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John M

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Everything posted by John M

  1. For me it was Bring it on Home. II was the first Zeppelin album I heard and I was 12 at the time. Every song on the album made a big impression on me, but I can recall clearly the overwhelming impression made by Bring it on Home. The intro seemed so dark, so forbidding, so mysterious and ancient to my young mind. Plant did not sound like Plant, and there was just a bass and harmonica. No drums or guitar, for what back then seemed like a long time. There was so much space in the recording- the harmonica and the bass had such a “lonesome” and distant sound. To add to the sense of foreboding, a friend told me that the line “watch this train going down the tracks” was really about watching a needle make tracks in your arm from shooting heroin. That freaked me out at age 12. To that point I had never heard an old blues record so I had no context was what they were doing in the introduction. Then that compact yet unfolding guitar riff comes screaming in and gets double tracked. The drums and bass blast off. It was like the dark veil had been ripped wide open and the song had come to life in an instant, out of a dark, scary past. To me it was the coolest guitar riff on the whole album. Plant was reaching for the sky, and that second funky guitar riff behind the vocals – the whole effect was electrifying. Then the ending took us back to the beginning with that dark, lonesome sound. The harmonica is perfect, and that ending high note fits so well. Many other Zeppelin songs have had overwhelming first impressions on me, but then I was older and had heard a lot of Zeppelin, so the impact was slightly less. I can’t imagine if Physical Graffiti was the first time I heard Zeppelin. Especially In My Time of Dying. What Zeppelin song had the biggest initial impression on you and why?
  2. I have sometimes wondered if they missed an opportunity by not having the harmonica solo live on Black Country Woman during the 1977 tour. Sure, the song works as an energetic short introduction to The Stomp, but it has a great harmonica break on the album. Plant did well with the harmonica during Nobody's Fault on the tour. I am glad they played Black Country Woman live, but I think it could have been something really special if Plant blasted that harmonica. I don't think two songs with harmonica in one show would have been too much. Yes, in the studio version Plant vocalizes during parts of his two harmonica breaks but so what? I think it would have been great live and a nice touch to the 1977 shows. The bass, drums, guitar and vocals were all song strong in the 1977 versions. What do you think?
  3. John M

    What Are You Listening To At This Moment?

    A great track from my favorite Fairport Convention album. A gripping traditional story song, the wonderful Sandy Denny, and a fantastic ending jam. Fairport at their peak from December 1969. This entire album is amazing.
  4. Thanks for the reminder. It has been so long since I listened to that show. I know it is a classic but I never really developed "bootleg ears" despite years of trying. For lower quality recordings I generally listen once or twice just to see if there are any surprises, but then as the years go by I forget, obviously. I should have rechecked Luis Rey's book - it is listed there. In the back of his book he says it was "played infrequently" on the 1972 US tour, but it is listed only for the Seattle June 19 show, but then again many of the tapes for the other shows are incomplete. In any case, I did go back and listen to it and it was great, just no harmonica as far as I could tell.
  5. Madison Square Garden 11 June 1977. It was the only Zeppelin show I attended. For years there was that clear soundboard section of No Quarter, Ten Years Gone, etc. and a lousy audience tape. Last year I found a much better audience tape on YouTube. It captures the sound and the mood very well. Of course now when I go to get the link to post here I find some newer versions posted. Love the photo in the first one. And then we have this great SBD/AUD matrix of No Quarter
  6. John M

    Led Zeppelin Photo Mysteries

    Steve, thank you for sharing so much information. Dennis had an amazing career.
  7. John M

    Led Zeppelin Photo Mysteries

    I am sure this not a mystery to many here, but I am wondering who is in the photo with Maureen, Carmen, and Karac? One of the road crew?
  8. John M

    Today In Led Zeppelin History

    The first 1977 footage I ever saw, all those years ago on VHS. Brought back so many memories from the 77 show I saw.
  9. John M

    What Are You Listening To At This Moment?

