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10 July 2014 5,508 views 2 Comments

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TBL Archive Special: Munich Over Europe 1980:

To mark the 34th anniversary of the final Led Zeppelin tour dates here is an extract from the book Led Zeppelin Feather In The Wind – Over Europe 1980…

This picks up the story as the band prepare to perform what would be there penultimate gig in Munich:

Saturday July 5th, 1980: Munich. Today the sun shines hot on the city centre.  There’s an air of expectancy all around.  You know it’s going to be one of those special days,  you can feel it.  The people here have waited seven years for the live return of Led Zeppelin and over at the Olympic Village it’s soon going to happen.

Back at the Hilton it’s fairly quiet.  Ones in the know are still hanging around the lobby and are rewarded around 4pm when Jimmy Page and bodyguard arrive in a Mercedes.  Jimmy in white again, signs some autographs and ambles in to the reception area and is gone.  Minutes later, Robert comes down to the restaurant area looking very relaxed, checks the scene, speaks to the ever present WEA promotion man on the tour, and then retires to his room. I guess most of the entourage are holed up watching the Wimbledon men’s final between John McEnroe and Bjorn Borg that is about to proclaim Borg a fifth time winner.  Or maybe they were tuned into German radio which, on this particular afternoon, plays a number of classic Hendrix tracks.  Jimmy Page would have liked that.

Freeze frame on jubilant Borg holding aloft the Wimbledon trophy.  Fade and cut to the Olympic complex.  Early evening and outside the hall I spot the familiar Edwin Shirley trucks.  Inside the vast Olympic Hall, where Zeppelin in a few hours time will play to 14,000  fans, it’s deserted, except for a handful of officials and personnel staff hovering around.  One person though, is doing just a bit more than hovering.  In fact, he’s skateboarding across the vast unseated area in front of the stage.  I should have realised sooner that it would turn out to be Benji Lefevre, sound technician and nerve centre of the Zep P.A. operation set up.

Wandering around the vast Olympic complex is a breath-taking experience.  With all its terraced covering it’s the product, as one of the Showco team remarked, of an architect’s orgasm.  Tonight there may be no Olympic athletes around but when the doors open, plenty of kids look set to run a four minute mile in an attempt to secure a vantage point down by the front of the stage. Munich is probably the most prestigious gig of the tour.  Fritz Rau is even wearing a suit for the occasion and introducing his children to the delights of the four man combo due on soon.  All the important German press are here and even England is represented with Melody Maker’s Steve Gett.  There’s going to be a lot of important guests too, including a few of the Roxy Music team, returning last night’s compliment.  To the side of the stage, out of view, an extra drum kit is stationed alongside an extra set of microphones – a black-finished kit owned by one Simon Kirke, he of Bad Company, which means tonight is jamming night.

By the projected kick off time of 9 o’clock, there is a massive surging and swaying down by the unseated arena area which prompts Harvey Goldmith to do his usual, “you guys down in the front, just take it easy” routine adding that “The show is gonna start very soon.”

When the house lights dim some 15 minutes later, I get the most incredible buzz from hearing the Wembley-like roar that echoes around the Olympic Hall.  And there they are, walking the 30 yard stretch from the dressing room area up on to the stairs that lead to the stage.  Ushered by torchlight and led as ever by manager Peter Grant.  Bonzo is flanked by the ever present Rex.  He’s shaved his beard (“I always do for the summer” he tells me later) and looks very much like he does in the concert part of the movie.  He also looks nervous, and at this moment I can’t blame him.

Jimmy is stumbling his way through, once again wearing that baggy suit I first saw in Cologne.  Robert strides forward head aloft, a bottle of orange juice in his hand, smiling.  John Paul Jones does an Ali-like shuffle up to the stairs.

Seconds later Munich sees Led Zeppelin and the roar is frightening….

So too is the awesome power of the opening numbers Train Kept A Rollin’ (“And it kept on rollin’ ”) and Nobody’s Fault But Mine.  It’s when they crunch down on numbers like these that you get into perspective the power that they can create.

Something like Nobody’s Fault with all its stop-gap acappella and soloing, has to be punctuated by the rhythm section at just the right moments.  If Bonzo or Jonesy drop one or stitch one it would totally throw out the up-front euphoria of Jimmy and Robert… but they get it right every time and it makes me gasp in amazement.  That power,which so easily could weigh them down, is manipulated with effortless ease, and it sounds so right.  “No-no-no-no-no-no-no-no body’s fault.”  Crunch!  Jimmy winds it up, but then Jimmy winds it up every night.

