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6 April 2013 1,026 views No Comment

Down under 10

Robert Plant at Rod Laver Arena Melbourne – this report for TBL from Michael Rae who attended with his son

As this photo of my 13 year old, Adam, shows, we weren’t in a great spot for photos tonight!

Never mind, we were there!

Robert was in fine voice and in a very cheerful mood. The band was spectacular.

LZ songs included Friends, Bron-Y-Aur Stomp, Black Dog, Going to California, Ramble On, Four Sticks, Whole Lotta Love and encores of What Is And What Should Never Be and Rock and Roll. Spoonful, Fixin’ to Die, and a snippet of Fly Me To The Moon and other phrases took out the covers. Another Tribe and Tin Pan Valley were also played.

The best plantation was a throw back to his previous performances at the Blues and Roots Festivals in Perth and Byron Bay. “Tonight is almost a blues show, it’s half way between Bryan Adams and Frank Ifield.”



This report from Colin Hunter

Reflections on last night’s concert. Firstly Robert was in fantastic voice –the sound was great and the band on fire. He was on great raconteur form even telling us that “Stryder hated rivers and had to be carried over water”. The venue was the problem . Rod Laver is a great stadium rock venue but too cavernous for the 2013 Space Shifters. Nonetheless I had a fantastic night–highlights were Going to California, Bron Y Aur Stomp and Tin Pan Valley.

This one from Kristine Sutherland:

At the Byron Festival Robert strolled onto the stage dressed in black long sleeve shirt,j eans and boots. His hair was tied back for most of the gig,falling loose towards the end(one of my companions, who is of a similar age and less hirsute, was most jealous. I think the word ‘basket ‘was uttered).Robert chatted between songs, talking about blues influences, Frank Ifield, Strider and that band (cough cough). The audience was very loud and very welcoming. The boys loving all the Zep riffs, when they could find them, and the girls swooning whenever the words ‘satisfied ‘and ‘me ’were sung. The voice still has it.
I wasn’t that far from the stage but there were lots of tall people at this gig and they were all in front of me,so I had to make do with the side screens and the occasional glimpse of the band on stage. Still it was one of the best shows ever..great energy and humour. The SSS are a great band and I hope they continue to make merry for some time.
Stand out for me was “Heartbreaker”, but they were all good.
As the man himself said at the end of the night…”Keep Happy”


Robert Plant presents Sensational Space Shifters – you tube round up:


Jimmy Page in New York:

Jimmy has been seen out and about in New York this past week –various Facebook sites reported that he was in the Bleecker St. Record store and  there are photos of his visit on Ross Halfins’s web site at


Deborah Bonham is on tour this month –here are the details:

APRIL UK DEBORAH BONHAM TOUR DATES special guest Steve Rodgers

Thu 11 MILTON KEYNES The Stables

Fri 12 LIVERPOOL O2 Academy2

Sat 13 BARNSLEY Birdwell Venue

Thu 18 WOLVERHAMPTON Robin2 Bilston

Fri 19 HULLBRIDGE Touchline Club ESSEX

Sat 20 WIMBORNE Tivoli Theatre

Fri 26 YORK The Duchess


MAY 2013 UK

Thu 2 BOLTON Railway Venue

Fri 3 PERTH BackStage at the Green Hotel Kinross

DEBORAH BONHAM NEW ALBUM ‘SPIRIT’ available to pre order


 Record Store Day Countdown:

As a countdown to the Record Store Day event, every day up to April 20th, I’ll be posting details of the DL vinyl LP of the day on the TBL Facebook page – a daily choice from my collection with relevant anecdotes to where I purchased it/reasons for choice etc. So day 2 with 18  days to go is…Led Zeppelin Dazed And Confused  on blue vinyl. This is a recent acquisition – a bootleg containing material from the 1969 Top Gear and Tasty Pop Sundae radio sessions. The official BBC Sessions set I foolishly missed out on when it came out in 1997 as a vinyl box set –it now commands a hefty price. This is therefore, the next best thing to having some prime’ 69 Zep on vinyl.     dazed

April 3: Day 3 with 17 days to go is…Rory Gallagher Stompin’ Ground – 6 track ten inch –this is what Record Store Day is all about – as purchased at last year’s event – great packaging (love the  Dansette record player illustration,) great content – a vinyl beauty  oh yes.


