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LONDON TERRORIST ATTACK/TBL ARCHIVE 1- THE LED ZEPPELIN 2003 DVD RELEASE – TBL ARCHIVE 2 STORYTELLERS 2002/JPJ IN CHURCH/ROBERT ON BBC RADIO/ LZ NEWS/SGT PEPPER AT 50/DL DIARY BLOG UPDATE

7 June 2017 2,125 views 8 Comments

LONDON TERRORIST ATTACK:

I watched the first news reports of the terrible terrorist attack in London late on Saturday night and then woke on Sunday to hear the full extent of the horror that unfolded around London Bridge and Borough Market – totally shocking.
Thoughts and a prayers go out to all those affected by yet another senseless attack….

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TBL ARCHIVE SPECIAL 1 – THE LED ZEPPELIN 2003 DVD RELEASE –  14 YEARS GONE:

It’s now some  14 years ago that Jimmy Page unlocked the Led Zeppelin film archive to present the five hour double DVD set simply titled DVD. Also released simultaneously was the triple live album How The West Was Won.

Looking back, it was in incredibly exciting outpouring of material.

In early April 2003, TBL then webmaster Dave Linwood and I were invited by Warner Music to attend an two separate exclusive playbacks -one for the DVD and another for the How The West Was Won set. The DVD playback took place at Metropolis Studios in Chiswick where the DVD film footage had been edited. It was hosted by the co director/producer of the DVD Dick Carruthers.

We were afforded a key insight into how Dick working closely with Jimmy Page, restored the original footage at their disposal into a coherent five hour edit. From the notes we took during a compelling playback, we were able to formulate an ongoing countdown preview on the TBL website running throughout the days leading up to the official worldwide release on May 26, 2003.

Prompted by the very welcomed viewing of the Royal Albert Hall film at the Icons of The Hall event a couple of weeks back – in the first of a series of TBL Archive features on the DVD and How The West Was Won, here are some of the day to day countdown previews we presented on the TBL website at the time. It captures the creative process of the project as relayed by Dick and the sense of expectation surrounding this unlocking of the archive at the time.

So back in 2003, this is how we awaited one of the most illumination periods in Led Zeppelin history all of 14 years ago…

TBL/WEB: DVD PREVIEW COUNTDOWN: with exclusive comments from co director/producer Dick Carruthers: TBL Overview Dave Linwood/Dave Lewis

38 DAYS TO GO: The Arch(Angel)elology: Buried Treasure
THE CREATIVE PROCESS:

There was a lot of footage to be reviewed. Dick described being confronted by 132 cans of film and video. In Dick’s words:”Buried Treasure”. All of the Albert Hall footage was silent – there was no soundtrack. Madison Square Garden was very fragmentary. There was only cursory labeling on the cans to describe what song/shots etc was in it.

To start the process, every single can of video or celluloid was digitised and then categorised by shot type (Albert Hall-drums, USA-audience etc etc). Then an attempt was made by members of the band and Dick to cross-reference shots to guide soundtracks already provided by Jimmy Page.

Dick hilariously described the process: “On the silent stuff it was a case of “Oh! Page’s got the Gibson Sunburst on – is it ‘I can’t Quit You’ ?” etc. etc. Dick described initial program discussions with Page: “How do we make this into a 2 hour program?” (The answer is obvious now, Impossible!). Page was the main driving force behind the project, choosing performances suitable for the DVD as well as making major contributions to the look and feel – especially to the later footage.

Some of the footage need “serious digital restoration work”. Using equipment such as the Archangel video archive processor, the footage was gone through frame by frame. At first this was a cleaning up process. Although they had the original footage in most cases (more on this later), the film did have the inevitable scratches and spots. The cleaning up process, takes colour from a nearby area and transplants this over the damaged part – slowly. Over and over again. As Dick said “You just polish & polish”

All was going very well with the polishing on the Albert Hall footage until it was noticed that the process was erasing Bonzo’s drum sticks when he was thrashing around on his kit! Back to the drawing board! Or at least, back to a previously not-so-polished version.

Matching the visuals to the sound proved to be tricky: “We had to match a lot by eye” said Dick. “There are more obvious sequences where a visual provides a clue as to the song being played but sometimes you have to go with gut-feeling and the emotion of the music”.

GET READY TO MARVEL AT: Albert Hall 1970: * Those of you familiar with the bootleg DVD will be amazed at the way the audience sound fills your living room as the band walk onto the stage – the first feel of the surround-sound. * The sheer power of Bonzo’s hammerings as We’re Gonna Groove kicks in… * The subtle cross fade into I Can’t Quite You Baby * Page’s violin bow echoing as never before in full glorious 5.1 surround sound…i.e. not just left-right.

 

 

33 DAYS TO GO: Royal Albert Hall 1970: Footage Re-united
THE CREATIVE PROCESS: The aspect ratio of the original footage has been preserved, so Royal Albert Hall is in 4:3 aspect ratio. The Royal Albert Hall footage is still dark in places but thanks to Dick and his team it is now crystal clear. One of the main challenges with the footage were “re-uniting” the missing segments from Whole Lotta Love: “The original film was cut and used for a Whole Lotta Love promo by Peter Clifton” said Dick. (Clifton did the WLL promo as an example of what he could do with Zep footage when he was called in to work on The Song Remains movie…) The original film has since been lost. “We had to find a copy of the promo, sample it, and then colour match it with the original film and then paste it back in! Finally we had to substitute any missing frames!” A long and exhaustive process

At times, Dick expresses frustration at the “almost but not enough” segments he discovered. “We had more Albert Hall” he said, “but there were just too many holes in the footage”. “We did have to cheat now and again” he admits “but at least we did it honestly and with integrity”. Dick went onto describe some subtle and clever editing techniques whereby a two or three second gap in the footage can be filled by using slow motion and other clever effects. Having seen this for ourselves, all we can say is that the results are superb.

GET READY TO MARVEL AT: * The close up shots of Page’s speed playing during White Summer – now beautifully restored. * A wonderfully laid back What Is And What Should Never Be. * The electric intro of How Many More Times with Jonesy’s bass reverberating around the speakers..

 

28 DAYS TO GO: Madison Square Garden 1973: Remastered
THE CREATIVE PROCESS:

“Despite all the previously seen footage from New York there were some big holes” admitted Dick. “Jimmy and I had to insert a bit, look for unusual shots, reprocess images to cover some of the gaps”. Presented in widescreen, fans will enjoy the re-working of Since I’ve Been Loving You and a particularly raunchy “The Ocean”. “We tried to stay away from any of the re-shot Shepperton Studios stuff – as much footage as possible is from the gigs”.

“The reels we had were very fragmentary, it took us six weeks to get four songs! Some footage such as Over The Hills & Far Away were just too full of holes which was a real shame.”

