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Big Klu

Pinpointing the gig when Plant lost it (the wailing)

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Robert Plant said Alison Krauss was being strict with him; it's his fault if people get that impression. :lol: He did not have nice things to say about Emmylou Harris however.
YES,with Robert you have to take into account he says a lot of different things at different times --STRANGELY :this recent project has had more over staturated promotional emphasis then anything either has worked on in the span of both careers?!!!!!Which, I will add that the Bluegrass /Folk/Country Music career of Emmylou Harris began before Alison Krauss was even born & they both worked on Tbones Burnett`s wonderful music contributions on that great film ''Oh,Brother Where Art Thou"!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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As Joel said before, it's all in the boots. The two examples you cite are a live cut and paste of the best of three nights at MSG, and a studio recording. Get a couple bootlegs from each Zeppelin tour and you can clearly see the progeressive loss of Plat's early years' wail. I think you're taking the "lost the wailing" too literally. Could he still wail his lemons off after 72, yes of course he could. But it definitely didn't sound like what he was hitting on a nightly basis 69-71.

He simply developed more control...

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He simply developed more control...

No, he lost the ability to do the things he used to do. Period. It's not a horrible thing, mind you, while he lost the ability to scream, he learned to sing. But that was out of necessity.

Here's a good experiment to see what we're all talking about. Listen to How The West Was Won, which was recorded in June '72. Then listen to the newly circulated Southampton bootleg from January 22, 1973. Seven months apart. Southampton was a professionally recorded show, and Jimmy considered both shows in 2003, before settling on the June '72 show and releasing it as HTWWW. It's easy to see why. Listen to the difference in Robert's vocals. It's only 7 months later, but it clearly is not a concert with a singer who only sounds different because he's learned more control. He sounds different because he's obviously lost the ability to sing many of the songs in their original key, to hit the notes he used to hit, and to be able to sing without his voice cracking.

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maybe he was sick

If that's the case, then you'd expect that he would have recovered and returned to the singer he was in '72 and before, BUT HE NEVER DID. In fact, he continued to move down in range. You think he wouldn't have liked to sing songs like OTHAFA, Black Dog, or Rock And Roll in their original vocal ranges? Of course he would've. He just couldn't anymore.

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If that's the case, then you'd expect that he would have recovered and returned to the singer he was in '72 and before, BUT HE NEVER DID. In fact, he continued to move down in range. You think he wouldn't have liked to sing songs like OTHAFA, Black Dog, or Rock And Roll in their original vocal ranges? Of course he would've. He just couldn't anymore.

This is really a sad thread to read. When I was a teenager I had what I thought to be a huge Zep bootleg collection on LPs (later dubbed to cassettes). But it was not complete enough or easy enough to to be able to dig down through the chronology and construct a map of Robert losing his range. You just jump around in time and latch onto aspects you like and don't overanalyze it. Having instant access to media like this has a way of bringing the aging process into stark contrast.

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well lets take it easy here.. we all agree he lost his "banshee" sometime in late71 - early72. he then learned how to sing.

although i am a bigger fan of the 68-71 era, lets all remember that any plant at all is better than no plant, (and that robert might read this and decide not to do another tour w/ zeppelin, lol)

Robert, you are still a fkn awesome front man.

..and please tour.

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True enough docron. No one is bagging on the guy, we're just analyzing the metamorphasis of his voice. It wasn't humanly possible to scream like he did forever, it took its toll. Nothing against him for that.

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i guess he does it sometimes only when he plays in whol lotta love and ive also heard it in rock and roll during the solo he dne some vocals and he kinda f'd up

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He simply developed more control...

No.

See Matt's post right below yours, it a perfect example.

To my knowledge no one in this thread has put Robert down in any negative way for his voice changing. And they shouldn't have any reason to, he has always had a tremendous voice, and is a favorite vocalist of MANY here on the board. We're just discussing the changes that have happened throughout his career. It's obvious that people who just say "he developed control" and "he learned how to sing" just cannot take a detailed analysis into Plant's vocal changes. Statements like those are absolutely wrong. Yes, he has become a better singer as his career has progressed, but he already knew how to sing in the first place! And he didn't "learn control", he had to learn how to adapt to a different style of singing because of a his diminished vocal range.

Edited by Killing Floor Blues

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I've said it elsewhere (apparently not here, like I thought) but I think the biggest change came in the weeks off between the December '72 shows and the January '73 ones. I believe Dave Lewis said he was sick when they came back from Christmas holiday, and I don't think his voice ever recovered.

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2 things I don't see mentioned in this thread so I'll add them.

1)There is a bona fide banshee wail in the climax of "Eyes on You", the opening track of solo album Manic Nirvana. It does not last the duration of that vocal breath, but, for a few seconds it is THAT wail, from 71. I found myself wondering if it was a sample.

2)I brought this up in another thread, but lost the thread before I saw a response. This time I'll be more blunt. Does tear gas have any permanent effects on vocal cords or mucous membranes? Robert continued to sing whilst being tear gassed in 1971.

