Content: Slate Blackcurrant Watermelon Strawberry Orange Banana Apple Emerald Chocolate Marble
Background: Slate Blackcurrant Watermelon Strawberry Orange Banana Apple Emerald Chocolate Marble
Pattern: Blank Waves Notes Sharp Wood Rockface Leather Honey Vertical Triangles
Welcome to Led Zeppelin Official Forum

Register now to gain access to all of our features. Once registered and logged in, you will be able to contribute to this site by submitting your own content or replying to existing content. You'll be able to customize your profile, while also communicating with other members via your own private inbox, plus much more! This message will be removed once you have signed in.

Sign in to follow this  
Followers 0
ListenToThis

Summer 1977 cont'd vs. Fall 1980 tour

34 posts in this topic

So when listening to the 3rd leg of '77 or Tour Over Europe '80 I often find myself wondering what the next gigs would have been like. After admittedly fantasizing about such fruitless things more than I should I think I would have been intrigued more by the '77 tour continuing.

It does appear an effort was made to reel in the shows after Seattle 07/17. Alternatively they had limited blocks of time in Oakland and needed to keep an eye on the clock; Tempe is simply victimized by location - a long way from Seattle and San Francisco, a smaller market at the time and not a particularly exciting place to be - the long plane ride appears to have done Jimmy in.

The Oakland shows, particularly 07/24, are pretty decent and simply a continuation of the Tight but Loose and sloppy but exciting playing featured throughout the tour. I think the huge Superdome in New Orleans and the Philadelphia stadium shows would have been very exciting. The variations in their playing over the four 3rd leg shows would seem to imply they were trying to loosen up the set list and I believe we would have seen some unusual and heavy stuff. 07/24 is Bonham's last over the top performance, particularly TUF, and it would have been cool to hear him some more at his peak and the band continue to play outdoor shows.

With regard to '80 I just don't think America would have gone that well. The first few shows, like in Europe, would have been good enough, but the inevitably expanded set list and long distance from home would have spelt disaster for Bonzo. I think fractions would have reached the breaking point and a disappointing run would have resulted in Plant taking a break after the trek. I also believe the American audiences would have been even less patient with Jimmy's poor showings. The spirit was willing but the body was failing. As Bonzo was struggling with just the thought of going to the US any poor performances would have likely resulted in some dangerous backstage "self-analyzing" of his skills.

Anybody else more intrigued by what Summer '77 would have brought?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Great thread, LTT. Summer 1977 would've brought a sold-out JFK stadium and a new world record.

With regard to '80 I just don't think America would have gone that well. The first few shows, like in Europe, would have been good enough, but the inevitably expanded set list and long distance from home would have spelt disaster for Bonzo. I think fractions would have reached the breaking point and a disappointing run would have resulted in Plant taking a break after the trek. I also believe the American audiences would have been even less patient with Jimmy's poor showings. The spirit was willing but the body was failing. As Bonzo was struggling with just the thought of going to the US any poor performances would have likely resulted in some dangerous backstage "self-analyzing" of his skills.

I don't think this is true at all. Page had been getting on the right track by late 1980. Edited by Geezer

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Great thread, LTT. Summer 1977 would've brought a sold-out JFK stadium and a new world record.

Indeed, this could be a good topic. I reckon they would have sold out the Superdome as well, we probably would have seen new attendance records (and grosses) set at a few of them '77 stadium gigs. Didn't Page say at one point that they were planning on recording/filming some of those shows? And possibly by trimming some of the excess -as they seemed to be doing- two and a half hour shows as opposed to over-indulgent three and a half hours would have been easier on both the audience and the band.

As I've said many times, I think the 1980 American Tour would have been very hit and miss performance wise. Good nights would have been great, mediocre nights would have been bad, but I believe U.S. audiences are a little more forgiving (and patient) than their European counterparts.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Page had been getting on the right track by late 1980.

Had he? His drug-related antics on the 1980 European tour were just as bad as ever...can't speak as much for when they were back home, during the interim.

Didn't Page say at one point that they were planning on recording/filming some of those shows? And possibly by trimming some of the excess -as they seemed to be doing- two and a half hour shows as opposed to over-indulgent three and a half hours would have been easier on both the audience and the band.

Interviews dating to 2003 (I believe) have him remarking that nothing in 1977 was recorded professionally/multi-tracked, with intimations (if not stated intentions) that they planned to record some shows toward the end of the tour.

I'm not sure how much they would have scaled back in America. Someone (can't remember who) reminisced watching Jimmy fawn over the elaborate stage-production then being planned, courtesy of Showco.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I'm not sure how much they would have scaled back in America. Someone (can't remember who) reminisced watching Jimmy fawn over the elaborate stage-production then being planned, courtesy of Showco.

Did I miss anything?

