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TBL CELEBRATION DAY COUNTDOWN DAILY NEWSLETTER: CELEBRATION DAY LONDON PREMIERE – ONE OF THE GREATEST NIGHTS…

13 October 2012 3,553 views 10 Comments

To mark the impending momentous worldwide screening of the Led Zeppelin Ahmet Ertegun 02 reunion concert on October 17th, we are counting down to the day with a daily Celebration Day Newsletter post. This will feature relevant news and updates and archive features.

Countdown to the Celebration Day…4 days to go.

THE CELEBRATION DAY LONDON PREMIERE HAMMERSMITH APOLLO – FRIDAY OCTOBER 12 2012

Where to start…on one of the greatest nights…

The TBL meet beforehand in the Distillers was like the greatest school reunion ever – old faces in every corner of the pub,  all about to converge on the Hammersmith Apollo for this night of nights. So many people who came here once again as the man once put it…on a blind date. They come from far and wide Christophe from France, Front Row Dave from the USA and the couple from Israel. The devotion this band commands is just simply amazing. ‘This could be the greatest night of our lives’’ was my mantra for the evening and that’s how it turned out. While in the pub we had a toast for dear Howard Mylett…he would have loved all this.

The scene outside the Hammersmith Apollo around 7pm was utterly astonishing (here I go again)…the giant Zeppelin above the billboards proclaiming Celebration Day. It was that alright. A mass of press photographers and TV crews, the Led Zep emblazoned red carpet the backdrop –all stunning.

As I remarked to Mark Harrison, how could we have ever imagined a scene like this when we outside this very building when attending Robert Plant’s 1983 and 1988 gigs or Jimmy’s Outrider gigs in the 1980s.

It was such a thrill to see the Zep family and friends begin arriving. Kevyn Gammond, Richard Cole, Benji Lefevre, Ross Halfin, Harvey Goldsmith, Phil Carson, Maureen, Julian Lennon (I heard his response to the question ‘’How do you compare Led Zeppelin and The Beatles?’’ ‘’They are on a par’’ he replied.

And then the arrival of the fab three…

Jimmy looking the coolest rock star on the planet in shades and taking time to chat to the crowd. John Paul jones and family ever assured and dignified. Robert Plant and family –Robert still commanding that air of rock god supremacy. The sight of the three of them together on the red carpet brought a lump to my throat but that’s the way it can creep up on you. The sense of seeing is believing…yet again.

Photo Dave Lewis

Photo Nigel Paling

Photo Gary Foy

In the theatre, the lights went low and Harvey Goldsmith made a short speech before handing over to director Dick Carruthers. Dick’s comment that it was going to be loud which was met with a huge roar. He in turn introduced to the stage Jimmy Page, Robert Plant and John Paul Jones

The audience just erupted…what a moment…

Jimmy and Robert gave short speeches –Robert reflecting back to 1968 and their signing to Atlantic and Ahmet’s guidance.

Photo Dave Lewis

Then the film – we had a great view in row M central. The sound was loud and powerful. I did hear that it was pretty erratic in other parts of the theatre.

The last words of the Tampa news pulse anchor man was the cue for the stunning intro of Good Times Bad Times and for the next 124 minutes…well what I can I tell you. You’ve heard it enough already from me…seeing it for the second time only confirmed my view that this is Led Zeppelin’s crowning moment.

The Hammersmith crowd got right into it and as I predicted, this really did feel like a gig and the atmosphere reflected that with much cheering after every performance. It was a totally unique atmosphere.

Highlights – so many: the triple whammy of For Your Life into Trampled and into Nobody’s Fault crushed the hall, Dazed was pure Zep theatre, Stairway got me going a bit emotionally yet again and then it was on into the home straight –Kashmir…oh what can I say – this really is the one…you’ll all see for yourself next Wednesday…

We went out into the night air in a state of delirium albeit a slightly dazed one. It was great fun watching many people pose on the red carpet and taking pics of the carpet itself. I did a quick piece to camera interview for a production company –it was a fantastic buzz to be there in the moment and there was that sense of not wanting to leave the vicinity – a bit like how I felt at Earls Court on the early morning of May 25th 1975… because then the party would be over.

But what a party it had been.

DL waffling on about the usual subject…

Some quick name checks. Great to see so many old faces – Billy, Alison, Carolyn,Paul H,Dawn A and Anne in the pub and Phil T and Julian, Graeme and Pam,Nick A, Geoff Adamson ,Warren, Karen and the lovely girls,  and Simon Pallet afterwards. Maria thank you for your card! Michaela for making sure Mark Harrison got home all ok. Richard Grubb for taking some TBl flyers to hand out at Cardiff ,Peter Chow apologies for my over enthusiasm during the watching the film! Dan Firth, Paul Aspey for some great and encouraging chat, Dave Linwood…well for being Dave Linwood creator of TBL web! Robin Wealleans for the late pint (they don’t do halves in Wales) and for offering up a wonderful compliment about my review of the film, Lee Mathews for tales of The Who at Lewisham, Andreas Stocker, Steve and Kathy, Nigel Paling for the pics, Bedford boys Tom and Phil for being there at Earls Court and still being there 37 years later, and to everybody else who said hi – we all shared in this special night.

There are many more pics of last nights event on the Tight But Loose Facebook page

I could get very deep and meaningful about the significance of being in the presence of the members of Led Zeppelin on this occasion…there was a real feeling that we were offering thanks to them for the past 40 plus years of musical greatness and of course for staging that remarkable come back on the night of December 10th 2007 – now preserved on this simply magnificent film.

