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Did Page serious consider "firing" Plant during their first year?


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So it's been a long time since I read the book "Hammer of the Gods", but I'm sure I recall Cole saying that Page was going to fire Plant early on as he felt he was being too much of a Showman, taking away from Page or something along this line.  I'm going by memory here, can anyone confirm this one way or another?  

I'm sure I also read somewhere else that he thought that often Plant was too uncontrolled.  For instance, in the song Babe Im Gonna Leave You, many of us have probably heard the many out takes in which Plant is screaming the first verse to the point of his voice scratching.  Page was the one who suggested he turn it into a more mellow , relaxed and deliberate intro.   These types of "differences" lead some credence to the aforementioned rumour.

I also recall Plant suggesting he didn't think he was going to do anything more than the first album anyways, and due to him being under contract elsewhere he received no writing credits.  I'm aware it was early in their careers but there certainly wasn't the online chemistry in their early concerts as later when they forged a very powerful energy on stage.  The music was always great, but their on-stage interactions seemed subdued.  I place this to many things, the fact the band was new, the clear difference in hierarchy and musical reputations etc.

Anyways, just curious if there is anything one might add to this.  One couldn't even imagine LZ without Plant, there are so many songs that simply wouldn't have existed, or, would have been vastly different with another singer.

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Plant too much of a showman in the early days? Never heard that one before. Watch the Danish television footage and ask yourself if Plant is conveying a stage presence of dominance and showmanship or clearly finding his feet. Even Jimmy is restrained as compared to the duckwalks and such he would become known for. Anyway, Robert bloomed where he was planted, and many have said by about 1972 he had developed a unique stage presence.

Plant uncontrolled...etc...I don't know...Page was the producer so I'm sure he provided some input one way or the other.

None of them knew if it would last beyond the first album...as Plant said, "we could have been a bum group". 

 

 

 

 

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24 minutes ago, SteveAJones said:

 

None of them knew if it would last beyond the first album...as Plant said, "we could have been a bum group". 

 

 

 

 

Yes, I acknowledge this much, which is why I suggested it.  Maybe I bring my own bias in my perception of the old videos since I never forgot that statement from Cole in his book, again if my memory is accurate.  I sometimes see possible doubt and/or tension due to what I read.  I also know that Page threatened to sue after the books release, saving his most anger for some of the stories written about Bonham, since as Page put it "it's disgusting to write things about people when they aren't here to defend themselves".

 

 

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Cole didn't always get along with Plant so I suspect he put a couple of things in his book about this, I remember reading a couple of subtle things in Stairway to Heaven about the early tours in America where they weren't sure if Plant was the right man for the job, however I don't think there's ever been anything to back this up from Page or Peter Grant.

Bonham was apparently under pressure to dial it down a notch or two early on with Grant (at Page's behest) informing him that he would be out on his ear if he didn't calm down with all the fills, although it wouldn't surprise me if his drinking (before & during gigs) was also a factor.

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Didn't Jimmy complain about Robert's ' lack of personal hygiene' during the early days? It's been quite a while, but I think that is the only thing/quibble between Jimmy and Robert  I can remember from the 'Hammer of the Gods'

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15 hours ago, duckman said:

Didn't Jimmy complain about Robert's ' lack of personal hygiene' during the early days? It's been quite a while, but I think that is the only thing/quibble between Jimmy and Robert  I can remember from the 'Hammer of the Gods'

I wonder if this is the reason Robert's teeth were so rotted out. You rarely see him smile open mouthed until after he had the implants put in. But damn, R-Dog had one nasty ass grill in the early days.

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The tables turned at the very end with the teeth matter.  Jimmy had a beautiful smile -  then
came heroin and you can see the stark difference.  There are some pictures in the very early
80s where I'm sure he wishes would fall into a dark hole.  But he got them fixed up again! :D 

I would have thought the hesitations and squabbles between Robert and Jimmy would have came
post 1977... well maybe 75 after his accident opposed to early on in their  relationship.  I like to 
think pre 1977 was the honeymoon period between them haha :lol:

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Almost everything in Hammer of the Gods is bullshit. 

Jimmy did provide some heavy input with Peter Grant behind his back, but Robert was too afraid to wind up with no job again so he obeyed. What Grant used to say was "do as he tells you to, or beat it" (I'm paraphrasing). John Bonham was the most stubborn, but there weren't any big tensions. 

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On 1/13/2017 at 8:46 PM, KellyGirl said:

The tables turned at the very end with the teeth matter.  Jimmy had a beautiful smile -  then
came heroin and you can see the stark difference.  There are some pictures in the very early
80s where I'm sure he wishes would fall into a dark hole.  But he got them fixed up again! :D 

I would have thought the hesitations and squabbles between Robert and Jimmy would have came
post 1977... well maybe 75 after his accident opposed to early on in their  relationship.  I like to 
think pre 1977 was the honeymoon period between them haha :lol:

Once Robert's son died and Jimmy never showed up at the funeral, just dropped out for a time, I think that was the moment Robert realized this god's (Jimmy's) feet were made of clay and could not be trusted (due to addiction). It was never the same after this and we have to give Robert credit for not walking away in 77'. Money or not, if one of my best mates and mentor did not show up to the funeral for my son, that would be it for me.

Jimmy's biggest mistake was heroin, to allow the drug to destroy his relationships was far worse than any bad performances he might have had.

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Agree to most, and Jimmy seemed to have  a few reservations about Plant in the start. But from the printed knowledge

and Jimmy's awareness of Robert's tremendous musical talent despite the shrieks, etc., my guess is Jimmy  didn't think

about this matter for long. Steve Marriott was in the mob's hands(no pun intended), and Terry Reid was still under contract ?? Maybe Grant "scolded" Robert, but still I can't imagine Peter or Jimmy being so stupid in any circumstance

firing Robert.

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  • 1 month later...
On 1/13/2017 at 3:44 AM, duckman said:

Didn't Jimmy complain about Robert's ' lack of personal hygiene' during the early days? It's been quite a while, but I think that is the only thing/quibble between Jimmy and Robert  I can remember from the 'Hammer of the Gods'

I don't think it said that.  It just said Robert was sent out to buy some deodorant, he had been up screwing all night after a show, , it didn't say by whom.

Edited by jasonlovesvids
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Grant was a heavy duty intimidator, but actually I find that serious thought about  tanking Robert very difficult to

believe. There are so many accounts/ versions that when Jimmy saw Robert sing live, Jimmy was totally floored.

Of course in early Zep many things may have seemed tentative. Yet to this day Jimmy seems to act like he only 

wants to use Robert as a vocalist. If Peter/ Jimmy had fired Robert, who could they possibly replace  him with ??

Steve Mariott(spelling ?) was not available because of the mob element. Totally great, not available. No Plant

firing.

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  • 2 weeks later...

I think the answer to the question can be found here on this BBC-tv performance in London March 21, 1969 -just six months after their first show. Most of us have seen this, I'm sure, but check out how well Page thinks this is going!!!

I think Jimmy's fairly elated about how Plant is working out-- and  ... into the sonic inferno, don't look down!!   

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I will never, ever get sick of watching that TV version of DAC. Just an absolutely awesome performance. "Howdy folks, a new sheriff has arrived in town and he's going to take over rock and roll. And his name is Led Zeppelin."

Edited by ThreeSticks
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