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Rolling Stones vs. Led Zeppelin- year to year, who wins out?


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On 8/1/2020 at 12:01 AM, Nutrocker said:

I'm probably as big a Stones nut as I am Zeppelin (okay, bigger, probably- you never forget yer first love, and mine was the Stones) but even I will concede throughout the 1970's Zeppelin trumped the Stones in just about every way. And the Stones knew it...and the professional jealousy! Whoo!ūüėÖ

IMO the only Stones LPs from the 70's on par with Zeppelin are my exalted Exile and arguably Sticky Fingers. I mean, It's Only Rock And Roll?ūüėÖ Fuckin' In Through The Out Door is better than that, even, I reckon IORR to be the Stones' worst album...

 

2 hours ago, JohnOsbourne said:

I recall a Stones vs. Zep discussion on royal-orleans a few years back, where it was claimed that Zeppelin's album sales outpaced the Stones' only relatively recently.  Zeppelin albums have continued to sell robustly (esp. in the digital age), while the Stones have not.  In the 70's, however, it was claimed that the Stones in fact had larger sales.  I can't seem to find any hard data on this, does anyone know?

No way. The only thing the Rolling Stones eclipsed Led Zeppelin on in the 1970s was Top 10 singles and press clippings and hobnobbing with princesses and the jet-set.

Led Zeppelin outsold the Stones in album sales in the 1970s...and beyond. 

The Rolling Stones have released way more albums than Led Zeppelin, having got a head start in the 1960s. But most of those albums only reached gold (500,000) or platinum (1,000,000) sales. Led Zeppelin had a much higher ratio of multiplatinum releases than the Rolling Stones.

Consider this: The Rolling Stones biggest-selling studio album was "Some Girls", with 6 million sold in the U.S. That is the same amount that Led Zeppelin III, one of Zeppelin's least popular albums, has sold.

Led Zeppelin has five albums that have sold 10 million or more. The Rolling Stones have only one...and it's the greatest hits compilation "Hot Rocks 1964-1971".

I have been researching this stuff for the past year. I meant to write a 40th anniversary post for "In Through the Out Door" last August but life intervened and I've been delayed. Now my project will entail both 1975 and 1979 as well as curiosities I noticed regarding Led Zeppelin III and Presence...stay tuned.

But I'll be back after work with some hard stats regarding the Rolling Stones compared to Led Zeppelin.

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7 hours ago, Strider said:

 

No way. The only thing the Rolling Stones eclipsed Led Zeppelin on in the 1970s was Top 10 singles and press clippings and hobnobbing with princesses and the jet-set.

Led Zeppelin outsold the Stones in album sales in the 1970s...and beyond. 

The Rolling Stones have released way more albums than Led Zeppelin, having got a head start in the 1960s. But most of those albums only reached gold (500,000) or platinum (1,000,000) sales. Led Zeppelin had a much higher ratio of multiplatinum releases than the Rolling Stones.

Consider this: The Rolling Stones biggest-selling studio album was "Some Girls", with 6 million sold in the U.S. That is the same amount that Led Zeppelin III, one of Zeppelin's least popular albums, has sold.

Led Zeppelin has five albums that have sold 10 million or more. The Rolling Stones have only one...and it's the greatest hits compilation "Hot Rocks 1964-1971".

I have been researching this stuff for the past year. I meant to write a 40th anniversary post for "In Through the Out Door" last August but life intervened and I've been delayed. Now my project will entail both 1975 and 1979 as well as curiosities I noticed regarding Led Zeppelin III and Presence...stay tuned.

But I'll be back after work with some hard stats regarding the Rolling Stones compared to Led Zeppelin.

Yeah, the Stones were never huge record sellers compared to some of the other 70's acts. And for some reason even six million US copies sold of Some Girls seems like low numbers- as I recall that fucking album was huge when it came out in '78, it saved the Stones' career for sure. I reckon their mid 70's "Junkie Music" period (as Keith called GHS, IORR and Black And Blue) put together probably sold as many copies as Physical Graffiti did. Or maybe not...

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Okay, I am home and have my research notes in front of me. 

First, let me clarify this is all official R.I.A.A. data based on U.S. sales only. Worldwide sales was a crapshoot until fairly recently because of several reasons. The main ones being that outside of Europe, Japan, and the English speaking countries there was no real rock n roll market of significance and there was no legitimate, dependable system in place to reliably count worldwide sales. Most worldwide sales have been guesstimated and most seem overblown.

Here are the all-time Top 5 selling artists in the U.S. according to the current RIAA chart.

