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ROBERT PLANT FOR GLASGOW CELTIC CONNECTIONS EVENT/LED ZEP II AT 46/ JIMMY PAGE BIOGRAPHY PREVIEW/DL DIARY BLOG UPDATE

22 October 2015 3,483 views 6 Comments

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Robert Plant set for Glasgow Celtic Connections 2016 Event:

Robert Plant will perform at the Celtic Connections Event in Glasgow on January 31, 2016.

This report via The Scotsman

 

Rock legend Robert Plant is to be one of the star attractions at Glasgow’s Celtic Connections music festival – in a line-up also featuring a night in honour of Joni Mitchell’s songs, a tribute to the life of Edith Piaf and a celebration of Paul Simon’s groundbreaking Graceland album.

Plant will be making a one-off appearance in a tribute night to late Scottish guitar legend Bert Jansch.

The Led Zeppelin frontman’s performance at the 1000-capacity Old Fruitmarket – along with indie-rock guitarist Bernard Butler and Glasgow-born Jansch’s former Pentlangle bandmate Jacqui McShee – is expected to be one of the hottest tickets at the event, which launched its programme today.

A clutch of South African township musicians who played on Paul Simon’s groundbreaking Graceland album will be flying into Glasgow for a special concert marking 30 years since its release.

The show, at the festival’s long-time base at the Royal Concert Hall, will be fronted by the Edinburgh band Bwani Junction after Mr Shaw spotted the band performing the album at a tiny nightspot in the capital this summer.

Evergreen Irish folk superstars The Chieftains – who have been performing for more than half a century – will be putting together a special concert to mark the 100th anniversary of the Easter Rising in Dublin.

Leading author James Robertson will be joining forces with Scottish folk singers Karine Polwart, Dick Gaughan and Annie Grace to “reimagine” the music and lyrics from Joni Mitchell’s classic album Hejira to mark its 40th anniversary, while a host of her other best-known songs will get special treatments on the night.

Shetland fiddler Aly Bain will be honoured with a special 70th birthday party, which will also mark the 30th anniversary of his hugely-popular partnership with accordionist Phil Cunningham.

Half a century on from the formation of the Traditional Music and Song Association of Scotland, one of the nation’s leading young singers, Siobhan Miller, will be masterminding a showcase of leading vocal talents for the festival’s opening night gala.

The 10th anniversary in December of the passing of one of Scotland’s most influential pipers, Gordon Duncan, who died at the age of just 41 after a long battle with alcoholism, will be marked by a tribute concert of his music masterminded by two of his proteges and festival favourites, Ross Ainslie and Ali Hutton.

The festival is also launching a new experimental music night at the Drygate Brewery, which will become a Celtic Connections venue for the first time, plugging a gap left by the demise of The Arches earlier this year.

The city’s recently-revamped opera house, the Theatre Royal, will be hosting a concert devoted to the life and music of Edith Piaf as part of a major showcase of French music of France, as well as marking the forthcoming 100th anniversary of her birth.

American and Canadian music is being strongly championed heavily at this year’s festival, with Lucinda Williams, John Grant, and Martha Wainwright all in the line-up.

World music stars heading to Glasgow will include Senegalese guitarist and singer Baaba Maal, Mongolian outfit Anda Union, Soumik Datta, a virtuoso on the Indian sarod instrument, who will be joining forces with Austrian percussionist Bernhard Schimpelsberger, and Afro Celt Sound System.

Scottish Album of the Year winner Kathryn Joseph will also be making her debut at the event, which will be held across 26 different stages in January.

Other home-grown favourites in the programme include Admiral Fallow, Eddi Reader, Lau, Rachel Sermanni, Blazin’ Fiddles and James Yorkston.

Mr Shaw said that securing 67-year-old Plant for the festival – which will see him follow the likes of Sir Tom Jones, Martha Reeves and the Bobby Womack by performing at Celtic Connections – had been on his wish-list for some time.

Celtic Connections will also be honouring Joni Mitchell, another long-time target for Mr Shaw, less than a year after she was treated in hospital after suffering a brain aneurysm.

It emerged last that the folk icon is “making good progress” as she recovers at home.

http://www.scotsman.com/what-s-on/music/robert-plant-to-star-at-celtic-connections-2016-1-3921998

Celtic Connections runs from 14-31 January. Tickets are on sale now.

