Email This Post Email This Post
Home » Dave Lewis Diary, Featured, TBL News


7 October 2020 2,387 views 11 Comments


Here’s something to look forward to…

Official Announcement – October 5,2020:

Led Zeppelin III

Celebrates 50th Anniversary Today

Limited Edition Reissue Of “Immigrant Song” Japanese 7” Single

Available For Pre-Order This Thursday

Jimmy Page, Robert Plant, John Bonham and John Paul Jones released Led Zeppelin III 50 years ago today in the U.S., on October 5, 1970, with the U.K. and other countries following a few weeks later. The band’s third album in less than two years, it would top the charts in several countries – including the U.S. and the U.K. – on its way to selling more than 13 million copies worldwide. Beyond its overwhelming commercial success, the album also represented a turning point musically for Led Zeppelin as the group expanded its hard-hitting sound to embrace a wider range of styles on acoustic-based songs like “That’s The Way,” “Tangerine,” and “Bron-Y-Aur-Stomp.”

In celebration of the record’s 50th anniversary, the band will reissue the Japanese version of the album’s only single – “Immigrant Song” b/w the non-album track “Hey, Hey, What Can I Do” – on 7” vinyl. Limited to 19,700 copies, it comes in a sleeve that replicates the original artwork. The single will be released on January 15, 2021 and can be pre-ordered at starting this Thursday October 8.

“Immigrant Song” was a Top 20 hit in the U.S. and has gone on to become one of the band’s most popular and enduring songs, currently ranking as their second most-streamed track worldwide. It’s also had an enduring impact on pop culture thanks to several memorable appearances in blockbuster motion pictures such as School Of Rock and, most recently, in Marvel’s Thor: Ragnarok.

“Immigrant Song” and its lyrical references to Norse mythology were inspired by the band’s concert in Reykjavik, Iceland on June 22, 1970. Six days later, the song made its live debut in England at the Bath Festival of Blues and Progressive Music. That fall, it would appear as the lead-off track on Led Zeppelin III.

Following the whirlwind success of the band’s first two albums and near constant touring, there was an initial rehearsal with Plant and Bonham where Page presented “Immigrant Song,” “Friends,” and what became “Out On The Tiles.” Page and Plant then took to the now famous Bron-Yr-Aur cottage in Wales in 1970 to have a musical sabbatical. The remote 18th-century cottage – which lacked electricity and running water – became home to “That’s The Way.”

Page and Plant later convened with Bonham and Jones for rehearsals before recording began in earnest that May with engineer Andy Johns. The band recorded the album in several locations, including London’s Olympic Studios and Island Studios. Following the recording sessions, Page, who produced the album, took the mixed master tapes to Ardent Studios in Memphis, Tennessee, to make the cut for vinyl. Fueled by classic tracks such as “Since I’ve Been Loving You,, “Out On The Tiles,” and “Celebration Day,” Led Zeppelin III has been certified 6x platinum in the U.S. alone while also achieving multi-platinum status in many other countries.

Beyond the music, the album is noteworthy for another reason; it’s innovative artwork. When it was originally released on vinyl, Led Zeppelin III came packaged in a gatefold sleeve, conceived by Page and designed by multi-media artist Zacron (aka Richard Drew), whom Page had met in the early 1960s when Drew was attending Kingston College of Art. For his design, Zacron created a surreal collection of images (planes, birds and butterflies) surrounding several cutout holes. Behind the cover, he placed a rotating disc (volvelle or wheel chart) that featured more images, including photos of all four band members. When the disc was turned by hand, different images would appear in the openings to create an interactive visual experience.

Led Zeppelin III

Side 1

  1. Immigrant Song
  2. Friends
  3. Celebration Day
  4. Since I’ve Been Loving You
  5. Out On The Tiles

Side 2

  1. Gallows Pole
  2. Tangerine
  3. That’s The Way
  4. Bron-Y-Aur Stomp
  5. Hats Off To (Roy) Harper


Robert Plant Interview:

This is an excellent interview via Rolling…


Reason prevails:

Reason has prevailed in the Stairway To Heaven cout case -see link below…


Eddie Van Halen RIP:

Like all of us I was deeply shocked and saddened to hear of the passing of Eddie Van Halen aged 65 – they will be listening to Eddie forevermore in heaven…

Jimmy Page paid tribute to Eddie on his Instagram

It is with great sadness that I heard the passing of Eddie Van Halen. ⁣

⁣He was the real deal: he pioneered a dazzling technique on guitar with taste and panache that I felt always placed him above his imitators. ⁣

⁣It was good to see him featured at the Met’s Play It Loud Exhibition.⁣

⁣R. I. P. Eddie⁣

Here’s some words about Eddie from long time TBL contributor Larry Bergmann Jr:

Having Eddie pass is a tough one for some of us here in the States…Van Halen came along here and kind of blew apart the “old world order” in rock.  And it was the sound, swagger and ENERGY that made their music so appealing, along of course with Eddie’s revolutionary playing, which sounded like something from deep space.  Guitar had never sounded like that before.

Of course credit has to go to David Lee Roth as well, he was the perfect frontman to go along with Eddie’s dynamic playing and the rhythm section of his brother Alex on drums and Michael Anthony on bass, who also took his instrument a few places that hadn’t been heard.

They were something to see live.  The records were great, but the live shows were just a flat out party, with Roth the Vegas-style host, complete with athleticism never before seen from a front man in rock.  And a sense of humor that wouldn’t quit.  Not everyone’s cup of tea perhaps, but I don’t think anyone went home bored.

