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Jimmy/Yardbirds Interview


Moonmaid

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This is interesting. I never knew Jimmy had an interest in film making (aside from the soundtracks for Lucifer Rising and Death Wish II). Here, he discusses a film that he has begun shooting. Fascinating...

I apologize if it's been posted before. I did a search and couldn't find it.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MAR0eeGfwJc

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That was a cool little interview . . .

However, since he was saying in 1968 that he'd begun shooting this film about "a system of events," I wonder how long till we see it--makes me even less optimistic about how long we have to wait for the O2 DVD! :D

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This is interesting. I never knew Jimmy had an interest in film making (aside from the soundtracks for Lucifer Rising and Death Wish II). Here, he discusses a film that he has begun shooting. Fascinating...

I apologize if it's been posted before. I did a search and couldn't find it.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MAR0eeGfwJc

That IS fascinating! Thanks so much for posting it. I haven't seen it before nor have I ever heard anything about it! Aw, so strange for me to see such a young Jimmy - when that was filmed, he wasn't much older than my own son is now.

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My pleasure to post it! I wish I had more info on it, but I just stumbled upon it while on my never-ending quest to see "everything Jimmy." I really wanted to start a discussion on his association with film, though. Other than Lucifer and DWII (and TSRTS, of course), do we know of any other journey into the film world?

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My pleasure to post it! I wish I had more info on it, but I just stumbled upon it while on my never-ending quest to see "everything Jimmy." I really wanted to start a discussion on his association with film, though. Other than Lucifer and DWII (and TSRTS, of course), do we know of any other journey into the film world?

'scream for help'

otherwise, nope...

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Thanks heaps for posting, I've definitely never seen that one before.

As usual he plays his cards tight to his chest.

Obviously he abandoned that particular project, however he maintained his interest in film, as stated via soundtracks etc. In fact, the band purchased editing equipment for TSRTS film (unusual, usually you would hire) and Page had this installed in his basement.

I wonder if he is still interested in film making? I would be more than happy to help out... :whistling:

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My pleasure to post it! I wish I had more info on it, but I just stumbled upon it while on my never-ending quest to see "everything Jimmy." I really wanted to start a discussion on his association with film, though. Other than Lucifer and DWII (and TSRTS, of course), do we know of any other journey into the film world?

And Blow Up (which the Yardbirds appeared in, of course), which he mentioned in the clip as his possible inspiration for getting interested in film.

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I wonder if he is still interested in film making? I would be more than happy to help out... :whistling:

Hey Cactus, are you in/interested in "the biz?" I was a theater and film major in college (which means the furthest I "made it" was as an extra). But I'm always thinking about film, maybe writing...? I don't know. But when I saw this clip today, I thought I would share it with the forum in the hopes that we could talk about Jimmy, or any of the boys, and film. Thank you Cactus and Aquamarine for really coming through on the discussion. B) I think Beatbo has been teasing me about it :unsure:

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Hey Cactus, are you in/interested in "the biz?" I was a theater and film major in college (which means the furthest I "made it" was as an extra). But I'm always thinking about film, maybe writing...? I don't know. But when I saw this clip today, I thought I would share it with the forum in the hopes that we could talk about Jimmy, or any of the boys, and film. Thank you Cactus and Aquamarine for really coming through on the discussion. B)I think Beatbo has been teasing me about it :unsure:

Don't think so. :) Scream for Help was a horror movie for which JPJ did the soundtrack and Jimmy guested.

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Ah ha! I apologize to beatbo, then. And I'm glad I started this thread. I wanted to learn something and I did. Funny, titles like Lucifer Rising, Death Wish and Scream for Help are pretty dark...

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Hey Cactus, are you in/interested in "the biz?" I was a theater and film major in college (which means the furthest I "made it" was as an extra). But I'm always thinking about film, maybe writing...? I don't know.

Yes I am indeed. I have done a fair bit of 2nd/3rd ADing (assistant directing for those who care to know) so I have done plenty of herding extras.

The difficulty of getting into film as a writer is almost everybody thinks they can do it, and so there are 1000s of scripts written every year. The good side to that is that most of what is out there is crap, and if you have something good it will really stand out. Professions script readers are dying to read something that is actually good.

I started a topic a while ago re: a Zeppelin film, and made enquiries into the status of the Malcolm McLaren project which was apparently to be based on the Hammer of the Gods book. I came up against a brick wall with his office, so not sure the status of the book rights.

