Posts Tagged ‘Jimmy Page’

led zeppelin led zeppelin_IIThe album that I chose for this week’s album of the week was inspired by the trailer for the new Thor: Ragnarok film which features the track The Immigrant Song. Now before you jump to any conclusions, I know that The Immigrant Song is not on Led Zeppelin II but rather on Led Zeppelin III. It’s just that you can’t review III before II considering we already reviewed one before. That is why for this week we are reviewing the band’s second album which was aptly titled with a II and it once again featured the classic and only line up that matters in Jimmy Page (Guitars), Robert Plant (Vocals), John Paul Jones (Bass), and John Bonham (Drums). The album was probably one of the most successful albums for the band and it helped them avoid the sophomore jinx as it went number one in seven countries that included the UK, United States, West Germany, Australia, Canada, Denmark, and Spain with three other top three finishes as well. The album has been certified platinum in the United States 12 times meaning that it has sold 12 million records (it went 4X platinum in the UK, 9X Platinum in Canada, etc.).

Led Zeppelin - Led Zeppelin 2-Back1.Whole Lotta Love– One of the most popular and probably overplayed song on the radio from the band that is about what you think it’s about. Using the AABA formula, Jimmy came up with the track on his houseboat that sees the track go from a blues feel right into a free jazz like break complete with a theramin solo and a bad ass drum solo from Bonham as well. 5/5

2. What Is And What Should Never Be– One of the first tracks that Page recorded with a Gibson Les Paul that contains that cool effect where it pans back and forth on the channels. There is also a cool effect used on Plant’s vocals during the verses. It has that cool effect where it changes in tempo from a cool bluesy tune into a full on rock track. It’s also the first Zeppelin song that Plant received writing credit for in this track that is about a romance he had with his wife’s sister. 5/5

3. The Lemon Song– A very sexual bluesy track in nature, but the song was inspired by Howlin Wolf’s song Killing Floor (Both first verses are indentical). In fact in 1972, the band was sued by the handlers of Howlin Wolf to which they settled out of court and Howlin Wolf is given credit on the track. 4.5/5

4. Thank You– One of my favorite Led Zeppelin songs that was for the first time completely written by Plant. It was the track that showed Page that Plant could handle himself in the lyrics department. A very cool power ballad from the band that everyone should check out. 5/5

5. Heartbreaker– A bad ass bluesy rock track with huge balls is the best way I can describe this track because it has that feel to it. Page told Guitar World in 1998 once that, “The interesting thing about the guitar solo is that it was recorded after we had already finished “Heartbreaker” – it was an afterthought. That whole section was recorded in a different studio and it was sort of slotted in the middle. If you notice, the whole sound of the guitar is different.” 5/5

II6. Living Loving Maid (She’s Just a Woman)– A cool hard rock track from the band that Page recorded with a Vox 12 string guitar and just to let you know, it’s Page’s least favorite song which is why it has never been played live. I definitely approve of the track. 4.5/5

7. Ramble On– If there was ever a track back in the day that made it cool to read The Lord Of The Rings, it was this track from the band. The song starts off with an acoustic feel which is just Page using regular open chords, but played a little higher on the fret board. It’s also a track that Jones and Bonham shined on showing how unique their relationship was in the band. 5/5

8. Moby Dick– For all the John Bonham lovers in the world, this is definitely your track as it was basically Jimmy Page recording all of Bonham’s jam sessions in the studio. The only thing is that in the beginning and the end, Page and Jones lead the way for him and end the track with him. 5/5

9. Bring It On Home– This is the last track on the record and it’s a cover of blues legend Sonny Boy Williamson II’s track that was written by Willie Dixon. 4/5

My Final Thoughts– It is almost the perfect album by the band and one that is considered to be one of the most influential rock albums of all time. Who in their right minds then did not want to be Led Zeppelin. The band’s sound which change however as they went for a more folkier sound with the next album. This is definitely must listen album for any fan off Zeppelin. I am going to give the album 4.7 stars out of five for a final grade.

John BonhamOn September 25, 1980, the rock world lost John Bonham of Led Zeppelin, who was arguably the greatest rock drummer to have ever lived. During his time in Led Zeppelin, Bonham had appeared on all nine Zeppelin albums which include the great Led Zeppelin 1, 2, 3, and 4 as well as other classics such as Houses Of The Holy, Physical Graffiti, and so much more. The man was known for his hard hitting style as well as his feel for the groove which influenced so many rock drummers all over the world. John Bonham was the reason a lot of kids wanted to become a rock drummer back in the day and he still should be influencing people. Unfortunately, on this day in 1980, he would be found dead in Jimmy Page’s house by John Paul Jones and Benji LeFevre, who was Zeppelin’s tour manager. According to a report, in a 24 hour period he consumed, “40 shots (1–1.4 litres) of 40% ABV vodka.” Nevertheless, the man left a legacy in his work and if you want to hear some of his hard hitting smash sound, check out the tracks Immigrant Song (Led Zeppelin III), When The Levee Breaks (Led Zeppelin IV), Kashmir (Physical Graffiti), The Ocean (Houses Of The Holy), and Achilles Last Stand (Presence). He also appeared on other songs from all sorts of different artists like Lulu (Everybody Clap), Screaming Lord Sutch (Lord Sutch And Heavy Friends), Jimmy Stevens (Don’t Freak Me Out), and more.

