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mrlowry

Jimmy Page and July 7th

58 posts in this topic

I don't post here very often but do read the contributions of other.  Today I noticed a strange coincidence when I was looking at my Facebook feed and I don't remember the topic being mentioned or discussed here.

The last Jimmy Page-era Yardbirds concert was July, 7th 1968 and the last Led Zeppelin concert with John Bonham was exactly 12 years later on July, 7th 1980. After some additional research it turns out that the last Jimmy Page and Robert Plant concert was July 7th, 2001. What is going on with July 7th and Jimmy Page?

 

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Damn.

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7 hours ago, mrlowry said:

I don't post here very often but do read the contributions of other.  Today I noticed a strange coincidence when I was looking at my Facebook feed and I don't remember the topic being mentioned or discussed here.

The last Jimmy Page-era Yardbirds concert was July, 7th 1968 and the last Led Zeppelin concert with John Bonham was exactly 12 years later on July, 7th 1980. After some additional research it turns out that the last Jimmy Page and Robert Plant concert was July 7th, 2001. What is going on with July 7th and Jimmy Page?

 

It has been brought up before by myself and others.

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I remain unconvinced The Yardbirds actually performed in Luton on 7/7/68. No ticket stubs, no posters, no photos and no reviews.

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Posted (edited)

Interesting.. This gig is referenced on The Yardbirds Wikipedia page as their final performance. 

July 7th 1968, College Of Technology, Luton, Bedfordshire. 

Edited by the chase

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7 hours ago, SteveAJones said:

I remain unconvinced The Yardbirds actually performed in Luton on 7/7/68. No ticket stubs, no posters, no photos and no reviews.

Steve, I recall from somewhere that the 7th July gig was postponed from earlier in the year? It was to take place in mid-March '68, but they were in france just before that & strikes delayed the recording of a tv show, so the Luton gig was postponed and ended up in July.

If it were a pre existing date, they must have had to play it contractually. Does seem an odd time to play a college gig though, since exams finish a month before and you'd imagine most of the studes would have gone by then.

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20 hours ago, the chase said:

Interesting.. This gig is referenced on The Yardbirds Wikipedia page as their final performance. 

July 7th 1968, College Of Technology, Luton, Bedfordshire. 

Hmm.  There's a comprehensive Yardbirds '68 site by a guy named Michael Organ that you can check out HERE. He also raises questions about whether this Luton gig ever happened, and has Peter Grant quoted as saying it did not. I've spent some time upgrading and adding sources and things to the Yardbirds wikipedia pages this year (they were in awful shape previously, apparently victimized by awful Beatles fans who don't think the Yardbirds are important). Should the wikipedia pages be changed? 

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21 hours ago, SteveAJones said:

I remain unconvinced The Yardbirds actually performed in Luton on 7/7/68. No ticket stubs, no posters, no photos and no reviews.

Who says the gig took place, Russo or another biographer?  Peter Grant said he didn't recall it, and that the last shows were the final dates in the US at the Shrine in Los Angeles 06/01/68 and June 4 and 5 at the Spring Fair in Montgomery, Alabama. http://yardbirds68.blogspot.com/

I know you've been looking for info on all Jimmy Page pre Zep gigs for a long time now. Sounds like I should make the change on the wiki page, yes? 

Would be good to know where the info about Luton does come from, do you know?

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21 hours ago, SteveAJones said:

I remain unconvinced The Yardbirds actually performed in Luton on 7/7/68. No ticket stubs, no posters, no photos and no reviews.

Setlist.com may be the culprit.  They also list a June 2 show in Santa Monica at an unknown venue.  Is that one a mystery as well?

Setlist.fm link HERE

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1 minute ago, Mercurious said:

Who says the gig took place, Russo or another biographer?  Peter Grant said he didn't recall it, and that the last shows were the final dates in the US at the Shrine in Los Angeles 06/01/68 and June 4 and 5 at the Spring Fair in Montgomery, Alabama. http://yardbirds68.blogspot.com/

I know you've been looking for info on all Jimmy Page pre Zep gigs for a long time now. Sounds like I should make the change on the wiki page, yes? 

Would be good to know where the info about Luton does come from, do you know?

