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SteveAJones

Zeppelin Mysteries Hosted by Steve A. Jones

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On 12/16/2016 at 3:22 AM, And You Know How It Is? said:

Hi Steve,

Two questions on the October 1972 Bombay Recording Sessions:

1. Why didn't Robert sing the lyrics on Four Sticks?

2. Did Jimmy and Robert consider recording any other Zep songs for this session besides Friends and Four Sticks? They had by that time, 5 recorded albums (even though Houses was in the can and not released until March '73, they played 5 of those 8 tracks on that album live by the time they got to this recording session). Thinking about 1994's reunion, and songs they played with that Orchestra, other options like Rain Song and Since I've Been Loving You could have been attempted, so very curious if any attempts were considered for other Zep songs at that session.

Thanks 

"From Bangkok, we flew to Bombay, where Jimmy and Robert had made arrangements to do some experimental recording. Jimmy had brought with him a Stellavox qaudriphonic field recorder that was several generations more sophisticated than anything the Indians had ever seen. 

"The Stellavox had been custom-made to Jimmy's specifications in Switzerland, and it produced a higher quality sound that all of the eight-track studios in Bombay combined… Robert, Jimmy, and their Indian colleagues recorded raga-style renditions of the some early Zeppelin songs, including Friends and Four Sticks."

-- RICHARD COLE

Working with late flutist and composer Vijay Raghav Rao and an ensemble that included sarangi player Ustad Sultan Khan, percussionists and violin, shehnai and tambura players, Page and Plant ran through several takes of Friends and Four Sticks. Led Zeppelin has never officially released any tracks from the Mumbai session though several bootlegs have since emerged. Especially fascinating is a 31-minute run through Friends, during which Page can be heard explaining the bars and scales to Rao, who gamely tries to convey his instructions to the Indian musicians who have clearly never collaborated with rock musicians.

At one stage, an apparently bored violin player begins playing snatches from the intro of RD Burman's Dum Maro Dum (from the 1971 film Hare Rama Hare Krishna), which was, to the musician, probably more exciting than the music of Led Zeppelin, which he had never heard.

The session produced a polished final take of Friends featuring Plant on vocals, Page on acoustic guitar and the Indian orchestra (wrongly referred to on the bootlegs as Bombay Symphony Orchestra) and a version of Four Sticks without vocals.

Cole wrote in his book that there were never any plans to release these recordings. Besides, the quality of the session did not rise to Page's perfectionist standards and the guitarist put the tapes from the session in storage in his extensive archive.

Interestingly, Page would repurpose the arrangements for these two tunes for the No Quarter unplugged album 22 years later and record them with Egyptian and Moroccan musicians.

 

Edited by SteveAJones

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Hi, I've got a question/mystery related to this quote from Hammer of the Gods:

"In America in 1976, pollsters for the two presidential campaigns found such overwhelming Led Zeppelin graph peaks on their demographic charts that both Democrat and Republican candidates appeared to endorse Led Zeppelin! The daughter of the president, Susan Ford, said on the Dick Cavett Show that Led Zeppelin was her favorite group. Speaking at the National Association of Record Manufacturers convention, Jimmy Carter reminisced about listening to Led Zeppelin records during all-night sessions when he was governor of Georgia".

Is there anything besides Hammer of the Gods which confirms this? Because as far as I can tell, Dick Cavett didn't even have a show in 1976. Apparently the Ford family, Susan included, appeared on Cavett in 1974, and so perhaps the Led Zeppelin reference actually happened there, but I haven't been able to find any video or transcripts or much of anything about that episode. So I thought I'd toss it out to Those Who Know Exponentially More Than I to see if anyone had any info on this. Thanks!

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^^^

Are there any references to the Cavett show episode or the Carter speech in the book's bibliography? Cavett did not have a show in '76, but he did have one on CBS until Sep 1975. I vaguely recall Amy Carter was a Led Zeppelin fan. 

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This gave me a chuckle......

Here's a true story told to me recently by someone who knows.

Noel Gallagher was in Harrods a while back and as he was shopping he bumped into Jimmy Page. Both were unaccompanied. They got to chatting when a group of Japanese tourists looked over and got rather excited. They walked over and asked if they could have some pictures. Noel and Jimmy being good sports said of course. One of the group came over and gave the camera to Jimmy and asked him to take the pictures. They didn't recognise him. All of the pictures were taken by Jimmy of Noel and the Japanese tourists. When the Japanese people were done they said their thank yous and went on their way. Noel went back to Jimmy and apologised saying he felt embarrassed. Jimmy said "It's OK I cut their heads off in every shot."