From all sources it appears the major problem which will prevent a Zep film is Robert - he is not keen on having his personal life under the microscope. I can completely understand but it's a shame because it could be an awesome film....So I live to dream that one day maybe we will see it.

Ah ha! I apologize to beatbo, then. And I'm glad I started this thread. I wanted to learn something and I did. Funny, titles like Lucifer Rising, Death Wish and Scream for Help are pretty dark...

Lucifer Rising was by Kenneth Anger, a Crowley-ite. The Death Wish series starred Charles Bronson as a vigilante seeking revenge for an attack on his family by street thugs.

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Ah ha! I apologize to beatbo, then. And I'm glad I started this thread. I wanted to learn something and I did. Funny, titles like Lucifer Rising, Death Wish and Scream for Help are pretty dark...

no apologies needed. i shouldn't have assumed that you knew 'sfh' was a film.

'lucifer rising' was released in 1972 and took several years to make, start to finish. kenneth anger, the film's director/writer/editor began as a child film actor in the 30's (a midsummer night's dream). he began many films, finished very few (demon brother, scorpio rising), wrote a book of junk called 'hollywood babylon' and mostly convinced rich british and american rock stars that he was the world's pre-eminent authority on aleister crowley and the occult and magick in general. he may be right, but i doubt it. mostly, he pumped these guys for money for his film projects. 'lucifer rising' - the finished film, does not have music from jimmy page, but instead uses music composed by bobby beausoleil-a follower of charles manson and in prison while composing the score. jimmy page, however, is IN the film uncredited. he plays 'man holding' something or the other. the story of the relationship between anger and page is not unknown and a little digging will reveal most of it.

while i personally think anger a magician of the self-important 'school of me', his talent as a cinematographer and editor are not without some merit. he is very adroit at mixing music with his visuals and the way he used pop songs as a soundtrack to 'scorpio rising' predates scorsese's 'mean streets' by a few years.

'deathwish 2' you may have seen. the music page wrote for that film was also used in the additional sequel, 'deathwish3'. the music is fascinating, if not the film. it was directed by micheal winner.

'scream for help' was also directed by micheal winner and it is sleazy, violent, and extremely offensive. i liked it-alot better than deathwish (which ain't saying much). the music was not the best example of the composing talents of my favorite bass player, john paul jones. he does rope page into playing on it and also jon andersen of yes.

i hope this helps a little more, moonmaid.....

beat

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Page did begin to compose for Lucifer Rising, however his music wasn't used. Some of the demos he recorded have been released, as part of the stolen bootlegs which surfaced.

I believe the beginning of In the Evening developed from something he wrote for Lucifer Rising.

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the 'the anger-page dance'

the backstory to 'lucifer rising' and it's soundtrack

the following is sourced from several interviews and i found it as a compilation on the web(link below). while i have several of the sources quoted, and i'm pretty sure that the others i recognize can be identified by others on this forum, there is some conjecture between the quotes added by the writers and there are also some quotes that i haven't located so ............ a grain of salt.

as far as the occult and crowley are concerned, all this if from prior to 1980. please keep that in mind before we spin off another 'lucifer's best friend' thread

beat

anger side:

Led Zeppelin guitarist and leader Jimmy Page has been fired as composer for the soundtrack of the film "Lucifer Rising" by it's director, Kenneth Anger. Speaking in London on Friday, Anger decried Page for time-wasting and a lack of dedication to the project, and claimed that Page's personal problems had made him impossible to work with. Page has been working on the film for the past three years and has so far delivered some 28 minutes of completed tape. The story of the collaboration -and the ensuing rift- goes back to 1973 when Page first agreed to compose and perform the movie soundtrack. He and Anger first met at Sotheby's, at an auction of boots by the English Occultist/Magician Aleister Crowley. Both Page and Anger are students of Crowley's teachings. Anger is a practicing Magus (a priest/magician) and his films'of which "Scorpio Rising" is perhaps the best known --- are replete with occult symbolism. Anger himself describes them as "Spells and Invocations". Page has often expressed interest in the teachings of Crowley. He owns the second largest collection of Crowley's books in the world, and one of his three houses is Crowley's former residence at Boleskine on the shores of Loch Ness. "Lucifer Rising", Anger's most ambitious project to date, deals with the "fallen angel" of orthodox Christian Mythology, who in Anger's film is restored to his Gnostic status as "the Bringer of Light"; an implicit part of Crowley's own teachings. The collaboration has continued intermittently since their first meeting. Anger commuting between London and New York to oversee the publication of his book on film-star scandals, "Hollywood Babalon", and Page involved with Led Zeppelin performances and recording. For the past three months Anger has been using the film-editing facilities in the basement of Page's Victorian manse in London, to trim the 17 hours of film he has in the can down to 1 ½ hours. Page had the equipment installed to work on another project, "Zeppelin Live at Madison Square Garden" film, provisionally titled, "The Song Remains the Same". Anger's work at Page's house was terminated by an extraordinary sequence of events beginning Tuesday night when Anger apparently the unwitting victim of domestic fraces was ordered to leave the house by Page's girlfriend, who was staying there at the time. No reason was given for his eviction. He returned to the house Wednesday morning to collect his film material and belongings to find the door locked and bolted. The same afternoon, Anger, unable to reach Page himself, informed his management/record company Swansong that the film collaboration was off and that Page had been fired from the project. Thursday morning Anger was eventually able to recover some of his belongings and the film from Page's now empty London home. Jimmy Page, in town for a friend's funeral, was unavailable for comment, but a spokesperson from Swansong claimed to be totally mystified by the news that the guitarist had been fired from the Lucifer project; he even expressed surprised at the information that Anger was even in London.