Maybe leave it on but make the point that the concert is in question. Maybe one of the members will see and clarify officially. I googled "Yardbirds July 7, 1968" and there were quite a few references to it being their last show. I agree it's odd that Steve can't find any official data. If there was any, he'd find it. 76229 has a strong point that it's odd that a college gig would be in the Summer..like I said interesting..

Now did Bonzo use a silver sparkle kit on The Presence sessions or not?? 

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1 minute ago, the chase said:

Maybe leave it on but make the point that the concert is in question. Maybe one of the members will see and clarify officially. I googled "Yardbirds July 7, 1968" and there were quite a few references to it being their last show. I agree it's odd that Steve can't find any official data. If there was any, he'd find it. 76229 has a strong point that it's odd that a college gig would be in the Summer..like I said interesting..

Now did Bonzo use a silver sparkle kit on The Presence sessions or not?? 

Oh man, the silver sparkle kit question. This originates from the anti-Vistalite crowd, doesn't it?  I'm not getting into that!! 

Jim McCarty would be the one to ask, I think.  But simple enough to mention that Grant doesn't recall Luton, and raise the question on the wiki pages. Yardbirds band members have worked on those wiki pages in the past, especially regarding information about Chris and Jim's more recent bands, as far as who was in the band with them and when, etc. 

 

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Posted (edited)

  1.  Buckley, Peter (ed.) (2003). The Rough Guide to Rock, p. 1198. ISBN 1-84353-105-4.

 

This would be the source of the Luton College gig.  I have no idea what's on P. 1198.  ANybody have this book?

Note: 1198 is in the google preview, and it just states the questionable date as their final show. This forum and Steve are the better sources, imo.

Edited by Mercurious

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3 hours ago, the chase said:

Maybe leave it on but make the point that the concert is in question. Maybe one of the members will see and clarify officially. I googled "Yardbirds July 7, 1968" and there were quite a few references to it being their last show. I agree it's odd that Steve can't find any official data. If there was any, he'd find it. 76229 has a strong point that it's odd that a college gig would be in the Summer..like I said interesting..

Now did Bonzo use a silver sparkle kit on The Presence sessions or not?? 

Done. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Yardbirds

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20 hours ago, 76229 said:

Steve, I recall from somewhere that the 7th July gig was postponed from earlier in the year? It was to take place in mid-March '68, but they were in france just before that & strikes delayed the recording of a tv show, so the Luton gig was postponed and ended up in July.

If it were a pre existing date, they must have had to play it contractually. Does seem an odd time to play a college gig though, since exams finish a month before and you'd imagine most of the studes would have gone by then.

It's an interesting theory, if not a possibility. The thing is, they all knew before leaving for the final USA tour they were to disband at the end of it. That is why there was a five day (or so) break in California...McCarty wanted an opportunity to shoot photographs in and around LA as he didn't know when or if he'd ever have another opportunity to return there. 

6 hours ago, Mercurious said:

Who says the gig took place, Russo or another biographer?  Peter Grant said he didn't recall it, and that the last shows were the final dates in the US at the Shrine in Los Angeles 06/01/68 and June 4 and 5 at the Spring Fair in Montgomery, Alabama. http://yardbirds68.blogspot.com/

I know you've been looking for info on all Jimmy Page pre Zep gigs for a long time now. Sounds like I should make the change on the wiki page, yes? 

Would be good to know where the info about Luton does come from, do you know?

Actually, Luton 7/7/68 has been referenced for at least 40 years now. I distinctly recall either Steven Rosen or Dave Schulps specifically mentioning the date to Page during an interview in 1977. The thing about that is Page's response was non-committal insofar as if the gig happened or not. As I recall, author Greg Russo does include the date in their concert chronology, but critics of The Yardbirds and their significance have suggested the date is fabricated to support the notion the band wasn't actually on their last legs when Page joined them and that there was still a demand for the group in the UK in Summer 1968. I don't have an agenda one way or the other, I'm just skeptical it occurred given there is no evidence whatsoever aside from hearsay. 