Of course, one of their great assets is the ability  to balance that power and  shift into passionate, emotion-filled diversity.  After Black Dog and In the Evening, they display this perfectly when performing The Rain Song with all its shimmering double neck virtuoso playing from Jimmy, and on All My Love too, probably the best received song throughout the tour.  You can actually hear the audience singing along on the chorus tonight. Of course, they’ve all got the album, and the dream of it being performed live is turning to reality with every movement of Robert’s outstretched arms, Jonesy’s string symphony, Jimmy’s emotive solo and Bonzo’s anchor man drumming.

“Eye thank yew” says Robert, taking this particular crowd through an  unfamiliar sketch.  Hot Dog has the boy doing his barn dance speciality and John Paul Jones adds some accurate piano work.  During Trampled Underfoot Jimmy really lets loose.  Pulling the most incredible notes from the Gibson, steely solos, juicy wah wah effects, you know, the whole works, and Robert loves it.  Dancing his two-step across the stage, grinning and looning. “Push” indeed. Since I’ve Been Loving You is another Jimmy showpiece and it’s apparent how well this song has matured over the years, having been written something like a decade ago.

“James Patrick Page guitar!  This is the first tour we’ve done in three years and it’s been quite an interesting sketch actually.” (Roars from the audience) “One more night then… who knows; maybe we’ll do this again very quickly; maybe not.”

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Achilles Last Stand follows that speech.  I close my eyes and it’s like being in a 1976 time warp.  It’s got that sort of atmosphere having been recorded here in forced circumstances, and it still retains a sense of melodrama (right down to the point Robert echoes the “Atlas” line and leaves Jimmy to stalk the stage in time with the revolving, closing chord passage, flanked by a blue spotlight). After Jimmy’s White Summer/Black Mountain Side interlude, Kashmir explodes forth and Robert unleashes every ounce of drama from within the lyrics.  Other highlights include that marvellous “Woman talkin’ to ya” ad lib; the combination of the two front men’s visual tactics; and finally Bonzo’s drumming – “Moby Dick, Dick, Dick, Dick” Robert teases.

Unannounced as usual, Jimmy plays two chords and as those two chords echo around the Olympic complex they’re soaked up by the Munich people and thrown back with a most volcanic-like roar that signals the anthem.  “Does anybody remember laughter?” asks Robert on cue and, judging by the reaction, I think they do.  Soon after, he’s thrown the tambourine and stands there arm outstretched in classic pose.  Behind him Jimmy rips out that solo.  By the end of Stairway to Heaven, Zeppelin receive an ovation that sounded like they’d scooped gold, silver and bronze in every event going.

“München… Goodnight!”

The band leave the stage, and Phil Carlo from Bad Company’s road crew  and Mick Hinton proceed to set up Simon’s drum kit to the side of the stage near John Paul Jones’ keyboards. The audience look puzzled. Back come the group for the obligatory encore of Rock And Roll which crushes the hall.

After this, Robert announces to the crowd: “Please welcome an old friend of ours from Bad Company, Simon Kirke!” Simon walks on, takes to the kit, does a few snare beats and before we know it the five man Led Zep are into Whole Lotta Love.  This, I haven’t seen before.  Incredibly though, it works!  Even though this jam had been totally unrehearsed, Simon gets all the breaks right, with eyes fixed on Bonzo, and the sound is sizzling hot.  Jimmy joins in on the vocals for the chorus, and then proceeds to fiddle about on theremin, battling with Robert’s vocal interplay.  The famous five grind on into the Let That Boy Boogie segment and then it’s on to the home straight, Simon filling in, complimenting Bonzo’s hammerings.

At the close they all take a bow – “Thank you… oh, and welcome back on stage Simon!”  Finally they leave the stage, grinning, sweating and satisfied.  While the Munich mania continues, the band are already speeding towards the Hilton hotel.

Munich mission accomplished – one final night Over Europe 1980 to follow..

munich press


Extract from chapter 3 of the book Led Zeppelin – Feather In The Wind –Over Europe 1980 written and compiled by Dave Lewis. Munich photos taken from the book.

The book is available via the link below


Led Zeppelin then As It Was – At Knebworth 1979  – the much acclaimed book at a special bargain price for a limited period:

To mark the 40th anniversary of the Knebworth concerts, and the 35th anniversary of Led Zeppelin’s appearances , I am offering the Led Zeppelin Then As It Was – At Knebworth 1979 book at a special bargin price.

