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What happened to Plant's voice in 1972 ?

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23 hours ago, ArmsofAtlas1977 said:

Worse than that, Led Zeppelin were reckless, and Robert did not take care of his voice at all.  No warming up beforehand, smoking and drinking during shows and an unfortunate tendency towards pushing his limits for the sake of showboating.  On top of that, the tours were ridiculously relentless.  Their European Tour in the spring of 1970 was 15 shows in 18 days, and by that point the shows were two hours or more.  He also famously continued to tour despite vocal complications like the flu.  Yes, cancelled shows are a mess, but you've got to put the long-term needs of the band first.

Things like Robert's voice make me wish we could take a time machine back to manage the band better.  Peter Grant got them their money, but also failed to prevent so much damage to the band themselves.  At the risk of getting too off-topic, I won't get into here, but it really is too bad!  

It wasn't Peter Grants job to take care of Plants voice. 'Oh Robert, you mustn't smoke, now its time to do your pre-show vocal exercises, uh oh, its getting late, you must go night night now, we have a show tomorrow dear boy. Robert, you mustn't showboat so much, you'll strain your precious voice. Oh dear, Roberts caught the flu again, sorry chaps but we'll have to cancel another tour'.  Yeah.....right.

And yeah, "Peter Grant got them their money", that is, in fact, a managers job, and he did it very well. 

 

 

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Posted (edited)
On 8/5/2015 at 7:12 PM, Disco Duck said:

 

IIRC, their gear had already been shipped to the U.S. before they postponed the tour. Still, you would think Page would have had a spare guitar laying about his house.

True but picking up a guitar around the house and playing with a band are 2 different beasts. You can practice 8 hours a day by yourself and still feel sluggish with the band. Still no excuse though, I guess they somehow could've still rehearsed with just the 3 of them to stay in shape.

Edit:  Someone might've mentioned this before but for Robert and perhaps all of them, no one knew how long it would last so maybe it was balls out all the time. I guess by 72 maybe they should've known they would be around for awhile. Robert did mention lots of times about tea, lemon and honey, maybe that was the extent of knowledge of vocal care back then. Like put a hat on or you'll catch a cold, viruses don't care about hats.

 

Edited by FL6

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On 5.8.2015 at 3:50 PM, Nutrocker said:

I'll see yer +1,000,000 and raise ya another +1,000,000

 

"What happened to yer voice in '72, Robert?" would be chief among the questions I'd ask. Mind ya, I'd be inclined to ask Jimmy something like, "Did you really not even 'touch a guitar' in the month long postponement of the 1977 tour, and if you didn't, do you really think it was a good idea?" I don't care about groupies/drugs/occult/reunions either (I know about all that shit :lol: )- I'm talking about critical factors that affected the band's live performances.

Yeah, you must be joking!

I agree to 100% that "What happened to your voice in 72, Robert?" is on the very top of the list. But sadly only in theory. I bet that his ego would NEVER EVER allow this question. Past, present or future: He would book this question as "Injury to his Majesty, Robert Anthony 1." Honestly, he turns 69 this year & still thinks he has the veto right to put down the cronological live album, a hearfelt wish of Jimmy since the 70ies! Jimmy, the man he owes more to than anyone else!!!- and he doesn`t give a shit. He had the guts to strut the stage 73 to 75, doing his Golden God thing, head full of snow, groupies and all that jazz, while his voice was shot at 75% of the shows. Why is he acting like a miffed old maid? We all know, that Jimmy would surely pick great shows with Robert in marvelous voice, why worry?

What happened to his voice in 72? Alcohol, cocaine (of course C. can damage a voice by damaging the nose & the paranasal sinuses causing a gridlocked nose), too many late nights & his unnecessarily shrieking in the early days due to his insecurity & too much cigarettes........

He did not only lose his high range by Oct. 72, the warmth tone of his low range was gone, adding the sound of a locked nose on top of that.

His natural voice was a God-given gift, he treated so thoughtlessly. What a shame.

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1 hour ago, Autumn Moon said:

Yeah, you must be joking!

