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weslgarlic

'Stairway To Heaven' Cover Reduces Robert Plant To Tears

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Remember when Led Zeppelin were honoured by Barack Obama at a ceremony at the White House, tail end of last year? Here's something I missed at the time, but have just discovered via a friend on Facebook.

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Following the ceremony there was a concert at the nearby Kennedy Center, which - in addition to Foo Fighters' cover of 'Rock N Roll' - featured a choir-assisted rendition of 'Stairway To Heaven' by Heart's Nancy and Ann Wilson. The three surviving members of Led Zeppelin were in the audience, as was Obama. Check out Plant's reaction, which gets increasingly emotional as the song progresses.

continued...

Phase one: yeah, this sounds alright I guess.

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Phase two: excuse me, I have something in my eye.

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Phase two: oh god, blubageddon.

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Somewhat less enraptured by the performance is POTUS, who gives the dutiful half-smile of someone who really isn't feeling this, and has quite a lot of other shit to be doing, tbh.

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Still, it's a great clip. You get used to the idea of Robert Plant as being a nostalgia refusenik, resisting attempts to romanticise Led Zeppelin's past (he once described endless reunion talk as a "pain in the pisser"). This footage proves that's not the whole story. There's something so lovely about seeing a man in his autumn years, being confronted with something he did in his pomp, and being moved to tears of joy.

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Only Robert knows what the tears were about. Memories of times gone by? Memories of his dear friend Bonzo - a loss he still feels deeply to this day according to Jason Bonham? Could it be that the reason Robert has claimed not to like Stairway in recent years is that it brings back memories and emotions he finds difficult to deal with?

Who knows what it is that moves a man?

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My take on Robert is that, as a singer, he was desperate to branch out and to and prove his career had legs, that he wasnt just a one trick pony. Not that he ever was, but hopefully you take my meaning.

Can you imagine the sheer courage it must have taken, after being so associated with Zeppelin for 12 years, to branch out on his own and be his own man for a solid 12 years (1981-1993)? The man has to be given major kudos for that.

And Its my firm belief that Robert would be a lot more amenable to his past were it not for the fact that so many, erm, 'enthusiasts' just put way too much emphasis on all the 'reunion' and associated talk. 'Stairway' has been done to death, as it were - had it not been, if people in the general public embraced more of the diversity of Zeppelin then I really believe Plant would not be as reticent as he is. But of course, people have a way of cottoning on to the easiest thing they can understand, and so to counter that Plant's reaction has been to diversify as much as possible and prove himself over and over.

Which he most certainly has done.

It may leave a gaping hole in our hearts, but frankly we only have ourselves to blame, and besides we have so much of that grand body of work that we can savour and appreciate.

Edited by TheTraveller

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I thought I saw tears coming down. He must of had a flood of memories hit him all at once. He has had triumph and tragedy in his life and at time it catches up with him.

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Yes he cried and I cried too, it was such a great rendition from The Wilson Sisters. As someone else said it could have been the emotion of Jason Bonham playing his heart out as it affected him too, or Robert's memories of times gone by. It was a brilliant tribute and the bands deserved the standing ovation they were given.

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I saw, somewhere, pictures that were very "up close." Jimmy Page also had a tear running down the right side of his face as you look at him. I saw the tear, yes, I saw it. I cried as well. It was just so touching to see them honored this way. Their music cannot be matched or exceeded.

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I don't know why Robert Plant had tears. However, just because a person has tears in their eyes, doesn't mean the person is crying. Though I saw tears in his eyes, I did not see any other signs of emotion on his face such as a lump in the throat or a quivering lip or the breaking or cracking of the face which are often a part of crying. There are many reasons why tears come to a person's eyes, and tears are not always due to emotion. However, I refrain from speculating because I know I am in no position to speak for Robert Plant. I can only speak for myself.

Speaking for myself, there have been times I have been brought to tears when even I did not know why myself. More than once, weddings have proven to be the occasion for such an outburst. I say weddings, not funerals, because one can reasonably expect to see people crying at funerals because they're grieving. But weddings are supposed to be happy occasions (which just goes to show you that people can cry when they are happy). I cried at my sister's wedding and I wasn't happy about doing so because it happened just as she was walking down the aisle and I was her maid of honor so I had just walked down the aisle myself and stood in front of all the wedding guests and truly believed that this was not a time for me to get emotional. I didn't want mascara running down my face at a time like that and I didn't want to draw attention away from the bride either, but it overcame me and it was like a surprise.

I have found myself brought to tears at other weddings I have attended, and when it happened, I was glad to be among the guests. I have shared my experience with other women who confessed to me they were brought to tears at weddings (always happens when the bride walks down the aisle and rarely at any other time), and often did not know why we were crying; albeit, some women admit they always cry at weddings.

Other than weddings, tne only other time I cried when I wasn't sad was when I underwent a very minor surgical procedure where the surgeon administered to me a mind-wandering drug to put me under, and upon waking up, I began crying. A nurse noticed me crying and came up to me, and I apologized saying, "I don't know why I am crying." The nurse told me that it was the mind-wandering drug they used to put me under; that it sometimes has that effect on patients when they wake up. It makes then cry.

There are times, however, tears came to my eyes because I was laughing. Tears have also come to my eyes because of smog or dust in the air. Heating and air-conditioning vents often have a lot of dust which can make eyes water. Now I am not saying that Robert Plant didn't have reason to be emotional. I am just saying that other than a show of tears, I saw nothing else which indicated to me he was crying. I wouldn't blame him if he did cry. He could have cried all he wanted to as far as I'm concerned, but I honestly did not see that. I saw a tear. That's all.

Edited by Dee Dee

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Given Robert's reaction to David Letterman's question about how it felt to hear Stairway played for them, and his general attitude about that song over the years, it's hard to imagine that Robert was crying. I am not a Robert hater, BTW, just posting my observations and the general vibe I get from books and interviews I have read and seen. And of course, (duh)not knowing what is in someone's head at any given moment goes without saying.

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http://www.rockcellarmagazine.com/2013/02/04/jason-bonham-led-zeppelins-living-legacy-interview/

I posted the above article in the "News" section speaking of Jason's JBLZE tour ... but it is relevant here as well.

Toward the end of the article, Jason speaks in detail about some of the behind the scenes planning and Robert and the boys reaction to his surprising them at the KCH ...It is a great read!

Personally, I think more than anything, the imagery and reminder of Bonzo was what had Robert emotional during Stairway.

What an absolutely amazing time for them!

Peace!

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The tribute to Led Zeppelin was just fantastic. My favorite reaction from the guys was Jimmy's absolute joy in watching and when the curtain lifted on the choir wearing the derby hats and Jimmy's "OH WOW" reaction. That was priceless.

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The tribute to Led Zeppelin was just fantastic. My favorite reaction from the guys was Jimmy's absolute joy in watching and when the curtain lifted on the choir wearing the derby hats and Jimmy's "OH WOW" reaction. That was priceless.

That was my favorite reaction as well. You can tell he/they really enjoyed and appreciated it. Best cover song ever! IT brought me to tears.

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i been in tears since 2007 during kashmir !

but i dont think plant was crying actually!

if he was no big deal , he said he teard up some when he snuck & watched pagey with the FIRM, he is a lil sentimental or whatever you call it,

but i dont that performance moved him to tears. if he was tearin up he had plenty other reason that day

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