Ticket details http://www.celticconnections.com/Pages/default.aspx

For the latest Zep news updates be sure to check out Led Zep News at https://www.facebook.com/ledzepnews/ 

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TBL Archive Special: Led Zeppelin II – it was 46 years ago today…

Zep-2-KindofRock

To celebrate the release of the Led Zeppelin II album back in 1969 – here’s a TBL Archive review I wrote in 2009  

A Kind Of Rock…. Still Flying

In the same way Miles Davis’ Kind Of Blue defined the jazz genre, the second Zep album well and truly encapsulated rock music as we know it. Dave Lewis re appraises Led Zeppelin II on the occasion of its 46th anniversary.

In reappraising the second Led Zeppelin album forty years on it occurred to me that a parallel with the jazz giant Miles Davis is evident.

In the same way that Miles Davis Kind of Blue was the jazz album of choice for those who thought they didn’t like jazz, Led Zeppelin II became the rock album for those who thought they didn’t really like rock.

After Kind Of Blue, Miles Davis went on to make continuing adventurous music (witness In A Silent Way and Bitches Brew), Zeppelin also would push the boundaries of creativity with the likes of Zep 4 and Physical Graffiti. Neither artist though, quite replicated the sheer shock element of intent so apparent on Kind Of Blue and Led Zeppelin 2. These are both works of massive influence that grew their respective audiences manifold.

Having recorded the album in a variety of locations as they toured relentlessly that year, Jimmy Page admitted to having lost a bit of confidence by the time the album appeared in October 1969 accompanied by an advert that proclaimed it be ‘’Now flying’’. He need not have worried. By the beginning of 1970, Led Zeppelin II had dethroned The Beatles Abbey Road at the top of the charts on both sides of the Atlantic. It marked the beginning of the band’s world domination. It registered over 130 consecutive weeks on the UK chart and remarkably was still holding court when Led Zeppelin III appeared a year later.

So what inspired this sales longevity normally reserved for the likes of The Sound Of Music or Bridge Over Troubled Water? Put simply Led Zeppelin II defined the rock genre in a way that Cream and Jimi Hendrix had hinted at. Here was a seamless forty one minute experience as track merged into track and sledehammered the listener into submission. At the helm of it all was Jimmy Page. If the first album had laid down the foundations of what this quartet were going to be about, Zep II extended the notion with a brain crushing display of dynamics. And it was Page’s precision production that gave the record its real character, a standard he would uphold on successive Zep albums.

It was also his ability to adapt to the varying studio conditions they found themselves in that gave the album its distinctive sound. Page’s experiments in distance miking, a trick he picked up during his session days considerably enhanced the effect of John Bonham’s straight from the wrist drumming and Robert Plant’s wailing vocal. When it transferred to disc, it reproduced an air of electricity you could almost touch.

This was best personified on Whole Lotta Love, the catalyst opening track and smash US hit single. The lyrics may have been the work of Willie Dixon but the sound was pure Page/Zep. The swirling white noise middle section being the result of a weekend mixing session in New York with Eddie Kramer.

This second Led Zeppelin album also marked the emergence of Robert Plant as the group’s lyricist. He offered up compositional strength that would further flower on subsequent albums. The dreamy What Is And What Should never be ,the emotional love song Thank You with John Paul Jones excelling on organ and the Tolkien inspired Ramble On all sound as fresh today as they did four decades back.

Chris Huston was the studio engineer at Mystic Studios in Los Angles where some of the tracks were cut. ‘’It was such a small studio’’ recalls Huston. ‘’I was very impressed with Jimmy’s ability to double track and create the sound he wanted first time every time. What you hear is the product of a lot of spontaneous chemistry in their playing’’.

69-10-16 Village Voice

Examples of that spark of chemistry can be heard in the smash and grab solos that light up The Lemon Song and the closing track Bring It On Home- the latter highlighting the band’s somewhat dubious practice for taking unaccredited old blues tunes (in this case Sonny Boy Williamson s song of the same name) and respraying them Zep style. Derivative as this tactic appeared, such arrangements always emerged unmistakably as their own.

Led Zeppelin II also contains one of the finest and few listenable drums solos committed to record in Moby Dick and a kitsch rocker Living Loving Maid that they always said they disliked, but actually packed a tight incisive punch. Another winning factor: The album made memorable use of the newly found freedom stereophonic sound offered, making it an early hi buffs delight.

It would of course been easy to replicate this formula on their next record but that was never an option. As the gold and platinum albums began lining their walls, Page and co had already moved on. Stedfastedly refusing to stick to one particular groove, with their second album they had already made the definitive hard rock statement. Mandolins, Martin acoustic guitars, Mellotrons and a date with ‘’A lady whose sure’’ now beckoned.

The intervening 46 years have done nothing to diminish the startling air of tension that signifies the opening cough and riff of Whole Lotta Love and the commencement of an album that continues to defy the wrath of time.

It a kind of rock…and a kind of legend and it’s still flying.