I agree to 100% that "What happened to your voice in 72, Robert?" is on the very top of the list. But sadly only in theory. I bet that his ego would NEVER EVER allow this question. Past, present or future: He would book this question as "Injury to his Majesty, Robert Anthony 1." Honestly, he turns 69 this year & still thinks he has the veto right to put down the cronological live album, a hearfelt wish of Jimmy since the 70ies! Jimmy, the man he owes more to than anyone else!!!- and he doesn`t give a shit. He had the guts to strut the stage 73 to 75, doing his Golden God thing, head full of snow, groupies and all that jazz, while his voice was shot at 75% of the shows. Why is he acting like a miffed old maid? We all know, that Jimmy would surely pick great shows with Robert in marvelous voice, why worry?

What happened to his voice in 72? Alcohol, cocaine (of course C. can damage a voice by damaging the nose & the paranasal sinuses causing a gridlocked nose), too many late nights & his unnecessarily shrieking in the early days due to his insecurity & too much cigarettes........

He did not only lose his high range by Oct. 72, the warmth tone of his low range was gone, adding the sound of a locked nose on top of that.

His natural voice was a God-given gift, he treated so thoughtlessly. What a shame.

Totally agreed! 

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On 3/15/2017 at 7:25 PM, Autumn Moon said:

Yeah, you must be joking!

I agree to 100% that "What happened to your voice in 72, Robert?" is on the very top of the list. But sadly only in theory. I bet that his ego would NEVER EVER allow this question. Past, present or future: He would book this question as "Injury to his Majesty, Robert Anthony 1." Honestly, he turns 69 this year & still thinks he has the veto right to put down the cronological live album, a hearfelt wish of Jimmy since the 70ies! Jimmy, the man he owes more to than anyone else!!!- and he doesn`t give a shit. He had the guts to strut the stage 73 to 75, doing his Golden God thing, head full of snow, groupies and all that jazz, while his voice was shot at 75% of the shows. Why is he acting like a miffed old maid? We all know, that Jimmy would surely pick great shows with Robert in marvelous voice, why worry?

What happened to his voice in 72? Alcohol, cocaine (of course C. can damage a voice by damaging the nose & the paranasal sinuses causing a gridlocked nose), too many late nights & his unnecessarily shrieking in the early days due to his insecurity & too much cigarettes........

He did not only lose his high range by Oct. 72, the warmth tone of his low range was gone, adding the sound of a locked nose on top of that.

His natural voice was a God-given gift, he treated so thoughtlessly. What a shame.

Agreed!

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On 3/9/2017 at 5:51 AM, IpMan said:

I agree almost completely with what you posted, except for the poor management part in the early (68'-71') days. You have to understand, this time period was a very chaotic one in music history, they were essentially learning as they went along. Of course as mentioned above if a performer now gets even a sniffle, they cancelled shows for a full week. I wish Zep would have done the same but rock music in particular was very fickle back then. I bet Robert felt the need to push it every night in fear that it might very well be the last tour, even as late as 75'. We can look back now and wonder why they did what they did but Robert was both very green and somewhat insecure in the beginning. Regarding the drinking, smoking, and no warm ups for his voice, that is a different story. Even then everyone knew how the great Maria Callas ruined her voice through smoking and booze and late night's. Robert, or at least those around him, should have known better. Then again I could see Janice telling Robert the reason her voice was so good was due to constant infusion of SoCo & cigs, so, there is that.

 

On 3/16/2017 at 0:25 AM, Autumn Moon said:

Yeah, you must be joking!

I agree to 100% that "What happened to your voice in 72, Robert?" is on the very top of the list. But sadly only in theory. I bet that his ego would NEVER EVER allow this question. Past, present or future: He would book this question as "Injury to his Majesty, Robert Anthony 1." Honestly, he turns 69 this year & still thinks he has the veto right to put down the cronological live album, a hearfelt wish of Jimmy since the 70ies! Jimmy, the man he owes more to than anyone else!!!- and he doesn`t give a shit. He had the guts to strut the stage 73 to 75, doing his Golden God thing, head full of snow, groupies and all that jazz, while his voice was shot at 75% of the shows. Why is he acting like a miffed old maid? We all know, that Jimmy would surely pick great shows with Robert in marvelous voice, why worry?