No need to list all of the great songs, and they helped rescue radio here in the US at the time as well, especially as Zeppelin was in a down period in 1978 when the first VH album came out, and then of course they kept cranking out a good record on an almost annual basis thru 1984 when Zep was already a thing of the past.  It was hard without Zep, and VH helped fill a little bit of that void.

I like Sammy Hagar, but I didn’t find Van Halen quite the same once Roth was gone from the band.  But they made some good rocking songs with Sammy as well.

Some of my youth was spent with Van Halen, and they’ll always have a place in my head and heart.

RIP Edward Van Halen, and thanks

Larry Bergmann jr 


LZ News:

Led Zeppelin News Update:

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

Led Zeppelin

  • The makers of the official Led Zeppelin documentary film have struggled to obtain archive footage of the band during lockdown, according to a recent Los Angeles Times article. Producer Allison McGourty spoke to the newspaper about recent progress on the documentary as part of a feature on the impact of the coronavirus pandemic on Los Angeles.

Jimmy Page

  • Jimmy Page spoke to The Financial Times about fashion designer Paul Smith for a feature marking Smith’s 50 years in the fashion business. Page said he showed Smith his archive of stage outfits and Smith spotted a shirt that he had made. “This was a very surreal moment for me,” Page said.

Robert Plant

  • T Bone Burnett is selling the Sunset Sound console which he has used for releases from artists such as Robert Plant. The console will go on sale on Reverb from October 7.

John Paul Jones

Upcoming events:

October – The limited edition, signed prints of Jimmy Page’s guitars will be dispatched by Genesis Publications.
October 7 – T Bone Burnett’s Sunset Sound console, which he used on releases by Robert Plant, will go on sale on Reverb.
October 13 – The affordable version of Jimmy Page’s Anthology book will be released in the UK.
October 16 – Footage of Them Crooked Vultures’ 2010 Royal Albert Hall performance will be shown on the Teenage Cancer Trust Unseen YouTube channel.
October 20 – The affordable version of Jimmy Page’s Anthology book will be released in the US.
June 18-20, 2021 – Robert Plant will perform as part of Saving Grace at the Black Deer festival in Kent.
September 25, 2021 – The 2021 John Bonham celebration event will be held in Redditch.

Many thanks to James Cook.

The complete Led Zeppelin News email goes out periodically. To receive it sign up here:

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


TBL Archive 1:


To mark the 48th anniversary of the Led Zeppelin Olympia Paris gig today,  here’s my 2014 review of the companion disc that features Jimmy’s edit of the show. 

Led Zeppelin Led Zeppelin I

The Companion Audio Disc: Live at the Olympia, Paris, October 10th 1969

Good Times Bad Times / Communication Breakdown (4.05)

I Can’t Quit You Baby (6.41)

Heartbreaker (3.49)

Dazed and Confused (15.01)

White Summer / Black Mountain Side (9.19)

You Shook Me (11.55)

Moby Dick (9.21)

How Many More Times (11.14)

zep one reissue

The debut Led Zeppelin album was the recorded statement of their first few weeks together. The material selected had been well rehearsed and pre-arranged by the four, one of the primary reasons it took a mere 36 hours to record the album at Olympic Studios, in Barnes, West London.

It’s evident there was very little left over from the album sessions, though back in 1992 Page did salvage Baby Come On Home (aka Tribute To Burt Burns), an outtake from this era that appeared on the Boxed Set 2 compilation. It’s been reported over the years that Zep rehearsed cover versions of The Band’s Chest Fever, Bobby Parker’s Watch Your Step and Elmer Gantry’s Flames but it would appear they were never recorded, as Jimmy has not come up with any alternate versions or outtakes from the first album’s sessions.

Instead he has used the companion disc platform for the first album to present a fully fledged 1969 live on stage recording. There may have been a case for an earlier representation of the band being made available- notably the early Fillmore 1969 appearances (and who knows maybe that situation will be addressed in the future).

However, Jimmy has opted for a later 1969 performance. The source is a radio broadcast of the band’s performance at the Olympia in Paris on October 10th 1969, recorded by Europe 1 radio for the Musicorama programme and part of a short European tour Zep were undertaking during that autumn. A 78 minute edit of the show was first aired on November 2nd 1969. Left to languish in the radio station’s archives for some 38 years, it was re broadcast on December 7th 2007, just three days before the band’s reunion concert at the O2 in London. The recording was subsequently bootlegged, most versions with the French DJ introductions left in and unevenly mixed.

Overall this is a much punchier mix than the bootleg version. To accommodate the formatting , there are some edits and the whole presentation clocks in at just under 70 minutes.

There is no band introduction and much of Robert’s between song chat is edited. As for the actual songs themselves, Good Times Bad Times/Communication Breakdown ,I Can’t Quit You Baby, Dazed And Confused ,White Summer/Black Mountain Side ( missing the ‘wanking dog’ Plant reference !) are relatively uncut from the original broadcast. The previously unheard Moby Dick clocks in at 9.21 – it can assumed that there has been some editing on this as Bonzo’s showpiece of the time was clocking in at around 15 minutes. There’s a slightly unorthodox intro to the piece as Jimmy comes in slightly later with the riff, behind Bonzo’s tympani playing. After the riff comes back in at the end, Bonzo undertakes a final percussive flurry with a boisterous shout and then a 50s riff from Jimmy brings it all to a close.

Heartbreaker is edited to a very compact 3 minutes.49 – during the solo just as the recording goes into that weird echo effect of the radio broadcast. Jimmy avoids that sequence and cuts it straight into the up-tempo solo – it all clocks in at a compact  3 minutes 49.