You're welcome, I x

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1 minute ago, JTM said:

This gave me a chuckle......

Here's a true story told to me recently by someone who knows.

Noel Gallagher was in Harrods a while back and as he was shopping he bumped into Jimmy Page. Both were unaccompanied. They got to chatting when a group of Japanese tourists looked over and got rather excited. They walked over and asked if they could have some pictures. Noel and Jimmy being good sports said of course. One of the group came over and gave the camera to Jimmy and asked him to take the pictures. They didn't recognise him. All of the pictures were taken by Jimmy of Noel and the Japanese tourists. When the Japanese people were done they said their thank yous and went on their way. Noel went back to Jimmy and apologised saying he felt embarrassed. Jimmy said "It's OK I cut their heads off in every shot."

You're welcome, I x

Never happened because Jimmy would never do that.

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41 minutes ago, SteveAJones said:

Never happened because Jimmy would never do that.

Lighten up ''Stephen'' don't be so defensive, of course it's not true. I just thought it amusing.  

Edited by JTM

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On 11/16/2015 at 0:35 PM, TheGreatOne said:

I could not see Zeppelin play JFK Stadium in Philadelphia and Chicago doing the same set list, it would have been much longer for sure.    Hmmm, maybe a 30 minute version of Carouselambra ??

In hindsight, that's what I would have preferred, a 30 minute Carouselambra. Let D&C, ALS, and WLL rest.

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6 hours ago, SteveAJones said:

^^^

Are there any references to the Cavett show episode or the Carter speech in the book's bibliography? Cavett did not have a show in '76, but he did have one on CBS until Sep 1975. I vaguely recall Amy Carter was a Led Zeppelin fan. 

That I don't know, I don't currently own a copy of Hammer of the Gods. I haven't spent a whole lot of time researching the Susan Ford thing, but what digging I did do always seemed to come back to the quote from Hammer, which of course makes me question whether or not there's any truth to it at all.

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2 hours ago, Balthazor said:

That I don't know, I don't currently own a copy of Hammer of the Gods. I haven't spent a whole lot of time researching the Susan Ford thing, but what digging I did do always seemed to come back to the quote from Hammer, which of course makes me question whether or not there's any truth to it at all.

It's such minutiae, even for me, I have to ask why is it of interest to you? 

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53 minutes ago, SteveAJones said:

It's such minutiae, even for me, I have to ask why is it of interest to you? 

Nothing too important. I can't honestly remember what made me think of it, but I thought I'd see if I could track down a clip of the Cavett show where this exchange allegedly took place. Searching the internet only turned up a brief discussion about it that took place here in 2012, and revealed that Cavett didn't even have a show in 1976. Like I said, I found that Cavett talked to the Ford family in 1974, which could have been the source, but I couldn't find any clips of that episode anywhere. So finally I thought someone here might know, which brings us to now. I realize that by now I've invested a substantial amount of time and effort in the pursuit of something that's entirely irrelevant, but after all, isn't that the primary function of the internet in the first place? :)

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2 hours ago, Balthazor said:

Nothing too important. I can't honestly remember what made me think of it, but I thought I'd see if I could track down a clip of the Cavett show where this exchange allegedly took place. Searching the internet only turned up a brief discussion about it that took place here in 2012, and revealed that Cavett didn't even have a show in 1976. Like I said, I found that Cavett talked to the Ford family in 1974, which could have been the source, but I couldn't find any clips of that episode anywhere. So finally I thought someone here might know, which brings us to now. I realize that by now I've invested a substantial amount of time and effort in the pursuit of something that's entirely irrelevant, but after all, isn't that the primary function of the internet in the first place? :)

I can relate to the thrill of the chase. However, in this instance it's difficult to have an answer quickly, if at all. It is possible Carter's speech is on file at his Presidential library, and there could be a recording of Cavett's show in existence, but I don't know who owns the rights to them or has access. It's difficult to imagine Carter name-checking them (even during a recording industry function) as a Southern baptist politician, but then he did have populist leanings and a teenage daughter at the time who may have been a fan.