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Posted (edited)

9 hours ago, Mercurious said:

I've spent some time upgrading and adding sources and things to the Yardbirds wikipedia pages this year (they were in awful shape previously, apparently victimized by awful Beatles fans who don't think the Yardbirds are important). Should the wikipedia pages be changed? 

Talking of them being in bad shape, the Yardbirds wiki page used to have a short section on the formation of Zeppelin, saying Page considered various drummers including Paul Francis. He was a good drummer, in Maggie Bell's band in the 70s, but this is literally the only place I've ever seen it said he was on Page's shortlist. I wonder where this came from, there's no citation listed. Same with the assertion on the Zep page that Ginger Baker was on Page's shortlist for the Zeppelin drumstool. No citation, and I've never seen it mentioned elsewhere.

 

ETA: Just seen your additions Mercurious and not only does it summarise the 1968 period better than before, it's far better written than the old wiki page. Nice one!

Edited by 76229

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2 hours ago, SteveAJones said:

It's an interesting theory, if not a possibility. The thing is, they all knew before leaving for the final USA tour they were to disband at the end of it. That is why there was a five day (or so) break in California...McCarty wanted an opportunity to shoot photographs in and around LA as he didn't know when or if he'd ever have another opportunity to return there.

If they knew they were to disband, it doesn't make much sense to then play a gig in Luton a whole month after the last US date, unless it was a contractual commitment of some kind.

Speaking of which, when the venue for the first UK Zeppelin gig in Newcastle was demolished, the promoter was interviewed and said it was originally booked as the "old" Yardbirds. I wondered if this was another date postponed (due to being delayed in France or for whatevr reason)?

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2 minutes ago, 76229 said:

Talking of them being in bad shape, the Yardbirds wiki page used to have a short section on the formation of Zeppelin, saying Page considered various drummers including Paul Francis. He was a good drummer, in Maggie Bell's band in the 70s, but this is literally the only place I've ever seen it said he was on Page's shortlist. I wonder where this came from, there's no citation listed. Same with the assertion on the Zep page that Ginger Baker was on Page's shortlist for the Zeppelin drumstool. No citation, and I've never seen it mentioned elsewhere.

Russo talks about Paul Francis on pgs. 124-127 (looking at them now) and refers to him as "the unknown Paul Francis". Amazon Look Inside Link. There were a couple of articles in the British press about Francis being the guy, and Francis says Dreja called him in July and basically said he had the job if he wanted it but Francis had to go to Germany for two weeks. He gets back in early August and talks to Dreja but by then Jonesy was in the picture and Francis says Dreja was having trouble getting ahold of Page. So the source is Russo (I'll add it to the wikipage. Russo's book is listed as a source on the bottom but I'll cite that sentence, which is all from Russo).  

Ginger Baker?  I never heard that either.  I really hate wikipedia Vandals!!

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Cheers for that, it looks like the putting together of the band really was quite a bit more haphazard than legend. I know Peter Grant asked Clem Cattini out for lunch to discuss him being the drummer, but Clem was too busy with sessions. Interesting that Dreja was semi involved in July, when the Mick Wall version was that he was getting cold feet early on in the process. Wall also said that Ace Kefford was considered for bass, but I don't know his source for this.

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2 minutes ago, 76229 said:

If they knew they were to disband, it doesn't make much sense to then play a gig in Luton a whole month after the last US date, unless it was a contractual commitment of some kind.

Speaking of which, when the venue for the first UK Zeppelin gig in Newcastle was demolished, the promoter was interviewed and said it was originally booked as the "old" Yardbirds. I wondered if this was another date postponed (due to being delayed in France or for whatevr reason)?

The Luton date on the 7th is one day after Relf and McCarty's Together Now recording sessions at Abbey Road.  I am beginning to believe this Luton gig was Together Now, not managed by Grant, so he wouldn't have been in on it.  Here's Grant's full comment on the Yardbirds last show:

Peter Grant (1994): Well, as I recall, we never played a gig after that American tour, so in reality it fell apart in America. Jim McCarty wasn't in the best of health and we had to use a session man. We had a club date in the States for $5,000. That was a lot of money. Jimmy wanted to do it and so did Chris, but the others didn't. There was a big row in a Holiday Inn. So I drafted out a letter giving Jimmy the rights to the name, which they all signed.