1. The Beatles 183 million

2. Garth Brooks 156 million

3. Elvis Presley 139 million

4. Eagles 120 million

5. Led Zeppelin 111.5 million

No one else is close to 100 million. Michael Jackson and AC/DC are down in the 80-85 million range. The Rolling Stones are at #14 with 66.5 million albums sold. But those numbers only tell part of the story. Let's put these figures under a microscope.

The Beatles have released 48 Gold albums (500,000 sold). Of those 48, 42 went on to go Platinum (1,000,000 sold), 26 went multi-platinum, and 6 sold 10 million or more (The Diamond award).

In percentages that means 87.5% of the Beatles albums went platinum, 54.1% went multi-platinum, and 12.5% went diamond.

Garth Brooks: 31 of 31 platinum (100%), 17 multi-platinum (54.8%), 8 diamond (25.8%).

Elvis Presley: 57 of 101 platinum (56.4%), 25 multi-platinum (24.7%), 1 diamond (0.01%).

Eagles: 13 of 13 platinum (100%), 11 multi-platinum (84.6%), 3 diamond (23%).

Led Zeppelin: 18 of 19 platinum (94.7%), 14 multi-platinum (73.6%), 5 diamond (26.3% - highest percentage of everyone).

Rolling Stones: 28 of 43 platinum (65.1%), 11 multi-platinum (25.5%), 1 diamond (0.02%).

In case you were wondering, the one Led Zeppelin release that failed to go platinum was the Boxed Set Volume 2 released March 19, 1993.

Elvis Presley's one diamond album is "Elvis' Christmas Album". The Rolling Stones' one diamond album is "Hot Rocks 1964-71" released December 15, 1971.

According to John M.'s post Rolling Stones fans are claiming that the Stones outsold Led Zeppelin in the 1970s but then more people bought Led Zeppelin albums later on. I will now do a year-by-year comparison that proves that Led Zeppelin outsold the Rolling Stones head-to-head in the 1970s and that Led Zeppelin's fan base has been deeper and more passionate and kept the flame alive more than the Rolling Stones, who draw millions of fans in concert because of their celebrity and their status as the last 1960s classic rock band standing but those fans show little interest in buying Stones albums.

FYI: The Platinum award was not created until 1976 so albums released before then were certified Gold after selling 500,000 copies but then not certified Platinum until the 1980s when the RIAA did their first reclassifications to update the sales tallies.

1969.

Rolling Stones:

Aug. 21, 1969 Through the Past Darkly (a greatest hits compilation): 1 million sold. Certified Gold in 1969. Certified Platinum in 1989.

Nov. 17, 1969 Let It Bleed: 2 million. Gold in 1969. 2x platinum in 1989.

Led Zeppelin:

Jan. 11, 1969 LZ I: 8 million. Gold in 1969. 4x platinum in 1990. 6x platinum in 1997. 8x platinum in 1999.

Oct. 22, 1969 LZ II: 12 million. Gold in 1969. 5x platinum in 1990. 8x platinum in 1997. 12x platinum in 1999.

So Led Zeppelin's two albums in 1969 combined to sell 20 million while the Rolling Stones two albums combined to sell 3 million. Even taking away the later certifications, if we just go by the RIAA's first round of updating sales in the 1980s, Led Zeppelin's 1969 albums had outsold the Rolling Stones 1969 albums 9 million to 3 million.

1970.

Rolling Stones:

Oct. 2, 1970 Get Yer Ya Ya's Out: 1 million. Gold in 1970. Platinum in 1989.

Led Zeppelin:

October 5, 1970 LZ III: 6 million. Gold in 1970. 2x platinum 1990. 6x platinum 1999.

1971.

Rolling Stones:

April 23, 1971 Sticky Fingers: 3 million. Gold in 1971. 3x platinum 2000.

Dec. 15, 1971 Hot Rocks 1964-71: 12 million. Gold in 1972. 5x platinum in 1989. 12x platinum 2002.

Led Zeppelin:

Nov. 8, 1971 LZ IV: 23 million. Gold in 1971. 10x platinum in 1990. 23x platinum in 2006.

1972.

Rolling Stones:

May 1, 1972 Exile on Main St.: 1 million. Gold in 1972. Platinum in 2000.

Late 1972 More Hot Rocks (another compilation): 500,000. Gold in 1973.

1973.

Rolling Stones:

Aug. 31, 1973 Goat's Head Soup: 3 million.  Gold in 1973. 3x platinum in 2000.

Led Zeppelin:

March 28, 1973 Houses of the Holy: 11 million. Gold in 1973. 5x platinum in 1990. 11x platinum in 1999.

1974.

Rolling Stones:

Oct. 1, 1974 It's Only Rock & Roll: 1 million. Gold in 1974. Platinum in 2000.