Friday, morning, a piqued but by no means disconsolate Anger was to be found at Page?s home removing the last of his belongings and film artifacts-including the crown of Lucifer, paste studded with rhinestones from a dress once worn by Mae West. "I haven't laid eyes on Jimmy Page since early June" he said. I've been trying to get in contact with him since then; I've fixed meetings through his office and been stood up half a dozen times. I've left messages on his Kafka-esque answering machine. All I've had is promises that the soundtrack is on it's way, but nothings materialized. I've got a fucking film to finish."

"The way he's been behaving is totally contradictory to the teachings of Aleister Crowley and totally contradictory to the ethos of the film. Lucifer is the angel of light and beauty. But the vibes that come off Jimmy are totally alien to that-and to human contact. It's like a bleak lunar landscape. By comparison, Lucifer is like a field full of beautiful flowers-although there may be a few bumble bees waiting to sting you if you are not careful. I'm beginning to think Jimmy's dried up as a musician. He's got no themes, no inspiration, no melodies to offer. I'm sure he doesn't have another "Stairway to Heaven", which is his most Luciferian song. "Presence" was very much a downer album . In the first place his commitment to Lucifer' seemed to be totally serious, and he was very enthusiastic about the project. On the other hand he's very into enterprise and hard work. But on the other hand he has this problem dragging him down. He's been acting like Jekyll & Hyde, and I have to have someone who's 100%. This film is my life's work."

"I really don't think he has the zing-the capabilities to do it. If he'd have said he was bored with the project I'd have understood, but he's just strung me along . Now he's no longer on the project, I'm no longer interested in having him." According to Anger, Page was never actually employed to do the soundtrack. "There was never any discussion about money, the whole idea was that it should be an offering of Love. The idea was to go 50/50 on the films profits and that Jimmy should have all the proceeds from any soundtrack album that came out of it. We never put anything down on paper. We had a gentleman's agreement, which to me is more serious than anything written down by lawyers."

Anger had spent the best part of the last 9 years attempting to complete "Lucifer Rising", and the Page episode is simply the latest in the catalog of upsets, misfortune and disruptions which have plagued the film's progress. Up until now Anger's main problem had been finding someone to take the part of Lucifer.

The original Lucifer was to be a five year old boy, but he died in an accident before filming had begun. His place was taken by Bobby Beausoleil, a former guitarist with the group Love. Beausoleil was fired from the movie after a prolonged altercation with Anger, and left taking most of the completed film with him. As a symbol of protest Anger inserted a full page R.I.P. notice for himself in the New York Village Voice. Two years later Beausoleil was facing a sentence for life imprisonment for the murder after falling under the sickening spell of the high priest of gore, Charlie Manson. With the little footage remained from the Beausoleil episode shaped another film, "Invocation of my Demon Brother", with a synthesizer soundtrack by Mick Jagger. Jagger was evidently taken with Anger's work (indeed Anger claims it was their conversations which inspired Jagger to write "Sympathy for the Devil") and agreed to take the part of Lucifer. He backed down before shooting began, however, apparently fearing that the Satanic aura he had once sought to cultivate was becoming to tangible for comfort. He place was taken by brother Chris, but an on-set row with Anger led to Jagger's dismissal. Eventually a Middlesbrough steel worker named Leslie Huggins was recruited for the part, and with Marianne Faithfull and Donald Cammel (author of "Performance") also taking principle roles, filming began.

