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that's very true after digging in to Americana with artists like Buddy Miller and ...well I already loved Alison's music , I am now listening to the Wolf, Muddy waters...music I knew of and liked but didn't dive into til now... Justin adams stuff with juldeh Camera's music is quite nice as well. Hoping for more albums from the SSS.

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  • 3 weeks later...

Some deserving accolades for lullaby...

- Mojo's 50 Best Albums of 2014: The Final Score - By MOJO Staff (November 21, 2014)

#19 you have to scroll through it a bit.


- The Sunday Times - 100 best records of the year - St Vincent, Jamie Cullum, Pink Martini & the von Trapps, Richard Strauss’s Elektra — our critics pick their top albums of 2014 (December 7, 2014)

32 ROBERT PLANT Lullaby and the Ceaseless Roar (Nonesuch)

The country and blues influences of Plant’s previous two albums are still here, alongside African grooves, electronic beats and Omnichord drones.


I got this info from Robert's site at The Times requires you to subscribe. No. Library's got it, thanks.

- NPR Music's 50 Favorite Albums Of 2014 (December 8, 2014)


lullaby and... The Ceaseless Roar

Having departed his recent habitation of Americana music for the boggy landscapes of his native England, rock's Aslan reconnects with old mythologies and chases new sounds on this sophisticated yet beautifully grounded and emotional set. Playing mostly with old friends — with the important new addition of West African riti player Juldeh Camara — Plant relaxes into expansive arrangements that connect the folk and blues of his youth with the world-spanning sounds that have inspired him in more recent year (Amazon / iTunes). His lyrics are personal and wise; his famous wail has mellowed into a vocal approach that's curious and effortlessly intuitive. Artists half his age could envy the life still in the old cat. —Ann Powers


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^^ Thanks for the info and video link. Interesting take on WLL. I actually like that they're not precious about it; doing the song completely differently frees them up to incorporate their various influences and present a version that is their own. Frankly, hearing it the same way as the original by different bands or even previously with the Zep lads in respective performances got tedious. Keep it up and at some point you just kind of become a cover band of your previous self....

On a side note, what I appreciate about these appearances Robert does without or with SSS outside of scheduled tour dates is that we get introduced not only to different music but also to programs that expose us to other arts. I hadn't heard of Sky Arts or its music focused program, but it seems like a great opportunity to combine live performance with some thoughtful discussion, one that is longer than a two minute clip or anything that you could fit in a tweet at that. Looking at the list of musicians they've already had, there are definitely others I will check out.

Reading a bit more about Sky Arts in general, I found these to be interesting:

Sky Arts offers an eclectic mix of the best music, arts, biographies, chat shows, film, drama and comedy. Sky is the only broadcaster in the UK and Ireland with channels dedicated solely to the arts...


And then:

Sky Arts also seeks to connect with culture on the ground; creating and collaborating with the best of the arts in the UK and Ireland to bring new experiences to life. Sky Arts has collaborated with a number of arts organisations including the English National Ballet and has supported the Hay Festival as broadcast partner since 2006. The Sky Arts Ignition Series launched in in 2011 to invest in the arts landscape of the UK. The Series will seek to collaborate with six arts organisations over the next three years in the creation of brand new works; Sky Arts Ignition Series: Futures Fund will support five young artists with a bursary of £30,000 each, enabling Sky Arts to back the creation of new works of art as well as nurture emerging talent.

Yes! Awesome. I'd like to know more about the extent to which these initiatives actually reach emerging artists, but it they do, it's an amazing support system that is close to my heart.

Anyway, back on topic, I'm looking forward to seeing the rest of Robert and the SSS's episode.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Looks like 2015 will be a busy touring year for Robert and the SSS:

BottleRock 2015: No Doubt, Imagine Dragons, Robert Plant highlight lineup

Multiplatinum pop outfit No Doubt, rising rock act Imagine Dragons and classic-rock legend Robert Plant will headline the 2015 BottleRock Napa Valley.

Acclaimed folk-rock act The Avett Brothers, rap titan Snoop Dogg, Indie-pop band Foster the People and hip-hop heavyweights Public Enemy are among the other top acts set to perform at the third annual festival, which runs May 29-31 at the 26-acre Napa Valley Expo center.