[Q: So you don't remember the gig at Luton?]

No, I can't remember that. What I can remember distinctly is driving Jimmy around Shaftesbury Avenue near the Saville Theatre after the split..." (Source: Chris Welch, Peter Grant: The Man Who Led Zeppelin).

On this forum Steve asked way back in 2008 for pre-Zep info about gigs, etc., and has never found a scrap confirming a Yardbirds Luton gig in 1968. Grant can't remember it happening. Yet we have Russo's authorized biography that says a show did happen 7 July 1968 and Together Now recording sessions the day before. Short of Jim McCarthy messaging me back to say they DID play, I'm going to say that there was no full fledged Yardbirds show on the 7th and that if there was anything at Luton it was former Yardbirds Relf and McCarty playing their new material. 

Based on Page's comments in the press in New York mid-June, it was over for the old Yardbirds - Relf and McCarty were out and he was talking about his vision for a new band. This was published in GO Magazine in June. 

 

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6 minutes ago, 76229 said:

Cheers for that, it looks like the putting together of the band really was quite a bit more haphazard than legend. I know Peter Grant asked Clem Cattini out for lunch to discuss him being the drummer, but Clem was too busy with sessions. Interesting that Dreja was semi involved in July, when the Mick Wall version was that he was getting cold feet early on in the process. Wall also said that Ace Kefford was considered for bass, but I don't know his source for this.

Russo has Dreja going up to Birmingham with Page and Grant to see Plant sing on July 20, and then only to find himself out of the loop in the weeks after that. He didn't know about Clem Cattini being approached, he didn't know about Jones or Bonham, either, so Page was moving a lot faster than Dreja knew between July 20 and the week of Aug. 12 when they rehearsed. Cold feet or did Page freeze him out knowing he had JPJ in the fold? Maybe a little of both.

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3 hours ago, SteveAJones said:

Actually, Luton 7/7/68 has been referenced for at least 40 years now. I distinctly recall either Steven Rosen or Dave Schulps specifically mentioning the date to Page during an interview in 1977. The thing about that is Page's response was non-committal insofar as if the gig happened or not. As I recall, author Greg Russo does include the date in their concert chronology, but critics of The Yardbirds and their significance have suggested the date is fabricated to support the notion the band wasn't actually on their last legs when Page joined them and that there was still a demand for the group in the UK in Summer 1968. I don't have an agenda one way or the other, I'm just skeptical it occurred given there is no evidence whatsoever aside from hearsay. 

Yes Russo lists both the skipped date 3/16/68 that 76229 mentioned and the 7/7/68 gig. He also lists all yardbirds recording sessions, and it's interesting to note that Relf and McCarty were at Abbey Road w/ Paul Samwell-Smith the day before this mysterious Luton gig recording Together Now tracks. If there was a Luton show it may not have involved Page, Dreja or Grant, which may be why Grant doesn't remember it.  Can't delete it from Wikipedia, though - the date has a book source citation so had to leave it and just work around.

"Critics of the Yardbirds significance", eh? No doubt Beatles fans and historians refusing to believe that British psychedelia was not started by the Beatles, or Led Zep haters? The yardbirds problem at home was getting paid - EMI's refusal to release Greatest Hits or Little Games or doing any work for Little Games/Puzzles or Happenings Ten Years Time Ago/Psycho Daisies showed how limited and controlled the British market was, and EMI's resources were certainly tied up in Beatles product. EMI killed the yardbirds in the record stores and there were few good paying gigs, but they could always get them, especially in the US where the money was.   Ridiculous and convoluted to think a single date was invented to prove anything - and McCarty appears to be the source of the gig info, not Page or Grant.  Grant could always find gigs - he had them booked at Middle Earth Club on July 12 ... according to June issue of OZ magazine  ... Middle Earth looks like the place to be in psychedelic London with Pink Floyd and the Move on the schedule in June... SOURCE  Yardbirds cancelled of course.

middleearth.jpg

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Posted (edited)

I am in the camp which believes the gig never took place. Relf in particular wanted to move on to other things as evident during the final American tour and the Holiday Inn blow up. I sincerely doubt someone as temperamental as Relf would have agreed to play one last date seeing what happened in the states. After all, if he was willing to turn his back on a $5,000 gig I doubt he would have given a single shit about some crappy university gig with a band he wanted nothing to do with...the day after recording HIS new music. If anything, the Luton gig was a Relf - McCarty gig to see how the new music went over with the locals.