Watching the visuals, it is great to see that the remastered Black Dog is pure stage action this time around. (Some of you in the UK may remember a version of Black Dog being shown on a BBC-TV programme called “Pop Quiz” which was all stage action: i.e. no New York cavalcade shots. This version is different again.)

Misty Mountain Hop works because as Dick described, some shots were borrowed from elsewhere on the reels to complete the overall effect. However, this effort is well rewarded – any “fills” do not stand out at all. Since I’ve Been Loving You is completely different from the film version. Page delivered a new soundtrack processed for surround sound, so viewers should not feel they’ve been shortchanged.

The Ocean was described by Dick as “This was a f*ck of a load of work…we just about got away with it”. Viewing it with Dick, TBL can conclude that it is absolutely stunning – a real highlight of what we saw.

GET READY TO MARVEL AT:

* The Transition: From the 4:3 aspect of the darkened Royal Albert Hall footage to the 16:9 aspect and a more general openness of the 73 footage. Also, the difference in the band visually in just 3 and a half years is remarkable. This transition concept is something that reoccurs throughout the DVD package and is something that Jimmy Page designed from the outset and was very keen to ensure worked well.

* The Ocean: Its encore time in New York. Watch Plant pick up the rose thrown onto the front of the stage, see him preen as he and Jimmy prowl the first few rows looking at the ladies. A really raunchy version. True Hammer of the Gods stuff.

* Since I’ve Been Loving You: It always lead to the great “Why wasn’t this on the Song Remains album?” debate. Still a wonderful version, and now with even better sound.

 

21 DAYS TO GO: Earls Court 1975: The Video Age
THE CREATIVE PROCESS:

Taking on the Zeppelin DVD project “was a huge responsibility” admits Dick, only too aware that there are people who have been waiting for something like this for years. Getting the balance right was key here: there are collectors and casual rock fans alike interested – and both have high expectations. “Noel Gallagher (Oasis) can’t wait to see it” mused Dick.

Dick quite rightly takes a great deal of pride in his work with Page. “I’ve spent nine months on this project” he says proudly pointing at the screen, “It’s beautiful – sorry – its such a shame the Telly’s f*cking dirty!!” he exclaims!

We asked Dick about the soundtrack. “Page delivered a guide video track for Earls Court and Knebworth for us to work with. Later on, he delivered the stereo version and the 5:1 surround version”. “Then it was up to us here at Metropolis DVD to re-sync, encode and match it to the footage.”

Looking at Earls Court, one is instantly drawn to the different picture quality. From the grainy film shots of 73, we now get smooth crystal clear video footage from 75. According to Carruthers “Earls Court was one of the more easier segments to work with”.

Although Earls Court was a multi camera source, there were occasions when only a single camera source was usable – sometimes for quite lengthy periods. Dick explained how was not ideal as it could make the footage seem lethargic and un-dynamic. To get round this, Dick re-shot some of the video footage in super 8 and reprocessed it giving a grainy audience bootleg feel to it. This combined with tasteful slow motion and very stylistic blurring covered any small gaps. The result is a very smooth and coherent playback which keeps the viewer on the edge of his seat.

GET READY TO MARVEL AT:

* The stark contrast from the chaos of Madison Square to the intimacy of the acoustic set at Earls Court – a deft piece of sequencing that captures perfectly the light and shade element of the band. * The subtle link from 1973 to 1975 via a close up of a fan at Earls Court waving his Led Zep scarf

* The interplay between Robert, Jimmy and Jonesy during California and That’s The Way

* The right out there on the edge delivery of In My Time Of Dying with fantastic close ups of Bonzo and Jimmy’s slide soloing.

* The completely awesome delivery of Trampled Underfoot which prompted journalist Charles Shaar Murray to observe at the time ”Apart for the Who and Stones I can’t think of any group who could have put on anything like it. Producing moments such as Trampled Underfoot during which it seemed the whole stage was just going to fall forward and crush everybody in the hall”.

* Stairway performed with immense pride with knowing looks between Page and Plant

In summary the Earls Court footage captures Zeppelin at their most extravagant and thrilling- totally on top of their game and performing with supreme confidence. It’s just sensational viewing…..

 

13 DAYS TO GO: Knebworth Park, Hertfordshire 1979: The Dinosaur Revival
THE CREATIVE PROCESS:

“We had a number of multi-camera angles for this – it was the best covered of the shows we had” admits Carruthers. “There was some audience footage which have used as well”. Page and Carruthers had the most to play with here. There were 16 camera sources complete with a guide soundtrack on each. In addition there was a fan-shot 8mm cine film too. Watching the film, there are some lovely touches interspersing close-up and footage from further back footage to great effect. Those of you familiar with the fuzzy bootleg videos will love the new presentation. At last, twenty four years on(!) we have a properly mixed and directed souvenir – courtesy of Page and Carruthers. Knebworth ’79..if you were there, get ready to relive it…if you weren’t you soon will be…

GET READY TO MARVEL AT:

The sound presentation of Knebworth – Page has made it really come alive. The “dinosaur” lives! (Remember this was the punk era back in the UK in 1979 – many music magazines were declaring any song over 3 minutes long as irrelevant!)

*Great atmospheric crowd shots as the action fades from Earls Court to that field outside Stevenage four years later

*Rock And Roll – Wonderful interplay between the four of them – lots of smiles and knowing looks – they knew they still had it and this performance is ample proof – Great audience shout backs enhanced by the 5.1 surround sound. Bonzo’s solo at the end – sheer percussive genius *Plant preening through Kashmir – with clever pan outs from clear pro-shot video to fuzzy audience 8mm – and then back again.. All seamlessly edited * Achilles – quite simply Jimmy’s show…sweating, cringing, thrilling…the spirit of the whole track dancing through his fingers -the drive from the whole band and their endeavour to get back to where they belong captured in this striking visual tour de force.

This footage will prompt fresh investigation of the 1979 Led Zeppelin….the In Through album…the Copenhagen warm ups..the Knebworth shows – musically erratic and under rehearsed they may have been, but on this part of DVD we see the spirit was still very much willing. More than enough visual evidence that they still had the desire to impress.

 

 

1 DAY TO GO: ALL THE OTHER BITS
THE CREATIVE PROCESS:

“We had some really nice stuff that didn’t belong anywhere else” says Dick as he shows us the Heartbreaker end-credits montage. To the music of Heartbreaker we get an array of 2 to 3 second clips from 70,73,75 and 79 as well as “fan footage” and other news-reel type clips. The montage will no doubt will keep the visual historians interested – as well as shuffling back and forwards with the pause controls! Page and Carruthers have really bought into the whole DVD format: just browsing throught the menus throws up all sorts of interesting footage and “secrets” such as the LA Forum 77 cine of Song Remains The Same.

One menu item shows what appears to be home cine film of a typical UK town (is it Edinburgh??) – and then four familiar looking blokes are seen strolling down the road on the opposite side.