Indeed, this could be a good topic. I reckon they would have sold out the Superdome as well, we probably would have seen new attendance records (and grosses) set at a few of them '77 stadium gigs. Didn't Page say at one point that they were planning on recording/filming some of those shows? And possibly by trimming some of the excess -as they seemed to be doing- two and a half hour shows as opposed to over-indulgent three and a half hours would have been easier on both the audience and the band.

As I've said many times, I think the 1980 American Tour would have been very hit and miss performance wise. Good nights would have been great, mediocre nights would have been bad, but I believe U.S. audiences are a little more forgiving (and patient) than their European counterparts.

They sold all the tickets of the entire tour. There's absolutely no question the Louisana show would've been sold out. I reckon it was already sold out by the time it was canceled. Edited by Geezer

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Interviews dating to 2003 (I believe) have him remarking that nothing in 1977 was recorded professionally/multi-tracked, with intimations (if not stated intentions) that they planned to record some shows toward the end of the tour.

Yeah, I thought I'd read that somewhere before, thanks, Melcore.

I'm not sure how much they would have scaled back in America. Someone (can't remember who) reminisced watching Jimmy fawn over the elaborate stage-production then being planned, courtesy of Showco.

I was talking about 'scaling back' in reference to the '77 tour, how the shows seemed to get shorter after Seattle, they probably would have stayed that way.

As I recall Showco planned (or was asked, I can't remember) to roll back the lighting and whatnot for the '80 tour as part of the band's new 'cut the waffle' philosophy.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

They sold all the tickets of the entire tour. There's absolutely no question the Louisana show would've been sold out. I reckon it was already sold out by the time it was canceled.

That's what I thought...I have no doubt they would have broken their four month old record set at the Silverdome. By the bye, how long did the 30/4/77 Pontiac show hold the attendance record for, anyway? Who broke it (if anybody knows)?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I'm not sure how much they would have scaled back in America. Someone (can't remember who) reminisced watching Jimmy fawn over the elaborate stage-production then being planned, courtesy of Showco.

Dave Lewis viewed the initial mock set upstairs at Swan Song's offices on Sept 17, 1980. The lighting rig was to have been stronger compared to Europe. Jimmy was pleased.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

That's what I thought...I have no doubt they would have broken their four month old record set at the Silverdome. By the bye, how long did the 30/4/77 Pontiac show hold the attendance record for, anyway? Who broke it (if anybody knows)?

Either the Stones in 1980 or The Who in 1982.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Dave Lewis viewed the initial mock set upstairs at Swan Song's offices on Sept 17, 1980. The lighting rig was to have been stronger compared to Europe. Jimmy was pleased.

This...must have read it in the recent book by Hoskyns. Thought it sounded more impressive. I wish I could remember where, but someone's statement gave me the impression Jimmy wanted the North American tour to be bigger than the European one -- it would have been a necessity in order to compete with the other touring acts of the period, no?

EDIT: I must be getting the wrong impression, somehow...here's Dave's remembrance in the book I mentioned (p.401):

[...] I went up [to see Jimmy at the Swan Song office]. They had a model of the stage they were going to use in America. It wasn't going to be massive, because in Europe they hadn't taken a lot, but it was definitely innovative. They were working with Iggy Knight again.

Jimmy was great. No matter how bad he looked, he was very proud that they were going back to America. They were going to do seventeen dates and then go home, then come back and then go home again. And that would probably have worked. So it was all on.

Edited by Melcórë

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I had 3rd row seats for the August 3rd show in Chicago and box seats for the make up show from April 9th when Page went down. The whole summer of 1977 was building towards those shows. When Robert's son died it was a real blow. I knew immediately that it would never be the same and that there was a strong chance they'd never play together again.That type of tragedy changes your entire world.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

This...must have read it in the recent book by Hoskyns. Thought it sounded more impressive. I wish I could remember where, but someone's statement gave me the impression Jimmy wanted the North American tour to be bigger than the European one -- it would have been a necessity in order to compete with the other touring acts of the period, no?

I want to say I read somewhere (actually it might have been courtesy of Dave Lewis) that for the 1980 tours they were involved with the same lighting people who came up with the Vari Lights system Genesis ended up using, so we're talking what would have been a state of the art lighting system for its time (and is actually still pretty impressive today)

I had 3rd row seats for the August 3rd show in Chicago and box seats for the make up show from April 9th when Page went down. The whole summer of 1977 was building towards those shows. When Robert's son died it was a real blow. I knew immediately that it would never be the same and that there was a strong chance they'd never play together again.That type of tragedy changes your entire world.

No question, in spite of the fact that the band had already gone through some changes by that point, the death of Robert's little boy was the big turning point. Understandably so. Not everybody can be like Keith Richards and play the fucking gig the night his son died of cot death- and release it on the live album, no less. (The Stones were playing in Paris in '76 when Keith got the call about his son back in Switzerland; telling nobody but Ronnie Wood, he decided the show must go on, and actually played so well they used quite a bit of that night's performance on Love You Live- I've never been able to hear that album or bootleg of the show the same since I read that story...)

