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New York 7-29-73 / Jimmy Page interview (Journal-News)

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partial transcription: Their performance Sunday night (July 29) was almost as overwhelming as their money-making ability.  Power, innovation, theatricism, mysticism all were textured qualities surrounding the three hour set.

Their latest release, Houses of the Holy, continues in a direction of musical innovation for Zeppelin. It is perhaps its most polished album, one whose musical complexity and versatility supersedes any current disc and one that shows Zeppelin’s undauntedness for varying musical expression.

Example: John Paul Jones only plays bass, but organ, keyboards and the mellotron with expertise.

“No matter how efficient we are musically, I think once you know what’s coming, and that relates to anything you get into, it becomes a bore”, Jimmy Page says. “That’s why every LP’s so different. If they weren’t, our LPs would have all stuck in the same sort of groove, more or less. But all our minds are alive and working – that’s why we go through all these changes. With us, we’re changing every night,” Page says.

“We never get two guitar breaks that are the same. All those riffs appear out of nowhere – every night. It keeps us from getting bored because there’s always something new to look forward to. You never know what’s going to come out. It’s like embarking on a mysterious adventure every night.”
“The only annoying thing is when you really hit on some good things, they’re lost in time, it goes into the other dimension, you’ve lost it. They only come once and then they’re gone. But then again, it’s exciting because you know that something’s gone but then something new is going to come.”

The notes seem to spill out of Page’s guitar with a spontaneity and fluidity that makes him rock’s premiere guitarist. Whether it’s a traditional ballad like Since I’ve Been Loving You or the hard-driving Heartbreaker, Page cuts around the basic melody with riffs that become majestic journeys up and down the fretboard.

What puts him a cut above the rest is his reservoir and range of material. He may not be as fast as the limited Jeff Beck or as resonant as the repetitive Eric Clapton, but his spectrum, his creativity and his clear and powerful picking surpass his peers. He is the guitar virtuoso and a sensitive artist.

“I think I’m just learning how to play the guitar,” he says. “Sometimes when I’m on stage I only get a flash of what my potential really is.”

Page also is the best showman. Dressed in glittering black, he prowls and prances while bursting through blistering riffs that absorb and vacate the mind. He appears venomous while snaking around the stage, in and out of the light – leaning, bending, twisting.

But one man does not make a band. What makes Zeppelin so overpowering is that all four are superb musicians. Jones and Bonham combine to give Page the strongest rhythm section available. They are all so keenly aware of the integral flow of the music that each responds precisely and creatively to the other.  The added dimension in the live performance was the different approach of the rhythms recorded previously on the albums.

This becomes apparent when each member dominates the performance at different points. John Bonham’s 24-minute drum solo in Moby Dick, where he plays like a caged animal but with the control of a tiger, is a fiery demonstration. Jones’ mastery of the mellotron is captivating as a free-floating effect is achieved in No Quarter.

Lead singer Robert Plant perhaps is the most spectacular on stage, as the group’s symbol on stage. His golden locks lay gently on his shoulders and the bare-chested performer creates havoc with a machismo. His voice control, his range and power make him the perfect springboard for the group’s music. [By Clint Roswell, Journal-News, August 1973]

 

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10 hours ago, sam_webmaster said:

The notes seem to spill out of Page’s guitar with a spontaneity and fluidity that makes him rock’s premiere guitarist. Whether it’s a traditional ballad like Since I’ve Been Loving You or the hard-driving Heartbreaker, Page cuts around the basic melody with riffs that become majestic journeys up and down the fretboard.

What puts him a cut above the rest is his reservoir and range of material. He may not be as fast as the limited Jeff Beck or as resonant as the repetitive Eric Clapton, but his spectrum, his creativity and his clear and powerful picking surpass his peers. He is the guitar virtuoso and a sensitive artist.

Great article and a fantastic description of what make's Page's playing and vision so unique.  Any one who wants to argue that Page is not a "great" guitar player should read these few lines and really listen.  I have never come across anyone else who has the breadth and vision of Page.  He incorporates so many kinds of riffs, rhythms, and fills in his solos.  He works with the rest of the band in the solos.  His is truly a unique style.  I could also substitute the names of many other guitarists in the sentences above for Beck and Clapton and make the same point. 