 

Edited by IpMan

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16 hours ago, Mercurious said:

Russo has Dreja going up to Birmingham with Page and Grant to see Plant sing on July 20, and then only to find himself out of the loop in the weeks after that. He didn't know about Clem Cattini being approached, he didn't know about Jones or Bonham, either, so Page was moving a lot faster than Dreja knew between July 20 and the week of Aug. 12 when they rehearsed. Cold feet or did Page freeze him out knowing he had JPJ in the fold? Maybe a little of both.

Russo is pro-Yardbirds, pro-Dreja and pro-McCarty. He is not necessarily anti-Page but IMHO he is not pro-Page. I say that as someone who contributed dates to the 3rd ed of Russo's book and corresponded back and forth for a couple of years. If Dreja or McCarty merely tell him they recall a Luton gig in July 1968 he'll accept it at face value.Yet as I mentioned, the speculation did not originate with Russo.

"Critics of The Yardbirds" are simply those who say had the group not featured Clapton, Beck & Page they'd be a footnote in the annals of British rock, known for their at the time unprecedented longevity more than anything else. I imagine at the other end of the spectrum are those who'd say were it not for misfortune the group could have been nearly as big as The Beatles.

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14 hours ago, Mercurious said:

Ridiculous and convoluted to think a single date was invented to prove anything - and McCarty appears to be the source of the gig info, not Page or Grant.  Grant could always find gigs - he had them booked at Middle Earth Club on July 12 ... according to June issue of OZ magazine  ... Middle Earth looks like the place to be in psychedelic London with Pink Floyd and the Move on the schedule in June... SOURCE  Yardbirds cancelled of course.

middleearth.jpg

Great find and discussion points. I am now leaning towards Luton as a scheduled but CANCELLED date. However, I don't understand why Grant or anyone else was still booking dates for a band that was disbanding at the end of the USA tour. Wishful thinking perhaps.

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Just now, SteveAJones said:

Great find and discussion points. I am now leaning towards Luton as a scheduled but CANCELLED date. However, I don't understand why Grant or anyone else was still booking dates for a band that was disbanding at the end of the USA tour. Wishful thinking perhaps.

Yes, Grant is hoping they reconsider. That's what it feels like, anyway. To have scheduled the Middle Earth gig July 12 for London OZ issue No. 13, he would have had to do so in early June, so Grant was still scheduling things even though the band was breaking up. He had also scheduled US dates for September, though they never take place, and quickly reschedules the Scandinavian tour once they got back to London and reissued the press release that they were breaking up and Page and Dreja were going ahead with things. The London press release announcing both the break-up and the Scandinavian tour happens July 8-9 according to Michael Organ's great chronicle of the Yardbirds' final year. Obviously they were in no shape to play the Middle Earth gig, so there really is no reason to believe they played at Luton except for the odd fact that so many sources before Russo said they did. I find Jimmy's choice of words interesting here:

Jimmy Page: 01 June 1968 - "I had my last rave up in LA with the Yardbirds. This was the last time the four live Yardbirds would play Los Angeles. The intrepid warriors played the Shrine Auditorium on this day in 1968. This was not the last date of the US tour, we had two more dates, both at the Montgomery International Speedway in Alabama, before the curtains would close on this incarnation of the Yardbirds in the USA."

So Jimmy on his own website specified the curtains closing on Relf and McCarty and the Yardbirds "in the USA", which suggests there was some U.K. activity after the Montgomery, ALA, shows. Why can't we find any evidence of this Luton college show? Jimmy is also quoted in NY BEFORE they return to London saying "We decided before the tour that we would split up at the end." I just don't see any acknowledgement in mid-June (the story below in GO magazine, NY, was published June 21, so Page talked to reporters in NY mid-June before heading back to London) that there are UK dates to complete:

img275.jpg

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