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I did, however, find this page from the New York Times in 1974 that references Gerald Ford's son Steven listening to Led Zeppelin.

file-page12.jpg

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^^^

Nice find. I can almost see where New York-based author Stephen Davis employed some artistic license with that article for his book. We have to bear in mind this same author wrote in his followup book, LZ: The Lost Chronicles of Led Zeppelin's 1975 Tour , about Led Zeppelin accepting a last minute booking for Austin, TX on March 7, 1975 (which never happened).

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3 hours ago, SteveAJones said:

^^^

Nice find. I can almost see where New York-based author Stephen Davis employed some artistic license with that article for his book. We have to bear in mind this same author wrote in his followup book, LZ: The Lost Chronicles of Led Zeppelin's 1975 Tour , about Led Zeppelin accepting a last minute booking for Austin, TX on March 7, 1975 (which never happened).

I really hate that book, its horrible. Davis comes across as a complete asshole and Zeppelin seem more an afterthought. The whole focus of the book is less Zeppelin on tour and more Mr. Davis recalling a sexual liaison with a former lover...on Zep's tab to boot.

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1 hour ago, IpMan said:

I really hate that book, its horrible. Davis comes across as a complete asshole and Zeppelin seem more an afterthought. The whole focus of the book is less Zeppelin on tour and more Mr. Davis recalling a sexual liaison with a former lover...on Zep's tab to boot.

It definitely pales in comparison to Hammer of the Gods, which although a sensationalized account is actually a damn good book as far as maintaining the reader's interest. I do recall reading an interview with Davis that I cannot find at the moment wherein he alludes to the second book being a cash grab. Here's another interview with Davis for those who may not be familiar with him or his other work:

http://www.bu.edu/bostonia/winter09/stephen-davis/stephen-davis.pdf 

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I recently listened to Immigrant Song at the Bath Festival, and...can anyone decipher the lyrics that Plant is singing? I find it interesting how the lyrics are still being worked on here. I recognize a few of the lyrics that would become the standard lyrics for the song, but I can't make out other parts. The recording quality definitely doesn't help either. Apologies if this has been posted before (I did a quick search on the forum and couldn't find anything).

 

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2 hours ago, ZepHead315 said:

I recently listened to Immigrant Song at the Bath Festival, and...can anyone decipher the lyrics that Plant is singing? I find it interesting how the lyrics are still being worked on here. I recognize a few of the lyrics that would become the standard lyrics for the song, but I can't make out other parts. The recording quality definitely doesn't help either. Apologies if this has been posted before (I did a quick search on the forum and couldn't find anything).

The audio quality of that recording is so poor one would have to isolated the vocals to have any real hope of discerning what is being sung. To my ears, the lyrics that differ aren't lyrics so much as they are improvisations to cover for missing lyrics.

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Ok this might not really be a mystery but I'll ask anyway. 

All of My Love is often described as being about or dedicated to Robert's late son. As far as I can tell this was only ever  media speculation that is now accepted as fact despite there being no confirmation by Robert or any in the Led Zeppelin camp. I know you could all say "just listen to the lyric" but it's very easy to temper your mind to a question when an answer has already been suggested.

Is there any real proof or am I missing something obvious?

Edited by babysquid

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Another question I've been pondering recently...how come Mike Millard missed the first four songs of the 6/23/77 show? According to The Year Of Led Zeppelin blog, his recording starts just before Since I've Been Loving You. So what happened? Did he think his tape was running when it wasn't? Did the first part somehow get lost over the years? Did he get delayed due to traffic (as reportedly happened at the 2nd Long Beach show in 75)? 

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On ‎1‎/‎9‎/‎2017 at 1:55 AM, babysquid said:

Ok this might not really be a mystery but I'll ask anyway. 

All of My Love is often described as being about or dedicated to Robert's late son. As far as I can tell this was only ever  media speculation that is now accepted as fact despite there being no confirmation by Robert or any in the Led Zeppelin camp. I know you could all say "just listen to the lyric" but it's very easy to temper your mind to a question when an answer has already been suggested.

Is there any real proof or am I missing something obvious?

It is often suggested the lyrics are inspired by the loss of Karac and/or conception of Logan, but I don't recall nor think you'll find any direct quote from Robert Plant confirming or denying this. As you know, the lyrics are very oblique and open to the listener's interpretation, which would seem to be by design. It is interesting that for the promo video for I Believe, another song also suggested (and more clearly) Karac-influenced, he chose to use the video to overtly establish that interpretation. 