How Many More Times is scaled down from the 22 minute original performance to 11 minutes 14. There is some chat from Robert prior to the track – it then omits the onstage band member’s introductions during the intro as was custom at the time and cuts straight to the riff.

There’s therefore no room for Aynsley Dunbar reference or the Lemon Song/Boogie Chillun’ sequence featured on the broadcast  – however the Oh Rosie/Steal Away (backed by a distinctive Whole Lotta Love riff) and The Hunter is in there  – in effect this version is in a similar arrangement to that of its studio counterpart. A final goodbye and namecheck for the players brings proceedings to a close.

The Paris Olympia show vividly demonstrates Led Zeppelin’s progression as a unit during their first year together, in particular the growing confidence of Robert Plant, his shrill vocal attack adds real vitality and spark to the proceedings.

Highlights: The opening Good Times Bad Times/Communication Breakdown salvo with John Bonham doubling up the bass patterns to whip them into shape. The pure blues attack of I Can’t Quite You Baby and You Shook Me – the latter providing a loose framework for a lengthy improvisation –and the How Many More Times finale which carries the listener along on an irresistible adrenalin rush.

After completing another US tour in the fall of 1969, they would go on to revise the act for the opening gigs of 1970. This Paris performance is therefore a welcomed official representation of the band at this point – with a set list still full of Zep I vitality nurtured during the countless gigs they performed that year – and now maturing with the introduction of new material from the about to be released Led Zeppelin II.

This then is an energetic snapshot of the often wild abandonment performances of this era. Whilst the bootlegs serve their purpose, when it comes to the officially sanctioned live album releases (of which How The West Was Won would be a template), I feel there’s a real sense that we are hearing Led Zeppelin as its original founder perceives it. That is reason enough to welcome Led Zeppelin Live at the Olympia 1969 into your homes and onto your deck at the earliest opportunity…

Dave Lewis  – May 20th, 2014


Led Zeppelin III at 50:

To celebrate the 50th anniversary of the release of Led Zeppelin III are ‘s the first part of the making of Led Zeppelin III feature I wrote for Record Collector in 2010. 

Led Zeppelin III

Dave Lewis tracks the story of the album that ensured Led Zeppelin would be remembered for much more than stacks of Marshall amps….

At around 9pm on the evening of Saturday June 28th 1970, a pivotal moment occurred that would shape the whole future of Led Zeppelin. Following a performance of Thank You from their second album, forty minutes in to their bill topping set at the Bath Festival, Jimmy Page exchanged his Gibson Les Paul for a Martin acoustic guitar and John Paul Jones switched to mandolin. After a few minutes of tuning up Robert Plant joked with the audience that ‘’This is a medley of Lonnie Donegan tunes before announcing ‘’This is one of the really good ones especially for John Bonham’’.

As Page strummed the first chords Plant revealed ‘’This is called The Boy Next Door, for want of a better title’’. Led Zeppelin were playing acoustically on stage for the first time in the UK. The better title would appear as That’s The Way, one of the centerpiece recordings on their landmark third album issued forty years ago this month.

The significance of their Bath Festival acoustic performance could not be understated. This was a band who had often bludgeoned their listener into submission with the full on rock assault of the likes of Whole Lotta Love, Dazed And Confused and How Many More Times. Indeed performances of those songs at the Bath Festival did much to cement their growing reputation as the most popular band in the world. Clearly though, as indicated by that acoustic rendering of That’s The Way, Led Zeppelin were going to be much more than just purveyors of Marshall amplifiers.

‘’We are not a rabble rousing group’’ Page informed journalist Chris Welsh early that year. We are trying to play some music.’’

Unsurprisingly, was a mixed reaction to the album when it was released in October of 1970. Many critics and fans could not quite believe their ears. However,the clues however had long since been there. The acoustic overtones of Babe I’m Gonna Leave You, the folk instrumental Black Mountain Side (itself a borrow form folk guitarist Bert Janch’s Black Waterside) and the subtly of Thank You and Ramble On all displayed evidence of Page’s intention to bring what he would often describe as a light and shade to the proceedings.

Misleadingly,the overall bombastic thrust of Led Zeppelin 2 clouded the musical diversity that lay ahead. Written and recorded on the road in between an extensive touring itinerary in 1969 ,the nature of the recording sessions provided was little room for reflection and experimentation. Its untamed power was perfect for the emerging mass album buying public, and they entered a new decade with the album topping both the album charts on both sides of the Atlantic dislodging The Beatles Abbey Road in the process.

Despite the successful formula applied to their second album, for their next recorded statement they were determine to extend the musically boundaries that their hectic schedule had yet to allow time for.

Initially sessions for their third album carried on from where Zep 2 had left off. Their fourth American tour ended in on November 8th in San Francisco just as Whole Lotta Love the single extracted from Zep 2 was climbing the American charts. There was intense pressure from Atlantic in the UK to issue a similar edited version of the song for the UK market. Peter Grant’s no singles rule averted any such plan though not before a few hundred copes slipped out from a warehouse in Manchester – ensuring it’s long term rarity status.