GET READY TO MARVEL AT:

The sheer attention to detail on each menu. They’re worth watching in their own right.

The additional footage, understandably not up to the standard of the main presentations but still worth watching nonetheless.

A great menu showing the boys arriving in Iceland with Moby Dick blasting away in the back. Other menus show the boys backstage at various venues.

With thanks to Dave Linwood.

More DVD archive look backs to follow …

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Latest news updates via LZ News

John Paul Jones performed new music in a small live performance in a church in North Yorkshire on June 4.

See more at

http://ledzepnews.com/2017/06/06/john-paul-jones-amores-pasados-swaledale-festival-north-yorkshire/

Robert Plant radio interviews:

Robert gave two radio interviews to BBC Radio this week – info below:

http://ledzepnews.com/2017/06/06/robert-plant-any-time-now-new-album-explanation/

Robert Plant gave 2 radio interviews about Kent Nerburn’s book ‘Neither Wolf nor Dog’

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

Led Zeppelin

A section of the photograph being shown at the Royal Albert Hall (© Mick Gold)

Jimmy Page

Brian May, Paul Rodgers, and Jimmy Page backstage at the Royal Albert Hall on May 28 (Facebook/Paul Rodgers Official)

  • Jimmy Page attended Paul Rodgers’ show at the Royal Albert Hall on May 28. Page posed for photographs with Rodgers as well as Queen guitarist Brian May, and his girlfriend Scarlett Sabet. Read our full report here.

Robert Plant

Robert Plant on stage at Hay Festival on Sunday evening (Twitter/crudites_)

  • Robert Plant was photographed recently at the Bäco Mercat Mediterranean restaurant in Los Angeles. See the photo here.

Upcoming events:

Mid-June – The March 21, 1975 Seattle soundboard bootleg “Deus Ex Machina” is rumoured to be released around this time.
June 23 – John Paul Jones will perform at the Sun Station Vadsø festival in Norway.
June 24 – John Paul Jones will perform at the Sun Station Vadsø festival in Norway.
Mid-September – The new Black Country Communion album, which will feature Jason Bonham, is due to be released.

Many thanks to James Cook.

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

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

http://ledzepnews.com/

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Bill Curbishley Interview:

A very illuminating  interview with Who and former Page and Plant manager Bill Curbishley appeared in Muisc Business Worldwide.

My two interviews that I conducted with Bill for the TBL magazine in 1999 and 2010 were amongst the most memorable interviews I’ve ever been involved in.

Read the new interview at this link:

https://www.musicbusinessworldwide.com/bill-curbishley-the-who-lot-artists-old-days-bullied-hate-bullies/

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world cup 2002

TBL ARCHIVE SPECIAL 2 : JUNE 2002 – STILL DREAMING OF WORLD CUP SUCCESS… 15 YEARS GONE… 

For 15 years ago, as the World Cup got underway in Japan, Robert Plant was back in the forefront again promoting the just released Dreamland album. Here in the UK we had a Storytellers TV recording and a one off London date in the space of a few days – all occurring at the time Sven’s England were attempting to triumph in the World Cup in Japan.

That summer of 2002 was something of a summer of love as our love affairs with England and Robert combined to produce some real highs. Looking back it was really good to have some fresh activity albeit with something of a retro songbook.

So let’s go back to June 2002 – this is how it was back in the Dreamland era when our combined passion for soccer and music created some joyous June days…

FROM ZEN TO NOW…HE’S ON THE BALL

Part 1: Solo rejuvenation followed by England’s win over Argentina…life’s good

Once again it’s been along time. A long time that is since I’ve witnessed Robert Plant perform as a solo artist in his own right. Sure we’ve had the Priory Of Brion diversions, and that bizarre evening at the Albert Hall earlier in the year when Plant and Page appeared separately on the same bill. This though is altogether different. This is Robert Plant solo artist in his own right supported by his band Strange Sensation recording for VH1′s Storytellers. You have to go back to 1993 for the last real Plant solo performances.

Fate of Nations.Ah yes..Francis Dunnery’s shorts…I Believe…29 Palms….What is And What Should Never Be….those were the days and we were relatively happy with it really. And then came that meeting with Jimmy and they were back…and there was Unledded followed by the world tour and then the Clarksdale album and tour.

It’s easy to forget that Robert had carved a very credible if somewhat erratic solo career between 1981 and 1993. By that time he’d already spent more years as a solo artist than he had being a member of Led Zeppelin. On that Fate Of Nations tour he had entered the most fruitful period of that solo venture. The accompanying album was by far the most satisfying solo outing. Blending the familiar histrionics with a folk rock purity that can now be viewed as a definite reference point to where he would land post Page with Dreamland.

Musically that ’93 tour saw the call of the Zeppelin looming large. By the end of it, the Zep quota in the set list was 60 -40 in favour of Zeppelin with the likes of  Ramble On, Thank You, Babe I’m Gonna Leave You, Going To California and Whole Lotta Love ever present.  In retrospect perhaps we should not have been too surprised when he opted to continue the evolution of Zep with Jimmy for the Unledded filming and subsequent tours.  Four years later came yet more re- evaluation and changes. No more led anything once again – and in it’s place the desire to reach back before Zep to go forward. The songs that he’d carried for years in ‘his back pocket’ as he wryly put it came out to live and breath again. First in the Priory and then with Strange Sensation.

Now it all lands here at the Westway Studios in London.

The new album Dreamland is ready to go and the artist and record company naturally are keen to promote it. With his intelligent spieling always worthy of attention the opportunity to perform for VH 1′s  Storytellers is a perfect one. Which is where I once again pick up on Robert Plant solo artist for the first time in nearly nine years. Just as Unledded acted as a catalyst for the whole rejuvenation of the Page and Plant partnership, this similar low key filming will do the same to rejuvenate Plant as he unleashes the Dreamland campaign. Like Unledded it’s a privilege to be in attendance. And as with Unledded many in attendance have qualified by TBL association.

At short notice we were asked to run a competition on the TBL Website  with the first 100 receiving tickets for tonight’s show. Therefore there’s a lot of familiar faces as the TBL crew meets up in the afternoon. It’s also a pleasure to have the good lady Janet in attendance for a timely opportunity to see first hand just why her husband sustains the enthusiasm to still do all this still.

storytellers

So less than 200 gather around the tiny studio area where the band are set up. There’s no stage and you are right in the eyesight of the singer. The deal for Storytellers is this – audience packs closely around the artist. Artist performs a selection of songs – unveiling stories surrounding the choices. Audience get to ask questions on camera ala those  ITV ‘Audience With’ TV specials, artist wraps it up with more songs. VH1 producer Bill Flannigan (a long time TBL subscriber) comes on to explain a few background details on how the evening will run – and enthuses greatly on Robert’s album .”We are so pleased to have him here and the album well…..it’s going to be the album of the summer”

Around 8pm from our wonderful vantage point front of stage second row, the artist formerly part of P and P walks on accompanied by the band. He plays with the mike stand and laughs when he fails to  unravel the mic- ”Can someone adjust this or I wont be able to do my tricks”  All goes quit as the cameras begin to roll…and Justin and Skin pick out some minor chords…and very soon it becomes apparent that this is Ship of Fools for 2002.  I have to say the sheer thrill of hearing Plant sing the opening line ”On waves of love my heart is breaking”  just a few feet in front of me is nigh on a par with that moment when they broke into Thank you at the first night of the Unledded filming eight years back.  This is a rejuvenation….this is a solo re acquaintance. This is a re-assurance and boy life is good.

