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  1. Flashback Friday. 50 Years Gone. September 4, 1970. Los Angeles, California.These are a few of the albums that were spawned on this night in Los Angeles 50 years ago. All of which I have. It is one thing for one random night of the year to generate one legendary live album. But when two concerts on the same night in the same city create two legendary live albums...one official, one unofficial...then, that is some music history. To top it all off, both bands and up jamming together at the end of the night. Fairport Convention was beginning a three-night stand at the Troubadour Club...Friday-Saturday-Sunday Sept. 4-6. They were professionally recording all three nights for a prospective live album. Sandy Denny was gone. This was the "Full House" Fairport Convention lineup of Richard Thompson, Simon Nicol, Dave Swarbrick, Dave Pegg, and Dave Mattacks. Joe Boyd and John Wood were overseeing the recording of the gig. I think they were using gear from Wally Heider Recording Studios. The tapes recorded over the three nights were used to make the "House Full: Live at the Troubadour 1970" album. Released in the UK in 1974 and in the U.S. (with a different cover and slightly different songs) in 1986. This would prove to be the only live recording of the Richard Thompson era of Fairport Convention, as he would leave the band at the end of 1970 and join forces with his wife, Linda Thompson. Meanwhile, a few miles south of the Troubadour Led Zeppelin was playing their concert at the Fabulous Forum of Inglewood. They were in the middle of their 1970 North American tour and had just become the first band to topple the Beatles from #1 in the Melody Maker Music Poll. Their new album Led Zeppelin III was still a month away from being released but they felt confident enough in the new material to play three or four new songs from the album on this tour, even though nobody in the audience had heard them before. Plus, they were still riding the jet trails of Led Zeppelin II, which had cemented and expanded their popularity by leaps and bounds. By 1970, Los Angeles had become like a second home to Led Zeppelin. This was their sixth tour to come through Southern California. They loved playing here and some of their most inspired shows happened at the Fabulous Forum and other venues in the area. Maybe the charms of Miss Pamela and her friends had something to do with that? Led Zeppelin did not professionally record this night at the Forum, apart from a soundboard from the mixing desk which has yet to see the light of day. Most likely buried deep in Jimmy Page's archives. But there were some intrepid audience members who recorded the concert secretly. One guy was known as Rubber Dubber. Another team were Ken Douglas and Dub Taylor, known as the TMOQ guys...Trademark of Quality. These were the guys who were also responsible for the Bob Dylan "Great White Wonder" and Rolling Stones "LiveR Than You'll Ever Be" bootleg albums. Rubber Dubber released his tape on double vinyl under the title "Led Zeppelin Live at the LA Forum 9-4-70".Rubber Dubber's tape is slightly better sounding than Ken & Dub's tape...both teams used portable reel-to-reel recorders at the Forum...but it is woefully incomplete. It is missing the first half hour and chunks of "Whole Lotta Love" and the encores. For this reason, it is Ken & Dub's bootleg album "Live on Blueberry Hill" that became the more famous bootleg. First released on double vinyl under the Blimp Records label, then shortly reissued under the Trademark of Quality label. Both Rubber Dubber's and the TMOQ's bootleg albums were released mere weeks after the concert and before Led Zeppelin III was even released. Which is why "Immigrant Song" was titled "From the Midnight Sun" on the bootleg...nobody knew what the song was yet. "Live on Blueberry Hill", along with the earlier Dylan and Stones bootlegs, confirmed there was a sizeable bootleg market for certain bands. The bootleg industry took off from that point. Led Zeppelin played Fats Domino's "Blueberry Hill" as the final encore. They also threw in a rare performance of "Out on the Tiles" (one of only two known in existence) and some other special treats that night at the Forum. So far, there are no less than six different audience source tapes of Led Zeppelin's concert at the Forum September 4, 1970. Each of varying length and quality, but taken together we now the complete concert available with the songs in proper order. After Led Zeppelin finished their 2 and 1/2 hour concert, they zoomed up to the Troubadour Club. If you had been standing outside of Pink's Hotdog stand on LaBrea Ave. that night around midnight you would have seen Led Zeppelin's limousines heading north up LaBrea before they turned left on Santa Monica Blvd. to the Troubadour Club. It was no secret that Led Zeppelin loved Fairport Convention. They arrived around the end of Fairport Convention's second set. Robert Plant, Jimmy Page, John Bonham eventually joined Fairport onstage for some songs and jams. The tapes were all rolling. "Morning Dew" and "Hey Joe" and "Mystery Train" have been mentioned as some of the songs played. Richard Thompson tried to teach Jimmy some jigs and reels. Dave Mattacks said his drums looked like they'd been through a hurricane after John Bonham got through with them. Okay, so where are the tapes to this jam session? Dave Mattacks, Robert, Jimmy, Joe Boyd, John Wood, everyone confirms the jam session at the Troubadour happened and the tapes were recording but nobody seems to know or be willing to confess where the tapes are located. I have read Joe Boyd says he has them but fears the Ghost of Peter Grant....which doesn't make sense in this day and age of youtube and internet. Peter Grant is long gone. Another time Joe Boyd mentioned the tapes were stored at Universal. Well, this could be a problem. Because a huge fire ripped through the Universal archives a few years ago. It could be those tapes were destroyed in the fire. That would be ghastly news for Fairport Convention and Led Zeppelin fans...the Troubadour tapes are one of the Holy Grails. One last note about this night of September 4, 1970...after the jam session was over, John Bonham, Dave Mattacks, and Janis Joplin drank the night away at Barney's Beanery on Santa Monica Blvd. in West Hollywood.