When they gathered in Olympic Studios in late 1969 there was a plan to try and record something for single release. Announcing the withdrawal of the planned release of Whole Lotta Love in the UK in December of that year Peter Grant issued a statement that read ‘’the group had no intention of issuing this as a single as they felt it was written as part of the concept of the album. They’ve written a special number intended as their first British single which they are recording this week’’’. It’s possible one of the numbers under consideration was the semi acoustic Hey Hey What Can I Do, which eventually emerged as a future American single B side

Page had also mentioned the singles dilemma in September of that year. ‘’We are going to spend time on producing a single. It’s going to be a bit of a challenge because in the past on the albums we’ve done long tracks, so it’s a question of condensing a 15 minute performance down to about three minutes.’’ It’s also possible the statement from Grant may well have been a smokescreen to divert the singles controversy.

In the end the plan to record a single came to nothing. However,the late ’69 session did see the beginnings of what would emerge on Led Zeppelin 3 a year hence. Page experimented with a chord progression that over laid a series of Hendrix like runs. This was dubbed Jennings Farm Blues, a reference to Plants then farmhouse in Blakeshall. This track would remain voiceless and unreleased. However the melody of this electric piece would later emerge in an acoustic arrangement titled Bron Y Aur Stomp. Another song they worked on during these initial sessions was Since I’ve Been Loving You. A dramatic custom made blues that showcased Plant’s soaring range and Page’s guitar virtuosity to great effect.

Led Zeppelin opened the new decade riding high on the back of the sales success of Led Zeppelin 2. A sold out eight city British tour for which they set a precedent in appearing without a support act (aside for a date in Edinburgh where Barclay James Harvest did the honours), saw them further cement their growing reputation. The future Zep 3 standard Since I’ve Been Loving You made its debut on the tour and would remain in the set for many years to come. The set list for these shows included a new set opener, a cover of Ben E. King’s ‘We’re Gonna Groove’. This number was recorded in the studio for Led Zeppelin 2 but remained unreleased until it turned up on the posthumous Coda set in 1982.

The UK tour included a memorable showcase at the Royal Albert Hall staged on January 9th –the night of Jimmy’s 26th birthday. The performance was captured on film by Peter Whitehead for an intended TV documentary.’’’ We are working on a film’’ said Page at the time adding that ‘’This show was just like it was at the Albert Hall in the summer, with everyone dancing round the stage. It is a great feeling. What could be better than having everyone clapping and shouting along? It’s indescribable, but it just makes you feel that everything is worthwhile.”   Backstage visitors included Roger Daltrey and his wife Heather. Jimmy was introduced to Charlotte Martin, a French model with whom he would develop a long-term relationship and who would become the mother of his daughter Scarlet.   The show was professionally filmed on Grant’s instructions under the direction of Peter Whitehead and Stanley Dorfmann and recorded by Vic Maille on the Pye mobile studio (the same recording unit employed by The Who for the recording of their Live At Leeds album a month later) . Disc later announced that Zeppelin would be seen on TV screens this year for the first time in a £25,000 film financed entirely by the group. “The movie, an hour-long semi-documentary, will show scenes for the Albert Hall, a section of a States tour, individual members of the group off-duty with their wives and families – and a lot of live action shots. Peter Grant stated.

The film was their planned retort to the numerous TV offers they had turned down. Although they did a spate of TV shows early in their career, including a BBC2 appearance on How Late Is (long since wiped), they had turned down offers to appear on Top Of The Pops and This Is Tom Jones.

Despite plans to film other concerts and a sequence showing John Bonham’s then four year old son Jason playing drums, the TV documentary idea was eventually scrapped as they were unhappy with the quality of the Albert Hall footage. It was eventually salvaged by Page and restored for their official DVD which saw the light of day in 2003. The Albert Hall footage is unfortunately missing the embryonic arrangement of Since I’ve Been Loving You as some of the footage was too dark to be used.

The touring continued into Europe in February With Robert fully recovered the group were back on the road within a month playing 11 dates in Europe. The most memorable date occurred on February 28th in Copenhagen. Before the show they were confronted by one Eva Von Zeppelin. Claiming to be a direct descendant of the designer of one of the first airships, Count Von Zeppelin, she threatened to sue the band if they performed as Led Zeppelin, making the infamous statement: “They may be world famous but a group of shrieking monkeys are not going to use a privileged family name without permission.” For their KB Hallen appearance they went under the name The Nobs, a playful pun on the name of their European promoter Claude Knobs and, of course, a thinly disguised reference to something else entirely. Little was heard of Eva’s Von Zeppelin’s claim again and they were back as Led Zeppelin for their next show.

From March 21st to April 18th they were back in America for remarkably what would be their fifth visit in the space in a little over a year. Billed as ‘’An Evening with Led Zeppelin’’, the tour captured the band in full on rock assault mode for the final time. Despite a few run ins with the US authorities over their long hair and. They performed 25 shows on the tour with a show that now exceeded two hours.This one was arranged to continue their push for mass acceptance in the US and saw them perform in venues of 10,000 capacity and upwards. It was a gruelling schedule that eventually took its toll on Plant’s voice, the final date in Las Vegas being cancelled. Stone The Crows were initially announced as the support act for the tour but then cancelled. From now on in, the shows were billed as ‘An Evening With Led Zeppelin’ and there were no support bands. The political climate in the US was far from stable at this time. The shooting of four students on Ohio’s Kent State University campus during a demonstration against the Vietnam War had exacerbated the already edgy relationship between the youth of America and its police. With their long-hair and wild appearance the Zeppelin entourage attracted unfavourable treatment from the authorities. Plant was more sensitive to the unpleasantness than his colleagues and his observations would later flower into the lyrics of the Led Zeppelin 3 standard That’s The Way. “We’ve seen much in America we don’t agree with and our feelings of protest do reflect in the music,” remarked Plant. “People may think we make a lot of bread but in some cities it’s so rough – fans won’t come to our shows. We’ve been threatened with arrest if we returned to the stage and our manager’s had a gun pulled on him.” It was during this tour that Page had his Gibson ‘Black Beauty’ Les Paul Custom guitar stolen during a flight change. It wasn’t all bleak news though – in Memphis they were made honorary citizens and they sold out the venues in almost every city they visited. The total gross of the tour was over $1,200,000 with record breaking attendances reported in Montreal and Vancouver.