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I was always surprised how supportive the press could be in quite many of these articles, quite surprising at times, it wasn't written as bad many times as some were saying.

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3 minutes ago, SteveAJones said:

Two days shooting at "Staines Studios"? Was there really such a place? It's my understanding that the filming was done at a disused linoleum factory.

I believe it was a make shift studio, at the factory.

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3 hours ago, sam_webmaster said:

I believe it was a make shift studio, at the factory.

Eye Thank Yew. B)

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Superstars - Zeppelins were flying high at £1,000 a night.
Express & Star, February 27, 1969

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SUPERSTARS
Zeppelins were flying high at £1,000 a night

Superstars… They play one night stands - for at least £1,000 a gig – to audiences of over 4,000. Each concert is attended by representatives of the top music papers and prominent officials of their record company. Advance orders for their albums reach staggering proportions.

One of the latest additions to this elite set is Led Zeppelin, the group formed by former Yardbird Jimmy Page and featuring local artists Robert Plant, vocalist, of West Bromwich and drummer John Bonham, who played for a time in Robert’s old group, the Band of Joy.

Recently returned from America where the superstars mostly work, they are to spend a short time in this country before starting a tour of Scandinavia.

After this, they set off again for America in April, for more gigs, including the one that’s staggered even them – a date at the Newport Jazz Festival.

The fact that their LP is breaking into the charts over here was obviously pleasing to them, but they were bound to take it calmly after hearing that advance orders in America had reached 125,000.

Led Zeppelin are flying really high, despite their name and at last Robert Plant feels fulfilled. Yet just before he got the job he was thinking of packing in the whole business.

He’d formed a number of bands which quickly became idolized locally – but somehow they all fell through. His most notable group was Listen, which entered the Top 50 for a week with a song called You Better Run.

He formed several Bands of Joy, but they didn’t get far outside the Midlands and eventually he joined another group – which was where his first break came.

While doing one concert he found himself playing on the same bill as Terry Reid. After the concert, they complimented each other’s singing and had a long talk about styles of music.

Three months later, Terry met a despondent Robert in London and told him: “The Yardbirds want to see you”.

Eventually Robert joined them, then formed a new group with Jimmy Page and bassist John Paul Jones, who had produced several Donovan records.

Then came the choice of a drummer. Robert suggested John Bonham, who was at that time backing Tim Rose. Jimmy was pleased with him and the group was together.

Ten hectic days followed during which they got the sound together, cut an album and prepared for a tour of Scandinavia. At the end of those ten days, Led Zeppelin was an established fact.  The Scandinavia tour was a hit.

They came back to Britain for a time. “Living on the name of the Yardbirds” as Robert say, then they set off for America. As a group they were unknown, although Jimmy had won an American audience with The Yardbirds.

Tapes of their album had been sent to the radio stations in advance and that served to whet the appetites of the fans.

They started off in Los Angeles, before an enormous audience who gave them a great burst of applause when they were announced. Says drummer John: “When they clap you like that you drive yourself to play well.”

He adds: “In America, the audiences are tremendously interested in what you’re doing.  They listen very carefully and if they life it, you’re made”.

They liked it! The music papers gave them rave reviews and they went on to San Francisco for several dates.  They started off unbilled, but finished by playing above established groups like Taj Mahal and Iron Butterfly.

Says Robert: “By the time we got to the east coast, we were getting standing ovations. At the Fillmore in New York, we did better than anyone. We were booked immediately for three times the amount. It was incredible. We were earning about £1,000 a night.  Everyone was saying we were the next Cream and the next God knows what.  Jerry Wexler of Atlantic Records, was so pleased that he came to every gig we did after that.”

Robert’s final words were that he doesn’t care what happens now that he’s been booked for the Newport Jazz Festival. From now on he’s satisfied.

[by John Ogden | Tops In Pops, Express & Star | February 27, 1969]

 

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Go-Set (Australia) Jan. 24, 1970
"To Turn Over a New Leaf, Pick a Page" - Jimmy Page Interview

 

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