1975.

Rolling Stones:

June 6, 1975 Made In the Shade (another compilation): 1 million. Gold in 1975. Platinum in 2000.

Led Zeppelin:

Feb. 25, 1975 Physical Graffiti: 16 million. Gold in 1975. 4x platinum in 1990. 9x platinum in 1997. 16x platinum in 2006.

1976.

Rolling Stones:

1976 Black & Blue. 1 million. Gold and Platinum in 1976.

Led Zeppelin:

March 2, 1976 Presence: 3 million. Gold and Platinum in 1976. 2x platinum in 1990. 3x platinum in 1997.

Oct. 1, 1976 The Song Remains the Same: 4 million. Gold and Platinum in 1976. 2x platinum in 1984. 4x platinum 1997.

1977.

Rolling Stones:

1977 Love You Live: 500,000. Gold in 1977.

1978.

Rolling Stones:

June 9, 1978 Some Girls: 6 million. Gold and Platinum in 1978. 4x platinum in 1984. 6x platinum 2000.

1979.

Led Zeppelin:

Aug. 22, 1979 In Through the Out Door: 6 million. Gold and Platinum in 1980. 3x platinum in 1984. 6x platinum in 1997.

As you can see, many of the Led Zeppelin and Rolling Stones albums haven't had their sales updated since the 1990s, so these figures are likely to change. But the ratio of sales in favour of Led Zeppelin is likely to remain the same.

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Off topic a little, but who the hell has bought an Elvis album since the 1970s? The Beatles, Eagles, Zep, and Stones are rock bands that still get played regularly so their popularity carries over to other generations. Elvis? Yes, the man is a legend, but that music is mostly lost in the era. So how do his album sales add up since, say, 1980?

Edited by gibsonfan159
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Elvis has had a cult reputation here in the UK for years The remix of "A Little Less Conversation" credited as Elvis V JXL  was number one for 4 weeks in 2002. it is mainly built around the Sun record period and some of the late 1960 tracks such as "Suspicous Minds".

Srider is there any way the compilation LP's can be taken out as I think The Beatles and Zep would have even higher percentages.

 

I am surprised at the Garth Brook figures.

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8 hours ago, Strider said:

Okay, I am home and have my research notes in front of me. 

First, let me clarify this is all official R.I.A.A. data based on U.S. sales only. Worldwide sales was a crapshoot until fairly recently because of several reasons. The main ones being that outside of Europe, Japan, and the English speaking countries there was no real rock n roll market of significance and there was no legitimate, dependable system in place to reliably count worldwide sales. Most worldwide sales have been guesstimated and most seem overblown.

Here are the all-time Top 5 selling artists in the U.S. according to the current RIAA chart.

1. The Beatles 183 million

2. Garth Brooks 156 million

3. Elvis Presley 139 million

4. Eagles 120 million

5. Led Zeppelin 111.5 million

No one else is close to 100 million. Michael Jackson and AC/DC are down in the 80-85 million range. The Rolling Stones are at #14 with 66.5 million albums sold. But those numbers only tell part of the story. Let's put these figures under a microscope.

The Beatles have released 48 Gold albums (500,000 sold). Of those 48, 42 went on to go Platinum (1,000,000 sold), 26 went multi-platinum, and 6 sold 10 million or more (The Diamond award).

In percentages that means 87.5% of the Beatles albums went platinum, 54.1% went multi-platinum, and 12.5% went diamond.

Garth Brooks: 31 of 31 platinum (100%), 17 multi-platinum (54.8%), 8 diamond (25.8%).

Elvis Presley: 57 of 101 platinum (56.4%), 25 multi-platinum (24.7%), 1 diamond (0.01%).

Eagles: 13 of 13 platinum (100%), 11 multi-platinum (84.6%), 3 diamond (23%).

Led Zeppelin: 18 of 19 platinum (94.7%), 14 multi-platinum (73.6%), 5 diamond (26.3% - highest percentage of everyone).

Rolling Stones: 28 of 43 platinum (65.1%), 11 multi-platinum (25.5%), 1 diamond (0.02%).

In case you were wondering, the one Led Zeppelin release that failed to go platinum was the Boxed Set Volume 2 released March 19, 1993.

Elvis Presley's one diamond album is "Elvis' Christmas Album". The Rolling Stones' one diamond album is "Hot Rocks 1964-71" released December 15, 1971.

