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DiscoRabbitDave

Jimmy Page 1963 TV interview

43 posts in this topic

Hello, first post,

I hope you may find this interesting. It's an early June 1963 TV interview with Jimmy that's recently been rediscovered.

In it he says that he sees music as a way of funding his art. Mission accomplished, I think.

Here's the link:

http://vimeo.com/105653705

Cheers,
DRD

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^That was an awesome first post DRD..and welcome to the forum!! I had to smile. As you stated I think mission was accomplished :thanku:

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Wow! Thanks for your comments all! This is an incredibly friendly place! :D

I don't think my second post will match the heights of the first, but I can offer a bit of background to the footage.

I work for ITV Channel TV (in the Channel Islands), and recently our absolutely brilliant librarian Dawn has been going through the mountains of 16mm film that's in our archive, sorting the wheat from the chaff, digitizing the good stuff and discarding the rubbish stuff.

The footage comes from an old Channel Islands programme called 'Studio Wednesday', it was written down in the film can as 'Children's Art', so not the most inspiring of titles, and was shot in the Channel Island of Guernsey. I honestly believe in anybody else's hands the footage would have been discarded, but thanks to Dawn's diligence and the fact that she's a massive Led Zep fan, her ears pricked up when she heard the name 'Jimmy Page'.

Am I correct in saying that this is the second earliest TV interview with Jimmy?

As you all know, the band spent some time in Jersey during 1975 when RP recuperated from his car accident. They played a gig at Jersey's West Park Pavillion on December 10th 1975. I really wish we had some footage of that!

Edited by DiscoRabbitDave

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Wow! Thanks for your comments all! This is an incredibly friendly pace! :D

I don't think my second post will match the heights of the first, but I can offer a bit of background to the footage.

I work for ITV Channel TV (in the Channel Islands), and recently our absolutely brilliant librarian Dawn has been going through the mountains of 16mm film that's in our archive, sorting the wheat from the chaff, digitizing the good stuff and discarding the rubbish stuff.

The footage comes from an old Channel Islands programme called 'Studio Wednesday', it was written down in the film can as 'Children's Art', so not the most inspiring of titles, and was shot in the Channel Island of Guernsey. I honestly believe in anybody else's hands the footage would have been discarded, but thanks to Dawn's diligence and the fact that she's a massive Led Zep fan, her ears pricked up when she heard the name 'Jimmy Page'.

Am I correct in saying that this is the second earliest TV interview with Jimmy?

As you all know, the band spent some time in Jersey during 1975 when Robert recuperating from his car accident. They played a gig at Jersey's West Park Pavillion on December 10th 1975. I really wish we had some footage of that!

This is indeed the second earliest TV interview with JP. Glad it was not lost, nice work!

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It is a miracle that this footage still exists and has been preserved.

:thumbsup:

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Wow, thanks for posting! Really highlights just how accomplished Jimmy was at a young age. Led Zep was founded by one worldly young man five years later!

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..It is very rare insight, and thank you along with all the fans here... The host, quickly, resembles Royston Ellis...I am not sure..

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Congratulations DRD, and Dawn, on an amazing archival find!

Really really special and plugs a very big gap in terms of TV recordings with Jimmy.

Did you and your team find any further detail or record of the context ? In particular, do we know who the interviewer was ? It's interesting that PlanetPage has referred to Royston Ellis .. not sure he moonlighted as a Channel TV presenter, but hey.

I realise the Channel Islands have little news to talk about ( sorry but it's true ! ) and had perhaps even less in the early sixties, but it's still fascinating that an unknown session guitarist should merit an interview : not least because filming, developing, editing and broadcasting anything in those early years was a huge exercise.... how fascinating they alighted on Jimmy, unknown as he was then... unless PlanetPage's instinct is right and someone - Royston Ellis or any other connection - had alerted them to JP...

As for the content - where to start ?

He seems very prepped for the interview: quick fire questions with equally quick fire answers.. and among the answers, he's claiming he's only played for four years! That ignores the Huw Wheldon performance... though of course other of his comments about when exactly he picked up a guitar have tended to vagueness..

The focus on art over music .. my dates are hazy but I thought perhaps he'd left art school behind by this point: if so, perhaps there was still some ambivalence about that decision?

The accent/demeanour : that's really the most striking thing ... As resolutely well-behaved as they come! Were the vowels clipped especially for a TV performance, or were they absolutely typical ? The language, the brevity and precision of it, makes it so hard to grasp his character. Small glimpses are there: the reference to the Musicians Union and a brief cheeky flash of humour. Not much to go on.

And : he's 19 an a half ?! Pretty much the age RP was when he was recruited into Zeppelin. What a contrast ..

I've often thought how huge the Robert/Jimmy age gap was once, at that most crucial time when they started ( and sometimes I think it throws such light on the roots of their differences ) : this also highlights the gaps between them but in an unexpected way.

The familiar story we have is of Robert the ingenu, recruited by Jimmy and out of his depth as he is drawn into an unimaginable world .... yet the few glimpses of teenage Robert which exist perhaps confirm the other familiar truism, that a working class Midlands 19 year old maybe has an edge of maturity/experience over a middle-class boy from Epsom, and also, given the shift in years, he has the cool edge of a sixties child , where Jimmy is much more of a fifties child.