At the end of the tour Plant collapsed on stage at the end of their show in Phoenix Arizona due to a bout of laryngitis forcing the cancellation of the final date in Las Vegas.

Plant’s fatigue and illness highlighted the band’s current state. They all needed a rest. Since their debut tour of Scandinavia in September 1968 they had barely stopped performing. Burn out loomed and Peter Grant knew he had to allow them some slack.

Just prior to the much needed break, viewers to BBC2’s Sunday night Julie Felix Show were privy to a significant performance by Jimmy Page.

“My next guest this evening is a member of certainly the most successful group to come out of Britain in the last couple of years. Led Zeppelin LP’s top both the British and American charts and the lead guitarist in that group is definitely a very talented and special musician. Ladies and gentlemen: Jimmy Page!” That was the introduction afforded Page on the night of April 26th when the show aired. This rare Page rare solo TV appearance came about from Julie’s friendship with John Paul Jones and her being part of the RAK management stable that shared the same office as Peter Grant. Recorded at the BBC’s Lime Grove studio, the performance featured Jimmy picking feverishly away on an all acoustic delivery of White Summer/Black Mountain Side – a then prominent part of their stage act played as an electric piece on a Dan Electro guitar. On this occasion he used a Gibson J 200 acoustic guitar acquired from session man Big Jim Sullivan. This would be the last performance of this showpiece for nine years. Again the all acoustic setting was a hint of things to come.

The majority of May 1970 was deemed a holiday period – and this provided the perfect opportunity for Page and Plant to take a break together. The plan was to visit a run down cottage Robert had remembered holidaying there when he was a child. The cottage known as Bron Yr Aur Welsh for “golden hill”, “breast of the gold” or “hill of the gold” was an 18th century building located in South Snowdonia. It’s worth noting that all credits for Bron Yr Aur on the Led Zeppelin 3 album incorrectly named the cottage as Bron Y Aur. It was restored to Bron yr Aur for all future album credits notably the 1970 Bron Yr Aur acoustic track that eventually surfaced on Physical Graffiti.

This trip to the serenity of the Welsh countryside would emerge as a working holiday.

Together with a roadies Clive Coulson and Sandy McGregor, Jimmy and Robert plus visits from their ladies Maureen and Charlotte spent the month at the cottage. Given the lack of domestic electricity, the arrangements for the new songs that emerged were entirely acoustic thus setting the flavour for much of their third album.

“We’d been working solidly and thought it was time for a break, or at least some time to get away from the road’’ said Page. ‘’Robert suggested going to this cottage in South Wales that he’d once been to with his parents when he was much younger. He was going on about what a beautiful place it was and I became pretty keen to go there. So often we went; took along our guitars of course. It wasn’t a question of ‘Let’s go and knock a few songs in the country’. It was a bit of a case of getting away for a bit. As the nights wore on the guitars came out and numbers were being written.” Plant did tell of an incident when three guys on motorbikes tuned up at the cottage one night. We were preparing for trouble but it turned out they were Led Zeppelin fans who had just come for a chat. Turns out one of them was the son of a local farmer which came in handy as his dad said we’ d be welcome to fish on his private stretch of river nearby.’’ Roadie Clive Coulson told journalist Phil Sutcliffe ‘’They just wanted some peace and quiet. They met local people while they were there. They ended up buying some goats from one of the local farms. Jimmy and Robert went into Machynlleth and at pub called Owen Glendower. Everyone mucked in at the cottage, there was no superstar shit. Pagey was the tea man. The cottage was stone freezing cold. There was an open hearth fire. Pagey had a Martin guitar and they a lot of songs at the cottage’’

These compositions carried influence from a variety of sources. America was already feeling the soft rock influence of Crosby Stills Nash and Young – in fact Page and Plant were in attendance at the band’s London show earlier in the year. There was a definite Neil Young lit about I Wanna Be Your Man an acoustic skit that they left unfinished and Down By The Seaside which would eventually surface on Physical Graffiti. Plant’s reflective That’s The Way (aka The Boy next Door’’) was another number borne under the influence of the cottage.

The Rover, Hey Hey What Can I Do, Poor Tom and Friends were other songs that were first developed.

When the group reconvened for studio sessions at Olympic in late May e they had a good ten numbers at the ready to record stage. ‘’We’ll be recording for the next two weeks and we are doing a lot of acoustic stuff as well as the heavier side’’ John Bonham told Melody Maker’s Chris Welch from the studio. ‘’There will be better quality songs than on the first two albums’’



More thoughts from Hiroshi on Led Zeppelin in Japan – part reveals some little known facts on their 1972 visit:

Led Zeppelin in Japan: a few things not known across the sea (Part 2: 1972)

Below rare images of the Nagoya show, October 5 (photographer unknown)