  2. The images below are from someone who was a teenage in LA during the 1970s. He went to a lot of great shows and brought his camera. He got as close as possible to the stage, often making it to the front row, and snapped close up shots of the bands. Luckily for us, he saw Zep a number of times and published his photos for all of us to see. Here are some samples. If you want to see the rest, here's the link: https://www.instagram.com/frommyseat/. He also sells some of the images at https://stratfordrockphotos.com/gallery.php?band=Led_Zeppelin (FYI, I'm not affiliated with him, just thought some folks here would like his work.)
  3. Hello all. I was wondering if anyone had specific I.D. information about the Eddie Edwards source which was originally combined with mike millard's tapes. the most information i've been able to garner about it is the following: ""Eddie Edwards "Trampled Underfoot" 1st Gen cassette of vinyl transfer"". Now, granted, I have yet to scour the earth for it, but I have put quite a spot of time into my search now and so far as I can tell, either this source completely no longer exists, or I'm doing a really bad job of dissecting the semantics of that sentence, which came from a description in the Winston Remasters. I have also found evidence that there was a release of... trying to remember... i think it may have even just been "For BadgeHolders Only", but was released on a label called Balboa, and is apparently the only non-Millard complete source without unforgivable issues such as single-channel dropouts, etc. I thought perhaps this could possibly be the "vinyl transfer" mentioned in the Winston Remasters, but have not found a way to confirm that, nor have I been able to find this Balboa release in the first place. Bottom Line: Does anyone have any information about that vinyl transfer mentioned in the Winston Remasters, or even just have any knowledge to add concerning lowest-gen-as-possible Eddie Edwards source? Because this is literally everything I got, and it ain't much. The winston remaster wasn't done that long ago, right? So it's unlikely we're talking about something that time has swallowed forever, one would think. Anyway thank you in advance; I figured if I was going to ask the question anywhere, it should be here.
  4. First impressions from the concert last night... The sound quality and my view of the stage was not as good as the Houston show. The Shrine is a deceptively larger and more cavernous venue than its seating capacity (between 4,000-5,000) would suggest, and there were times when I felt the sound should have been louder...particularly Robert's vocals, which got buried in the mix on a couple occasions. The sound balance between the instruments was also off at times. So, sound quality-wise, Houston was better. Performance was still good, though...although again I think Houston was a notch above. The setlist was exactly the same as Houston with one exception...instead of "Angel Dance" they played "Another Tribe". A quick check of the internet shows that it's the same set they played at Austin, June 23. Whether this portends a permanent change in regards to Angel Dance being booted in favour of Another Tribe, time will tell. The crowd atmosphere was great...lots of freaky people getting their freak on amid the crowd. I think there was a sizable contingent of former consorts of the days of the Riot House and Rodney's English Disco. The crowd went apeshit over "Going to California" of course. But I think the Houston crowd sang along more and louder than the LA crowd. The opening act, Grace Potter and the Nocturnals made a good impression...she's got a great presence and rocked the shit out of her Flying V. Her drummer was good, too, and later they did one of the coolest drum solos I've ever seen and heard when the whole band joined the drummer on his kit. Everyone picked a part of the kit and started banging away. So I thought the opening band in LA was better than in Houston. But Denver has the best opening band of the entire tour: The Black Angels. If you're going to the Denver show, make sure you get there early. Sound problems aside, Robert was in great voice again, bringing out his "rock and roll voice" many times and treating the audience to some vintage, epic moans and howls and wails of yore. It appeared he was wearing similar, if not the same, clothes he wore at Houston. The highlights for me remained the same as from the Houston show: "Babe, I'm Gonna Leave You" getting the crowd into it immediately..."Tin Pan Valley" and the excellently psychedelic "Enchanter" showing the skill and chemistry between Skin and Justin...the trio of acoustic Zep gems, "Going to California", "Friends", and "Bron-Yr-Aur Stomp"...the "Whole Lotta Love/Who Do You Love" closer, proving that that WLL riff is eternal. It's just such a Juggernaut of a riff...it will not be denied. You cannot resist banging your head and stomping your feet to that riff. Actually, I enjoyed the whole set..."Please Read the Letter" is really growing on me; it's much better in concert than on the studio album. "Spoonful" and "Fixing to Die" are great blues reworkings. And "In the Mood" is just a good upbeat tune and groove...it fits perfectly coming immediately after the opening "Babe...". I'll expand on these thoughts and more another time. It's back to work and the daily grind for me now. I'll leave you with a photo that I took so you can see the difference between my vantage points in LA and Houston.
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