Throughout July and August the book will be available at a price of £15 plus postage and packing – a saving of £10 on the cover price!

Led Zeppelin Then As It Was – At Knebworth 1979 is the latest in the TBL publishing series that analyses the concert history of Led Zeppelin in greater detail than ever before.

If you were there back in 1979 …you will revel in reliving the memories…if you weren’t lucky enough to be…this is the opportunity to discover the full story surrounding the final remarkable on stage performances in their homeland of Led Zeppelin with John Bonham…

Suffice to say, the book will also make great summer reading during the Knebworth anniversary period and beyond…

kneb offer preview

Led Zeppelin Then As It Was – At Knebworth 1979 is the book that will take you back to that field just outside Knebworth during an English summer of 1979…

The concerts…the crowds…the music…the memories…the legacy…

And this time there are no sleeping bags required…

Don’t miss out – order now!

Order now at a bargain price from this link :


Knebworth Rock Concerts 40th Anniversary Exhibition:

To celebrate 40 years of concerts, throughout July and August, Kenbworth House will be staging a unique exhibition of Knebworth Concert memorabilia – featuring posters, tickets, t-shirts and never-before-seen photos and video footage from every show since 1974 on display in Knebworth House. There is no extra charge to view the exhibition, which is included in the House admission ticket.

More details at:


Jimmy Page at Nordoff Robbins 02 Silver Clef Awards:

Jimmy Page attended the Nordoff Robbins 02 Silver Clef Awards at the Hilton in London last Friday. He was presented with the prestigious Silver Clef Award. There’s a couple of excellent interview clips via Youtube below.

norfoff jimmy  also ran with this story

Jimmy Page agrees with polls which say Led Zeppelin should headline Glastonbury

Jimmy Page has said he agrees with polls which state that Led Zeppelin should headline Glastonbury.

Speaking to Bang Showbiz at the Nordoff Robbins O2 Silver Clef Awards yesterday (July 4) in London, the guitarist said he agreed with polls and also bookies who have suggested that band could one day top the bill at the festival. “I agree with them, it’s good music isn’t it,” he commented. “Maybe I could just go out on my own then and call myself Led Zeppelin.”

Page added that the band’s cross-generational appeal is why fans want them to headline the huge festival. “I think the reason people want it is the fact Led Zeppelin’s music has touched people all the way through and every year seems to bring new young musicians and a new audience. I’ve just been out promoting the first three releases of Led Zeppelin’s albums and it’s young people that are there and young journalists – it’s not the old school. So, I know what it means to people and it’s a really nice thing.”

In April Glastonbury boss Michael Eavis has said he was “sure” that Led Zeppelin would reform in the future. The classic rock band have long resisted offers to reform and play together again, and their last proper show was at London’s O2 Arena in December 2007, where they were joined by Jason Bonham, son of the band’s late John Bonham, on drums.

In an interview with Ireland AM, Eavis said he was convinced they would share a stage once more and that he had always wanted them to play at Worthy Farm. Asked if the group would ever reform, he replied: “That will happen one day – I’m sure of it. They will do it.”


Jimmy was also in attendance at the Black Sabbath/Soundgarden/Faith No More/ Motorhead Hyde Park British Summer Time London event last Friday.

Thanks to


Robert Plant Feedback:

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Here’s a review of the Denmark show filed by Mimo Antabi

Robert Plant and the Sensational Space Shifters

June 18th, 2014 – Den Fynske Landsby, Odense, Denmark

Setlist: Babe I’m Gonna Leave You/Tin Pan Valley/Spoonful/Black Dog/Rainbow/Going to California/the Enchanter/Little Maggie/What Is and What Should Never Be/Fixin’ to Die/Whole Lotta Love. Encores: Satan Your Kingdom Must Come Down/ Rock & Roll

On June 18th Robert played his first gig in Denmark in 13 years. Quite amazingly he picked the provincial town Odense  (which just happens to be my hometown) for this historic ocassion! The venue was equally historic namely ’Den Fynske Landsby’: a 2000-capacity outdoor amphiteatre situated in an open-air museum.

The Golden God himself (having turned a bit grey over the years, obviously!) took the stage just before sunset and introduced tonights set as a ’bit of country and eastern’. And as he and his incredibly talented band blazed through every musical genre imaginable the gig evolved into one of the finest  I’ve ever attended.