According to John M.'s post Rolling Stones fans are claiming that the Stones outsold Led Zeppelin in the 1970s but then more people bought Led Zeppelin albums later on. I will now do a year-by-year comparison that proves that Led Zeppelin outsold the Rolling Stones head-to-head in the 1970s and that Led Zeppelin's fan base has been deeper and more passionate and kept the flame alive more than the Rolling Stones, who draw millions of fans in concert because of their celebrity and their status as the last 1960s classic rock band standing but those fans show little interest in buying Stones albums.

FYI: The Platinum award was not created until 1976 so albums released before then were certified Gold after selling 500,000 copies but then not certified Platinum until the 1980s when the RIAA did their first reclassifications to update the sales tallies.

1969.

Rolling Stones:

Aug. 21, 1969 Through the Past Darkly (a greatest hits compilation): 1 million sold. Certified Gold in 1969. Certified Platinum in 1989.

Nov. 17, 1969 Let It Bleed: 2 million. Gold in 1969. 2x platinum in 1989.

Led Zeppelin:

Jan. 11, 1969 LZ I: 8 million. Gold in 1969. 4x platinum in 1990. 6x platinum in 1997. 8x platinum in 1999.

Oct. 22, 1969 LZ II: 12 million. Gold in 1969. 5x platinum in 1990. 8x platinum in 1997. 12x platinum in 1999.

So Led Zeppelin's two albums in 1969 combined to sell 20 million while the Rolling Stones two albums combined to sell 3 million. Even taking away the later certifications, if we just go by the RIAA's first round of updating sales in the 1980s, Led Zeppelin's 1969 albums had outsold the Rolling Stones 1969 albums 9 million to 3 million.

1970.

Rolling Stones:

Oct. 2, 1970 Get Yer Ya Ya's Out: 1 million. Gold in 1970. Platinum in 1989.

Led Zeppelin:

October 5, 1970 LZ III: 6 million. Gold in 1970. 2x platinum 1990. 6x platinum 1999.

1971.

Rolling Stones:

April 23, 1971 Sticky Fingers: 3 million. Gold in 1971. 3x platinum 2000.

Dec. 15, 1971 Hot Rocks 1964-71: 12 million. Gold in 1972. 5x platinum in 1989. 12x platinum 2002.

Led Zeppelin:

Nov. 8, 1971 LZ IV: 23 million. Gold in 1971. 10x platinum in 1990. 23x platinum in 2006.

1972.

Rolling Stones:

May 1, 1972 Exile on Main St.: 1 million. Gold in 1972. Platinum in 2000.

Late 1972 More Hot Rocks (another compilation): 500,000. Gold in 1973.

1973.

Rolling Stones:

Aug. 31, 1973 Goat's Head Soup: 3 million.  Gold in 1973. 3x platinum in 2000.

Led Zeppelin:

March 28, 1973 Houses of the Holy: 11 million. Gold in 1973. 5x platinum in 1990. 11x platinum in 1999.

1974.

Rolling Stones:

Oct. 1, 1974 It's Only Rock & Roll: 1 million. Gold in 1974. Platinum in 2000.

1975.

Rolling Stones:

June 6, 1975 Made In the Shade (another compilation): 1 million. Gold in 1975. Platinum in 2000.

Led Zeppelin:

Feb. 25, 1975 Physical Graffiti: 16 million. Gold in 1975. 4x platinum in 1990. 9x platinum in 1997. 16x platinum in 2006.

1976.

Rolling Stones:

1976 Black & Blue. 1 million. Gold and Platinum in 1976.

Led Zeppelin:

March 2, 1976 Presence: 3 million. Gold and Platinum in 1976. 2x platinum in 1990. 3x platinum in 1997.

Oct. 1, 1976 The Song Remains the Same: 4 million. Gold and Platinum in 1976. 2x platinum in 1984. 4x platinum 1997.

1977.

Rolling Stones:

1977 Love You Live: 500,000. Gold in 1977.

1978.

Rolling Stones:

June 9, 1978 Some Girls: 6 million. Gold and Platinum in 1978. 4x platinum in 1984. 6x platinum 2000.

1979.

Led Zeppelin:

Aug. 22, 1979 In Through the Out Door: 6 million. Gold and Platinum in 1980. 3x platinum in 1984. 6x platinum in 1997.

As you can see, many of the Led Zeppelin and Rolling Stones albums haven't had their sales updated since the 1990s, so these figures are likely to change. But the ratio of sales in favour of Led Zeppelin is likely to remain the same.

Very interesting, thanks.

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10 hours ago, gibsonfan159 said:

Off topic a little, but who the hell has bought an Elvis album since the 1970s? The Beatles, Eagles, Zep, and Stones are rock bands that still get played regularly so their popularity carries over to other generations. Elvis? Yes, the man is a legend, but that music is mostly lost in the era. So how do his album sales add up since, say, 1980?