Led Zeppelin and their entourage landed at Tokyo Haneda Airport at 11:51 on Friday September 29, exactly one year after the legendary show in Osaka that finished one of their greatest ever and most historic tours the last year. The cars they hired, however, didn’t go to the hotel straight away. First they headed for the adjacent Kawasaki-city where they would have a rest at a “special bathhouse”. Best not go further and leave it here before my writing traces the Hammer Of The Gods version 2.0 route… It was almost near the evening, around five o’clock, that they finally checked in at Hotel Hilton Tokyo.
It is often said that, on their second visit to Japan in 1972, they were banned from Hilton Tokyo because of the antics and the damage they did there in 1971. That is a myth. For all the troubles they made the previous time, they were somehow admitted to stay at the same hotel again. However, the Royal Hotel in Osaka where they had stayed in 1971 indeed refused them in 1972. They instead stayed at the Grand Hotel, which was situated in the same building that housed the Festival Hall where they played both times.
Like last year, a press conference was held in a large meeting room at the hotel on September 30. To the reporters who gathered, they announced that about 30 to 40 percent of the show contents would be new songs from the forthcoming album. Asked about the then thriving glam rock, the members shunned T Rex, suggesting that what Bolan was doing wouldn’t last long. As for Bowie, they appreciated that his work had certain substance.
On the 3rd, the day after the opening Budokan show, Page gave an interview to the Music Life magazine in his hotel room. Coming out of the Japanese style bedroom where he had slept in the futon spread on the tatami on the floor, he answered numerous questions. In relation to the question regarding musicians’ involvement with politics, Page replied, “Of course, I respect Lennon, but I think he has been less and less like him since Yoko came along. It feels like he has lost his identity… I’m afraid I may be rude to say this, as I know Yoko is Japanese… I can’t take what she does seriously.” A stark contrast of the view from the unsparing appreciation for John and Yoko by Plant, ever a hippie at heart.
This is the first time Bonham added a tympani to his kit. According to a now retired executive of Udo Artists who were the promoters for the 1972 tour, it was rented in Japan, not the group’s belongings.
The tickets for Led Zeppelin’s second Japan tour that also turned out to be their last, were released on September 1. Contrary to the myth, it was not a sell-out affair. From various sources, e.g. reviews and first-hand accounts of the fans back in time, one gets the impression that the venues were not 100 percent full. Tickets were available from the box office on the show day, even at Osaka’s Festival Hall that was a 3,000 seater, let alone the sizable Budokan with a capacity of 10,000-plus. The relatively short length of time between the ticket release and the concerts may have resulted in some lagging of the ticket sale.
The reviews were not favorable, either. There were voices of strong criticism and complaints heard from lots of people, especially those who had attended the show the previous year. They said it was way below the 1971 show in almost every aspect — the setlist, the show-length, the performance, the energy, just about everything. It was like a whole lotta backlash going on. And above all else, many pointed out the significant deterioration of Plant’s voice that was very noticeable and often painful to hear.
The inspired Osaka second night, the October 9 show, almost saved the day with its spirited performance, but when the group played a truncated set on the next and tour’s final night in Kyoto to catch the last bullet train (departure time: 20:49) that would get them back to Tokyo, where they would spend the last night in Japan partying all night at Byblos, things went pear-shaped. The group took the stage at 18:30 prompt, and once they finished the show that barely lasted over 90 minutes and the house lights were on, all hell broke loose. Shouts of anger filled the hall, and there was a near riot happening on the floor. Some rushing to the staff to complain, others climbing up on the stage, voicing their protest aloud.
It was reported that someone set fire to a flyer with a lighter and threw it in the bin! Rock ‘n’ roll, eh? Sadly, this is the scene unfolded right after Led Zeppelin’s last ever public appearance in Japan. Little did we know they would not set foot on our soil ever after.
On May 21, 2018, the rare poster for Led Zeppelin’s Kyoto show was offered at Japan’s Yahoo Auction. One week later, it fetched the final bid price: ¥248,300 (appx. £1,800). Some artifact, really.
Now, I wrap up this two-part series with a bitter tale of mine.
In the fall of 1979, when I was a young man, an elder rock fan I knew then — he saw all of Zep’s Osaka shows 71 and 72 but the first night 71, as well as Hiroshima 71 — informed me that he decided to part with his collection of hundreds of records. He generously offered me anything I want for reasonable price.
I picked couple dozens. As a bonus, he added a large-sized black and white poster of Zep’s acoustic set in Japan 1971, manufactured by Warner Pioneer, for free. A nice gesture and I was pleased with it.
“By the way,” he then continued, “I have a copy of the poster of their Kyoto show. If you want it, I’ll give it to you, too.”
“What does it look like?” I asked.
“Nothing special. Just a common group shot you see everywhere,” he answered.
“Hmm…I’ll pass it then.”
Don’t ask me why I said that. Later in my life, every time I remember the conversation, I cringe in deep regret. The news of the auction in recent years only rubbed salt into the wounds. Oh well, never mind…life goes on.
The infamous Kyoto show poster offered for the auction

Many thanks Hiroshi for those insights.


DL Diary Blog Update: 

Friday October 2:

Friday treats at the Vinyl Barn.

At a wet and rainy but always excellent Vinyl Barn this morning I was well pleased to find a copy of the Leon Russell triple album Leon Live – a US pressing on the Shelter label. Recorded at the Long Beach Arena in August 1972 (a few weeks after Led Zeppelin’s performance there part of which made up the How The West Was Won live set), this is in the grand tradition of early 70s live albums – six sides of the concert with versions of Mighty Quinn, Jumping Jack Flash and Delta Lady. All packaged in an impressive triple fold out sleeve – top stuff – thanks Darren.