It’s Led Zeppelin II – go and wish it a happy 46th birthday and play it right now …

Dave Lewis, October 22, 2015.

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Mothership Reissue?

Not quite sure if this is official or genuine as yet but this one came via Super Deluxe Editions.com

If you’ve spent the last year buying the Led Zeppelin Super Deluxe Editions then your appetite for Zeppelin vinyl is probably well and truly sated… but just in case, the band’s 2007 compilation Mothership is being made available again across four vinyl records.

It was issued on the black stuff at the time, although the vinyl renaissance was a few years off at that point and the two-CD and 2CD+DVD formats were what the majority would have opted for.

Probably the key buying point here is that this new vinyl set uses the new 2014/15 remasters, which is good news since the original compilation mastering has never been fans’ favourite.

The set is smartly packaged in outer box with embossed artwork and a large booklet with David Fricke notes. The two-CD version is also being reissued.

Mothership is reissued on 6 November 2015.

See link at http://www.superdeluxeedition.com/news/led-zeppelin-mothership-4lp-vinyl/

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TBL 38 Collectors Cover Limited Edition:

TBL38-Covers-1

This one via Julian at the Underground Uprising site:

Magazine Review:

“Tight But Loose” Issue 38 Special Limited Edition: John Bonham Earls Court 1975 Cover (limited to 300 numbered copies).

TBL Issue 38 (October 2014), has been reissued with a tremendous photo of John Bonham from Earls Court, hard at work. For those who missed this issue the first time round (a most unwise decision), this is an opportunity to get a very nice limited edition of this issue. In addition you get a limited and numbered colour photo, taken from the 1980 Tour Over Europe Tour.

Apart from the highlight of this issue, the interview with Jimmy Page, there is also detailed coverage of the first three album reissues. Plus numerous other articles, which as one expects from TBL and its creator and author, are full of interest, and full of correct facts.

A highly recommended read, the magazine can be ordered direct from the TBL website here:
http://www.tightbutloose.co.uk/tbl-38-special-limited-edition-collectors-edition-with-john-bonham-cover/

(Jules McTrainspotter, October 2015

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Chris Charlesworth on the forthcoming Jimmy Page biography by Martin Power:

Here’s a piece via Chris Charlesworth’s excellent Just Backdated blog about the forthcoming Jimmy Page biography by Martin Power – due out via Omnibus next year. I met with Martin a few months back to discuss the book – he is very thorough on the music and his credentials include the much acclaimed Jeff Beck book Hot Wired Guitar -The Life of Jeff Beck.

Over to Chris:

While editing the early chapters of a forthcoming biography of Jimmy Page this week, three of which are devoted to his work as a session player between 1963 and 1966, my attention was drawn to the guitar playing on ‘My Baby Left Me’ by Dave Berry and ‘Leave My Kitten Alone’ by First Gear, just two examples of the casual brilliance Jimmy brought to records that weren’t even hits. Guitar playing like this certainly hadn’t appeared on records by The Beatles or Rolling Stones up to this point.

Page young

Of ‘My Baby Left Me’, author Martin Power writes: “Alongside the likes of drummer Bobby Graham, bassist Alan Niven and, on occasion, legendary big band trombonist Don Lusher, Jimmy Page and Big Jim Sullivan helped form the crack team that Dave Berry had dreamed of. By the autumn of 1963, some of them had also cut Berry’s own favourite of all his studio recordings, a sterling cover of Elvis’ ‘My Baby Left Me’. ‘Yep, that’s the one I’d like to be known for,’ he said ‘Nothing like the Arthur Crudup original, nothing like Elvis, just our own version of the song. Jimmy Page on lead guitar, Alan Niven on slap bass – there were actually two basses on that, you know. But yes, a good song. I’m happy with that and really glad Jimmy was on it.’ Page was actually all over it. Providing a master class in snappy riffs and clattering chords throughout the verse and chorus before letting fly with a quite superb solo, Jimmy took Berry’s already spirited reading of ‘My Baby Left Me’ to another level.  ‘I remember the great solo that Jimmy did on that session,’ Sullivan later recalled. ‘It’s one of the best constructed rock solos on record.’”

Here’s a link to listen: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KqL71rZjb2s

Of ‘Leave My Kitten Alone’, Martin writes: “Page’s performance on First Gear’s ‘Leave My Kitten Alone’ must surely rank as one of the finer guitar solos of the sixties. Signed to Pye records and managed/produced by Shel Talmy, First Gear were at the time tipped for big things, their North eastern cocktail of Elvis-style rock’n’roll and Mersey-approved beat pop as gritty, energetic and potentially promising as Van Morrison’s Them. With Talmy at the helm, the band entered the studio in the autumn of 1964 to record a single version of Ernie K-Doe’s ‘A Certain Girl’. In itself no slouch, ‘A Certain Girl’ motored along nicely on the back of lead singer Dave Walton’s behind-the-beat falsetto, some pleasing female backing vocals and Jimmy’s countrified string bends.

