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12 December 2018 2,287 views 4 Comments

A couple of important radio shows to announce:

Radio 2 Rock Show – Led Zeppelin Special:

BBC Radio 2 Monday December 17, 2018 – 9pm-10pm

Here’s the info:

Led Zeppelin is 50 years old this year! So what better way to celebrate than a special show featuring some of the biggest names in rock paying homage to Jimmy Page, Robert Plant, John Paul Jones and the late great John Bonham.

Hear Brian May, Roger Daltrey, Def Leppard’s Joe Elliott and ZZ Top’s Billy Gibbons all chat about their own appreciation of rock’s ultimate four-piece. Plus, singer Ann Wilson from Heart explains how her band has its origins in Led Zep’s back catalogue and how she managed to sing Led Zeppelin’s most famous song for the band themselves.

In autumn 1968, Led Zeppelin signed to Atlantic Records. Fifty years later, US rockers Rival Sons just signed to the same label. We hear from them to see what Zeppelin mean to the new generation. Plus, author Dave Lewis recounts his first Led Zeppelin experience and explains why he’s followed the band around the world for over forty years.

I recorded my piece a few weeks ago with producer Liz Barnes – here we are at the Wise Buddah studio in London. Liz has been a long time supporter of all things TBL and it was pleasure to be interviewed by her.


Classic Rock Radio:

The interview I recently conducted with the always excellent Jon Kirkman about the Evenings With Led Zeppelin book and more will be aired at 12 noon on Sunday December 16 on Classic Rock Radio – see link below:


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

  • Previously unseen photographs of Led Zeppelin performing at Madison Square Garden in New York on June 10, 1977 have been published online.

Jimmy Page

Robert Plant

Upcoming events:

December 11 – The console used to record parts of “Stairway To Heaven” and “Four Sticks” and a guitar signed by Jimmy Page will be sold at auction.
December 17 – A special edition of the Radio 2 Rock Show about Led Zeppelin will air on BBC Radio 2 at 9pm UK time.
January – The four new models of Jimmy Page’s recreated Fender Dragon Telecaster will be revealed.
January 31 – The UK Americana Awards will be held in London. Robert Plant has been nominated for artist of the year.
February 24 – The Tate Britain’s Edward Burne-Jones exhibition, which features two tapestries owned by Jimmy Page, closes.
April 8 – The “Play It Loud: Instruments Of Rock And Roll” exhibition, featuring Led Zeppelin items, will open at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York.
September 20-21 – The 2019 John Bonham memorial concert is scheduled to be held in Redditch.
November – The “Play It Loud: Instruments Of Rock And Roll” exhibition will move to the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame.

Many thanks to James Cook.

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

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


Jimmy Page SirusXM Volume interview:

Interesting one here via Planet Rock:

Led Zeppelin legend Jimmy Page says he can “guarantee” fans will be “getting stuff” from him in 2019.

The guitarist recently spoke to Mark Goodman of SiriusXM Volume’s ‘Debatable’ to promote Led Zeppelin’s official illustrated book ‘Led Zeppelin By Led Zeppelin’ when he was asked if he has any extended Led Zeppelin 50th anniversary activity up his sleeve in 2019.

Non-committal in his response, Jimmy said: “I’ve always got things in mind, and I always think of things as a schedule of releases over a period of time.

“I’ve never been, actually, any different. And, obviously, I would have ideas of things or projects which could go ahead, but, you know, it all takes time. So, at the moment, we’ve got this book out, so that’s really brilliant. And who knows what may come further on down the line? I can’t really say at this point.”

Pushed about possibility of new music from him in the new year, Jimmy said: “Ah, well now that’s a different story. Yes, you’ll definitely be getting stuff from Jimmy Page, I can guarantee that.”

See more at:


TBL Archive Special:

Golden Lion Reunion 37 years gone…

December 15 – that is a date that always revives memories of the first public reunion of Jimmy Page, Robert Plant and John Paul Jones which I was lucky enough to be in attendance.

Here’s the story:

Back in the early months of 1981, Lynn Sizemore who was PR to the Golden Lion Roadies Charity For Children Association, the charity formed from the Fulham pub often frequented by the Zep / Swan Song entourage, approached me to publicise in the next issue of TBL, a children’s charity raffle being held in December.

I was only too willing to help and we began planning how this would all work. The raffle was duly featured in TBL issue 6 which came out in the late summer of 1981. I had a few meetings with Lynn during this period including one memorable occasion at the Golden Lion pub in Fulham. Robert’s sound man Benjii Lefevre was in attendance and I was introduced to John Bindon the notorious London character who had been with the Zep entourage on the 1977 tour and involved in the infamous Oakland fracas. Robert and John Paul Jones had already promised to attend and give prizes out on the night set for December 15th, so it was always going to be a special evening.