Friday October 2:

At last… The new 2 CD compilation Robert Plant Digging Deep: Subterranea is in the house.. I am very much looking forward to celebrating his solo legacy – as he puts in the sleeve notes ‘’our ceaseless roar’’…long may he continue to do so…

Saturday October 3:

Saturday is platterday…on the player the Robert Plant Now And Zen album from 1988. At the time Charles Shaar Murray noted in his review in Q it was ‘’Plant’s most convincing exercise as a solo artist and his most successful attempt to reconcile his past and present”. Sounds mighty fine this morning…




Monday October 5:

Hayley Martin RIP:

A dazzling ray of light has been dimmed…

I am so very sad and my heart is truly broken to hear the passing of my very good friend, ex work colleague and beautiful soul Hayley Martin aged just 44.

Hayley came to work with me at the Our Price record shop I managed in Bedford as a Christmas temp in 1997. It was evident her peoples skills and musical knowledge were built for the job and she quickly became an important part of the team. Let me state this was not just a job as those who worked with me such as Rob, Lauren, Rachel and Matt will know. It was such a fun and exciting place to be as we combined our musical passions with a deep sense of commitment to provide the Bedford public with the entertainment products it craved. Back then working in music retail was such a buzz and the camaraderie we shared is something none of us have ever forgotten.

Hayley became central to all that and when Rob Jones moved up the ladder to be a manager, Hayley took over as assistant manager. Like Rob she combined unflagging loyalty with a calm approach that perfectly complimented my passionate drive –we made a fantastic team. All through those retail days I was also blessed with other great assistant managers such as Chris Eden, Colin Stonebridge, and David Brett and after Hayley went to manage her own V. Shop, Fleur O Leary.

This was really put to the test in 2000 when the Our Price shop changed it’s branding to V Shop and became an outlet for selling Virgin mobile phones. While this in many ways saved the business, online buying was increasing and physical sales of music products were suffering, it was hard for me to see the shop lose the musical focus that it had built it’s name on. Hayley was brilliant in ensuring that music focus remained as much is could – she was also superb at selling phones (as was Matt Ricketts) which more than made up for my lack of tech knowledge.

Against a lot of odds, the Bedford V.Shop proved to be very successful and profitable and much of that was down to Hayley’s incredible support and passion. This was also a period where I was combining my retail manager role with the running of the TBL magazine and writing Led Zep books. So, as I scooted off to interview John Paul jones, it was Hayley who ensured I was able to do so by putting herself out and holding the fort back at the shop. It’s worth noting she was always so supportive and interested in my Zep projects and books. When I gave her one of my Evenings With Led Zeppelin book in 2018,Hayley was thrilled to learn that one of her all time fave singers the late great Janis Joplin had appeared on a festival bill with Zep in the US in 1969.

In June 2001, I contacted a serious face infection and spent nine days in hospital and was off work for a month. Again, Hayley was right there for me keeping the shop moving along and putting my mind at rest. I remember Hayley and Rob coming to see me and Janet here and cheering me up with a present of a new Tottenham shirt – as they were both ardent Arsenal fans that could not have been an easy purchase to make – of course I still have it.

The good lady Janet would testify to how incredibly loyal Hayley was to me – indeed it was like having a second wife. We spent many hours together in the shop and shared so many ups and downs in the confines of 27 Harpur Centre Bedford. We laughed and cried in equal measures and shared a genuine bond in doing this job the best way possible and always endeavored to treat the staff with respect for their efforts and we loved every single minute of it.

Sadly, the selling off of many of the V Shops to the Australian retailer Sanity Records in October 2002 proved to be the end of my Bedford reign and Hayley’s too. I went off to spend the next seven years at Virgin Megastore in Milton Keynes before being made redundant in February 2009 and then going self employed working from here publishing my Zep books and magazines. Hayley transferred her retail skills to Game and then Tesco.

For a good while we lost contact but through Facebook, thankfully we got in touch again. Hayley told me how ill she had been with scleroderma a rare autoimmune disease. I was of course very concerned to hear that. Three years ago we met up and it was like we were back in the shop. Though her health was an increasing worry, Hayley’s sense of fun, dry wit and fortitude was so incredibly inspiring. That bond between us was as strong as ever.

This was at a point where I was beginning to suffer deep depression and anxiety. I found it was easy to unburden that to her and it was so cathartic to do so and she was so empathetic and understanding. Just as she had done some 17 years previous, Hayley became an incredibly important person in my life again.

We had a few more wonderful meet ups and chatted on the phone. We often laughed about the mad retail days in Our Price and V Shop – it’s incredible looking back how fulfilling and exciting that time was and we both felt huge gratitude for having shared it.

On June 6 2018 we had a nostalgic pic taken outside the site of the old Our Price which is now a phone shop –a similar pic to the one we had taken on the morning the V.Shop opened on September 27 2000. I’ve just looked at both pics with tears streaming down my face…

I will never ever forget her kindness and selflessness .Even though she was going though such health traumas herself, she was always concerned for me and Janet- particularly when Janet broke her leg in front of me just before Christmas last year and my increasing mental health issues. When I found myself sectioned in a psychiatric unit a few days after Janet’s accident, Hayley was one of the first people I called – I knew her kindness and understanding would inspire me and help get me through this troubled time and it helped me considerably…

Hayley was a massive Madonna fan and I am so glad she got to see her musical icon for one final time when she attended one of Madonna’s concerts at the London Palladium earlier this year.

In the last few months as her condition deteriorated , I tried to keep in touch and support her as best I could – again on those last phone calls even though she was gravely ill, Hayley would brush off her problems and worry about Janet and I.