Yeah I never liked Elvis, love the Beatles though.

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28 minutes ago, gibsonfan159 said:

He did to country what Metallica did to metal, making it a worldwide, mainstream genre. 

Brooks is a bloody goat-fucker. Yes, he took country mainstream...by literally destroying country music and turning it into pop music with a shitty twang.

In case you have not noticed, I hate Garth Brooks. I like all music types and have no problem stretching boundaries within a particular genre, but Brooks just diluted country to such a point it was no longer country. Randy Travis was really the last of the true country artists IMO. At least Metallica stayed within the genre of metal, just smoothed out its rough edges a bit.

So if you take Striders numbers LZ vs. Stones, it shows Zep's strategy of not releasing singles paid off.

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8 hours ago, anniemouse said:

Srider is there any way the compilation LP's can be taken out as I think The Beatles and Zep would have even higher percentages.

Sorry Annie. The exact opposite would happen if I did that.

The Rolling Stones biggest selling album and their only 10 million-plus seller is a compilation..."Hot Rocks 1964-71".

Conversely, the weakest selling albums in Led Zeppelin's catalogue are the compilations...Early Days, Latter Days, the 2-disc Remasters best of, Mothership, and of course, Coda. If you take out the compilations, then Led Zeppelin rises to 100% on multiplatinum releases and nearly 50% on Diamond releases...far far higher than any other band.

What about the Beatles, you ask? Take out compilations and their Diamond albums shrink from 6 to 3. Three of their 10 million-plus sellers are compilations...Beatles 1964-66, Beatles 1967-70, and #1s.

Just as a historical note, back around the time of the BBC Sessions release, the RIAA list was...

1. Beatles

2. Led Zeppelin

3. Elvis Presley

4. Garth Brooks

I can't remember if the Eagles were #5, but they were in the Top 10 but not yet at the 100 million mark. At that time the only bands over 100 million were the Beatles and Led Zeppelin.

But Garth Brooks and the Eagles (and their management) are two of the most aggressive groups in pushing for sales certifications. Apparently the RIAA doesn't update yearly, as you can see many albums were last certified 20 years ago or more. Except for Garth Brooks and the Eagles.

There have been some grumbling from certain quarters that both Garth Brooks and the Eagles have manipulated the figures. I'll have to dig to find the articles that investigate this topic...I remember there was raised eyebrows at how much the Eagles leapfrogged over everyone.

Lastly, people need to stop sleeping on Elvis Presley. If you don't dig his music, fine. But if you think interest in Elvis died in the 1970s with his death you have not been paying attention or live in a narrow musical bubble.

Elvis is eternal...like Marilyn Monroe. He is embedded in American Culture and a foundation of music that you can't escape and have to confront eventually, along with Louis Armstrong, Frank Sinatra, Hank Williams, Chuck Berry.

You can like him or not. But there is no refuting his existence and his impact.

I still get asked for Elvis. From little old blue-haired ladies to freshly-scrubbed Southern belles to rockabilly Chicanas to motorcycling dudes from the Netherlands to Australian surfing grommets to Indian cricket fans. I'd even wager that Elvis Presley's profile is higher worldwide than Led Zeppelin's.

 

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14 hours ago, gibsonfan159 said:

Off topic a little, but who the hell has bought an Elvis album since the 1970s? The Beatles, Eagles, Zep, and Stones are rock bands that still get played regularly so their popularity carries over to other generations. Elvis? Yes, the man is a legend, but that music is mostly lost in the era. So how do his album sales add up since, say, 1980?

I bought many of the Elvis reissues. They have better bonus material then the LZ reissues...

Btw. Most of his early records aged well. Yes, his film stuff is mostly annoying, but other than that he has tons of great stuff.

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43 minutes ago, Strider said:

Lastly, people need to stop sleeping on Elvis Presley. If you don't dig his music, fine. But if you think interest in Elvis died in the 1970s with his death you have not been paying attention or live in a narrow musical bubble.

Elvis is eternal...like Marilyn Monroe. He is embedded in American Culture and a foundation of music that you can't escape and have to confront eventually, along with Louis Armstrong, Frank Sinatra, Hank Williams, Chuck Berry.

You can like him or not. But there is no refuting his existence and his impact.

I still get asked for Elvis. From little old blue-haired ladies to freshly-scrubbed Southern belles to rockabilly Chicanas to motorcycling dudes from the Netherlands to Australian surfing grommets to Indian cricket fans. I'd even wager that Elvis Presley's profile is higher worldwide than Led Zeppelin's.

 

Rightfully so. Without Elvis there would be no LZ. I still think that Elvis had the best voice ever, studio and live. He was on top of his game till the end.