Anger is now working on editing the film to meet a Christmas deadline and looking for a musician to do the soundtrack. "I'm seriously questioning whether to use a musician from the rock world." He says. "It seems like most of todays rock music is savage, deliberate bad taste. It's not optimistic, constructive or even fun anymore. I'm certainly jaded with the rock superstar syndrome. They're like renaissance bandits. Who need those people?? Asked whether he felt vindictive towards Jimmy Page he said: "You bet I do. I'm not a Christian, turn the other cheek kind" He allowed a thin smile. "In fact, I'm all ready to throw a Kenneth Anger curse...". Persistent attempts to contact Swansong for some statement from or on behalf of Jimmy Page were met with a stonewall of silence. Not even a "No Comment".

postcards from page along the way:

"He also professes to be "dabbling" with synthesizers, having completed a soundtrack for Kenneth Angers film "Lucifer Rising". Anger, a noted American experimental filmmaker who gained notoriety 12 years ago with a bike film called "Scorpio Rising", and more recently "Invocation of my Demon Brother", a short, intense, ritualistic film with a jagged, rough, almost naive synthesizer soundtrack by Mick Jagger that had quite a disturbing effect, began "Lucifer Rising" ten years ago but friend and confidant Bobby Beausoleil (later a friend of Charlie Manson) stole large portions of the footage (what eventually became "Invocation"). Now he is shooting it again, a feature length film. With the first 20 minutes finished, he asked Page for his services.

"With a synthesizer, every instrument is different from what it's meant to sound like, which is especially interesting when you get a collage of instruments together not sounding the way they should and you think (excited) What's that? That's the effect I wanted to get. So you immediately didn't realize it was five instruments playing together. Because Anger's visuals have a timeless effect. The important thing with "Invocation" was that the visuals and music were like that-" He interlocks his hands tightly. "That is how I wanted this music to be, but I wanted to hold up and keep the attention without people actually listening to it."

"The man's pacing is absolutely superb. It starts so slow and after say four minutes it gets a little faster and the whole thing starts to suck you in. The thing was, I only saw clips, and 20 minutes is a long time, and he put the music onto the visual - I know he didn't do any edits because I saw the piece with different music-and things just worked out in synch. Like certain bits match certain actions. It's so well crafted, and this undercurrent of everything working independently."

"It's just so arresting. I had a copy and while I was in the states I hooked it up to a big stereo and frightened the daylights out of everyone." He laughs softly. I was on the sixth floor and there were complaints from the twelfth. There's a real atmosphere and intensity. It's disturbing because you know something is coming. I can't wait for it to come out." Which brings us to the long overdue Zeppelin film, based around a 1974 Madison Square Garden concert, fantasy and documentary sequences lifting it out of the arena. It is now in the credits stage, and will be released sometime this summer. Although it may be considered a documentary it is more a musical. "It's so time consuming. It's a horrible medium to work in. It's so boring! So slow! Just shooting the fantasy sequence. Can we do it again so we can get a different angle? Can you do it again so we can get a different angle? Can you do it again? I'm not used to that. It's a silly attitude, okay, but nevertheless...the Anger things are completely different. Working with him is a unique experience."

Jimmy met filmmaker and author of "Hollywood Babalon", Kenneth Anger at an auction where they discovered they had a mutual fascination for the occult and particular Aleister Crowley's works. Anger approached Jimmy to supply the music for his long term venture, "Lucifer Rising". In Jimmy's words, "I felt it quite an honor that he asked me. The version I was involved with was the third version. After being shown the initial rushes I've messed around with the instruments and the only recognizable instrument is the twelve string guitar, though even that doesn't sound like a twelve string. Plus the synthesizers sound like a horn instrument. The danger with synthesizers is that if it just sounds like a synthesizer, you've had it really and then there's drum combined with a pulse sound which sounds like a heartbeat as if there's a presence, plus a sound like ethereal breathing, out of that comes the horn sound. It is a very small part I play and in no way sensational."

"When you've got a collage of say, four sounds together, people will be drawn right in because there will be sounds they haven't heard before. That's basically what I'm into; collages and tissues of sound with emotional intensity and melody and all that." "In the film Lucifer is the light bearer and not Satan as in Christian terms. They had an art show at the Museum of Modern Art where they showed the film and I saw that the music wasn't synched up to the film so when I was in America in 1974 to see Maggie Bell, I brought the music for the film with me and now I know he's got it synched up right. He showed it at Berkeley and apparently the reaction was good."

