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Best Stairway

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Orlando 8/31/71 is a candidate for best version for me. I also like a lot the 1980 versions in particular due Jonesy's CP 70 with gives a prophetic atmosphere to the song. The Brussels 6/20/80 one is obe of the best (and the show itself is my favourite 1980 show)

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I'm sure Nutrocker can back me up on this one. I listened to 1977/06/11 (an old favorite) for the first time in awhile today and I forgot how kickass Jimmy's solo on Stairway was. Like, I always remembered it being good, but wow! Page was a man possessed this night! He's throwing in all sorts of licks and shreds just effortlessly. The audience video really helps the experience too. Hopefully EVSD will put out the rest of the sbd for this show someday.

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I've held off on throwing my thoughts out there since I could never decide between

Orlando 8/31/71

Southampton 1/22/73

Long Beach 3/11/75

L.A. Forum 6/23/77 (a great performance from each era, I'm not familiar enough with 1980 Stairways to comment)

But I came across two consecutive performances a while back (not for the first, but first well through multiple listens) of Vancouver 3/19/75-3/20/75 and was incredibly pleased by the both! I will say Vancouver 3/20/75 is the best IMHO. JPJ was phenomenal on 3/19/75, very creepy sound :) but I mean TSRTS, 6/23/77, and some others are very hard to beat, and the Studio version will always be perfect in its own ways, I love the long solos though.

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Agree IPman. Page is incredibly unique in his style and ability, aside from the purely technical aspects of guitar playing. Give him the ability to overdub and "do-over" and his orchestration capabilities are unsurpassed -IMO.

BTW, have appreciated your contribution to this forum.

Wish I could have been there for the 90's/'98 performance.

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Another excellent version of stairway is sept 17 1988 ,Outrider tour at the Mesa amphitheater .the DVD boot is called Raving Arizona, starring Jason Bonham!!

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Sydney 72. No contest. JP reached for every note and didn't miss. It just builds and builds and doesn't stop. Even the intruding audience/taper comment can't take away enjoyment after listening many times. And the rest of the show ain't so bad.

Thanks.

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On 2/28/2014 at 6:19 PM, kingzoso said:

This may or may not be the best version of "Stairway to Heaven" but I think that this is the longest version of this song. Played at the very last live Led Zeppelin show Ever. July 7, 1980 in Berlin, West Germany. A very Sad but fitting tribute to the Greatest Song of All-Time. Have a Listen.

 

 

First Vid link in this thread - I said to myself, I'll give it a crack...

Faaaarq. How beast is the guitar solo. Feels a bit sad that Bonzo doesn't seem to be along for the ride, but still, what a rendition. Bloody hell. That's amazing.

 

Edited by rm2551
spelling

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I like Orlando '71 and TSRTS. Both totally different takes on the song. One is fairly short and akin to the studio version....the other, well the solo speaks for itself. But the two versions show the evolution of the tune. If I had to pick one, it would be Orlando 

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Another tough one.  Hard to beat NY 7-27-73.  I'd also say (in no particular order):

Detroit 7-12-73

Seattle 7-17-73

Earl's Court 5-24-75

Long Beach 3-11-75

Long Island 2-13-75

Hamburg 3-21-73

Offenburg 3-24-73

Manchester 12-8-72

Glasgow 12-4-72.  

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1 minute ago, JohnOsbourne said:

Another tough one.  Hard to beat NY 7-27-73.  I'd also say (in no particular order):

Detroit 7-12-73

Seattle 7-17-73

Earl's Court 5-24-75

Long Beach 3-11-75

Long Island 2-13-75

Hamburg 3-21-73

Offenburg 3-24-73

Manchester 12-8-72

Glasgow 12-4-72.  

How could I forget Vienna 3-16-73?  Like I said, very tough question. 

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So many to pick from. I can agree with nearly everyone mentioned. However, I am leery of any official live release though. SRTS and HTWWW are great 'versions"  but are they true documents like Long Island 2/13/75 per say ? ....."studio magick". Just food for thought.

My next project is going to be a compilation of the growth and regression along with what I feel are the most important versions of SW. 4 Discs.

Right now I'm all 1980 Tour , all the time. Having fun too!

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18 hours ago, Jimmywalnutz said:

So many to pick from. I can agree with nearly everyone mentioned. However, I am leery of any official live release though. SRTS and HTWWW are great 'versions"  but are they true documents like Long Island 2/13/75 per say ? ....."studio magick". Just food for thought.

My next project is going to be a compilation of the growth and regression along with what I feel are the most important versions of SW. 4 Discs.

Right now I'm all 1980 Tour , all the time. Having fun too!

Fair points, but you should check out the "untouched" versions of the MSG show;  there's a soundboard fragment (Safecracker's Show) and reasonable audience fragment (Out of Song Remains).  The original performance really is not far off from the official version, all of the brilliance is there.

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Yes, I agree with you. " The Effect is Shattering" and "The Grand Finale" sound excellent and are unmolested save for whatever equalization was used in production they are  fairly new release insomuch that I have not listened it to it as much as some of the other versions. Winston has a remastered 7/27 that I have played only once so far and it's foggy

An example would be that I know the 75 & 77 Forums (Millards), 1972 Forum, RAH, Southhampton, Trentham Gardens and Earl's 5/24 and 5/25 as well as SRS . In fact, for over 20 years I thought that the SRS was a true live show recorded in 1973. When I found out the album was "chop suey" I was pretty darn upset. The grooves from my SRS album where burned in to my soul!! So many memories of a time that is lost . Sorry , time traveling.

It wasn't genuine. In fact, I recently learned that the album version of NQ is the only song to have been untouched right up to the Remastered SRS.

It's like a woman who is beautiful and I find beauty in whatever flaw. Then she visits the local plastic surgeon and the flaw is gone. She is still beautiful but the lack of the flaw is not genuine and when I close my eyes, trace the lines of her face with my finger or caress her she is no longer  genuine . I'm not so shallow to dump her right away because her heart has not changed . She is the same but not genuine and before you know it. I lose interest.

Ok. Officially too tired . Two more points and Goodnight all. 

Sometimes, I pick up new (to me) Zep Boots in gluts that they invariably get lost in the shuffle and then eventually rediscovered and played, for a week a month, sometimes more.

I'm still listening to The 1980 shows pretty much exclusively for over a week. Brussels SW is killer, Serial Killer on Winstons tape! I've had these shows for over a year and am finally getting to know them and the nuances.

Boots are more often than not, genuine articles. True documents of a time and space .

 

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I honestly don't think I can narrow it down to just one. There's several factors involved and it depends on my mood too. Regardless, some of my personal favorites are:

5/3/71

9/14/71

9/23/71

6/25/72

6/27/72

3/24/73

7/27/73

3/21/75

5/24/75

5/30/77

All of LA 77 (with maybe the exception of 6/27)

7/17/77

7/7/80 - even though this is far from technically perfect, there's something about Page reaching for the stars even though he's fucked up that's really inspiring IMO.

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I'm surprised no one mentioned Offenbach 73', a stop on the early Euro/German 73' trek. Maybe it's not considered much

because the first boots of that show ran too fast, although consistently fast and with kind of a metallic tinge to the sound.

It is plenty clear though, Plant is pretty intense and Jimmy and Bonzo seem to be engaged in the solo in some kind of

cosmic drama, playing as if they are fighting to the death to save some eternal cosmic principle. Of course there are

many others, but this one is technically dazzling AND Jimmy plays few wasted notes.

 

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