April 4 –Day 4 in the countdown to Record Store Day with 16 days to go –today’s most appropriate choice is BBC Broadcast by Led Zeppelin –this is the original bootleg on orange vinyl by the Trade mark of Quality label. I brought this on mail order in 1973- and what a revelation it was/is.

bbc zep

For its 42 years ago today that that BBC In Concert Paris Theatre performance was first broadcast on Radio 1. I’d faithfully taped it on an old reel to reel tape player on that afternoon . It was great to have it on vinyl. I now have countless versions on CD but it’s this bootleg that is most treasured. Great back cover art work too by William Stout who did a fair few   sleeves for the TMQ label. The music is of course prime 1971 Led Zep –opening up fresh horizons with every performance and this one still sounds utterly amazing.

Here’s the full story: Looking back  to that Sunday 42 years ago when I first heard the music of Led Zeppelin performed live – the effect was pretty shattering to the ears of a young 14 year old. The occasion was the Radio One broadcast of an hours worth of live Zep for John Peel’s In Concert programme. Recorded three days earlier at the Paris Theatre on the back of the band’s ‘Back to the clubs tour’, at the time this was a very big deal. Zeppelin had not appeared on a BBC radio session since August of 1969 –their return to the UK airwaves was therefore much anticipated. Especially by me, tuning in a at home on our portable radio eager to hear how they sounded on stage.

Beforehand I carefully put the jack plug from my reel to reel tape recorder into the radio to capture this historic moment. Then the dulcet tones of John Peel spoke forth: ‘’This is something we’ve waited a long time for on the Sunday repeated on Wednesday show and I know it’s all going to be worth the wait. Would you welcome please Led Zeppelin.

Oh yes we would welcome them Mr Peel. Blam! The battering ram riff of Immigrant Song reeled from the radio and I was in seventh heaven. This was Led Zeppelin live – and a riveting experience to behold.

I was already in love with their three studio albums, I had missed out on their 1969 broadcasts hearing them live was absolute confirmation that all my enthusiasm was justified. On record they were fantastic -but their songs performed live took all into another stratosphere.

No more so than the next track that was aired. As I was later to discover via the bootlegs, this hour long presentation was edited down from a full set. On this Sunday evening broadcast Immigrant Song therefore did not segue into Heartbreaker as was the custom of their then live act. Instead we heard Dazed And Confused. All nigh on 18 minutes of it…

This was my baptism into the free form improvisational world of live Led. It was then I realised that the studio versions were just the starting point. Dazed And Confused live went off into all sorts of tangents – the drama of the slowed down intro, the violin bow episode, the call and response sequence through to the lengthy outro – it was all there. Within the space of 18 minutes my estimation and appreciation of Led Zeppelin shot up 100%.

That trend continued as they performed a dreamy What Is And What Should Never Be, Stariway To Heaven and Going To California from their yet to be released fourth album,That’s The Way and the Whole Lotta Love marathon that had a rock’n’roll medley that included That’s Alright Mama and Mess Of Blues. Phew…

My trusty reel to reel captured all this action blow by blow. Unfortunately due to the poor reception of the then 247 metres radio band of BBC Radio One –much of it was played out alongside the strains of several foreign radio stations drifting amongst the airwaves. I therefore ended up unwittingly with some rather unique versions of these BBC recordings. No matter –I had an hours’ worth of live Led Zeppelin on tap…and life was very good indeed.