“But it was when First Gear and Page ran through the B-side, a cover of Little Willie John’s ‘Leave My Kitten Alone’ that Shel Talmy’s interest was truly peaked.  ‘Jimmy was about 18, 19 at the time, with bushy black hair, and very quiet,’ Dave Wilton recalled to the BBC. ‘But then he did this off the cuff, lightning guitar break on ‘Leave My Kitten…’. Well, Shel came racing down from the control room and said, ‘What did just you do to get that!’ So, he (told) Jimmy he was going to take it again. First take, Jimmy played it note-for-note perfectly.’ The resultant solo really was a thing of beauty. All twists, turns and racing speed pick work, Page’s contribution to ‘… Alone’ distilled all he had learnt from James Burton, Scotty Moore and Buddy Guy into just 23 seconds. Yet, there was also something else that was utterly distinctive and unique. At the start of his solo intrusion, Page’s guitar actually sounded like it was riding a wave of electricity. No distinct notes per se, more a wash of undulating sound. Quite unlike anything else Jimmy (or anybody else) had recorded up to that point, it was the first real pointer of where Page’s muse would take him in later years.”

Link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ezPQBv32kBo

The book, entitled No Quarter: The Three Lives Of Jimmy Page, will be published in the spring of next year. Updates on its progress and further extracts will appear on Just Backdated over the next few months.

Chris’s blog link:

http://www.justbackdated.blogspot.co.uk/2015/10/jimmy-page-session-man.html

DL Diary Blog Update:

Another tricky week here with Janet’s mum Betty still in hospital – we have had a fair few discussions about her care ahead. Whilst we’ve  had good support and advise, dealing with occupational therapists and social workers is draining. We are hoping we can get some focus and clear direction ahead.

Along with all that, there’s been some additional TBL related stress that left me well upset. I won’t go into detail, but it was not good.

Anyway, one has to rise above these things so it’s been onward with TBL 40 text – and extensive work on the 9,000 word feature on the history of the early years of the TBL magazine. Elsehwere, Nick Anderson has come in with his usual diligent Collectors Column and I conducted an interview with Jeff Strawman regarding his forthcoming Led Zeppelin Gear book. Regarding the history of the early TBL issues – it’s been very nostalgic wading though issues number one to six – there are so many incredible memories for me contained amongst those pages.

early magsAt the Victoria Record Fair last Saturday it was good to see TBL contributor Richard Grubb, long time TBL supporter Keith Creek, Classic Rock news editor Dave Ling, fellow vinyl enthusiast Steve Livesley and veteren Zep fan/Eric Clapton expert/author Marc Roberty. Marc is also working on a Zep book project for next year.

On the subject of books, there was a very productive Skype session with Mike Tremaglio regarding progress on the Evening With Led Zeppelin book project we are collaborating on. Mike continues to unearth some simply amazing archive reviews and features – adding to the bank on info we already have. The man is phenomenal.

In a week of some negativity, Mike’s input and feedback have been truly inspirational.

As have a variety of  vinyl acquisitions – amongst them from the Vinyl Barn stall – Jimi Hendrix- More Experience. A live 1969 recording from the Royal Albert Hall on the Ember label. I originally brought this from Carlow’s Records Bedford in 1973 but lost it along the way. It’s nice to have it back – there’s some great stuff on this.

Here’s the other recent vinyl additions that will be lining up on my retro Sony player – graphic equaliser ready to be twiddled with…

Rory Gallagher – Live In Europe – original Polydor UK pressing – you gotta love Bullfrog Blues!

Tom Rush –Classic Rush – UK Elektra K number 1971 – songwriter of the sublime No Regrets which Robert covered in the Priory Of Brion days.

Free – The Free Story –Island limited edition numbered 2243

Above via the Vinyl Barn stall in Bedford

This is the Victoria Fair haul – an excellent Fair with some weird and wonderful pressings and great bargains to be found:

David Crosby If I Could Only Remember My Name – Atlantic/ Hipsavox Spanish pressing.

Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young – Celebration Copy – US Atlantic pressing – a great compilation.

Led Zeppelin – Led Zeppelin I –original US Atlantic pressing with thick cardboard sleeve – used condition but a snip at £3!

Led Zeppelin – Led Zeppelin II bootleg of rare Turkish sleeve pressing.