What happened to his voice in 72? Alcohol, cocaine (of course C. can damage a voice by damaging the nose & the paranasal sinuses causing a gridlocked nose), too many late nights & his unnecessarily shrieking in the early days due to his insecurity & too much cigarettes........

He did not only lose his high range by Oct. 72, the warmth tone of his low range was gone, adding the sound of a locked nose on top of that.

His natural voice was a God-given gift, he treated so thoughtlessly. What a shame.

1) What makes you think he was insecure in the beginning? By Royal Albert Hall he had a confidence and stage presence that could not be rivaled, so I assume you mean in '69 (though the shrieking of course would continue well past then).

2) Why would being insecure correlate with shrieking? I'd think that insecurity would make him quieter and less boisterous than he'd otherwise be.

I just don't see the relation between his actions and a claim of him being insecure, and I don't see the relation between insecurity and pushing yourself to the limit. I'd appreciate some clarification.

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7 minutes ago, paplbojo said:

 

1) What makes you think he was insecure in the beginning? By Royal Albert Hall he had a confidence and stage presence that could not be rivaled, so I assume you mean in '69 (though the shrieking of course would continue well past then).

2) Why would being insecure correlate with shrieking? I'd think that insecurity would make him quieter and less boisterous than he'd otherwise be.

I just don't see the relation between his actions and a claim of him being insecure, and I don't see the relation between insecurity and pushing yourself to the limit. I'd appreciate some clarification.

Insecure in regard not to his ability but in regard to the longevity of the band. Robert came from a very middle class family, he did not have the upper middle class upbringing that Jones & Page had. When you grow up under such circumstance you tend to have a "better get what I can, when I can" attitude. So, I believe he pushed himself to his limits and beyond vocally to give the best show possible and keep em coming back so to speak. The scene back then was brutal, up until the fourth album, any tour could have easily been the last tour, the last record and he knew that. There were AMAZING bands back then like Blue Cheer, the MC5, Camel, etc that put out groundbreaking music but made little money and went nowhere. They had their year or two and...Poof, gone. So I figure Plant thought he should set it at 11 and run in the red non-stop, that is until his motor blew.

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Well he did a really good job at the O2, so it's almost like 'why bother', but his early voice for most people really was the best even on the low notes on things like Babe I'm gonna leave you, Thank you and Going to California. And he could reach all the notes smoothly, without strain, with really good articulation and no cracking and he was only as raspy as he wanted to be.

It would be quite natural, you would want to do all you can to preserve that and seek all kinds of best professional advice on that. And perhaps it's quite irrelevant to discuss the early slight worsenings that quickly got better(although there is an excellent detailed analysis online that even has the pre 1971 details and starts more seriously with 1971 bootlegs) and even if eventually that would perhaps have to lead to longer rests and no smoking and no drugs and even deciding to sing things lower with the voice completely in tact, it was still mostly just about resting enough.

And while the whole thing about big voice problems being just sort of ignored might be understandable even until the ending of 73 European tour, going through the whole 1973 US tour is just self destructive and excuse me, just stupid.

You just have to give it a good rest and seek advice and if advised, to even stop smoking and doing drugs. Plant did nothing of that and there were several factors. It was the whole rock and roll 'I don't care that much' approach, which certainly included generally not caring about the cigarettes and drugs advice enough, it was the demand of the audience and perhaps the pressure of management, it was perhaps also the feeling you don't know how long it will last and so just do it as long as you still can, even if you damage yourself in the process and it was also the ego thing but not in a very direct way or even really in much of an ego way at all, it was more about the fact that these were the biggest concerts on the planet at the time, almost no one else had that much live success and while it is very important to be really good technically if you have small gigs and you are yet to get successful or if you play in a hotel restaurant, such big events sort of give it a feel of 'being good by itself', all you got  to give is a really good party and no one will really care abut the messed up details. That was the approach at that point.