    Great soundtrack, terrible movie. Title track, Pusherman, Freddie's Dead.
  10. John M

    Underrated/overrated shows

    YES. The bass sounds so good!
  11. I am reaching the conclusion that Over the Hills on this new HTWWW is one of the most exciting recordings of Zeppelin I have ever heard. I can't imagine what it must have been like to see one of those 1972 shows where this incredible song was debuted. That beautiful guitar only pastoral opening, Plant enters in a mellow but wonderful "singer" mode, Page picks up steam, and then what a blast off with Plant managing to go sky high over the all-out bulldozer assault. So much power and energy. It is still impressive to this day although we have all heard the song many many times. It is still so captivating and well electrifying. You know that blast off is approaching and it still packs a wallop. For those of you lucky enough to have seen Over the Hills live in 1972 I would like to hear your thoughts.
  12. Rock and Roll - after 1972. It slowed down and lost its punch, and of course Plant could no longer sing it. Battle of Evermore - an obvious choice. Song does not really work without the incomparable Sandy Denny. Page and Jones did a good job on the guitar and mandolin, and Jones made an heroic attempt on the vocals, but it could never live up to the original. The version on UnLedded is great. I might say Over the Hills after 1972 due to Plant's voice, but the instrumentation kept getting better and better and better in 73 - 75, with some great versions in 1977 as well. I still love those versions - they are just different without the 1972 Plant.
  13. Sweet! Thanks for posting.
  14. A few days ago I mentioned 27 April 1977 Destroyer Remastered on the Bad Girl Songs label from the Black Beauty site. I was listening to it again yesterday because the sound and performance are so great. What really struck me was how powerful Plant was, particularly on Sick Again, Nobody's Fault but Mine, and Dying Time. In Sick Again his voice breaks for one instant early in the song but then he gathers steam and really takes off. The ending to Nobody's Fault is a herculean effort and result by Robert. I have always marveled at how strong he came back in 1977 after 1975. Sure it is not the 1971 or 72 Plant, but he is amazing in 1977 and I really noticed in this show.
  15. John M

    What Are You Listening To At This Moment?

    My favorite Bowie Album. I like both "sides" including the experimental art rock side 2.
  16. John M

    Seattle 1977

    Here is the audience recording. Pretty good. Looks like this one was just posted on YouTube ten days ago.
  17. John M

    Zeppelin's most exotic song

    Its the tabla drums that give it that Indian feel. The guitar is basically taken from Bert Jansch's arrangement of an old English folk song called Blackwaterside, released in 1966.
  18. John M

    Zeppelin's most exotic song

    Friends is fairly exotic.
  19. John M


    Does that mean that if they release a 1977 show Plant would have them take out when he said "Does anyone remember . . . Forests ??!!". That was hilarious. Plant making fun of himself.
  20. John M


    One bit they took out for the remastered The Song Remains the Same always puzzled me. In the original soundtrack, near the end of the title track Plant sings "Here we go !" right after "slidin, slidin, slidin". It was such a great moment and it worked perfectly.
  21. What is and What Should Never Be Ramble On Bron-Y-Aur Stomp Battle of Evermore Over the Hills and Far Away Kashmir Night Flight Achilles Last Stand Hots on for Nowhere Fool in the Rain
  22. John M


    So great that you saved all those and have them is such good condition. Did you save Circus magazine too?
  23. Salt Lake City 26 May 1973 An excellent recording - great mix - and a most enjoyable show. A few notes Celebration Day has some country-fied licks in the outro guitar solo. Very cool. TSRTS has a gong during the intro. No Quarter has some subtle keyboard and guitar variations to the standard 73 phrasing that I don't think I have heard in other shows. maybe they just stand out because the sound and mix on this are so excellent. WLL has a great funky section. Looking back it must have been something of a clash of cultures for the 1973 Zeppelin to be in Salt Lake City in 1973. A very conservative Mormon area, especially back 45 years ago. Earlier today I listened to 27 April 1977 Destroyer Remastered on the Bad Girl Songs label from the Black Beauty site. It goes only through Battle of Evermore but this is a revelation! I don't think I have enjoyed any other 1977 soundboard this much. And the show is better than most people seem to think it is, at least to my ears. The sound is amazing - it has so much crunch and PUNCH! The band is TIGHT. The recording seems to capture perfectly the hazy intensity and mania of that tour and of the whole year 1977. It has tinges of the decadence and yet the overwhelming power that was Zeppelin in 1977. They were the biggest rock band at the time and this captures that in all its glory. As Page has said on his site - the 1977 tour featured "a full-on energy approach". Indeed Jimmy, indeed! Or to quote one Mr. R. Plant "welcome to three hours of lunacy".
  24. John M

    Any bluegrass fans?

    When I first heard this I thought it was a cover of a swing tune but Sierra Hull wrote it. She is a real talent on vocals and mandolin.
  25. John M

    What Are You Listening To At This Moment?

    My favorite song about UFOs. The lyrics are great fun. Some samples Spiro came to make a speech about raising the Mars tax (then US Vice President Spiro Agnew) Ronnie the popular said it was a communist plot (then California Governor Ronald Reagan) And my favorite lines: The White House said put the thing in the blue room The Vatican said no it belongs in Rome Jody said its mine but you can have it for 17 million