Jimmy was particularly happy when John Paul Jones complimented him on the soundtrack because Jimmy feels John Paul has got high standards musically. "I was really nervous because the opening sequence is a dawning sequence which brings comparisons to the film 2001, A Space Odyssey to mind. The film was shot in Egypt and I wanted to create a timelessness so by using a synthesizer I tried to change the actual sounds of every instrument so you couldn't say immediately "that's a drum or guitar." I was juggling around the sounds to lose a recognizable identity as such. In 2001, a Space Odyssey there was fantastic music done with voices. I wanted to attempt to do that with Zeppelin in the beginning." The resultant music appears in a 22 minute performance on a bootleg entitled "Solo Performances" (the other side of the record features all of Robert Plant's solo singles before joining Led Zeppelin. "The performances in impaired by a slight hiss. A hypnotic droning cadence of four notes begins and underlines the first segment of the recording. The few melodies seem tortured and grim, wailing and writhing, sometimes bright for a moment but then fading into dissonance. Near the middle a crashing thunderstorm intertwines itself into the music, followed by eerie, unintelligible harmonic chanting and theraminish noises. An unusual ringing rhythm picks up. More synthesized guitar washes over and ends in a fading, muffled thunderclap. Haunting and disturbing this piece is highly expressive of Page's strain of morbidity." Wrote American music critic Juli LeCompte.

The insert of the album says "Page plays all music by himself, most of which was done on an electric guitar being run through an early ARP Synthesizer. An incomplete version of the film was premiered in Los Angeles in September from which this recording comes." In October 1976 an article appeared in the English music papers featuring allegations from Anger that Jimmy had not completed the soundtrack and Jimmy replied that this was untrue and added that he had given Anger everything in plenty of time and had helped him to locate a place for screening and editing the film in London and even offered him his Kensington home for accommodation. Jimmy was replaced in 1976 by Bobby Beausoleil and since then Anger has denounced Jimmy on every possible occasion. Jimmy's final words on the incident were: "All I know is that at the end of the film I promised him - as I had before, the loan of a three-speed projector which makes editing so much easier. I said to him "Well, it's just going to be your time invested". And I told him that he must put the music on after he put the footage together, so I was just waiting for him to contact me, really. He had other music that I'd done instead of the stuff that I'd delivered which he said he wanted to use, nevertheless I still needed to hear from him and I never heard anything."

"Lucifer Rising, this moody, quiet piece comes from the Kenneth Anger film of the same title. Jimmy Page was commissioned to write the piece in 1973 and began work later that year after the completion of Led Zeppelin's American tour. Page plays all of the music by himself, most of which was done on an electric guitar being run through an early ARP synthesizer. An incomplete version of the film was premiered in Los Angeles in September 1976, from which this recording comes. It is rumored that the beginning of the Zeppelin track "In the Evening" is taken from this source.

"Even during the tragic random happenings of 1975 and 1977 involving accidents and fatalities it seems wrong to blame them on Jimmy's fascination with Aleister Crowley as he never set out to push his own beliefs on others and in fact explained his interest as a "quest for knowledge" and plumbing one's own mystic depths for certain truths which are beneficial for the whole of humanity. He has little contact with people outside of the world of music or the arts. Whereas Plant seems more accessible Jimmy seems more at ease active on stage and in person reveals little about himself or his lifestyle." Robert told Anne Nightengale in the July 2nd, 1982 daily express, "As to us being involved in black magic-that was bumkum."

jimmy page on aleister crowley:

"My house used to belong to Aleister Crowley. I knew that when I moved in. Magick's very important if people can go through it. I think Crowley's completely relevant today. We're still searching for the truth. The search goes on. Crowley didn't have a very high opinion of women and I don't think he was wrong. Playing music is a very high sexual act. It's an emotional release and the sexual drive comes in along with all the other impulses. But once you start earning money people start assuming things about you and your whole life is changed. If I wasn't into rock I would be somewhere living in a commune in Wales."

Boleskine House is the name of Crowley's house on the shores of the Loch Ness, Scotland. In an attempt to restore Boleskine to it's condition at the time of Crowley's ritual's, Page engaged Satanist Charles Pace to paint murals. He stays there when he can, often with artistic friends. "I find it crystallizes things for them in a very short time." In a conversation with Michael Watts of Melody Maker in September 1974 Jimmy said, "The house was built on the site of a Kirk dating from around the 10th century that had burned down with all of it's congregation inside. Nobody wanted it, it was in such a state of decay. I hadn't originally intended to buy it, but it was so fascinating.. It's not an unfriendly place when you walk into it. It just seems to have this thing..."