If you were lucky enough to be there – let us know what you thought. Add  comments in the comments box below or email your review to davelewis.tbl1@ntlworld.com

All reviews will be considered for the next TBL and O2 book project.

So ends a remarkable week that has echoed the events of five years ago. That pressure that came with soaking all the activity up has been in much the same vein as it was back then. The early 5am starts in relying the daily TBL newsletter, the mixed emotions, the packing and distributing of TBL 33 in between all this Celebration Day activity… it’s all been worth it of course – I consider it a pleasure and a priviledge.

Last night I and the lucky few thousand in attendance, felt a real pride in witnessing this astonishing film in the company of the genius musicians that were responsible for it and to call ourselves fans of the greatest band of all time…

Get ready to feel the same way come October 17th.

Celebration Day – next stop: Bedford and the whole world…

Dave Lewis – drained of Bedford 16.53 – October 13th 2012.

Here’s the  you tube clip of the red carpet arrival – note the TBL editor greeting the esteemed Mr Jones… 



Until tomorrow…keep reading – keep listening…

Dave Lewis/Gary Foy

October 13 , 2012

Don’t forget that you can follow Dave Lewis/TBL on Twitter – LedzeppelinTBL

and view additional photos etc at the Tight But Loose Facebook page (add us as a friend) at

http://www.facebook.com/#!/profile.php?id=1611296783

 

 

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10 Comments »

  • John said:

    Dave,

    TBL 33 arrived Friday and a fantastic read as always. Can’t wait for Wednesday in Nottingham. Reading your review has just added to the tension – I never got lucky in the scramble for tickets 5 years ago but I’ve got my ticket for Wednesday night.

    Bring it on.

  • Michaela said:

    Wonderful summary Dave , thank you. What a privilege to have been there in 2007 and again last night. It was amazing , hard to put into words. Seeing the band & how happy they were was , in your words, joyous. Strange how Stairway had such an effect on me , in tears , maybe thinking of the significance of it all. Wonderful to have my son by side , also very emotional at times , finally sharing the occasion with me. But for me it was Ramble On & Kashmir that stole the show on the night . As we expect the film was awesome. Spent today catching up with new and old friends reliving the moments. Missed those not there on the night but great to meet with all who were. No longer the TBL crew but the TBL International family ! Cant wait to do it all again on Wednesday

  • Dave Lewis (author) said:

    Pete it survived!

    Mark – you got it all there in your summary…

    Nigel a perfect silver wedding anniversary present!

  • Steve Livesley said:

    Superb work Dave, cant wait for Wednesday now. Sadly couldnt make last night, looked brilliant from reading the above. Tight But Loose 33 arrived today as well, another fantastic effort from you! Well done.

  • Pete Leigh said:

    Sorry for dropping your phone Dave, was a great nite!

  • Mark Harrison said:

    To coin a phrase “Led Zeppelin BLOODY HELL!”
    Now I KNOW HOW this band continues to inspire my soul. Last night’s showing of their surely already immortal film was simply staggering. This film is an ASSAULT on the senses, there is no other way to describe it.From the start and for a further two hours plus, the band through their magnificent performance pick you up and SLAM you to the floor over and over again. They STEAMROLLER you into submission. There are no low points in this film other than it has to end.Jimmy Page BEAMING throughout the evening was obviously totally in his element. His enthusiasm spreads throughout the band and very soon we are into a smiling competition. What makes this film different is because of the number of cameras used, you really ARE up there with them.At some stages it looks like you could just tap each of them on the shoulder. You’re almost part of the band. A fitting testament to the mother of all reunions
    Everyone involved in the making of this masterpiece should be congratulated, especially the Director Dick Carruthers who has given us a film to treasure forever…..
    It was a pleasure – Just wish dear old Howard could have been there…….
    Mark

  • andrew said:

    the 70s certainly belonged to Zeppelin and hey , they’re not doing too shabbily in 2012 either. One day to go!

  • Chris Wright said:

    Clearly a deeply significant moment in Led Zeppelin history. You really couldn’t write a better ending, except, of course, that dear Bonzo was still with us, and also Peter Grant, as he had a lot to do with getting the band to their current unprecedented status. Nonetheless, as Jimmy observed last night, John will be very proud of what Jason achieved and, in that sense, it really is the most fitting conclusion to the most incredible story that has ever unfolded in rock.

    Julian Lennon’s observation is, in my view, very correct. Whereas the 60’s belonged to The Beatles, the 70’s were the property of Led Zeppelin.

    The anniversary of Love Me Do topping the charts and this week’s amazing Zep occasions on both side of the Atlantic are a reminder, as if we needed it, that we have lived in extraordinary times. Enough justification for us all to have our own Celebration Day next Wednesday.

  • Julian Walker said:

    Fantastic summary of a fantastic night Dave! I think that even you were silenced by this film, if that is possible!!
    A very special and wonderful evening. And a great five year anniversary celebration of the original concert. When I sat down in row E, right at the front, the young couple to my right were in awe that I had been to the original concert!

  • Nigel Castle said:

    Cannot wait until next wednesday 17th.It just happens to be my and “MY good lady Jannet’s” silver wedding anniversary. A meal in Cardiff and then Cineworld at 20:45. It does’nt get any better than this.

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