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9 hours ago, PeaceFrogYum said:

Brooks is a bloody goat-fucker. Yes, he took country mainstream...by literally destroying country music and turning it into pop music with a shitty twang.

In case you have not noticed, I hate Garth Brooks. I like all music types and have no problem stretching boundaries within a particular genre, but Brooks just diluted country to such a point it was no longer country. Randy Travis was really the last of the true country artists IMO. At least Metallica stayed within the genre of metal, just smoothed out its rough edges a bit.

So if you take Striders numbers LZ vs. Stones, it shows Zep's strategy of not releasing singles paid off.

Well, yes but that sort of reasoning gives short shrift to how massive Led Zeppelin were in both record sales and concert box office. 

Are you saying that if The Rolling Stones had not released any singles that their album sales would match Led Zeppelin's? If The Rolling Stones had not released "Brown Sugar" as a single then "Sticky Fingers" would have gone on to sell 10 or 20 million like Led Zeppelin IV, also released in 1971?

I bought singles and albums. I bought the "Brown Sugar" single, just as I bought the "Immigrant Song" and "Black Dog" and "Whole Lotta Love" singles. Buying the single didn't stop me from buying the albums and I doubt it stopped many Stones fans from buying the albums if they really wanted to buy them.

Consider Led Zeppelin's most successful single, "Whole Lotta Love". Did the success of "Whole Lotta Love" cause sales of Led Zeppelin II to suffer? Not in the slightest. "Whole Lotta Love" was Led Zeppelin's biggest selling single and Led Zeppelin II was their biggest selling album until Led Zeppelin IV came along, and even then it finished the decade as their second highest selling album.

The Rolling Stones just didn't have the committed record-buying fans that people have always assumed they had. They paled compared to The Beatles, Led Zeppelin, Pink Floyd and Elton John…and then later in the 1970s to bands like AC/DC and the Eagles. That is why the Stones are always touring. It is the only way guys like Charlie Watts and Ronnie Wood can get paid. The Stones don't sell that many albums and whatever they do sell, Mick and Keith get all the money because they alone are credited as the songwriters and get the publishing royalties.

Edited by Strider
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3 hours ago, Strider said:

Well, yes but that sort of reasoning gives short shrift to how massive Led Zeppelin were in both record sales and concert box office. 

Are you saying that if The Rolling Stones had not released any singles that their album sales would match Led Zeppelin's? If The Rolling Stones had not released "Brown Sugar" as a single then "Sticky Fingers" would have gone on to sell 10 or 20 million like Led Zeppelin IV, also released in 1971?

I bought singles and albums. I bought the "Brown Sugar" single, just as I bought the "Immigrant Song" and "Black Dog" and "Whole Lotta Love" singles. Buying the single didn't stop me from buying the albums and I doubt it stopped many Stones fans from buying the albums if they really wanted to buy them.

Consider Led Zeppelin's most successful single, "Whole Lotta Love". Did the success of "Whole Lotta Love" cause sales of Led Zeppelin II to suffer? Not in the slightest. "Whole Lotta Love" was Led Zeppelin's biggest selling single and Led Zeppelin II was their biggest selling album until Led Zeppelin IV came along, and even then it finished the decade as their second highest selling album.

The Rolling Stones just didn't have the committed record-buying fans that people have always assumed they had. They paled compared to The Beatles, Led Zeppelin, Pink Floyd and Elton John…and then later in the 1970s to bands like AC/DC and the Eagles. That is why the Stones are always touring. It is the only way guys like Charlie Watts and Ronnie Wood can get paid. The Stones don't sell that many albums and whatever they do sell, Mick and Keith get all the money because they alone are credited as the songwriters and get the publishing royalties.

I believe I did not articulate the point well. A better way of putting it is Zeppelin always were and always planned to be an album orientated band so the entirety of each album was filled with strong material, no fillers. Even what some would consider to be fillers (Living Loving Maid, Hats Off, The Crunge, and Hot Dog) were still well constructed, excellent songs. People bought Zep albums because they knew every song on their albums would be great. So because they focused on the whole album vs. a couple of strong singles and F the album, they sold a shit-ton of albums. The Stones started earlier and in the early days did not have the control they would gain later on, plus, they were still a product of the early 60's when you HAD to have a single so that was the focus. I assume that's why Exile & Sticky are such strong, amazing albums with little filler compared to the earlier albums and later albums. Zep had the ability to consistently produce excellent material, album after album over the entirety of each album. I believe this is what sets Zeppelin apart from their contemporaries.