You have to wonder if that make up show in Chi that was planned really would have been an 'all request' show, as Jimmy Page promised...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Yeah Nutrocker, the Circus magazine interview with Jimmy Page came out the summer of 1977 and he did say the make up show in Chicago would be an all request concert. In theory that sounded exciting but the reality of how the band were playing at that time would disallow that. They weren't even doing soundchecks back then so I don't see how they could have pulled off songs they hadnt played in years.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Off topic to some degree, but I have thought more about what the next album (1981? 1982?) might have been like, and the supporting tour. Of course, there's very little to work with going down that road.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

^ Jimmy said that him and Bonzo were talking about a very heavy sounding album.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Their live shows pretty much lived and died with Jimmy. JPJ and Bonzo were pretty much always solid. The difference between a great show, a decent show, and a bad show pretty much laid with the state of Jimmy and his playing. If you were to graph Jimmy's playing ability, fluency, speed, and accuracy from '73-'80, it would pretty much be a straight line downward. I don't think there's any reason to believe that trend would have reversed in the fall of '80. If you look at how frail and sickly he looked in '83 at the ARMS shows, you get a good idea of where he was trending. The America '80 shows would have been shorter, more compact, no jamming, with Jimmy doing a bad to decent job, depending on the night. I doubt you would have had much of the "old fire" from him in many shows.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Their live shows pretty much lived and died with Jimmy. JPJ and Bonzo were pretty much always solid. The difference between a great show, a decent show, and a bad show pretty much laid with the state of Jimmy and his playing. If you were to graph Jimmy's playing ability, fluency, speed, and accuracy from '73-'80, it would pretty much be a straight line downward. I don't think there's any reason to believe that trend would have reversed in the fall of '80. If you look at how frail and sickly he looked in '83 at the ARMS shows, you get a good idea of where he was trending. The America '80 shows would have been shorter, more compact, no jamming, with Jimmy doing a bad to decent job, depending on the night. I doubt you would have had much of the "old fire" from him in many shows.

Yes indeedy...I agree with yer entire post, but in regard to the bolded part, how would that make the '80 American tour any different from the European gigs? :lol:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Whenever I ponder what the last show of the '77 tour would've been like, I admittedly like to imagine that after Rock and Roll, when Robert and the others have begun to leave, that Jimmy would stay behind, and he would begin to do some excellent soloing, the others would come back out, and when every one's taken their places, Jimmy would lead them into the first performance of Thank You since 1973/07/29. Towards the end, Robert would then begin to call out Peter Grant and the techs and roadies, and when the song ends, everyone bows to thunderous applause and then they all make their way home for some well-deserved rest.

Edited by Sue Dounim

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Am I the only one that thinks that Jimmy was in worst shape than Bonzo by the time he died? I've always felt that if they did manage to tour America later in 1980/81 Jimmy would have eventually OD'd ... Proof is on the pictures from the rehearsals for the Over Europe tour: Jimmy's arms are way too boney, he couldn't have kept doing what he was doing for much longer. Apparently after Bonzo died he calmed down on the drugs but he was back on them at the ARMS show in 1984, it's clearly visible he's on something...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Am I the only one that thinks that Jimmy was in worst shape than Bonzo by the time he died? I've always felt that if they did manage to tour America later in 1980/81 Jimmy would have eventually OD'd ... Proof is on the pictures from the rehearsals for the Over Europe tour: Jimmy's arms are way too boney, he couldn't have kept doing what he was doing for much longer. Apparently after Bonzo died he calmed down on the drugs but he was back on them at the ARMS show in 1984, it's clearly visible he's on something...

Absolutely, Jimmy was a mess. Bonzo was a drunk, he died of a self-inflicted mishap. But Jimmy was in much worse shape overall. He was just lucky he didn't die.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I still vote that Summer 1977 would have been more exciting. Sure 1975/02/13 is a good show and features some outstanding tunes, but its almost boring when you compare it to Oakland or Seattle 1977. Obviously this doesn't apply to everyone, but the fact that they were constantly on the brink of destroying themselves and the songs they were playing make it incredibly exciting to me. Same goes for 1980 to a lesser extent. I guess I'm just a fan of the latter days.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I still vote that Summer 1977 would have been more exciting. Sure 1975/02/13 is a good show and features some outstanding tunes, but its almost boring when you compare it to Oakland or Seattle 1977. Obviously this doesn't apply to everyone, but the fact that they were constantly on the brink of destroying themselves and the songs they were playing make it incredibly exciting to me. Same goes for 1980 to a lesser extent. I guess I'm just a fan of the latter days.

I agree completely.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!


Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.


Sign In Now
Sign in to follow this  
Followers 0