Tin Pan Valley and The Enchanter where the stand out moments of the night driven by the amazing Justin Adams who sounded and looked like he was having the time of his life, even doing a bit of Page-style duckwalk,

Robert’s vocal was as strong as ever, in particular during What is and What should Never Be where he managed to hit the high notes.

Overall he seemed in extraordinary good mood that night, During Whole Lotta Love he took  the time to joke about his own age and  sex god-persona of youth, inserting some rather amusing ’grandpa here needs it too!’ ad libs.

Just before the final encore Robert and the band realized that England had sadly lost the match against Uruguay. Thus Rock and Roll was introduced as an old English folk tune and dedicated to the defeated English national team.

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Robert Plant and his Sensational Space Shifters however ,stood out as the undefeated champions that night!

Mimo Antabi

Pics by Mimo – many thanks.


DL Diary Update:

Another great week of World Cup action – the brave Costa Rico side just missing out on a semi final place, and of course that simply astonishing Brazil thrashing by Germany which really was one of those ”where were you” moments to relayed time and time again. Football..bloody hell…

It now all leads to a Germany v Argentina final on Sunday. I really cannot see the Germans slipping up. In other sports activity, it was great to see the crowds out on the streets here for the Tour De France cycle race and the Wimbledon men’s final served up a corker with Novak Djokovic eventually overcoming Roger Federer.

Back on Planet TBL, there’s plenty going on with TBL 38 initial design work underway on Andy Croft’s 1975 tape analysis of the March US dates and a great contribution from long time Zep chronicler/author and now space flight author Rob Godwin. His original Collectors Guide books remain definitive works on the collecting of Zep unofficial releases – even more so now with the resurgence of interest in vinyl collecting. Talking of which, I recently added a new acquisition to the DL collection -the four LP box set Fab 4 Liverpool which has a splendid Sgt Pepper cover parody.

sgt zep

The new TBL T-shirt is also close to wrap and I should have the ordering details in the next couple of weeks.

I’ve been reading the memoirs of broadcaster/writer Mark Ellen. Mark has been the editor of Q, Select, Mojo and The Word – magazines I’ve enjoyed immensely over the years  -I’ve also had a bit of contact with Mark over the years re the usual subject.

The book is a highly enjoyable if slightly sardonic romp through his various escapes with rock stars leading to its apt title Rock Stars Stole My Life  – it includes his hilarious account of the celebrated filmed interview Mark conducted with Roy Harper and Jimmy Page half way up a hill in  for the Whistle Test programme in 1984.Well worth a read.

On the playlist – Led Zeppelin Live in Seattle 1973, all three Led Zep reissues, Robert Plant Fate Of Nations, Robert Plant and SSS Rainbow, Dave Brubeck My Favourite Things, Wings Band On The Run (another great summer album) and Joni Mitchell The Hissing of Summer Lawns & Court and Spark aiding a rather reflective mood here this week.  I’m looking forward to picking up the CSNY Live 1974 recently released set at some point. There needs to be a few inspirations to aid something of a full on period here.

Aside from the ongoing TBL activity , there’s a lot of things going on re family stuff with Janet’s special birthday at the end of August, Adam going to University in September etc. Trying to balance all that with several key TBL projects ahead has put the old stress levels up a bit – and as mentioned previously, it’s taken a Joni album or two to bring a calming reflective influence….I’ll no doubt be on the look out for one or two more in the coming days and weeks…

DL – July 10th, 2014

You Tube Clips:

Jimmy Page Nordoff Robbins Awards Interview:

Jimmy Page Nordoff Robbins  Awards  – Absolute Radio interview clip:

Robert Plant and the Sensational Space Shifters – Whole Lotta Love Rock Werchter Belgium – July 3rd 2014

Robert Plant Interview – this is to be part of a documentary on Claude Nobbs and the Montreux Festival. 


Until next time…have a great weekend…

Keep listening, keep reading…

Dave Lewis/Gary Foy – July 10th , 2014.

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  • Ed-Washington DC said:

    Plant’s humor just glimmers throughout the interview. He really brought it home contemplating the true meaning of “The Nobs” and whether Led Zeppelin did more damage the peace and tranquility of Europe than did Count Zeppelin’s flying machines. What a raconteur he is. Would be great to listen to him for hours over several fine adult beverages.

  • Kristine said:

    I finally have all three of the Led Zep super deluxe reissues.( Zep 111 dragged the chain a little but arrived this week at last.)So, as my annual holidays begin, I will be catching up with the rest of you by listening to a lot of Led Zeppelin.Happy days.

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