 

 

6 hours ago, ZepHead315 said:

Another question I've been pondering recently...how come Mike Millard missed the first four songs of the 6/23/77 show? According to The Year Of Led Zeppelin blog, his recording starts just before Since I've Been Loving You. So what happened? Did he think his tape was running when it wasn't? Did the first part somehow get lost over the years? Did he get delayed due to traffic (as reportedly happened at the 2nd Long Beach show in 75)? 

It is often alleged the tape is incomplete because Millard forgot to press record, but he is long since deceased so we will never know for certain.

Recording includes: Since I've Been Loving You, No Quarter, [ cut ], Ten Years Gone, The Battle Of Evermore, Going To California, Black Country Woman (<< Bron-Yr-Aur Stomp..), [ cut ], White Summer (...Black Mountain Side...) >> Kashmir, Trampled Underfoot, Over The Top (...Out On The Tiles, Moby Dick...), Guitar Solo (...The Star Spangled Banner...) >> Achilles Last Stand, [ cut ], Stairway To Heaven, [ cut ], Whole Lotta Love >> Rock And Roll.

(Recording Length: Near 166 minutes).

 

 

Edited by SteveAJones

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During the re-issue interviews, Jimmy was asked if he knew at the time that All My Love was about Karac.

'I came to realise it later', he said.

So Jimmy himself believes it - but 'came to realise' suggests that he arrived at that conclusion himself, not that Robert actually told him.

All this is in contrast to Halfin's comment that 'Jimmy hated All My Love but it was about Karac, so he couldn't criticise it.'

It’s not hard to see why very few people seem to like Halfin, is it...?

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19 hours ago, SteveAJones said:

It is often suggested the lyrics are inspired by the loss of Karac and/or conception of Logan, but I don't recall nor think you'll find any direct quote from Robert Plant confirming or denying this. As you know, the lyrics are very oblique and open to the listener's interpretation, which would seem to be by design. It is interesting that for the promo video for I Believe, another song also suggested (and more clearly) Karac-influenced, he chose to use the video to overtly establish that interpretation. 

 

 

It is often alleged the tape is incomplete because Millard forgot to press record, but he is long since deceased so we will never know for certain.

Recording includes: Since I've Been Loving You, No Quarter, [ cut ], Ten Years Gone, The Battle Of Evermore, Going To California, Black Country Woman (<< Bron-Yr-Aur Stomp..), [ cut ], White Summer (...Black Mountain Side...) >> Kashmir, Trampled Underfoot, Over The Top (...Out On The Tiles, Moby Dick...), Guitar Solo (...The Star Spangled Banner...) >> Achilles Last Stand, [ cut ], Stairway To Heaven, [ cut ], Whole Lotta Love >> Rock And Roll.

(Recording Length: Near 166 minutes).

 

 

Not sure where or when, but I remember reading Millard was delayed en route to the venue on 6/23/77...maybe someone else can corroborate? 

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17 hours ago, Brigante said:

During the re-issue interviews, Jimmy was asked if he knew at the time that All My Love was about Karac.

'I came to realise it later', he said.

So Jimmy himself believes it - but 'came to realise' suggests that he arrived at that conclusion himself, not that Robert actually told him.

All this is in contrast to Halfin's comment that 'Jimmy hated All My Love but it was about Karac, so he couldn't criticise it.'

It’s not hard to see why very few people seem to like Halfin, is it...?

Thanks for that. The lyrics are open to interpretation, and purposefully so. Obviously, anyone (fans or band mates) familiar with Robert's personal situation at the time would come to realize what quite likely inspired it. Ross Halfin is entitled to his own interpretation of the song, interpretation of Jimmy's feelings about it and whatever his own opinions are. However, again, Robert should probably be the one to speak for himself, if he'd like, when it comes to explaining what inspired the lyrics he wrote.  

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1 hour ago, SteveAJones said:

 Robert should probably be the one to speak for himself, if he'd like, when it comes to explaining what inspired the lyrics he wrote.  

Absolutely.

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I don't know if this qualifies as a mystery, but I want to know more about Zeppelin and the Peace Medal Ceremony in Hiroshima in 1971.

1. Who's idea was it? Zep or promoter?

2. Zep donated their concert proceeds?

3. Was this a big deal in Japan? Or did every rock band do this etc 

 

thx 

 

 

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