Ship is performed fairly faithfully to the original -unlike the meandering  ’93 version. Hearing this sparks instant Plant solo nostalgia. Always a stand out from the Now and Zen era it can rightly take it’s place as one of Plant’s best compositions in or out of Zeppelin.

From there Robert begins explaining the origins of the journey of the next song from up that Delta via Bukka White. Justin takes to percussion and that neo Cajun intro that has resounded repeatedly out of the Totnes deck in recent weeks is alive and vibrant right in front of us as the Strange Sensation run down track one of  Dreamland Funny In My Mind (I Believe I’m Fixing To Die) expertly performed with the eclectic drive of the studio version. Further roots are divulged before Arthur Crudup’s Win My Train Fare Home (If I Ever Get Lucky). Another already familiar Sensation signature tune. Robert wraps the aching vocals all the way around Justin’s mesmerising mantra.

More influences and roots are up for discussion prior to going way down inside. The bluesy You Need Love Willie Dixon intro is suddenly undercut by a razor burst of riffing from Skin and Justin and hey it’s welcome back that mother of all riffs that is Whole Lotta Love. As much as I love the original, live Page- less re-workings often leave me cold. At best they can sound  hackneyed, at worst they edge on self parody. Not so tonight  and not so in this new arrangement. The riff itself is played with conviction and for all it’s cock rock drama, Plant plays it straight and serious. This arrangement also benefits greatly from omitting the overplayed ”way down inside”call and response finale and instead the band spiral off into a sonic improvisation led by Plant which slows and slows to a point where Plant lowers the tone and himself to the floor and the song  just stops….and you can hear a pin drop. A knowing grin and  then it’s mass applause. Masterful.

From one rejuvenation to another.

Come in Tall Cool One for a similar overhaul. Back in ’93 and before that in ’88 this rockabilly pastiche was nothing more than a kitsch crowd pleasing stomper – memories of Phil Johnston uttering those immortal words ”I should be so lucky, lucky in love ‘ in mid song reference to Kylie in hindsight may not have the best moment of that particular partnership. The Sensation version I’m pleased to report has much more in common with Gene Vincent than Kylie. Dirty and slick, mean and moody it rocks with a vengeance Plant in his best Ral Donner/Evis mode. Totally authentic, totally believable. Who would have thought it.

Next up, Robert  takes to the stool camera centre to take questions from the audience. These questions have been filled in earlier from a cross section of the audience. Robert answers them with surprising candour getting put right on the spot from the start.

”Is there going to be a further live Zeppelin official release or will we be left with just The Song Remains The Same soundtrack ?” is the perceptive first question.

”No… Song Remains won’t be the only thing” replies Plant going on to explain that Jimmy is searching out tapes not a million miles from here. ”Latest news is two more shows discovered” is Plant’s revelation ”I hope to be joining him soon”. NB – This is a reference to the work in progress DVD and How The West Was Won projects that would surface the following May.

Our own Phil T asks if there will be extra tracks on the album in foreign markets and Robert offers the record company market forces view. Other questions revolve around the chances of Honeydrippers vol 2 (Can’t see it no”) and his latest touring plans.

Robert then remains on the stool for a sensitive rendering of another Dreamland staple Morning Dew followed by an equally intense and superbly sung Song to The Siren. Darkness Darkness completes a trio of Dreamland extracts and like the album version, this is an absolute stand out performance. Justin takes up the mandolin and there’s no surprise to what’s coming next – the plaintive chords of a simple arrangement of  Going To California signals a welcome Zep revival.

Sticking with Zep 4 the band then takes it all back up with a real storming Four Sticks. The memory of the former lead singer of  Led Zeppelin screeching out that ”Oooooh yeah” finale directly in front of me at eye level is another one to be stored right up there with the highest highs this thing has provided me with over the last 30 plus years.

The band walk off stage left but there’s no way we want this to end. Repeated calls of  ”More more” bring them back on for a scorching A House Is Not A Motel . The middle section with Justin again to the fore makes considerable more sense than at did in the heady atmosphere of the Albert Hall earlier in the year.

VH1′s Bill Flannigan comes on to talk to Robert and notifies him there’s a couple of retakes required. ”We have to do Morning Dew again Robert tells us. That’s no hardship and neither is a repeat run through of the revamped yet again Whole Lotta Love.  Robert smiles continually as Bill Flannigan thanks him and us for making it quite a night.

Lights up and way. We excitedly relay the events in the nearby pub. It’s been a great night and the good vibes prevail throughout the next 12 hours.

Next day around 2 pm, as I’m walking to the pub to celebrate post England match, I take a call on the mobile from Mr Linwood. Amongst the babble of noise from the London bar he’s watched the game from, I can just about make out his excited banter. England have just beaten Argentina 1-0. ”Plant last night England today! How good was all that” relays the ecstatic TBL webman. How good indeed.

From the solo rejuvenation in the most intimate of surroundings…to the stirring Beckham led three lions victory against the Argentinians. Over those 18 hours of June joy, both Robert Plant and the England eleven were definitely on the ball.

It couldn’t last….could it?

Part 2: Tentative Plant London work out before the nervy England Nigerian encounter…

CALM AFTER THE STORM

Robert’s Astoria London gig had been organised some weeks before but the official announcement was embargoed until after the Isle of Wight Festival. Unfortunately that co incided wth the double bank holiday of the Queen’s Jubilee. Ticket details were hurriedly announced via ticket agencies and the TBL web – with the short lead time to the gig on Monday June 10 the decision was made that all tickets would be call collect.

So it is that a snaking queue greets us on arrival at the Charing Cross venue. This prompts a rather extended visit to the nearby Royal George where the usual faces are located so it’s high to various Simply Led’s, a Whole Lotta Led or two,Luis Rey, Andy Adams, a near full complement of TBL crew Gary, Tom etc and after the  partner filled VH1 treat this night is something of a stag. So beers are drunk, memories revived and debates such as ten solo numbers you never want Plant to play live again (come in Messin’ With The Mekon, Billy’s Revenge and Mystery Title to name three on my list), we attack the queue and shuffle in.