"You see people are not used to total quiet and that's what it is there. All I'm saying is that it's a really interesting house and a perfect place to go when one starts getting wound up by the clock. I bought it to go up and write in. The thing is that I never get up that way. Friends live there now. "My interest in the occult started when I was 15. I do not worship the devil but Magick does intrigue me. Magick of all kinds. I read "Magick in Theory and Practice" when I was about 11 years old but it wasn't for some years that I understood what it was all about." Jimmy told Chris Salewicz in 1977, "After having read this ridiculous book called "The Beast" where the author hadn't the faintest idea of what Crowley was all about and totally condescending. I took it all from there. It's like there's an incredible body of literature - I mean don't even bother with the sex thing because it's a bore anyway-and it's like there's a diamond to be found at the end and it involves a life's study.

"What I can relate to is Crowley's system of self-liberation in which repression is the greatest work of sin. It's like being in a job when you want to be doing something else. That's the area where the True Will should come forward. And when you've discovered your True Will you should just forge ahead like a steam train. If you put all of your energies into it there's no doubt you'll succeed because that's your True Will. It may take a little time to work out what that is but once you discover it, it's all there." "You know when you realize what it is that your supposed to be here for. I mean everyone's got a talent for something, not necessarily artistic but whatever you care to say and it's just a process of self liberation. I mean I find his writings to be 20th century as a lot of others weren't. I enjoy my researches. I find him a highly enigmatic character but it doesn't want to get blown out of proportion because that would be silly."

The run off matrix of the early pressings of Led Zeppelin's third album bore a hand written inscription by Jimmy of the Crowley philosophy: "Do what thou wilt shall be the whole of the Law." "Although I don't agree with everything he said he was a visionary. I don't particularly want to go into it because it's a personal thing and isn't in relation to anything I do as a musician. Apart from that I've employed his system in my day to day life.

Jimmy opened a bookshop venture for Occult books called "Equinox" at 4, Holland Street, Kensington, London. The shop was never designed to make money but just to tick over so it could publish books. "There was not one bookshop in London with a good collection of occult books and I was so pissed off not being able to get the books I wanted." The first two books from the publishing company side of the business were "The Book of Goetia translated by Aleister Crowley" and "Astrology, A Cosmic Science by Isabel Hickey". At Equinox, it was possible to buy several books signed by Crowley and at one time the shop housed a first edition set of Crowley's ten volume work "The Equinox" priced around 350 Pounds. By 1979 the shop lease expired and Jimmy admitted, "It's obviously wasn't going to run the way it should without some drastic business changes and I didn't really want to agree to all of that. I basically wanted the shop to be a nucleus, that's all."

Page, infact, almost brightens to the thought of putting his side of the Anger epic into print. "I must say that I've lost a hell of a lot of respect for him. I mean, the level of pure bitchiness he was working on...at one point he started writing silly letters to everyone he thought I knew so that they would naturally bring it up in conversation when they saw me." "The whole thing about "Anger's Curse", they were just these silly letters. God it was all so pathetic. I mean, I've got to get my side across because now it's just gone to far. Hell, you know that I did the film's music and you know when I did it so you must have thought it odd when Anger came out against me like that, right?? (Page in fact, rented a rough cut of Lucifer Rising and showed it at an informal gathering, yours truly included, complete with it's soundtrack in early 1975.) "Well he's implying that he'd received nothing from me, which is totally untrue. I gave him everything in plenty of time, OK."

What Page also claims is that he had helped Anger personally locate a sceening/editing room in London and that Peter Grant was also interested in maybe investing something into the completion of the film and offered him accommodation in London's chic Gloucester Place Mews. "So OK, I'm a mug! Cos one day this whole thing just blew up. And that's all I knew about it. This bitchiness was just an extension of Anger's Hollywood Babalon." Anger had apparently been angling for a further backer for the film, Page claims "Now whether he felt that he had to get me off his back I don't know. I mean I didn't start hassling, I just wanted to see the bloke finish the bloody film. I mean it's whole history is so absurd that it was unfinished because he was such a perfectionist and that he always ended up going over his budgets. All I can say is that Anger's time was all that was needed to finish that film. Nothing else'. Anger had also made allegations that his belongings had been held-impounded by Page and his cohorts. "What a snide bastard. His stuff was just all over the place and I just got some roadies to get it all together for him. Christ, he even turned that one against me." "I mean, I had a lot of respect for him. As an occultist he was defiantly in the vanguard. I just don't know what he's playing at. I'm totally bemused and really disgusted. It's truly pathetic. I mean, he is totally powerless-the only damage he can do is with his tongue."