After one such call on May 20 Hayley wrote on her Facebook page: ‘’Just got off the phone to one of the most influential men in my life. You know who you are and you know you’re my hero. Stay safe and know you are loved.’’

I was flattered, humbled and so deeply moved by that comment… it was the other way round – Hayley was my hero…

Hayley had planned to come and see Janet and I in late July but sadly it was not to be…

So selfless, so caring, so kind, so trusting, such fun, such empathy for people and above all so loyal and loving, I will miss this beautiful lady so much.

Madonna once sang ‘’and I feel like I just got home, quicker than a ray of light’’

Hayley, until we find you in your new home, always remember you lit up all our lives and your dazzling ray of light will shine in our hearts for evermore…


Dave Lewis

October 5, 2020

Update here:

A tough week here and even before the heartbreaking news of Hayley’s passing I was struggling. I took a real dip on Saturday and Sunday was worse. While many Spurs fans were revelling in their amazing 6-1 away win at Manchester United, I was in bed in a deep depression unable to face anything. One of the worst aspects of this illness is when it hits, I waste so much time that could have been spent positively – and then there’s deep regret at how I acted. Janet of course has to cope with all this too and it’s distressing all round. That’s how it was Saturday and Sunday. The message of Hayley’s passing came through at 10pm on Sunday night. It was devastating news.

Since then I have been trying to cope with the shock and grief of it  – the passing’s of Eddie Van Halen and Johnny Nash has been yet more sad news in a very difficult week. Aside form all that, with the infection rates on the increase and increased lockdown measures in various parts of the UK already in place and with possibly more to follow, it’s a very worrying situation.

Some particular inspirations this past week:

It’s been hard to find much inspiration this week at times but I certainly enjoyed Robert Plant’s appearance on Later With Jools last Friday…

On Tuesday, at short notice I had a visit from long time TBL supporter, Beatles expert and all round top man Paul Humbley. On the agenda during his short stay (Paul was down this way from the Midlands to visit his brother who he had not seen for a good few months) was a whole lot of Beatles talk and it was a welcome respite from some of the stressful things going on. Thanks Paul for cheering me up…here’s Paul pictured in the TBL hub.

This Friday would have been John Lennon’s 80th birthday and I will be soaking up the media coverage and searching out an appropriate Lennon playlist for the weekend. One album sure to be on is the brilliant 1971 Imagine  The lyrics of John’s song How? on that album are very much resonating with my current mood

”How can I go forward when I don’t know which way I’m facing?”  That’s certainly how it feels it sometimes here and I am sure I am not the only one feeling like that right now…

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

Dave  Lewis – October 7, 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


1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (No Ratings Yet)


  • Mike Wilkinson said:


    I’ve just had my money returned for the Hey Hey 50th anniversary single.

    There has been no explanation or anything from the seller and I just checked the link on here to find out if there was anything about it and found out that it had been cancelled at some point.

    I don’t know whether you posted it on here Dave but if you did, I clearly missed it.

    Because of the exchange rate (I guess) it’s cost me around £4, not in itself worth bothering with but if evryone has been caught out, that’s £71,600, plus nearly four months interest, somebody has made out of us!

    Very disappointing to say the least!


  • Dave Lewis (author) said:

    Ian thank you for your very moving words..

  • IanD said:

    RIP Hailey – Fond memories welling up from a wonderful and deserved Eulogy. Anyone fortunate enough to have spent time both sides of a music retail counter in those days will know how the experience sharpens and shapes. The shared commitment, the camaraderie, passion for the product and the desire to do the best job you could, because that was what the customer deserved. A team of diverse talents molded by the leaders and lieutenants but where every individual’s knowledge and ideas helped create the whole.

  • Dave Lewis (author) said:

    Hiroshi many thanks for those kind comments and info
    I apologise for formatting -not sure what went wrong

  • Hiroshi said:


    Amidst your sufferings and loss of the beloved friend and ex-colleague, thank you so much for another weekly renewal of the website — it was not an easy task to do under the tough circumstances you were going through. I was bewildered to see all of the spaces between the paragraphs of my article gone completely, but it is understandable you may have had difficulty in focusing as you normally would.

    On your obituary to Hayley Martin, her attending Madonna’s show at the London Palladium caught my attention particularly, as I was at the last night of Madge’s residency there, too — thinking that was Hayley’s last concert to see in her life makes me feel poignant, and that I have something to connect and share with her even though I have never met her.

    Regarding the commemorative reissue of the Japanese single, Immigrant Song b/w Hey, Hey, What Can I Do. Early in 1971, that was the song I discovered the group by. Aired on the midnight radio, Robert’s war cry singing gave me quite an impact. The single was released on January 25, and became the group’s biggest hit in Japan. However, that it topped the chart as described in Stephen Davis’ Hammer Of The Gods is far fetched, a false information. The highest position was No.13 as of February 15. Another myth-making albeit small by the notorious book.

  • Dave Lewis (author) said:

    Many thanks Wools

  • WOOLS said:

    Sorry for your loss of such a dear friend. Stay well Dave Lewis!


  • Dave Lewis (author) said:

    Byron thank you for your very kind words

  • Dave Lewis (author) said:

    Ian thank you so much

  • Ian in NZ said:

    Sorry to hear you’re having such a rough time Dave.

    One of Churchill’s lines might help: when you’re going through hell, keep going.

    All the best to you and yours.

  • Byron Lewis said:

    I think we’ve all had somebody like Hayley in our lives in the past. Currently got Sandy singing who knows where the time goes.
    Thanks for the updates, such a relief from the worldwide doom n gloom. Take care.

Leave your response!

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

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

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