David Bowie – Diamond Dogs – original RCA pressing.

David Bowie – David Live -original UK RCA pressing.

I am having a bit of a Bowie phase at the moment inspired by reading the superb Complete David Bowie by Nicholas Pegg.

The Doors – The Doors first album mono Elektra -another in slightly used condition but a very welcomed find.

The Rolling Stones – Through The Past Darkly UK Decca with hexagonal sleeve.

Elton John – 11- 17 – 70 – US UNI label pressing  very fine early Elton live album -Sixty years On is an awesome performance.

Jack Bruce – Songs For A Tailor – Original UK Polydor pressing £3.

pretty things promo

The Pretty Things -Silk Torpedo – US Swan Song promo DJ copy with Promo sticker

The Pretty Things – Savage Eye – US Swan Song with Promotional Only label.

Very pleased to pick up the above two Swan Song promos. Both bargains at £4 a piece.

Wings – At the Speed Of Light – UK pressing.

Elton John – Rock Of The Westies – Argentina pressing.

Vashti Bunyan – Just Another Diamond Day CD reissue.

Free – The Stealer – original UK Island single.

Fairport Convention – Si Tu Dois Partir  original UK Island single.

The Beatles – Twist And Shout EP original Parlophone.

Julie Felix – Songs From The Frost Report EP – UK Phillips label.

I’ve also been listening to two sets of River albums – Terry Reid’s superb 1973 solo effort and Bruce Springsteen’s 1980 double set –  the forthcoming deluxe reissue of this Boss epic looks well good.

One more anniversary: TDE 80

35 years ago tonight, my very good friend Dec promoted his first gig The Teardrop Explodes suported by the Thompson Twins at the Adison Centre in Kemspton Bedford. As I recall Julian Cope’s boys were on fine form and would hit big a few months time with their Reward single. The Thompson Twins also racked up a fair few hits in the early 80s. The ticket is here …from small acorns Dec! 35 years where’s that gone!

Right, time to get off to Mick’s to get some design work completed on TBL 40…

Dave Lewis – October 22, 2015

YouTube Clip:

This is the official 2015 trailer for the release of the feature length documentary film TAKEN BY STORM: THE ART OF STORM THORGERSON AND HIPGNOSIS on the legendary graphic designer Storm Thorgerson (Hipgnosis, StormStudios). Interviews include David Gilmour and Nick Mason of Pink Floyd discussing design of ANIMALS, THE DARK SIDE OF THE MOON, and MOMENTARY LAPSE OF REASON, Robert Plant on HOUSES OF THE HOLY, IN THROUGH THE OUT DOOR, and PRESENCE, Peter Gabriel on LAMB LIES DOWN ON BROADWAY and his solo LPs, Steve Miller, Graham Gouldman, Alan Parsons, and members of Muse, The Cranberries, Catherine Wheel and The Mars Volta. Other interviews include artists Sir Peter Blake and Damien Hirst, and rock photographers Jill Furmanovsky and Josh Cheuse.

Until next time…

Have a great  weekend

Keep listening, keep reading…

Dave Lewis/Gary Foy –  October 22 , 2015. 

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6 Comments »

  • Paulo Alm said:

    “No Quarter: The Three Lives Of Jimmy Page”, I’ll surely get that! Looking good.

  • Chris Serratella said:

    Young Dave,

    We’d all love those first 6 TBL issues reissued in their entirety in a nice little limited side project. How ’bout it?

  • Larry said:

    Very exciting to see that three chapters of Mr. Powers’ book are being devoted to Page’s session career….a serious examination of that will be most welcome, that has been a well-known yet under appreciated aspect of his career for far too long. Looking forward to the book!

  • Matt O'Kane said:

    Onwards and upwards Dave, that’s what I say.

    Talking of Jimi H @ RAH, you need to beg borrow or steal a ticket to see his Bobness there this week. Was lucky enough to go Weds, he’s back on form and mattering once more (just 49 years after the previous famous RAH run….!).

    Almost intelligible too (well, sometimes)!

  • Dave Lewis (author) said:

    Those early solos are pioneering for sure!

  • Hunt Sidway said:

    Dave, Sorry to hear about Janet’s mum Betty, a little prayer up for you all…

    In listening to Jimmy’s solo on ‘Leave My Kitten Alone’ I have to say I think that sounds like the prototypical version of his unbelievably fast and dexterous lead work immortalized in the ‘Let That Boy Boogie Woogie’ medley from Whole Lotta Love in the MSG 1973 performances of The Song Remains The Same. Amazing to hear it rendered this brilliantly this early on.

    cheers,
    Hunt

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