In all, the festival will feature more than 60 acts, including several Bay Area artists.

Three-day tickets are $235-$2,500 and go on sale at 10 a.m. Jan. 8 atwww.bottlerocknapavalley.com. No word on when, or if, single-day tickets will be made available.


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  • 2 weeks later...

Robert Plant joins an impressive list of contributors to a new Ralph Stanley album that came out yesterday (RP sings on "Two Coats"):

Ralph Stanley & Friends – Man of Constant Sorrow
January 19th, 2015

Well, we’ve crossed the threshold of 2015. No, we don’t yet have hover boards and flying cars, and we still have many of the same problems we’ve been dealing with since time immemorial. Indeed, we have some new problems thanks to technological innovations. Yes, it’s a new year, and time keeps marching on, which is why it so damn refreshing to have a new record courtesy of Ralph Stanley. The album is refreshing in the way it’s refreshing to have a home cooked meal after being on the road eating hotel food and takeout. The record is familiar, and made with love.

But make no mistake, while this record does not veer off the well-worn path of bluegrass music, Stanley has opted to freshen up classic tunes that include “Pig in a Pen” and “We Shall Rise” by inviting some help from the likes of Robert Plant, Gillian Welch and David Rawlings, Elvis Costello, and Old Crow Medicine Show, just to name a few. Dr. Stanley (as he was dubbed by Yale University and is now known) has delved into his catalogue and offered up these war horses to his fellow, though younger, musical legends to play around with. The results are worth the listen.

Dr. Stanley’s voice has its own distinction. For those of you who may not be familiar, his voice was made famous by his work on the soundtrack to O Brother, Where Art Though? when he sang on “Oh Death.” His voice and that song painted a sonic picture of Appalachia that could rival the best written accounts. Take that voice and pair it with Robert Plant’s over droning fiddles, and you get a haunting rendition of the song “Two Coats” that carries the weight of Appalachian culture as profoundly as “Oh Death.” The lyrics “Now this coat, it suits me, it keeps me so warm, it’s good in the winter, and it’s good in the storm” seem quite fitting.

Gillian Welch and David Rawlings bring a sprightly energy to “Pig in a Pen” and are a perfect fit for this tune. Elvis Costello is unexpected and uplifting to hear trading lyrics with Stanley on “Red Wicked Wine,” and his turn on the record runs right along with his most recent work with The New Basement Tapes.

Call this a record of Dr. Stanley and his new disciples. Bluegrass is gaining a wider appreciation from the public and from unexpected corners of the musical landscape, and Stanley is making the most of that. Bluegrass music has always been about collaboration, but this one takes that tradition to a new level.


You can get more info about how to get the album from Ralph Stanley's website. Here is the track list:

The 13 songs on Ralph Stanley & Friends: Man of Constant Sorrow are:
1) "We Shall Rise" with Josh Turner
2) "I Only Exist" with Dierks Bentley
3) "Sweethearts in Heaven" with Ricky Skaggs
4) "Rank Stranger" with Nathan Stanley
5) "I Am the Man, Thomas" Buddy Miller & Jim Lauderdale
6) "White Dove" with Lee Ann Womack
7) "Red Wicked Wine" with Elvis Costello
8) "Pig in a Pen" with Gillian Welch & David Rawlings
9) "Two Coats" with Robert Plant
10) "Brand New Tennessee Waltz" with Del McCoury
11) "Short Life of Trouble" with Old Crow Medicine Show
12) "Hills of Home" - Dr. Ralph Stanley
13) "Man of Constant Sorrow" - Dr. Ralph Stanley
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Ooh Sweet thanks for posting that Pat. Looking forward to hearing that album and especially Robert's contribution. Love Ralph Stanley, esp Man of Constant Sorrow. We love to watch Bluegrass Country Soul dvd for relaxing time, it takes you back to 1971. Ralph sings a beautiful version of MOCS on that. Looking forward to Blackberry Smoke tour next month, they do a killer version of MOCS too (ok sorry so off topic)