But one who, between 1963 and 1968, evolved at breakneck pace.

THAT is what makes this interview so telling ..

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Wow, this is extraordinary. Thankyou, DRD and Dawn. Such a sharp picture too - I was expecting something incredibly fuzzy like the 1966 interview.

He must have taken a shine to Guernsey - didn't Jackie DeShannon say that he kept talking about chucking in the music to be an antique dealer in "Cornwall or the Channel Islands"?

I just love the BBC accent - he sounds like he ought to be narrating one of those hilarious public information films from the fifties. But then it's amazing how many musicians of this era sounded so much posher then than they do now. (Plant sounds more Brummie now than he ever did in the seventies, Bowie more Brixton etc). Just goes to show how much British society has changed in just a few decades - even in something like pop music, there was this feeling that if you wanted to get on you had to learn RP and basically pretend to be something you weren't. It's hard now to imagine the time when a regional accent was something to be embarrassed about.

I wonder why he doesn't tell the truth about how long he'd been playing. He was 12 or even younger, right?

We spend a lot of time on here obsessing over tiny obscure details and endlessly discussing stuff that's really pretty well known, but it's rare that anyone posts anything entirely unknown and new. Well done that man (and woman).

Edited by scylla

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I wonder why he doesn't tell the truth about how long he'd been playing. He was 12 or even younger, right?

Jimmy talks frequently about a guitar which was left at the house in Epsom to which his family moved, when he was, I believe, about 8 years old .. and that it was the trigger for his starting to play ..

In other interviews, he's " 11 or 12" when he starts playing..

And the Huw Wheldon interview has him at the age of 14, on top of what he was doing. ( Plus I have always suspected that in spite of his years vs. the older members of that band, that he was a prime mover in that TV appearance which was NOT a mainstream show but a children's entertainment show: he was the only "child" there and I bet he got them in .. ).

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This was just shared on facebook and I loved it!!! It was absolutely fasincating to see. He was 19 when he did this interview. I love his accent in these interviews pre 1980. I love listening to him. Thanks for posting this. It needed to be here.

You're right syclla, Jackie said that Jimmy wanted to live in a commun in Cornwall and make pottery.

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What an awesome find! Thanks for sharing, DVD! I love the accent, mannerisms, and he was not bashful with his quick responses!! :)

Amazing how his life and aspirations evolved into what we know today. Talk about a portal into the past!

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Thanks for posting the footage DRD, and thank Dawn for her efforts!

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Congratulations DRD, and Dawn, on an amazing archival find!

Really really special and plugs a very big gap in terms of TV recordings with Jimmy.

Did you and your team find any further detail or record of the context ? In particular, do we know who the interviewer was ? It's interesting that PlanetPage has referred to Royston Ellis .. not sure he moonlighted as a Channel TV presenter, but hey.

I realise the Channel Islands have little news to talk about ( sorry but it's true ! ) and had perhaps even less in the early sixties, but it's still fascinating that an unknown session guitarist should merit an interview : not least because filming, developing, editing and broadcasting anything in those early years was a huge exercise.... how fascinating they alighted on Jimmy, unknown as he was then... unless PlanetPage's instinct is right and someone - Royston Ellis or any other connection - had alerted them to JP...

As for the content - where to start ?

He seems very prepped for the interview: quick fire questions with equally quick fire answers.. and among the answers, he's claiming he's only played for four years! That ignores the Huw Wheldon performance... though of course other of his comments about when exactly he picked up a guitar have tended to vagueness..

The focus on art over music .. my dates are hazy but I thought perhaps he'd left art school behind by this point: if so, perhaps there was still some ambivalence about that decision?

The accent/demeanour : that's really the most striking thing ... As resolutely well-behaved as they come! Were the vowels clipped especially for a TV performance, or were they absolutely typical ? The language, the brevity and precision of it, makes it so hard to grasp his character. Small glimpses are there: the reference to the Musicians Union and a brief cheeky flash of humour. Not much to go on.

And : he's 19 an a half ?! Pretty much the age RP was when he was recruited into Zeppelin. What a contrast ..

I've often thought how huge the Robert/Jimmy age gap was once, at that most crucial time when they started ( and sometimes I think it throws such light on the roots of their differences ) : this also highlights the gaps between them but in an unexpected way.

The familiar story we have is of Robert the ingenu, recruited by Jimmy and out of his depth as he is drawn into an unimaginable world .... yet the few glimpses of teenage Robert which exist perhaps confirm the other familiar truism, that a working class Midlands 19 year old maybe has an edge of maturity/experience over a middle-class boy from Epsom, and also, given the shift in years, he has the cool edge of a sixties child , where Jimmy is much more of a fifties child.

But one who, between 1963 and 1968, evolved at breakneck pace.

THAT is what makes this interview so telling ..

....Your post is very thoughtful as always...

