well enough but it’s a completely different kettle of fish from Zeppelin, and I think there was some snobbery up that way re. same. The Dead were a long-form jam band and one could mellow out in whatever way one wished and take it all in.

    When Zeppelin hit the stage, they opened the show like they meant it, and blew the audience back in their seats. The guess here is that maybe some of the rock fans of SF were used to something a little different and their tepid responses (according to what the band was used to) was probably the bone of contention. Or perhaps they were just shocked into oblivion.

    I certainly don’t find anything wrong with the music that was played in Berkeley by Led Zeppelin on September 13 and 14 of 1971. And I’ve long held Osaka 929 as my all time favorite show, certainly decades before the excellent soundboard of same surfaced. But the great concerts in Japan don’t diminish the other performances of the era.

    Maybe some of the Deadheads didn’t like it, but the music Zeppelin played in Berkeley 1971 is top shelf all the way in this fan’s opinion, lack of Dead Country crowd enthusiasm notwithstanding.

  • Dave Lewis (author) said:

    Hiroshi many thanks for your comments

  • Hiroshi said:

    Berkeley Daze or Berkeley Haze?
    I haven’t listened to the Berkeley first night for ages. Regardless of how the crowd noises may sound like on the recording source of the day, according to “On This Day” from his website, Jimmy’s recollection of the audience [posted on Sept 13, 2011, quoted below] is anything but complimentary;

    “On this day in 1971, I played with Led Zeppelin at the Berkeley Community Theatre and the seated, uni-like audience seemed pretty non-plussed. It wasn’t a very good communion that night. Maybe that evening they: a) were contaminated by the negative press we had continually received from the locally-based Rolling Stone; b) were sitting in the remnants of the vibrant San Francisco music scene they had witnessed over the last 5 years; c) weren’t receptive to new music we played – material from the unreleased Led Zeppelin IV; d) were heavily stoned, or; e) were all of the above.”

    If this is how he felt towards what is seemingly the better of the two nights in regard to the audience’s responses as captured on the respective recordings, then, I wonder, what was his judgement on the uncannily quiet second night? It seems to me, individual negative remarks on the audience from both Jimmy (40 years after the event) and Robert (just one week afterwards) offer the enough evidence that Berkeley was among the low points of the 1971 U.S. tour. The group’s bypassing the Bay Area the next year only underlines the issues they experienced there.

    A thought on Mike Wilkinson’s comment —
    After all, bootleg is an acquired taste, isn’t it? I sometimes feel ‘experts’ take the significance of bootlegs for granted way too much.
    Led Zeppelin hadn’t released a live album until The Song Remains The Same soundtrack came out in 1976, which developed a sense of starvation among the fans in the old days. In my view, that formed the basis of their endless craving for live recordings, a mentality that has been passed down to next generations of fans. Well…that was then, this is now. With the officially released material to date, i.e. Paris 69, BBC Sessions, How The West Was Won, the aforementioned TSRTS, together with the DVD and Celebration Day, the group’s career of on stage activities through the years can be covered for the most part if not entirely — and that’s enough for the majority of fans. The self-proclaimed hardcore shouldn’t take this lightly.

    With that in mind, I would suggest Mike to visit Led Zeppelin Boots [], the YouTube channel dedicated to bootleg recordings of the group. And for a starter, I agree with Dave, Live in Osaka, Japan (Sept 29, 1971) [] is also my recommendation to pick up. Enjoy — and take it or leave it as you wish.

  • Dave Lewis (author) said:

    Rich many thanks for your kind comments

  • Rich Farquhar said:

    Hello Dave, thoughts regarding your current tough situation. I feel for you. I just acquired recordings of the famous Mike Millard for Jimmy Page, Inglewood 1988 and Robert Plant San Diego 1990. If receiving those burns would cheer you up, just say the word and I will ship your way. My way of saying “thank you” for everything you do!!

    All the best,
    Rich Farquhar

  • Dave Lewis (author) said:

    Aris enjoy!

  • Aris Roskam said:

    Hi Dave, thanks for the review. I’ve ordered my (blue) copy right away, it should arrive within 10 days.
    Besides this one, I’ve got an original TMoQ copy of the 2nd night. Can’t wait to play both nights (on vinyl) back to back…
    Cheers, Aris

  • Dave Lewis (author) said:

    Mike the Osaka Japan September 29 1971 show is essential….

  • Mike Wilkinson said:

    Bootlegs – I’ve never really “got” them and in fact only own one, the so-called legendary Bluberry Hill.
    Frankly, I was so underwhelmed, that I’ve never bought another one.

    However, it makes me wonder whether there is a “must have” one out there somewhere that is so outstanding that I’d consider getting a copy?

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