Subsequently this BBC performance would emerge first on a series of bootleg LP’s – (I had the BBC Broadcast LP with that great Will Stout pig cover on Trade Mark Of Quality a year later) and then on a variety of CD bootleg sets and then officially on the BBC Sessions album in 1997.

I wish I still had that reel to reel tape version but it’s long disappeared along with the reel to reel tape recorder. I do still have the original BBC Broadcast album and some fantastic CD versions.

So thank you John Peel for persuading Led Zeppelin to perform on Radio One again back in the spring of 1971.I have countless hours of live Led Zeppelin at my disposal but it’s that very first hour that still resonates as much as any, as it unlocked the (up until then) secret world of Led Zeppelin in concert. It ultimately led to a fascination for me to hear as many of their live performances as possible. 42 years on that desire is as strong as ever – and that Led Zeppelin BBC Broadcast as recorded at the BBC back in April 1971, remains one of my all time favourite Zep recordings. Dave Lewis April 4th, 2013.

April 5 –Day 5 in the countdown to Record Store Day with 15 days to go –today’s choice is Planet Waves by Bob Dylan….now here’s a thing – I was only discussing with my good friends Terry and Jerry in the pub last night the merits of Bob Dylan’s output and Jerry mentioned that his fave Dylan song is Dirge from the 1974 Planet Waves album. I noted that I brought that album when it came out here on the Island label – it was leased to Island in the UK by Asylum Records,  this was a part of a short deal Dylan did to release his records with Asylum in the US –he later returned to the Columbia label….lo and behold what do I find on the Hitchin Market record stall today but a copy of said album on the esteemed US Asylum label in good condition going for all of 50p…you can’t say no to that! Very fine album it is too with the Zim in the company of The Band –Robbie Robertson’s playing on Going, Going Gone is beautifully sublime.


dylan planet waves


DL Diary Update:

The last few days has seen some intensive work here on the Knebworth revised book project. Mick has now laid out about 50 pages of new design and it really is looking very impressive. There’s a way to go yet and attention will soon switch to kick starting TBL 35 – again there’s some very good stuff lined up for that.

Don’t forget all TBL 2012 subscriptions ended with TBL 34 – and now is the time to re-subscribe. Here’s the link to do so…

Janet’s mum Betty has been making a little progress in hospital but is still fairly weak ….elsewhere it’s been a case of putting up with the cold weather –it must be age but it really does get in my bones…hopefully it will get warmer soon……the announcement that The Rolling Stones are playing Hyde Park is all very nostalgic but this time it ain’t free that’s for sure…and the pricing is again pretty steep at £100 …. on the playlist the record store day countdown as seen above, plus a bit of definitive jazz via John Coltrane’s Love Supreme and I’m also lining up David Bowie BBC In Concert 1971 (thank you John P) and Wide Eyed And Legless The A & M Recordings by Andy Fairweather Low (thank you again John P). I’m going to make a concerted effort to get to the Studio Magik  set and the Stephen Stills Carry On box set in the next few days. A trip to Hitchin market with the good lady yesterday yielded one or two very nice vinyl finds including the aforementioned Bob Dylan Planet Waves, The Yardbirds Odds and Sods LP and a white label Elektra Records sampler Begin Here with tracks from Love, Incredible String Band etc at a bargain £2.

I might have a little flutter on the Grand National today…..looking at the line up Viking Blond at 80/1 might be a bit of a long shot  -Seabass at 12/1 look a bit more realistic. Here’s hoping for a good competitive and safe race.

Here’s the Yardbirds LP sleeve:

oddsa dn yard


Neal Preston has a new digital book Led Zeppelin Sound And Fury due out which looks impressive

Here’s the preview


And finally….a very neat clip of the Celebration Day vinyl box set being produced – thanks to Graeme Hutchinson for spotting this one…


Until next time…

Have a great weekend

Keep listening, keep reading…

Dave Lewis/Gary Foy

April 6th , 2013.

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