It has to be said that the arrangements to call collect is a  wholly unwise one – many punters are still in the queue as Plant and band get ready to come on. The late arrangements have done little to affect the actual attendance. It’s well full in the downstairs arena and on the balconies too. The actual attendees made up of a cross section of invited guests and the usual enthusiastic crowd. It’s good to be amongst the converted once again and though it’s clear that this will be an altogether different experience to that of last Thursday’s VH1 bash, this is still a big night. A launch night for Dreamland as is evident by the hugh album sleeve backdrop that covers the stage. This is Robert’s first headlining London solo appearance for nine years.

Dreamland 2

The band arrive onstage – new man Skin to the left – Justin to the right and the moody swirl of Win My Train Fare Home (If I Ever Get Lucky) signals the arrival of the white shirted Plant. An ugent techy 7 And 7 Is follows before the first departure. Down To The Sea that bizarre second track from Fate Of  Nations gets a live rendering. With it’s stop start construction it does pose a difficult challenge live – a quaint delve into the old solo songbook that needs a few more run through before really clicking.

Four Sticks has already been well honed though it’s evident that Justin is having some tech trouble with his guitar as the band wait for him to come in on the intro ”This is where you need an harmonica” states Plant realising there’s a problem. He then begins scat singing ”oh baby..oh baby…” before Justin finally comes in. They recover as best they can but there’s a couple of  disjointed breaks mid song.

If  Down To The Sea is yet to be honed they have well and truly nailed another Fate highlght Come Into My Life. Another of my all time fave Plant solo moments it’s a real joy to hear this one live for the first time. Plant soars here and Justin takes on the exquisite Richard Thompson licks with considerable aplomb.  Hey Joe is performed in the now familiar eccentric arrangement and it’s around  here that Robert seems to be having a little trouble of his own. Just slightly hoarse towards the end, he seems to recover with a fine Going To California and  the now equally familiar Morning Dew.

So far it’s been something of a muted affair with sound problems perhaps hampering the overall effect but the best is yet to come. The home straight is where proceedings really take an upturn. First up there’s Calling To You, yet another Fate revival and it’s plangent Eastern riffs come tailor made for a Sensation update. The closing coda receives an intense Sensation re write as Justin and Skin veer for the spotlight and Plant gets in some typical vocal traits. The stripped down Tall Cool One retains the momentum led by Skin’s grunge like wah wah work.

Next an old favourite. Zep 3′s Celebration Day – played in England my reckoning for the first time since….is it Knebworth ’79? It might well be but it’s just great to hear this old flame played with real gusto and sung superbly by Plant. The utter conviction he displays here is proof if it were needed that this is a man who still cares immensely about his fabled back catalogue. Led Zeppelin still means a lot to this audience and it would appear on this showing it means a lot to the singer as well.

A House Is Not A Motel rounds off a great half hour last blast. Their back for two encores Babe I’m Gonna Leave You is up first – the semi acoustic blend suits the Sensation sound but I personally find this song a little overplayed now. Song To The Siren is a gracious final step and the band walk off. The lights are quickly up and the taped blues tracks echo out of the PA and it’s all a rather low key finale  – a far better conclusion may have been achieved by shifting say Tall Cool One to the close or a bluster through Whole Lotta Love. It’s not to be.  Overall the post match verdict is that this has been perhaps an average night .There were moments of real magic: Come Into My Life and Celebration Day displaying both sides of the coin. The former a delightful delve into his solo songbook, the latter a Zep a crowd pleasing blast.

As a London album press launch it may have not been entirely spot on – indeed of the eleven tracks on the album only  four were aired -hardly a full representation of the album. Darkness and Fixin’ To Die being conspicuous by their absence. The resulting press coverage is well positive so as an exercise in gaining the required column inches it has done the trick. Robert himself looked happy enough at the post gig lig holding court on a stool with well wishers a plenty. Overall these two Dreamland influenced evenings have offered more than enough evidence that this project has new places to go and the journey ahead is never going to be less than interesting.

On the way home attention turns to England’s nervy encounter with Nigeria that lies ahead on Wednesday morning.  As we know a predictably nervy performance ensued though it was enough to set up that quarter final meeting with Brazil. We all know what happened then – a 2-1 defeat and World Cup exit.

Before that ultimate disappointment well life was good ….very good indeed and musically with Plant and Strange Sensation entertaining and educating in equal measures it’s going to be very good again come the autumn when they head back our way.

For two early summer weeks we really were on a roll. Hearing that ”In the summertime… in the summertime” refrain on Darkness Darkness will always instantly recall these joyful June days of 2002 when our passion for soccer and music collided to create something of a Dreamland in itself. After all the highs and lows of the past couple of years, right now it’s so good to have had first hand evidence that Robert Plant as a solo artist can still be so utterly captivating.

Dave Lewis  – June 28th, 2002 – First published in TBL issue 16:

………………………………..

TBL Celebrates Sgt Pepper at 50: 

Following my piece on the remixed re-released Sgt Pepper album – here’s a very informative overview from long time TBL contributor and Beatles expert Paul Humbley

Over to Paul…

Let me introduce to you, the act you’ve known for all these years. Discovering Sgt. Pepper.

Being born in August 1964, I was not quite three years old when ‘Sgt Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band’ was released on June 1.1967.

So no, 50 years ago I wasn’t rushing to my local record shop to pick up a copy of the new Beatles album. However with parents who had wide and varied musical tastes – jazz, pop, musicals, singer song writers, in fact anything. I grew up in a home filled with music. That matched to an uncanny memory for music related facts – release dates of records, labels, catalogue numbers, all stored in my memory ready to be called off at the drop of a hat -really sad I know, but it does mean I have two distinct memories of listening to the radio back in 1967.

My first memory is hearing ‘Simon Smith and His Amazing Dancing Bear’ – Alan Price. The second is hearing ‘When I’m Sixty-Four’. No not by The Beatles, instead a cover by actor Bernard Cribbins. Of the two, the later song is the most significant. A cover of the Paul McCartney song featured on side 2, track 2 of ‘Sgt. Pepper’. This cover version never made the UK charts. However, according to the date printed on the label of the promotional copy of this Parlophone record. It was released the day after the Beatles original, June 2, 1967. Little did I know then, how important hearing this song would be in my life long musical journey?

My personal introduction to ‘Sgt. Pepper’ the album followed a similar path to how the album reached the public back in 1967. After six months of no new material, a lifetime in the 60’s pop scene. The Beatles issued a taster for the album in February. Although ‘Strawberry Fields Forever’ / ‘Penny Lane’ where never included on ‘Pepper’, they were among the first songs recorded when sessions began in November 1966. Four months later the album appeared in June, The first album of new material to be released since Revolver 10 months earlier. In a world which demanded an artist release at least two albums and three singles in a 12 month period. This six month period of recording was unprecedented. In fact the media reported that the fab four were losing their magic and not able to come up with new songs. Little did they know what was in store?