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Woz70,great post man you hit the nail on the head, I was thinking along those lines but couldn't get it out, sometimes it can just be all so heartbreaking, it makes sense your post ,Woz,let me ask a ?. Do you think plant Fuddles around w/ the zep tunes on his solo tours just to sell tickets ,I mean plant might suspect the late comers and newbies do want to experience a live zep tune ,but this contradicts plant and everything he stands for.Ex. its fair to say many in the audience might never have even been a zep fan but favor plant and all his solo work only. And the opposite is ,some fans don't give hoot what he sings ,they are just happy to listen to " the singer from led zeppelin". bejesus! Bottom line,Plant could go tour ,sing a set list of alll Nat King Cole songs only and fools would still by the tickets

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Ascending Without Zeppelin

Robert Plant Releases ‘lullaby and The Ceaseless


“I’m always in a state of flux, I think,” Robert Plant said, then corrected himself. “I hope.”

Mr. Plant, 66, was talking by phone from his home in Shropshire, England, about his new album, “lullaby and ... The Ceaseless Roar” (Nonesuch), which is due for release Tuesday. It is Mr. Plant’s first album of his own new songs since he released “Mighty Rearranger” in 2005. And it’s the work of a musician who — after defining arena rock stardom when he was the golden-haired, wailing, howling lead singer of Led Zeppelin and then embarking on a long, varied solo career — has determinedly followed his instincts and impulses rather than more clearly commercial paths. “Every time I make a record,” he said, “I have to find a time when I’m absolutely besotted by the work.”

American, Celtic, Middle Eastern and African styles get a technological shake-up in his new songs, as the album transforms and reconfigures elements that have been part of Mr. Plant’s music since the 1960s. Hypnotic world-music grooves mesh with blues and country, as loops and programming mingle with banjo, electric guitars, synthesizers and a one-stringed West African fiddle. “I’ve been very lucky to be attached and in love with so many different genres,” Mr. Plant said. “It only seems fair game to me to pilfer and be seduced by these different forms and bring them together.”



Robert Plant is promoting his new album.CreditSebastien Bozon/Agence France-Presse — Getty Images

Mr. Plant hasn’t exactly been idle since 2005. In 2007, he released “Raising Sand,” the duet album with Alison Krauss that dug into a repertory of haunted Americana, returned him to the Top 10 and won top Grammy Awards. He toured with Ms. Krauss, then with his own American group, Band of Joy, and with the Sensational Space Shifters, who include British musicians and a griot from Gambia in West Africa.

Of course, Mr. Plant also reunited with Led Zeppelin for just one concert at the O2 arena in London; there were millions of requests for seats. “Celebration Day,” the 2012 film and album documenting the concert, won the Grammy for best rock album. But Mr. Plant has continued to shrug off any further Zeppelin reunions, to the clear public annoyance of Jimmy Page, who played guitar and wrote Led Zeppelin’s songs with Mr. Plant. Well into 2015, Mr. Plant has mapped out a world tour with the Sensational Space Shifters, including concerts Sept. 25 at the Capitol Theater in Port Chester, N.Y., and Sept. 27 and 28 at the Brooklyn Academy of Music as part of its festival dedicated to Nonesuch Records.

On “lullaby and ... The Ceaseless Roar,” Mr. Plant often sings in an otherworldly voice: sustained, androgynous, balanced between serenity and ache. The album begins and ends with very different versions of “Little Maggie,” an old-timey Appalachian song about unrequited love and separation. One meshes banjo picking with African instruments; the other swirls and thunders with dance-music electronics, a six-beat rhythm and the exultant voice of the griot Juldeh Camara singing “Abaden!,” a word in the Fulani language that means, Mr. Plant said, “Let’s go and give everything we’ve got for a good time.”

In between are songs by Mr. Plant that ponder earthly and transcendent love. In “Embrace Another Fall,” with his voice poised amid hand drums, an insistent riff plucked on an African lute and distant sustained electronic tones, Mr. Plant sings, “To you I bare my soul/My summer’s almost gone.”