Even more so after the call I made to Swan Song the week before the event. Sian at Swan Song informed me that Jimmy was also due to attend. It duly turned into something of a grand Swan Song reunion – in true Zep style.

On the night itself, Peter Grant arrived with Jimmy around 8.30. A combat attired Robert and smartly dressed JPJ were already in tow. Various roadies, Swan Song employees and guests (including Cozy Powell) were there as was John Bindon again. Tom Locke and I spent a memorable night in the pub as Jimmy, Robert and JPJ mingled by the bar and duly got up on stage to present the prizes of Jimmy’s Yamaha acoustic guitar (wonder where that is now?) and a set of personally signed albums. The main winner was an American guy ( pic above) while runner up was, Steve Simmons, a TBL subscriber from Bristol. Here’s a pic below of Steve on stage receiving his prize.

golden lion 1

Jimmy looked in slightly better shape than he had in Europe the previous year and told me he was working on the Death Wish 2 soundtrack. As a Christmas present I gave Robert a copy of a large format History Of The Blues book (wonder if still adorns his book shelf?) to which he acknowledged with the classic “Eye Thank yew” catchphrase so prevalent on the Over Europe tour. I took the opportunity to tell Peter and Atlantic’s Phil Carson of my plans to write a major reference work on the band’s music though it would be another eight years on in the Marquee (at a Jason Bonham gig) when I was able to tell the pair of them that the book (Led Zeppelin A Celebration) was soon to be a reality.

It may have been a strictly non playing role, but this unexpected Led Zeppelin reunion was full of warmth and good cheer. Underlying all that though was the definite feeling that they now all had separate plans – Jimmy with the soundtrack, Robert with the in progress recording of his debut album and Jonesy who wryly informed someone at the bar that he was now on permanent school run duty for his daughter’s back in Devon. It would be another eleven years before all three appeared in public together in the UK again to attend the 1992 Q Awards to collect the outstanding achievement award, and another 26 years before they played together on that night of nights in December 2007.

Fast forward to August 29th, 2013 and the Colston Hall Bristol.

golden lion 2

As we were making our way into the arena for Robert’s Sensational Space Shifters show amazingly enough I bumped into Steve Simmons for the first time since that night at the Golden Lion back in 1981. Steve was carrying a photo book of the pics he took back then – we had a good old chinwag about how he had been the runner up in the competition and the signed albums he was presented with on that night all of 37 years ago. The first, but not the last grand reunion…

DL – December 12, 2018


Mick Wall – When Giants Walked The Earth book:

Mick Wall’s excellent 2008 Led Zeppelin biography has just been published in an updated edition – here’s the info via Mick’s website:;

My 2008 Led Zeppelin biography, When Giants Walked The Earth, has just been published in the UK/Ireland/Australia/New Zealand in a new, vastly updated anniversary edition – the 10th anniversary of the book, the 50th anniversary of Zeppelin forming and making their first album. It has an additional 40,000 words, some of it added to the original text, including a brand new start to Chapter One, see below. Some of it updating the story to cover the past 10 years. It also features brand new interviews with a great many people that I didn’t get to speak to first time around, including Jason Bonham, former Atlantic Records chief (and later manager of both Plant and Page) Phil Carson, plus the late Chris Squire, Paul Rodgers, Kevin Shirley, Chris Dreja, Jim McCarty, Eddie Kramer, Lemmy and many, many more.

Order at this link

The Treasures of Led Zeppelin  by Chris Welch (Carlton Books)

Another book just re-published is The Treasures Of Led Zeppelin by Chris Welch


Pete Shelley – 1955 -2018 RIP:

It was very sad to hear the passing of Pete Shelley aged 63, the pioneering leader and singer songwriter of The Buzzcocks. He was a master of the three minute pop single. Bizarrely, last Thursday when is passing was announced in the afternoon I had purchased at the local Slide Records a copy of The Buzzcocks single Ever Fallen in Love (With Someone You Shouldn’t’ve). A bargain at 50p – I already had a copy but could not leave it in the racks. It was somewhat unnerving when his passing was announced during the evening.

In 2005 Pete took part in an all star tribute version of the song dedicated to John Peel – it featured amongst others Robert Plant and Roger Daltrey , David Gilmour, Peter Hook and Elton John · See YouTube clip below.


DL Diary Blog Update:

With Dec back on Thursday, it was great for us both to catch up with TBL designer Mick Lowe  – amongst others Mick designed the recent Evenings With Led Zeppelin book and Dec’s acclaimed From Heaven To Heaven – New Order Live, The Early Years 1981- 1984. Mick’s work on the Evenings With book has been much acclaimed in the feedback we’ve had.

On Friday, we had a fabulous time  at  the annual Wallbangers FC day out in London. Our 25th year was a day of reflections, laughs and more than a few beers – oh and we had some chips in the excellent Golden Union fish and chip shop – we even assisted in cooking them as can be seen!