I have been a Beatles fan since April 15, 1974, the date when the BBC premiered the animated feature ‘Yellow Submarine’ on UK television. By the time the film finished I was hooked and my collection was starting to be built from the records I could find in my parents collection. Over the next couple of years I collected together a few vinyl albums and singles and a number of cassette tapes recorded from albums borrowed from friends and relatives.

It was March 1976 when my induction into the psychedelic world of ‘Sgt, Pepper’ began. In February of that year The Beatles contract with EMI expired. EMI wasted no time in repacking and reissuing all 22 original Beatles singles in March, together with a new addition for the UK market, ‘Yesterday’. Within weeks all 23 singles had entered the UK Top 75 and for the first time I was able to purchase Beatles records while they featured high in the current singles chart.

My first selection was the aforementioned ‘Yesterday’. With the second being and a single containing two songs I had no recollection of previously hearing, ‘Strawberry Fields Forever’ / ‘Penny Lane’. Why did I make this choice? All these rereleased singles came in generic green picture sleeves. The only difference being, the rear sleeve image changed to reflect the ever evolving fashions the band adopted. The sleeve for ‘Strawberry Fields’ featured an image of the fab four sporting moustaches and John using a cine camera. For some reason this image intrigued me, as it was not a formal pose like the other featured images. Unbeknown to me at the time, I was purchasing the single almost 9 years to the day after its original release, give or take a few weeks.

Hearing the disc for the first time on Dad’s prized Fidelity UA5 music centre (the 3 in 1, turntable, cassette and stereo radio systems, which were the mp3 players of there day). I had one of those rare experiences when you discover a piece of music and it has an unforgettable effect on you. To this day when I hear John sing the opening lines ‘Let me take you down…’ it gives me goose bumps. What I was experiencing, was what record buyers had back on February 17,1967. This new direction in sound for The Beatles, was the first fruits of the bands extended recording sessions in EMI. Sessions which evolved into Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts club Band.

Back in 1967, ‘Pepper’ the album, followed ‘Strawberry Fields 4 months later, on June 1. Similarly for me 9 years later in 1976. My first encounter with ‘Pepper’ followed four months after I encountered ‘Strawberry Fields’, in July of the long hot summer of 1976.

Discovering The Beatles as I had in the mid 70’s, was great timing on my part. Since the official split in 1970, the solo Beatles were never far from the singles and album charts. Paul released his fifth album ‘Wings at the Speed of Sound’ in March 1976. Over the next few months the hit singles ‘Let’Em In’ and ‘Silly Love Songs’ would gain blanket coverage on UK radio and climb high in the charts. This resulted in my dad coming home from work in July 1976, with a copy of that new Wings album together with a Beatles album. Both loaned from a work colleague. That Beatles album was ‘Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band’.

It’s difficult for me to understand now, but it was the Wings album that I wanted to hear first. Within a few days both were recorded onto blank cassette tapes, Curry’s the electronics retailers own brand of C60. Maybe it was because the Wings album was new and my friends didn’t understand why I was obsessed with and old band from the 60’s. To eleven and twelve year old’s the Beatles having split six years ago, made them ancient. Or because within days I was away on holiday on the Isle of Wight with school mate Alan and his family. Whatever the reason ‘Pepper’ took a back seat for a few weeks.

Gradually over the coming weeks I started to pick up on the magic of ‘Sgt. Pepper’. Over the next couple of years that C60 cassette tape would be on constant rotation. I would however have to wait until Christmas day 1977 to receive my first vinyl copy.

It was then that I started to realise that my cassette copy sounded different to the vinyl record. Some songs sounded faster. Background noises audible on one, were not present on the other. Slowly as my Beatles knowledge grew, I worked out that what I had recorded was a mono copy of Pepper. While the vinyl pressing was stereo.

Over the last 40 years my Pepper collection has expanded far beyond the wildest dreams of the 12 year I was back in 1976. Multiple vinyl and CD pressings have been joined by reel to reel, cassette and 8 track tape formats. 20th anniversary box sets and audiophile pressings have also joined my hoard. Plus of course those under the counter albums and CD’s, featuring recording sessions and alternate mixes which have leaked out of EMI over time.

Fixing A Hole and Getting Better? – My view of the 50th Anniversary Reissues

For an obsessive collector like myself. Do the new 50th anniversary issues have anything to offer? The answer to that is a big YES. Since news broke at the start of the year, that the anniversary would be celebrated. It soon became apparent this was going to be a celebration of a Beatles album like no other.

With a selection of releases to please dedicated casual fans, die hard collectors, or young music fans wanting to understand what all the fuss is about. The 1CD, 2CD, 2LP and Deluxe 4CD, Blue Ray & DVD box set covers all bases.

The media focus has been on Giles Martin and his new stereo mix. As Beatle historians know the mono mix of ‘Pepper’ has always been considered the approved version, As George Martin spent approximately three weeks mixing the album for mono and during many of the mono mixing sessions either one, two, three of four Beatles were present. Compared to the stereo mix which was produced in a few days.

Unlike the stereo mixes George Martin created for earlier Beatles albums. The stereo separation used on the original 1967 mix was not the hard vocals on one channel and instruments on the other, particularly noticeable on the original stereo mixes of ‘Help’ and ‘Rubber Soul’. Over the years this primitive mixes came under a lot of flak. Indeed when the first Beatles CD’s were issued by EMI in 1987. George Martin remixed both of these albums, so that they had a stereo separation suited to modern ears. Indeed when listening to the placement of the instruments and vocals of the original 1967 ‘Sgt. Pepper’ stereo mix, the separation is very tame. With the majority of the vocals placed centrally.

When you compare both the original 1967 stereo and mono mixes. The mono sounds more powerful, with a denser sound. One thing however that both mixes have in common. Is due to the 4 track recording process used, and the constant bouncing down of one 4 track tape to another. Is that both suffer with a muddy sound on the instruments and backing vocals.

In order for me to assess Giles Martin’s 2017 stereo remix I reacquainted myself with the original mono mix via an original 1967 UK Parlophone vinyl pressing. Then I listened to the original stereo mix played from my 1977 pressing. From the pressing ID in the run out grooves it is clear that this copy is cut from the original Harry Moss master lacquerers. Harry being the EMI engineer who cut the majority of Beatles album masters. Then while listening to the new 2017 mix I A/B compared with a high resolution digital file of the 1982 Mobile Fidelity UHQR Stereo master and a similar file of the Nimbus Supercut pressing from 1984. I avoided the 2009 remasters as I have never been a fan. They are all that is wrong with too many digital remasters of classic albums. Too loud, with no subtlety and painful on the ears.