But ultimately it was all down to not caring enough about making a good enough performance according to album standards and preserving your voice. Plant's voice sounded damaged so it was obviously damaged and it's quite logical you can damage it even more. It's impossible Plant would not understand that by himself and was unable to find further advice. For the reasons stated above and perhaps others, he just didn't care enough, overall the performances(even his) were still really good, many even excellent even beyond 1973, they still managed to produce The Song remains the same even if it took a lot of editing work to get the vocals to this point of good enough quality. Robert also still has a really good voice and still did 'a regular good singer with a lot of range' kind of performance at the O2, but unfortunately it's not just the shrieking element that is gone, it's a bit on the worn out, crooning and struggling side, so it would be good he would preserve his early voice and just sing in different styles on purpose, while still having a preserved voice. His voice should not just be preserved for hard rock, he did pop best in his pre Zep days and early Zep days and could still do damn fine bluegrass with his early voice. He just wasn't into preserving his voice enough by serious professional methods, yet he still preserved it, so alright! 

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On March 15, 2017 at 7:25 PM, Autumn Moon said:

I agree to 100% that "What happened to your voice in 72, Robert?" is on the very top of the list. But sadly only in theory. I bet that his ego would NEVER EVER allow this question. Past, present or future: He would book this question as "Injury to his Majesty, Robert Anthony 1." Honestly, he turns 69 this year & still thinks he has the veto right to put down the cronological live album, a hearfelt wish of Jimmy since the 70ies! Jimmy, the man he owes more to than anyone else!!!- and he doesn`t give a shit. He had the guts to strut the stage 73 to 75, doing his Golden God thing, head full of snow, groupies and all that jazz, while his voice was shot at 75% of the shows. Why is he acting like a miffed old maid? We all know, that Jimmy would surely pick great shows with Robert in marvelous voice, why worry?

What happened to his voice in 72? Alcohol, cocaine (of course C. can damage a voice by damaging the nose & the paranasal sinuses causing a gridlocked nose), too many late nights & his unnecessarily shrieking in the early days due to his insecurity & too much cigarettes........

He did not only lose his high range by Oct. 72, the warmth tone of his low range was gone, adding the sound of a locked nose on top of that.

His natural voice was a God-given gift, he treated so thoughtlessly. What a shame.

Ever wonder why Plant had so many colds/flu's/laryngitis etc... through out the 70's?

 

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Yeah it's not a good idea to pull too much snow through your nose.

 

 

But it's good nothing really happened to Robert's voice as heard in All my love and according to John Bonham it's Plant's best ever performance and indeed he has great emotional integrity, maybe even more because of the voice change and he shows a lot of range and great articulation! 

So lets listen to it today in memory of Bonzo as I dare to say it's one of his best performances too, the way he responds to little melodic details in the song, just wonderful! Thanks Bonzo, you will always be remembered in our hearts!

 

 

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I heard an interview with Rob Halford and he said he babies his voice - no smoking, no alcohol anymore, tea, warming it up. It takes care and I think in the early '70's that wasn't really a consideration. Different times. Also agree with the others that stated they never knew how long it would last; may as well perform every show like it was a final performance.

I am a huge fan of Plant's solo stuff and I think he's done a great job adapting his voice as he ages. 

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On ‎15‎/‎03‎/‎2017 at 11:25 PM, Autumn Moon said:

Yeah, you must be joking!

I agree to 100% that "What happened to your voice in 72, Robert?" is on the very top of the list. But sadly only in theory. I bet that his ego would NEVER EVER allow this question. Past, present or future: He would book this question as "Injury to his Majesty, Robert Anthony 1." Honestly, he turns 69 this year & still thinks he has the veto right to put down the cronological live album, a hearfelt wish of Jimmy since the 70ies! Jimmy, the man he owes more to than anyone else!!!- and he doesn`t give a shit. He had the guts to strut the stage 73 to 75, doing his Golden God thing, head full of snow, groupies and all that jazz, while his voice was shot at 75% of the shows. Why is he acting like a miffed old maid? We all know, that Jimmy would surely pick great shows with Robert in marvelous voice, why worry?

What happened to his voice in 72? Alcohol, cocaine (of course C. can damage a voice by damaging the nose & the paranasal sinuses causing a gridlocked nose), too many late nights & his unnecessarily shrieking in the early days due to his insecurity & too much cigarettes........

He did not only lose his high range by Oct. 72, the warmth tone of his low range was gone, adding the sound of a locked nose on top of that.

His natural voice was a God-given gift, he treated so thoughtlessly. What a shame.