“I know how to sing about love, because love is the continual roller coaster,” Mr. Plant said. “It doesn’t have to be for real. It just has to be considered as something beautiful and ragged and solitary and occasionally unifying. I feel the need for love, and I also feel the despair, and I put it all together.”



Robert Plant’s new album, “lullaby and ... The Ceaseless Roar,” taps into several genres. He has not been guided by commercial targets in his solo projects. CreditEd Miles

Writing the songs, “I felt pretty vulnerable,” Mr. Plant said. “I don’t know if that’s the right word. I felt exposed, but I felt I had to do something for myself rather than write about imaginary situations and strange romances.”

It took a record company nudge to get Mr. Plant writing again. The band and the groove came first. After touring with Band of Joy, which included the American songwriters Patty Griffin and Buddy Miller, Mr. Plant returned to England and resumed working with Justin Adams, a widely traveled guitarist steeped in Middle Eastern and African music who had been at the center of Mr. Plant’s band the Strange Sensation from 2001 to 2007. In the interim, Mr. Adams had teamed up with Mr. Camara, the Gambian griot, and the drummer Dave Smith. Along with other members of the Strange Sensation, in 2012, they became the Sensational Space Shifters and started a world tour with “nothing to promote,” Mr. Plant said cheerfully.

Mr. Adams described Mr. Plant as both leader and catalyst: “With all of those years of experience, it’s not like he’s learned a huge amount of complex music theory. But he has learned a lot of complex vibe management. He can create an atmosphere where suddenly lightning is more likely to strike. In collaborative music, it’s often not a question of careful writing and composition and all these sorts of things. It’s more the spirit of the moment when things come together in a flash. And he’s an expert on that.”

On tour, Mr. Plant sang old blues and songs from Led Zeppelin and his solo albums; the band jammed them in different directions at each show, with “a lot of swirling and twirling and physical mayhem,” Mr. Plant said. He grew so enthusiastic that he invited David Bither, senior vice president at Nonesuch, to an uproarious concert in Mexico City. “He said, ‘Well, this is amazing music, but where are the new songs?’ ” Mr. Plant recalled. “ I was so busy having a good time, I didn’t think about creating original material.”

Back in England after the tour, Mr. Plant gathered the band to focus on songwriting. He listened to concert recordings and culled bits of music from spontaneous moments onstage and from band members working on their own. From there, Mr. Adams said, Mr. Plant chose to approach the album “in a collaging way, which fits with the way tech works.” He continued, “Robert with his magpie mind was delighted to work with technology in a cut-and-paste way.”

In June, Led Zeppelin released newly remastered and expanded versions of its first three albums, overseen by Mr. Page, their original producer. Although Mr. Page was most deeply involved in the project, Led Zeppelin’s bassist, John Paul Jones, and Mr. Plant also delved back into the music they made together, “We’ve all been involved in A-ing and B-ing bits and pieces,” Mr. Plant said.

Listening now to the way he sang four decades ago with Led Zeppelin is “like visiting an old friend, the stuff you’ve forgotten about that made you like something in the first place,” Mr. Plant said. “And, of course, from the vocalist’s viewpoint, I was learning my trade. There was a totally different R.P. than what there is now, which is fine. That’s how it should be. Ever onward.”

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Woz70,great post man you hit the nail on the head, I was thinking along those lines but couldn't get it out, sometimes it can just be all so heartbreaking, it makes sense your post ,Woz,let me ask a ?. Do you think plant Fuddles around w/ the zep tunes on his solo tours just to sell tickets ,I mean plant might suspect the late comers and newbies do want to experience a live zep tune ,but this contradicts plant and everything he stands for.Ex. its fair to say many in the audience might never have even been a zep fan but favor plant and all his solo work only. And the opposite is ,some fans don't give hoot what he sings ,they are just happy to listen to " the singer from led zeppelin". bejesus! Bottom line,Plant could go tour ,sing a set list of alll Nat King Cole songs only and fools would still by the tickets

Man...... your posts are just so confusing to read... At least you've cooled it a bit with the exclamation marks.


Which post that I made are you talking about?