For me, the biggest revelation of the new Giles Martin Stereo mix, is that those layers of instruments and backing vocals come to life. By going back to the individual 4 track session tapes, Giles has created a mix which breathes new life in to the music. It’s like looking at an old master which had been restored. You see revealed the true colours of the painting which the artist had intended you to see. The sound of Ringo’s drums is now much clearer. The bass drum and cymbals shine through. You can hear him tap the drum skins with brushes during ‘When I’m Sixty Four. Back in 1999 Peter Cobbin assisted by Paul Hicks remastered the soundtrack of Yellow Submarine. The accompanying Yellow Submarine Songtrack album featured 4 songs from ‘Pepper’ and was universally praised for the quality of the remix work they had undertaken. Now18 years later, these mixes although good, still suffer from the muddy sound, which Giles Martin has now eliminated.

Many of the Beatles original stereo mixes don’t have the same power of the mono. With this new stereo mix Giles has successfully recreated the power of the mono mix in the stereo domain. The majority of new mix keeps all the elements, lead vocals, lead instruments, background vocals, and orchestrations in the centre of the stereo image. There is no extreme panning of sounds from left to right. Just a very clean, open, but powerful mix.

As with Ringo’s drumming, Paul’s bass guitar is a revelation. In the Anthology TV series / DVD. Paul McCartney explains that due to this new recording technique of layering sounds and bouncing down a full 4 track tape to another to create multi, multitrack recording as you would find in a modern studio. He had the opportunity to play melodic bass lines which complemented each song. Rather than just underpinned each song. These bass lines now have a greater definition and clarity.

The vocals throughout now have a new dynamic to them. Despite the layer of sounds employed on ‘Pepper’ the vocals you hear are live, no auto tuning back in 1967. The new mix now brings these vocals to life. It’s like you are there in the studio standing at the microphone next to John, Paul, George and Ringo.

Having now lived with the new stereo mix for four days, the tracks which continually impress me are ‘Fixing A Hole’, ‘She’s Leaving Home’, ‘When I’m Sixty Four’, ‘Good Morning, Good Morning’ and ‘A Day In The Life’.

With the exception of the single disc CD. These new 50th anniversary editions don’t stop at the new stereo remix. George Martin described the process of recording ‘Sgt. Pepper’ as “Painting pictures with Sound”. What we are presented with are the initial sketches from which these sound paintings were based. The skeleton frame of each song, before the Beatles and George Martin built the final master. For the casual fan expecting an alternate, stripped down ‘Sgt. Pepper’, you will be disappointed. What we hear are raw takes direct from studio sessions tapes. Allowing the listener to eavesdrop on how John, Paul, George and Ringo. together with George Martin, Geoff Emerick and the technicians at EMI crafted the album.

For the 2 CD edition the listener is treated to an outtake from each song in the same running order as the finished album, together with an outtakes of ‘Strawberry Fields’ and ‘Penny Lane’. For the box set aimed specifically at the obsessional fan. You are presented with multiple versions of each song across 2 CD’s. Sequence chronologically as the recording sessions took place between November 1966 and April 1967.

Now Beatles fans are a difficult bunch to please (a bit like Led Zep fans!- ED). They moan when opportunities are missed to open the EMI tape vault. Then moan when they do get presented with new material. One thing that becomes clear very quickly when you listen to all the unreleased material presented in these anniversary packages. Is that George Martin did the right thing when he collated together ‘Sgt Pepper’ studio sessions for the ‘Anthology’ project back in the mid 1990’s. At the time he was criticised for editing together small sections of multiple takes of songs to create new mixes. As you would expect from George Martin, he was right. Although from a historical perspective the outtakes presented across these anniversary packages deserve to be included, in truth are a hard listen and I doubt will receive regular repeated plays from casual fans.

In addition to the 2017 remix and studio outtakes you also receive within the deluxe box set. The original mono mix. A 5:1 surround mix which I can’t play due a lack of compatible playback equipment. A copy of the 1992, 25th anniversary ‘Making of Sgt. Pepper’ TV documentary. Which now makes my rather warn out VHS tape recording and pirate DVD complete with Japanese sub titles, redundant. Finally there is a truly magnificent book all housed in a beautiful box replicating an EMI Tape library box.

Yes there are some negative aspects about these anniversary sets. The selection of outtakes presented on the 2CD set could have been improved. Featuring the full ‘Hums’ session, rather than tagging a single ‘Hum’ to the end of the ‘A Day In The Life – Take 1’. The ‘Hum’ being the original idea to close ‘A Day In The Life’ before the piano chord was recorded. Take 1 of ‘Within You, Without You’ should have been swapped with the version featuring George coaching the assembled musicians. The 2017 stereo mix of ‘Penny Lane’ sounds too bright and not a patch on the excellent 2015 mix of ‘Strawberry Fields’ presented. While finally, whoever approved the dub of the rare and unique USA promo mono mix of ‘Penny Lane’ recorded from a worn out and distorted copy of the original vinyl 45, needs shooting. The infamous audiophile bootlegger, Dr Ebbetts presented collectors with a very clear dub on his ‘US Singles Collection’ set back in 2001.

All in all, what Apple and Giles Martin have presented is a very worthy release to honour ‘Sgt. Pepper’ on its 50th anniversary. It is leaves me wanting to revisit and listen again in depth and explore The Beatles back catalogue all over again. I also find it hard to believe that John, Paul, George and Ringo were aged between 24 and 27 when they recorded this masterpiece. How creative they and George Martin were back then 50 years ago! Lets hope that with 22nd November 2018 being the 50th anniversary of the ‘White Album’, that Apple and Giles Martin work on an equally impressive set to honour that great work.

After that I think it’s time for tea and meet the wife!

Postscript:

I wonder how many people record shopping back on the 1st June 1967, headed for the ‘Bs’ in the LP section, but passed by Beatles and Sgt. Pepper and instead headed to ‘BO’ and picked up the first long playing record album on Deram of a young wiper snapper going by the name of David Bowie? His debut album was released on the same day as ‘Sgt Pepper’….

 Paul Humbley

Many thanks to Paul for that wonderful overview.

On Saturday night BBC 4 aired an excellent documentary Sgt Pepper’s Musical Revolution with composer Howard Goodall – it’s repeated on Friday on BBC 4 at 10pm – see more at http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b08tb97f

Some final words on Sgt Pepper written by me on the TBL/DL Facebook page on June 1,2017:

On the player – what else?…and it’s truly magnificent –the new mix punchy with greater separation of the instruments and vocals. Record 2 The Sgt Pepper Sessions is just fantastic – with the same line up of tracks as the main album, a Companion Disc if you will (now where has that idea been used before!