It is indeed Royston Ellis, as previously posted in this link from our Forum...from Royston Ellis - his blog...

http://forums.ledzeppelin.com/index.php?/topic/16164-jimmy-page-on-this-day-archive/page-4#entry532317 - from Steva A. Jones, our expert herein..

This from Royston Ellis:

“Jimmy composed his own music to back my poems - usually ones from JIVING TO GYP - although I might have been performing the one with the line "Easy, easy, break me in easy" from RAVE” The Mermaid show was the peak - and possibly the final one - of our stage performances.”

"I gave Jimmy Page his first stage and TV shows when he backed me reading my poetry...”

“This was after my stage and TV appearances with The Shadows, because they became so in demand, I had to find other musicians…”

“I appeared on television with Jimmy on Southern Television from Southampton, with Julian Pettifer, in late 1960.”

“We did other shows together, too, in the 1960s…"

"There was one to the HERETICS society of Cambridge University on 4 March 1961 and another at the Mermaid Theatre, London, on Sunday 23 July 1961 which was just Jimmy and myself on stage as part of an evening of poets and actors (Ralph Richardson, Flora Robson, etc) reading works…”

“I used to appear with Jimmy alone (not with the group in which he played then, the Red Cats and managed by Chris Tidmarsh who later emerged as Neil Christian) although I think we may have recruited a bongo player for some dates…”

“Jimmy was sitting down in the background while I was lecturing.”

I remember that Jimmy visited me when I was in Guernsey in early 1963 and we did a TV interview on Channel TV….

"We are still in touch and have met several times during the past decades... we are still firm friends...”

...and Truth and Beauty, there is another video of Royston Ellis. I recall, in relation to the British Teenagers/Society in early 60's, I cannot find that video readily, I posted while ago...

T& B thank you for your wonderful insight...

Edited by PlanetPage

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Great find, great interview. This is fascinating on several levels, and may even re-write Jimmy's history to a certain extent:

- he refers to himself as a session guitarist as if it's already become his full-time job (but the common story is that Jimmy didn't become a full-time session man until late 1963).

- he says he's been doing sessions for 18 months, which would correspond to December 1961 (almost a year before the Jet Harris "Diamonds" session).

- he indicates that he still plays with Neil Christian (by most accounts, he left that band in 1962).

Edited by swandown

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This is indeed the second earliest TV interview with JP. Glad it was not lost, nice work!

..Thank you for such wonderful Forum for the fans to celebrate the Legendary Musician and his beautiful vision that leads to the Masterpiece Led Zeppelin...

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Hello, first post,

I hope you may find this interesting. It's an early June 1963 TV interview with Jimmy that's recently been rediscovered.

In it he says that he sees music as a way of funding his art. Mission accomplished, I think.

Here's the link: http://vimeo.com/105653705

Cheers,

DRD

..THank you for your kindness to post this, and it does seems that Jimmy Page is indeed holding some sketches in his hands, that would indicate that Young Musician is still perhaps in art school.... I hope date of itnerview can be located somehow...

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You're right syclla, Jackie said that Jimmy wanted to live in a commun in Cornwall and make pottery.

Make pottery? Wow, I've never seen that one.

So in the space of about three years he variously stated that he wanted to:

a. be an artist

b. be an antique dealer

c. be a potter

d. be a filmmaker.

With such an amazing musician, you tend to imagine that there was something inevitable about him going down that road... but it clearly took him a while to figure out what he really wanted to do and start putting all his efforts into it. It'd be interesting to know exactly when (and how) he made the decision to commit to music.

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Congratulations DRD, and Dawn, on an amazing archival find!

Really really special and plugs a very big gap in terms of TV recordings with Jimmy.

Did you and your team find any further detail or record of the context ? In particular, do we know who the interviewer was ? It's interesting that PlanetPage has referred to Royston Ellis .. not sure he moonlighted as a Channel TV presenter, but hey.

I realise the Channel Islands have little news to talk about ( sorry but it's true ! ) and had perhaps even less in the early sixties, but it's still fascinating that an unknown session guitarist should merit an interview : not least because filming, developing, editing and broadcasting anything in those early years was a huge exercise.... how fascinating they alighted on Jimmy, unknown as he was then... unless PlanetPage's instinct is right and someone - Royston Ellis or any other connection - had alerted them to JP...

Thanks for your lovely comments T&B! I think PlanetPage has proved that the interviewer was Royston Ellis, who knew Jimmy. So that must be how it came about. We're ever so glad it took place!

No comment about the amount of news! But it's quite surprising how many well known musicians are in the Channel TV archive, considering it's such a tiny patch. This is our Rolling Stones footage that we uploaded the other week: https://vimeo.com/104099605

Wow, this is extraordinary. Thankyou, DRD and Dawn. Such a sharp picture too - I was expecting something incredibly fuzzy like the 1966 interview.

Many thanks! Again, all the credit should go to Dawn. I only stuck it on the internet! It was taken from the original 16mm film.

Wow, well I'm so pleased that everyone seemed to enjoy it! I'm sure Dawn will be equally as happy when she returns from holiday and I show her this forum. :)

Cheers,

Rob (DRD)

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