I don't know about you but if I was a young bloke in my early 20s, World at my feet, young girls throwing themselves at me, cocaine falling from the sky, I would be making the fucking most of it rather than getting tucked up in my bed with a cup of lemon tea & worrying about what somebody on the internet would think about it 40 odd years down the line.

It's a shame he didn't look after his voice a little better but I don't think there's any need to be quite so sanctimonious about it.

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Led Zeppelin went to a party, and it lasted 10 years. Nobody walks away from a party like that unscathed. These were the "do what thou wilt" times, and they did just exactly that. I love this band.

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On ‎9‎/‎25‎/‎2017 at 0:07 PM, Mook said:

I don't know about you but if I was a young bloke in my early 20s, World at my feet, young girls throwing themselves at me, cocaine falling from the sky, I would be making the fucking most of it rather than getting tucked up in my bed with a cup of lemon tea & worrying about what somebody on the internet would think about it 40 odd years down the line.

It's a shame he didn't look after his voice a little better but I don't think there's any need to be quite so sanctimonious about it.

BINGO.

 

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On 25.9.2017 at 6:07 PM, Mook said:

I don't know about you but if I was a young bloke in my early 20s, World at my feet, young girls throwing themselves at me, cocaine falling from the sky, I would be making the fucking most of it rather than getting tucked up in my bed with a cup of lemon tea & worrying about what somebody on the internet would think about it 40 odd years down the line.

It's a shame he didn't look after his voice a little better but I don't think there's any need to be quite so sanctimonious about it.

Reading my comment again after six months, I`d like to admit, that my concluding sentence (God given gift.........) was a little over the top & clumsy. Well, it wasn`t my intention to judge Robert`s offstage activities with a wagging finger, I am anything but a moralist and have NOT lived a life of a saint myself. Actually, I wanted to explain my thoughts about the loss/change of his voice in 72, after reading some strange comments like: "Cocaine does not harm a singers voice" & "only the failed vocal-cords surgery is to blame".....So, he did what he did, for good or bad- I do not condemn or glorify his antics.

PS: I think you are terribly wrong: of course he liked to be tucked up in bed with a cup of lemon/honey and a couple of lemon squeezing ladies, didn`t he?

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10 hours ago, Autumn Moon said:

Reading my comment again after six months, I`d like to admit, that my concluding sentence (God given gift.........) was a little over the top & clumsy. Well, it wasn`t my intention to judge Robert`s offstage activities with a wagging finger, I am anything but a moralist and have NOT lived a life of a saint myself. Actually, I wanted to explain my thoughts about the loss/change of his voice in 72, after reading some strange comments like: "Cocaine does not harm a singers voice" & "only the failed vocal-cords surgery is to blame".....So, he did what he did, for good or bad- I do not condemn or glorify his antics.

PS: I think you are terribly wrong: of course he liked to be tucked up in bed with a cup of lemon/honey and a couple of lemon squeezing ladies, didn`t he?

Ha ha, fair enough, mate.

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Plant was never a trained singer. He sang from the throat not the abdomen most likely. He was lucky to reach the highs he did before 1972 even though he did hit it now and then in 1973 ( LA ). 

I always thought that HTWWW had Plants voice recorded too high . I personally don’t like it . There is little baritone and it was pitched way too high in the recording. To me it had little feeling. The 71 Osaka dates were Percy in top form. He can hit the highs , be spontaneous and on key and also supply a baritone Elvis like feel in medleys. Orlando also is a peak.

Plant had a mature voice so imagine him on American Idol at the age of 20 and he would have blown those teenyboppers off the stage. It matured fast I guess with his harmones and one had to realize how young he was in 72 and 73.

He never lost his voice as much as he juat just got older. His voice changed. 

Yes they did 3 hr shows 4x a week which would not be happening now and he could have cancelled a ton of them. Alcohol and cigarettes don’t help plus the grueling touring of the seventies. It was a voice stress for anyone. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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The candle that burns twice as bright burns half as long, and Plant burned very, very bright. What would we rather have: a good Plant for a decade, or a brilliant Plant for half that time? I'd rather have five years of Plant than a decade of a pale imitation. Speaking of David Coverdale...  :)

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