In answer to your other points - at Plant's live shows the Zep songs still get the biggest audience reaction, no matter how much he strays from the original arrangements. As a performer he feeds off the reaction of the audience, so of course he's going to throw things in that give him that lift even if he's sick to death of singing them. I don't think it's just a ticket selling exercise either. Despite his striving to remain relevant and move ever onwards, he also knows that he has to trade on his past in order to stay relevant and bring new ears to his newer material. The sad thing is that he mostly ignores the years between 1975(ish) and 2005 when it comes to choices of songs to play. It'd be great to hear current reworkings of stuff from 'Fate of Nations' for example. Obviously he feels that the 1970-72 Zep stuff has most resonance with his current outlook and that's why he sticks with that and puts it in his current set.

Maybe he could get away with singing a set of Nat King Cole songs and still grab an audience, but the thing there is would that turn him on? Highly unlikely, and if he's not turned on enough to sing with conviction, the audience will know and leave in droves.

That's the key - singing stuff that excites him enough to bring it to an audience with conviction. And therein lies the reason he'll never do a Zep reunion - that whole package is just so far removed from where he is now, both musically and as a person, that it would be a case of going through the motions if he did it. And that would be very boring for everyone involved.

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"fools" wow! pretty strong opinion there 9/28 concert was one of best experiences in entertainment in my life. But hey the people that don'y dig what Robert is doing make it possible for people like me to get decent seats for under 100 dollars...I am sure had LZ ever gone out again it would have required a bank loan on my part to get inthe door....

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Ignore him Mook. He has little time for Plants work so his views aren't worth reading. If you want to know the name of the taxi driver who drove Jimmy in 1973 from his hotel in germany then thats what he can give you. As a music critic he's pretty worthless as he doesn't seem to have any real feel for music.


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  • 2 weeks later...

To celebrate Record Store Day 2015 (UK version here), on April 18 Robert Plant is releasing a special 10" EP called More Roar which includes four live tracks (well, three, if you count the B side medley as one song). Quantities limited to 10,000 copies, apparently.

Robert Plant to Release Live EP for Record Store Day 2015
by Jeff Giles March 2, 2015 10:58 AM
Robert Plant has joined the growing list of artists releasing special limited-edition vinyl titles for Record Store Day 2015.

Plant’s contribution, titled More Roar, is a 10″ EP that collects three performances from his world tour with the Sensational Space Shifters in support of 2014′s lullaby … and the Ceaseless Roar album. Limited to 10,000 copies, it includes live versions of Ceaseless Roar tracks “Turn It Up” and “Arbaden” on Side A, with a medley of “Poor Howard” and “Whole Lotta Love” on Side B.

The release of More Roar comes several months after Plant expressed a desire to work with vinyl enthusiast and Record Store Day hero Jack White. Saying he’s intrigued by White’s use of the Voice-O-Graph, the restored instant vinyl apparatus White used to cut the “world’s fastest record” last year and brought onto The Tonight Show for a Neil Young live recording, Plant applauded White’s “buccaneer spirit, and the way he dodges through the musical horizons.”

One of many Record Store Day 2015 releases from the Warner Bros. label family, More Roar will be available at participating outlets on April 18. For more information about the event and local shops near you, visit the official Record Store Day site.

Plant joins an Record Store Day 2015 classic-rock contingent that also includes Foo Fighters frontman Dave Grohl — who, as previously reported, has been named this year’s official ambassador. The Foos will be releasing their own four-track EP, Songs From the Laundry Room, which collects previously unreleased demos, covers and songs.


I think there's a Record Store Day thread here somewhere but anyway I'm on pain meds atm and can't find it, so in this link you have a long list of artists contributing to this year's vinyl fest:


Happy vinyl shopping! I hope you get what you seek :)

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Thanks for the photo, luvlz2, and for the venue info, ledded1. I really like that sepia look of the cover. What a beautiful, ornate space WOW! I wonder which concert(s) the songs for this EP are from or are we to assume that they're from the Blackpool gig?

By the way, the Record Store Day 2015 site has a list of participating stores, but people should double check before going because it is not up to date. For example, it has the three Sunrise Records stores in Toronto on its list, but they're all closed now.

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