As far as I'm concerned the jig is basically up when Immigrant song moves from the beginning to the end of the set. That said, there are these little windows where Plant seems to miraculously recover some of that high power throughout his career. In 88 his voice seems to get deeper, and also perhaps his septum became deviated (sounds nasally). I'd like to see a graph of when he was a smoker and when he wasn't. In 1988 at 1am in the morning I was halfway through "Heaven Knows" before I realized who I was listening to. My heart sank. I had waited all night for something I scarcely recognized when it arrived. I got used to his "new" voice within a few weeks, and looking back, I see it's all relative. We are mortal and the sands only go through the hourglass in one direction.

Edited by rokarolla

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No.

See Matt's post right below yours, it a perfect example.

To my knowledge no one in this thread has put Robert down in any negative way for his voice changing. And they shouldn't have any reason to, he has always had a tremendous voice, and is a favorite vocalist of MANY here on the board. We're just discussing the changes that have happened throughout his career. It's obvious that people who just say "he developed control" and "he learned how to sing" just cannot take a detailed analysis into Plant's vocal changes. Statements like those are absolutely wrong. Yes, he has become a better singer as his career has progressed, but he already knew how to sing in the first place! And he didn't "learn control", he had to learn how to adapt to a different style of singing because of a his diminished vocal range.

I think I hit a nerve...

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:lol:

Na, not at all. :ph34r:

Well..... I sure get a tickle out of it ! :lol:

In a way it's refreshing to see 'naitivity' in posts.....the unknowing and unrealising some have. It's all about exploration and experience....and the desire to KNOW.....B)

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Well..... I sure get a tickle out of it ! :lol:

In a way it's refreshing to see 'naitivity' in posts.....the unknowing and unrealising some have. It's all about exploration and experience....and the desire to KNOW.....B)

Good point (as usual B) ). The unknowing ones (probably with exposure to official releases only, or very few boots) have a world a amazing music ahead of them. Dig! Dig deep into Zep's vast boot collection!

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Well..... I sure get a tickle out of it ! :lol:

In a way it's refreshing to see 'naitivity' in posts.....the unknowing and unrealising some have. It's all about exploration and experience....and the desire to KNOW.....B)

Damn... they even have snobs on Zep message boards.

Edited by Led Zeppelin

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I understand...

For the sake of demonstrating how well you think you know his voice, you and KFB were in effect, pointing out what you believe to be a decrease in his vocal prowess... and then realized how it may sound negative.

Don't worry - I'm sure you're both true fans. ;)

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And I agree Klu, I have no idea why Page changed his guitar tone from 69-70. That tone IS rock and roll for me.

I loved Page's tone from 71-75, reminiscent of his studio sound in the solo of Heartbreaker.

If you ever have plugged a 70's Les Paul into a 70's Marshall and crank it up, you will hear Pages rich sustaining sound. It's the bootlegs that don't do his sound justice (soundboards especially) they can't give you that sensation of the Marshalls making the stage vibrate warmly under your feet.

I feel as the band developed and played louder (particularly indoor) venues, his desire to 'cut through' the sound evolved his sound. To me his earlier sound lacked the definition and subtlety required for tracks with big tonal changes/ dynamic range like Stairway/the Rain Song/ Over the Hills.

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Yeah, he lost some range and heft from 71 to 73, and I agree that he gained in mental ability and finesse as he went along, but what nobody's mentioned yet is the change in Percy's attitude and stage presence that occurred too.

Sure, he had glorious chops in 71, but the 71 Robert doesn't seem to be having much fun. Serious, head down, sounds like he's pissed about the critical reaction to III or that LA isn't as much fun as it once was or whatever.

By 73 though, we get the full on Horn Dog Robert that everyone remembers when they think of Led Zeppelin. Yes, the high notes cracked more often. Yes he's more cavalier with the original melodies. But his singing is SEXY SEXY SEXY! The wail was never sexier than in 73 IMO. The rough road weariness that shows in his voice is real rock 'n' roll.

And to anyone who feels cheated when Robert doesn't sing the original melody in OTHAFA or RnR, or thinks he was just yelping in the early days, I'd argue that what really sets Robert apart from Rock's other great vocalists is that he really did change it up from night to night, and from year to year. He was not just faithfully delivering a song like most singers. He was out there improvising on the edge with Jimmy and the rest of the band every night. In this way he was almost more of a musician than a singer. Jimmy himself has called Led Zeppelin 4 virtuoso musicians that came together and created a fifth element. What other singer commands such a description? YOU try singing in front of a band like Zeppelin and see what comes out!

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Yes, Plant became much more of the master of ceremonies as time went on. In the early days he was kind of uncomfortable and nervous as you can see in the Danish TV special. And Robert was much more of a vocal acrobat than an "artist" in the early days. His main motivation seemed to be to show off his voice like a special effect rather than to find the right approach to the theme of each song. But then lots of other artists were doing similar things (like Gillan in Deep Purple).

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I understand...

For the sake of demonstrating how well you think you know his voice, you and KFB were in effect, pointing out what you believe to be a decrease in his vocal prowess... and then realized how it may sound negative.

Don't worry - I'm sure you're both true fans. ;)

:huh:

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