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more jimmy page on lucifer rising

from classic rock magazine:

Publication date 08-Feb-2007

Jimmy Page on Lucifer Rising

When did you first meet Kenneth Anger?

"I'm trying to think. I can tell you when I first became aware of him. I was already aware of Anger as an avant-garde filmmaker. I remember seeing two of his films at a film society in Kent. It was Scorpio Rising and Invocation Of My Demon Brother, and I think the other half of the evening was taken up with The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari; it was rather a fun evening. And I was already aware of Anger because I had read and researched Aleister Crowley. There was an article in Life magazine from the mid-fifties: Anger had been to Sicily, he'd been to Crowley's abbey there, he was traveling with Kinsey, of Kinsey Report fame.

"In 1923 Crowley had been expelled form Sicily. Mussolini's people had whitewashed the walls of the abbey because Crowley had decorated the walls accordingly, for his better intentions. When Anger visited it had belonged to two brothers. Once was a facist, the other a communist, and between them they had built a wall in the centre of the room that was a temple. So anyway the whitewash was still there, so there was this karma that continued on as the brothers hated each other. Anger had gained access to the building and started to scrape the whitewash off the walls to reveal the murals and frescoes.

"So I knew Anger's films and then I read this article. Then I saw some letters that he wrote to Gerald Yorke, who was a good friend of Crowley's. He was pleading with Yorke to drum up some funds to save the abbey. I could see Anger was passionate about this stuff. So that, along with his creative output, made him somebody I would like to meet. Eventually he came to my house in Sussex and I went to his flat in London."

When was this?

"In the 70's. We were on speaking terms even though I managed to outbid him on stuff he wanted (Crowley memorabilia at auction) and vice versa. And when I was at his apartment he outlined this idea for a film that became Lucifer Rising, that he had already started shooting in Egypt. It was then he asked me if I would like to take on the commission and do the music and I agreed to that"

So you produced the music without seeing the film?

"Yes. I said to him originally that I'd like to see it but, this is a key element to the story, he said, 'I always put the music on after I've made the film'. That was exactly the same with Scorpio Rising and Invocation."

How did you feel about this method of operating?

"Well it worked with this one. When I did the music for Death Wish it was an entirely different approach. But with Lucifer... that was the way Anger worked and I thought, 'I'll take this on as a challenge' and went home and cooked up some interesting music."

Did you have any idea what the film was about?

"Anger sort of outlined that it was about the deities of Egypt. He told me all the characters. Donald Cammell was in it and he went on to make Performance. Donald Cammell was the son of a very close friend of Aleister Crowley."

Could you explain what Lucifer Rising is about?

"Well, no. I'll let [Anger] do that. It's his film."

Could you give me your interpretation?

"Within the framework of it Anger was saying there's a dawning. You have Isis who would correlate to the early religions. Isis is the equivalent of man worshipping man, which is now where we have Buddha and Christ and all the rest of it, like the three ages. And then the child is Horus, which is the age of the child. Which is pretty much the New Age as it was seen."

How did you go about putting the music together?

"I had an idea of what Anger wanted. So I went about creating this music in my home studio and I employed a variety of instruments and effects. I had this tampura, which is an Indian instrument that produces a majestic drone. This was one I had brought back form my early travels in India and it was about 5 1/2 ft tall and it was a really deep, resonant beast. So this was the first thing I wanted to employ on it. I thought of this being quite a hypnotic, trance-like piece. Then I had a Buddhist chant that was phased: everything wasn't quite what it appeared to be. I played some tabla drums, not very well I might add, but the effect of it was really good. So that's how the whole thing started to develop. I had synthesiser and Mellotron. And right at the very end there's an acoustic 12-string cascading in with these great horns that sound like the horns of Gabriel. It was a good piece."

I understand there was some significance in the amount of instruments and the musical scales that were employed?

"Well, yes, to a degree, but whatever metaphysics I was employing at the time were of the moment and not necessarily to be held up to scrutiny now. Don't forget that this was going to be something which I knew was going to be shown in arts labs and underground cinema and brotherhoods, if you like. Although really Kenneth wanted this project to manifest in the mainstream cinema - at least that's what he told me."