Good post about Elvis, the man is "The MAN" all over the world, a damn icon. As you pointed out, no one can sing as good on record or live as Elvis did. Shit, when he had one foot in the grave and the other on a banana peel in June of 77' he delivered one of the greatest vocal performances of his life with his rendition of Unchained Melody on June 21st (ironic huh) in Rapid City. Not only was his voice crystal clear but his emotion and delivery was unmatchable, on par with Judy Garlands 1955 performance of Somewhere Over the Rainbow, and Maria Callas 62' performance at Covenant Garden.

Edited by PeaceFrogYum
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For me, Zeppelin and the Stones can't be compared. I think the Stones are way overrated and I think you had to be there at the time to see the Stones as equal or better than Zep. I was born in 74 and there was still plenty of Stones being played on the radio as I was growing up, but to my ears it sounded, shall we say, "black and white" while Zeppelin sounded "in color", if you know what I mean. Zeppelin ushered in modernity itself in music, while the Stones were "last generation". It's like TV at the time. Shows from 64-67 were in black and white and today, they seem so old fashioned. They seem 100 years old. But the shows that came out in color in the early 70s, while just a few years newer (really they are in the same handful of years), seem so much more modern. A show like The Munsters seems so old while All in the Family just a few years later still seems modern in many respects. That's how Zeppelin comes across to me versus, say, the Beatles, Stones, Doors, Animals and the like. Yes, the Stones, Beatles, Doors - they seem to me like the first three Doctors on Doctor WHO, all of which were in black and white, while Zeppelin is the Fourth Doctor in color!

Did I mention Mick Jagger can't sing? Not in my book. He gets by as a rock and roller, but he can't sing. While I'm on it, please let me trash The WHO for a moment. They are another overrated bunch of noise makers. I think if you grew up with the Stones and The Who and you were into it in school before Zeppelin came along, then okay, you might still carry that nostalgia around with you today and no one can take that away from you, but I think they are two of the most overrated bands ever. Zeppelin comes out ahead of them all by a mile.

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On 8/5/2020 at 4:11 PM, Strider said:

The Rolling Stones just didn't have the committed record-buying fans that people have always assumed they had. They paled compared to The Beatles, Led Zeppelin, Pink Floyd and Elton John…and then later in the 1970s to bands like AC/DC and the Eagles. That is why the Stones are always touring. It is the only way guys like Charlie Watts and Ronnie Wood can get paid. The Stones don't sell that many albums and whatever they do sell, Mick and Keith get all the money because they alone are credited as the songwriters and get the publishing royalties.

Yeah, like I said, as much as I'm a big a Stones fan as a Zeppelin fan, IMO the Stones really are just too much of an 'acquired taste' for many people to be huge record sellers. As far as making big money off of touring I think Mick was always jealous as hell of Peter Grant's whole 70/30 split or whatever it was- probably thinking, "Shit, I wish I'd come up with that!"ūüėܬ†And as for the songwriting, well, that's why the Glimmer Twins have fucked so many other real collaborators over over the years, they don't like sharing the bucks. Ron Wood got a total of ten songwriting credits in his 45 year tenure, the last being on Dirty Work, thirty five years ago. If Mick 'n Keith were being completely honest, by my own estimation Mick Taylor should have gotten at least half a dozen or so in addition to "Ventilator Blues": "Sway, "Moonlight Mile", "Winter", "Till The Next Goodbye", "Time Waits For No One"- tracks where I can actually hear Taylor's compositional style there not to mention how he really was an active collaborator with Jagger when Keith was too out of it to show up. MT knew this, it's a large part of why he quit the Stones in such the "fuck you" manner he did (three days before they started recording Black And Blue).¬†

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21 hours ago, Christopher Lees said:

For me, Zeppelin and the Stones can't be compared. I think the Stones are way overrated and I think you had to be there at the time to see the Stones as equal or better than Zep. I was born in 74 and there was still plenty of Stones being played on the radio as I was growing up, but to my ears it sounded, shall we say, "black and white" while Zeppelin sounded "in color", if you know what I mean. Zeppelin ushered in modernity itself in music, while the Stones were "last generation". It's like TV at the time. Shows from 64-67 were in black and white and today, they seem so old fashioned. They seem 100 years old. But the shows that came out in color in the early 70s, while just a few years newer (really they are in the same handful of years), seem so much more modern. A show like The Munsters seems so old while All in the Family just a few years later still seems modern in many respects. That's how Zeppelin comes across to me versus, say, the Beatles, Stones, Doors, Animals and the like. Yes, the Stones, Beatles, Doors - they seem to me like the first three Doctors on Doctor WHO, all of which were in black and white, while Zeppelin is the Fourth Doctor in color!