It’s an illuminating and enlightening experience. It’s the creative process with pleasing off-mic chat from the boys and George Martin , false starts and alternate arrangements. Back
in 1988, the brilliant Beatles author Mark Lewishon produced The Beatles Recording Sessions book based on his enviable task of listening to every Beatles session tape at Abbey Road – I used to wonder how amazing that must have been – well Record 2 The Sgt Pepper Sessions has given me some idea,–it really is like being in the studio next to them and some of the off mic chat particularly from the so sadly missed John and George, is incredibly moving and sends shivers down the spine

So it’s the act we’ve known for all the years and their story continues to enthral – Sgt Pepper Remixed is a revelatory, celebratory listening experience – and 50 years on, a splendid time is still guaranteed for all….Dave Lewis – June 1, 2017.

………………………

DL Diary Blog Update:

The good lady Janet and I took off for a couple of days in a very sunny if breezy Brighton last Friday and Saturday. We travelled back to Bedford on the train in the early evening of Saturday . The train passes through London Bridge station on it’s way across London – little did we know that in a few hours this would be the scene of yet another horrific terrorist attack. Our thoughts and prayers are with all those affected…

I watched the Love Manchester benefit concert on TV on Sunday night – I was greatly moved by Ariana Grande’s dignity and performance – Coldplay were excellent as was Liam Gallagher. An uplifting experience that did give hope and inspiration -although the extended news bulletin that followed on the latest reaction to the London Bridge attack was a stark reminder of the sheer terror of that night…

On a brighter note…

As the good lady went shopping I visited the usual haunts – namely the excellent record shops Resident Records, Across The Tracks and Wax Factor. One or two purchases were made including a very fine UK MCA label pressing of the Wishbone Ash Argus album and the Jethro Tull single Witches Promise/Teacher in original picture sleeve.

There was another great vinyl find last week at the local Oxfam shop  – Paul Simon’s album There Goes Rhymin’ Simon –full of quality song writing – Take Me To The Mardi Gras, American Tune, Kodachrome, Something So Right ,Was a Sunny Day etc. This was something of summer fave back in 1973 when it first came out and 43 years on, it will be a summer fave again. Awesome gatefold sleeve too – oh and the asking price for this good conditioned copy – 49p –I’ll take it!

As mentioned last week I’ve been acquiring some great CD sets recently via the Vinyl Barn – this one is a gem  – The Small Faces 1967 album – 2 CD set with the original mono and stereo mixes of the album plus numerous outtakes and an extensive colour booklet – top stuff all round…when CD’s are done this well it’s a hard to resist ..

It’s a full TBL workload here with ongoing preparation on content for the next TBL magazine due later in the year  – there’s some great stuff lined up – more on all this soon. Meanwhile in the Evenings With LZ book project, we are now working on the 1972 US tour – co -author Mike Tremaglio has pulled together a concise and detailed overview of this often underplayed tour – it’s one of the highlights of the book so far.

On the playlist here – in the light of the TBL Archive feature above and working on the 1972 US tour text , the How The West Was Won album -I always felt this set got a little overlooked by being released at the same time as the DVD – it really was so much to take in- play it yourself and I am sure you will agree.

Here’s some of the albums I’m lining up for the June DL Playlist:

Led Zeppelin – Three Days After

Led Zeppelin – Listen To This Eddie

Led Zeppelin – For Badgeholders Only

Robert Plant – Pictures At Eleven (35 years gone this month)

Marianne Faithful – Rich Kid Blues (Record Store Day release)

Elton John – 7 -11-70 (Record Store Day release)

Bad Company – Run With The Pack and Burnin’ Sky reissues 

And finally …Frank Zappa Hot Rats original album on Reprise – reviving memories of it being one of the first LP’s I brought with my £11.50 first weeks wages when I started work in the big wide world age 15 and 9 months at British Home Stores on June 6, 1972 – 45 years ago on Tuesday  – the same day Zep were kicking off their US tour in Detroit.

The number one single in the UK charts that first week of June in 1972 was Metal Guru by T. Rex – I was a big Marc Bolan fan then and still am. It’s perhaps fitting then that the good lady Janet and I will be in attendance at the T. Rextasy concert at Bedford’s Corn Exchange on Friday. We have seen this excellent tribute act a few times now – lead singer Danielz is a big Zep fan and was at Knebworth in 1979. Get it on…

Dave Lewis – June 7 , 2017.

Until next time –  have a great  weekend…

TBL Website updates compiled by Dave Lewis

with thanks to Gary Foy and James Cook

Follow TBL/DL on Facebook:

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

And follow TBL/DL on Twitter.

YouTube clips:

Robert Plant and Strange Sensation: Storytellers TV recording June 6, 2002:

Led Zeppelin May 2003 US Today TV Interview for the DVD release:

Robert Plant and Strange Sensation: Storytellers TV recording June 6, 2002:

 

 

 

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8 Comments »

  • Dave Lewis (author) said:

    Graham I recall that session too -excellent!

  • Graham Rodger said:

    Remember listening to Robert’s incredible live Saturday morning BBC radio session when Dreamland came out, such beautiful atmospheric washes of sound, some of which ended up on the Song To The Siren cd-single. I was delirious with flu at the time, so it was extra trippy…!

  • Dave Lewis (author) said:

    great comments Ed!

  • Ed-Washington DC said:

    The DVD release (and the Celebration Day release some years thereafter) capped off what was for most of us a lengthy absence of visual evidence of Led Zeppelin’s dynamic live presentation. You can only watch “Song Remains” so many times over the decades, and the yearning for more only became more pronounced. Especially when you peruse the vast array of pirated bootleg audio on offer.

    Thus the DVD was manna from Heaven. I felt the acute urge to store several unopened copies in a safe deposit box, should anything unnatural happen to mine.

    The video output of their contemporaries was already well played out down through the years, but Led Zeppelin finally had the last word. Emphatically.

    So a toast to Dick Carruthers, and of course Jimmy Page and Led Zeppelin, for delivering what is for me the finest rock and material ever committed to disc. Its a gift that simply keeps on giving.

  • Dave Lewis (author) said:

    thanks mate!

  • Dave Lewis (author) said:

    Larry
    Many thanks -yes How the West is an underrated gem!

  • Larry said:

    Love the archive special on the DVD…that one’s now due for a dusting off soon! Dick Carruthers is undoubtedly one of the unsung heroes of Zeppelin lore…his work on DVD, the upgraded TSRTS film, and Celebration Day was all top-notch.

    The Sgt. Pepper set is a real joy. Thanks to Paul Humbley for the enjoyable and informative review.

    And there’s no doubt that HTWWW was overshadowed by the DVD back in 2003. I’ve often wondered why they were released at the same time. Is it possible that as a result, HTWWW is an “underrated gem”? Despite the edits in the WLL medley (the tragic omission of Slow Down is painful to endure)…sorry, the Beatles, I mean Zep fan, in me…it had to be said.

  • Danielz said:

    Most interesting and informative as always. Great tit-bits of information that I never knew or had forgotten about. Lovely to see the passion still rides within. All the very best, Danielz (T.Rextasy)

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