While Dec was back we also met with fellow vinyl enthusiast Pete Burridge, and Jenny Fisk at The Castle. Whilst there, Pete and I battled it out in an ad-hoc quiz to name the top 30 charts of Christmas 1976 from a copy of the NME of the time I had on me. Tthe only clue given by quizmaster Dec being the record label of the song or album. Pete was the winner and I have to say his knowledge on this was just incredible. He even knew the Pam Ayres album was on the Galaxy label. I did do well to name Bert Weedon album on Warwick…all good fun. Pete your position as Bedford’s number one musicologist is well safe!


Pete also runs the excellent monthly Record Club in The Castle and on Tuesday I took along my original  copy of  The Beatles Complete Christmas Collection 1963 -1969 – the original Trade Mark of Quality bootleg of the annual Beatles Christmas fan club flexi discs. Whilst there, Pate played the Dave Edmunds Girls Talk single –  clear vinyl pressing on Swan Song – a top track indeed.

Later that night I caught the second half of the Barcelona v Spurs Champions League game – and what joy it was to see Spurs get that late equalizer that put them through the knock -out stages.

Aside for all that, there has been plenty of work going on here  with orders to pack  -and some hassles to face with some ongoing distribution problems that have caused some frustration.

I’ve also been busy on a couple of  features that have come in late and needed to be wrapped on a very tight deadline – more on all this to follow.

There’s the usual rush to get all prepared for Christmas with cards to write, shopping etc etc with less than two weeks to go.

In between all that  – on the Playlist here amongst others :

John Lennon – Imagine 2 CD extended reissue

Bob Dylan – More Blood More Tracks – The Bootleg Series Vol 19 2LP

Paul Weller – Five Meanings CD

The Beatles -White Album – new mix 2LP

Jethro Tull -This Was mono LP

Led Zeppelin – Led Zeppelin IV LP and Companion Disc

Phil Spector – Christmas Album on Apple

and the aforementioned Beatles Complete Christmas Collection 1963 – 1969 – all keeping the festive spirit going…

Dave Lewis – December 12 ,2018

Until next time, have a great weekend

Website updates written and compiled by Dave Lewis

with thanks to Gary Foy, Mike Tremaglio and James Cook

Follow TBL/DL on Facebook:

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


YouTube clip:

Pete Shelley  and various artists – John Peel Tribute:

1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (1 votes, average: 1.00 out of 5)


  • Dave Lewis (author) said:

    Thanks ED – seasons greetings!

  • Ed- Washington DC said:

    I enjoyed your various cameo appearances in the book, Dave. It lent greater credibility to the work as a whole.

    Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to you and yours.

  • Dave Lewis (author) said:

    Thanks Ed!

  • Ed- Washington DC said:

    I have just concluded Mark Blake’s very entertaining biography of Peter Grant (Bring it on Home: The Story of Rock’s Greatest Manager, De Capo Press, 2018) and it takes its place in the pantheon of quality Zeppelin-related literature which now lines my bookshelf.

    Peter Grant was a character straight out of central casting (in more ways than one). Like the author, my first introduction to him was the backstage segments in The Song Remains the Same, where Mr. Grant cuts a figure that resembled Tony Soprano with a Bob Hoskins accent.

    With musicians of Led Zeppelin’s caliber, and the heights to which they were poised to attain, they needed someone on the money end who matched their musical talent with ruthless business acumen and ferocious physical tenacity. In Mr. Grant, they had it in spades.

    I’ve always believed Zeppelin’s reach and impact was purely about their music and charisma, but the business tactics employed by Mr. Grant, his loyalty and let’s face it, his ample guts and scrotal fortitude, played a significant role in Zeppelin’s meteoric rise. If not a pivotal role.

    Whether waging war with the American system of concert promotion and gate receipts, heavily weighted against the artist in rock’s formative years, or taking on the suits who ran the record companies, government institutions, tax collectors or to the other artists themselves, Peter Grant’s loyalty to Zeppelin and Jimmy Page in particular, is every bit as much a part of the story as the band members themselves.

    Yes, there were missteps by Mr. Grant along the way: The copious consumption of “Peruvian Marching Powder”, the ultimate neglect of the Swan Song label and its money acts like Bad Company, the premature sale of Zeppelin’s publishing (later recovered), and the intense paranoia surrounding the almost comical security measures which contributed an opaque layer of mystery and gangster intimidation to the sheen of Led Zeppelin in its heyday.

    But his human side emerges in Mr. Blake’s telling, as Mr. Grant was a legendary charmer, raconteur and family man. His later years post-divorce (his wife ran off with his farm director, who miraculously is still breathing) and post-Zeppelin, as the inevitable descent from the top of the game unfolds, has a wistful tone.

    I’d recommend this biography of Peter Grant to those readers who like myself continue have an insatiable curiosity of this band and the characters who made it happen. And this character in particular made a lot happen.

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