Did I mention Mick Jagger can't sing? Not in my book. He gets by as a rock and roller, but he can't sing. While I'm on it, please let me trash The WHO for a moment. They are another overrated bunch of noise makers. I think if you grew up with the Stones and The Who and you were into it in school before Zeppelin came along, then okay, you might still carry that nostalgia around with you today and no one can take that away from you, but I think they are two of the most overrated bands ever. Zeppelin comes out ahead of them all by a mile.

Holy shit and BRAVO my good man, this is golden and right to the heart of it. And BTW, The Fourth Doctor was the Best Doctor, Tom Baker is the man!

HUZZZAH!!!!

:thumbsup::drinks:

Edited by PeaceFrogYum
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22 hours ago, Christopher Lees said:

While I'm on it, please let me trash The WHO for a moment. They are another overrated bunch of noise makers.

I have to disagree with that one. I'm not much into their stuff pre Tommy as it's too teeny bopperish, but I won't deny the giant leap they made into rock genius with Tommy, Quadrophenia, and Who's Next. 

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5 hours ago, Nutrocker said:

Yeah, like I said, as much as I'm a big a Stones fan as a Zeppelin fan, IMO the Stones really are just too much of an 'acquired taste' for many people to be huge record sellers. As far as making big money off of touring I think Mick was always jealous as hell of Peter Grant's whole 70/30 split or whatever it was- probably thinking, "Shit, I wish I'd come up with that!"ūüėܬ†And as for the songwriting, well, that's why the Glimmer Twins have fucked so many other real collaborators over over the years, they don't like sharing the bucks. Ron Wood got a total of ten songwriting credits in his 45 year tenure, the last being on Dirty Work, thirty five years ago. If Mick 'n Keith were being completely honest, by my own estimation Mick Taylor should have gotten at least half a dozen or so in addition to "Ventilator Blues": "Sway, "Moonlight Mile", "Winter", "Till The Next Goodbye", "Time Waits For No One"- tracks where I can actually hear Taylor's compositional style there not to mention how he really was an active collaborator with Jagger when Keith was too out of it to show up. MT knew this, it's a large part of why he quit the Stones in such the "fuck you" manner he did (three days before they started recording Black And Blue).¬†

Great post. I don’t rate anything the Stones have done since Mick Taylor left. 

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3 hours ago, gibsonfan159 said:

I have to disagree with that one. I'm not much into their stuff pre Tommy as it's too teeny bopperish, but I won't deny the giant leap they made into rock genius with Tommy, Quadrophenia, and Who's Next. 

The Who did not attract Teeny Boppers. That expression came about in the early seventies, it was aimed at fans of T Rex, Slade, The Sweet, that slime ball paedophile Glitter, Suzi Quatro too maybe.

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7 hours ago, JTM said:

The Who did not attract Teeny Boppers. That expression came about in the early seventies, it was aimed at fans of T Rex, Slade, The Sweet, that slime ball paedophile Glitter, Suzi Quatro too maybe.

I've definitely heard that term used to describe kids in the 60s. But back to the point, the Who's music was a little too far on the pop side before Tommy. At least that's my opinion. 

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3 hours ago, gibsonfan159 said:

I've definitely heard that term used to describe kids in the 60s. But back to the point, the Who's music was a little too far on the pop side before Tommy. At least that's my opinion. 

Not in the UK. That's my opinion.

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13 hours ago, JTM said:

The Who did not attract Teeny Boppers. That expression came about in the early seventies, it was aimed at fans of T Rex, Slade, The Sweet, that slime ball paedophile Glitter, Suzi Quatro too maybe.

A shame as those were great bands / musicians. Suzi Quatro was the first woman rock star, the first to play an instrument competently and rock her ass off. No Suzi, no Patti Smith, Chrissy Hynde, Joan Jett, and most of the 90's lady musicians such as Tori Amos (genius) & Melissa Etheridge.

Suzi is, IMO, the most underrated rock musician period, just for her influence alone.

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1 hour ago, PeaceFrogYum said:

A shame as those were great bands / musicians. Suzi Quatro was the first woman rock star, the first to play an instrument competently and rock her ass off. No Suzi, no Patti Smith, Chrissy Hynde, Joan Jett, and most of the 90's lady musicians such as Tori Amos (genius) & Melissa Etheridge.

Suzi is, IMO, the most underrated rock musician period, just for her influence alone.

Leather Tuscadero

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9 hours ago, gibsonfan159 said:

I've definitely heard that term used to describe kids in the 60s. But back to the point, the Who's music was a little too far on the pop side before Tommy. At least that's my opinion. 

I think it was first used to describe fans of The Archies.

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