Did any of your unused Lucifer Rising soundtrack appear in Led Zeppelin's music?

"No! Because the thing is, the one thing I wanted to do with it was avoid using guitar. As I've already said, there was a fraction of guitar right at the end, just a little taste. One piece from Lucifer Rising I plucked out and put into Death Wish. I can't remember what it's called... an abstract sort of piece. It's quite good, actually."

You produced the first 31 minutes of music for the film, what happend next?

"So you can imagine having seen these 31 minutes of film and my music for all intents and purposes fitting like hand in glove, I was keen to see Anger complete this film. Because up until then he had only done shorts and he had this vision of a 93-minute film. So the next logical step was to give him the facilities to continue, which is what I did.

"Kenneth had turned the basement of the Tower House into an editing suite and the housekeeper was there one day and found him giving people a guided tour and there was an argument. Kenneth took umbrage that he couldn't show people around and the next thing I knew I started getting all this hate mail directed at my partner and myself at the time. It was quite pathetic actually, because it was like newspaper articles that were cut out and underlined in red ink and I guess that if that was supposed to be some kind of curse, it fell flat.

"He'd stored some stuff at my house and after all the nonsense and letters I did think about returning all his possessions in a hearse, but then I thought that might be a tad dramatic."

Did it come as shock when Anger sort of exploded/imploded?

"You have to remember, at the time I was really busy working with Zeppelin. I remember I was in the States playing the film in my room in the Plaza hotel and I got complaints from six floors above which I thought was marvellous. I kept playing it again and again."

Back to the Angry one...

"So Anger stormed off and the next thing I know he says he's going to use Bobby BeauSoleil and I said, 'Do what you want'. So he replaced my music. I thought, 'this is absolutely ridiculous; the man has had a brainstorm, a man who I had so much respect for. Now I almost see it as being a bit sad. This was going to be his masterpiece, but he didn't manage to pull it off.

"All that remains now is the myth, certainly as far as the collaboration of my music and Kenneth Anger goes."

Do you think that, considering the subject matter, Lucifer Rising is actually filmable?

"Well you have to forgive me because I don't really know what his overall concept was going to be. I'm only familiar with the first 30 minutes which was, in essence, only a third of the film. So I can work out my interpretation of that and I would say that it was very much of its time. Although the underlying theme of it will resurface, I'm sure, at some point along the way."

How do you mean?

"Well, just what he was trying to put across. That's all I'm going ot say about it."

Have you watched the film recently?

"You know I've seen it [Classic Rock provided Jimmy with a bootleg of the film featuring his soundtrack instead of BeauSoleil's], but it wasn't a great copy. It didn't sound as good as it sounded when I had it going full blast at the Plaza. It certainly had a charm about it."

Are you sad that it isn't available to the public?

"It's not the fact that I'm disappointed that some of my music wasn't heard. In the context it was really interesting. But I was really keen to see Anger pull this thing off; maybe it was just too big."

Prior to your collaboration with Anger did you have an interest in underground films?

"Well I had an interest in Underground everything. Art college was a hotbed of everything that was alternative, whether it be poetry, music, film certainly art."

Did you use what you learned at art school into your music?

I would say so. I'd been quite involved in what had gone on in art labs prior to Lucifer Rising. It's not well known but I remember in The Yardbirds we did a number called Glimpses. And Glimpses was something that involved the bow. The bow guitar wasn't a novelty to me; I really considered that it was making music. The manifestation of that is in The Song Remains The Same with the bow and the whole imagery with the hermit. Anyway, with Glimpses I was playing with tapes. I had all these sound effects, like the Staten Island Ferry, all these crunching noises and horns; there might have been Hitler's speeches in it as well. All this stuff which you could have taken out of the Filmore East and put into an art lab. When they used light beams as burglar alarms I had an idea of using tape recorders that were triggered by the interruption of light beams. You could have a dancer affecting the music. The combination was whatever the dancer would be inspired by, by the ambience of the audience and their own imagination.

"So the fact that I got involved with Anger was really just a step along the road of my interest in what was quite alternative."

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Was that interview really done in 2007? Wow. Jimmy hasn't been asked about Lucifer Rising in a long time. That has to be the most detailed account from his side we've seen yet. Hammer of the Gods painted him in a really bad light over Lucifer Rising, but from what I've heard since, I'd say Anger was more at fault for being a combination of an incompetent and a hot-head.

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