Bonhams-630x420In a recent interview with Train Singer Pat Monahan’s podcast, Jason Bonham reflected on the day he was told his father passed away, “I was 14, he was 32. It was like, wham! — I remember not knowing really what the hell was going on. When you don’t know anything about death, and no one close to you has died […] I can play that day back perfectly clear in my head. I went to the back door — knock on the back door. There was Robert Plant and Maureen were there, which was strange, because they were supposed to be at rehearsals. I’m in my school uniform. He says, ‘Is your mom here?’ And I went, ‘Yeah, hold on.’ ‘Robert’s here? What’s he doing here? Where’s your dad?’ […] I remember seeing family arrive out of the corner of my eye and getting upset, and I didn’t know why I was upset, but I knew something was up. My mom came in and said ‘Your father’s passed away.’ I remember going, ‘Oh, okay. Am I still going to school tomorrow?’ You’re just — life goes on.” I am going to share with you, two of my favorite Zeppelin songs below with one being Bonzo’s legendary drum solo Moby Dick and the second being my favorite Zeppelin song Immigrant Song. Long Live the legacy and legend of John Bonham.

David Coverdale is one of those musicians who I feel gets looked over way too many times in the rock history books and I will tell you why before I get into this weeks Soundtrack Saturday song. The man started outplaying his career with Deep Purple before starting Whitesnake which might be the band he is known for the most and he has worked with the likes of Jimmy Page (Coverdale and Page), Barbi Benton, Eddie Hardin, Steve Vai, Bernie Marsden, and he has toyed with a solo career as well and that is not even mentioning all the guitar greats he has worked with as well. In 1990, Tom Cruise starred alongside Robert Duvall, Randy Quaid, Cary Elwes, and Nicole Kidman in the Nascar film Days Of Thunder which is an incredible film. The film came complete with an amazing soundtrack that features the likes of Elton John, Guns ‘N Roses, Joan Jett & The Blackhearts, and our featured artist David Coverdale. The song on the soundtrack is called The Last Note Of Freedom and it was co-written with Billy Idol and Hans Zimmer. You can tell Hans had something to do with the song as it starts off with a string arrangement before it gets tribal and bluesy as David Coverdale commands your attention with his soulful vocals and apparently I heard Steve Vai played on the song as well. The track is very different from what we are used to hearing from David, but I think that is what is cool about the track and why I featured it this week.

Led Zeppelin 1For this week’s album of the week, I wanted to chose an album that was so iconic that everyone knows who it is no matter what song you play. It can be argued that the self titled debut album from Led Zeppelin (otherwise known to their faithful as Led Zeppelin 1) could be the album that kick started the hard rock and heavy metal genre. I know Sam Dunne explored this theory in many of his documentaries, but one thing that you can’t deny is that their fusion of rock and roll and the blues laid the ground work for what was to be known as hard rock. On the UK album charts, it peaked at number 6 while it peaked at 10 on the Billboard 200 selling 8 million copies (8X Platinum) with 10,025,000 world wide sales (this includes the US sales of 8 million). The legendary band that featured Jimmy Page (Guitars), John Paul Jones (Bass), Robert Plant (Vocals), and the late great John Bonham (Drums) released an album that has awards and accolades that include The Grammy Hall Of Fame and it made the definitive 200 list for the Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame. The album cover for the record is just as iconic as the music as it features the Hindenburg disaster picture of the crash in New Jersey.

Led Zeppelin Back CoverGood Times Bad Times is one of the most amazing tracks that opens up this iconic record with their in your face approach matched by some amazing drumming from Bonzo. Bonzo was so innovative that drummers would immitate him for years especially since he was repeating a series of two sixteenth-note triplets on a single bass drum. It was so amazing for it’s time that Page once said, “The most stunning thing about the track, of course, is Bonzo’s amazing kick drum. It’s superhuman when you realize he was not playing with double kick. That’s one kick drum! That’s when people started understanding what he was all about.”  Babe I’m Gonna Leave You is Led Zeppelin’s cover of the Anne Bredon penned track that originally featured Joan Baez singing. You Shook Me is the band’s blues tinged cover of the Muddy Waters classic. Dazed And Confused is a song that takes you on a musical journey of ecstasy and is one of a few tracks that features Page playing his guitar with a bow.

led zeppelinYour Time Is Gonna Come is the first track of side b that features Jimmy Page playing an out of tune 10 string steel fender guitar and it features John Paul Jones playing the organ in the beginning of the track. Robert Plant shows off his love for the blues in this track as he sings about a girl who is very unfaithful. Black Mountain Side is a very creative instrumental that featured Page creating his magic with his guitars. Communication Breakdown features a kick ass pounding guitar intro from Jimmy Page before the band explodes into full throttled rock and roll madness. I Can’t Quit You Baby is Led’s  blues rock cover of the Otis Rush classic that was originally written by Willie Dixon. How Many More Times is the ninth and final track on this classic album and it’s an epic 8 and the half minute long song that is divided into sections that were held together by a bolero rhythm named after Beck’s Bolero by Jeff Beck. This is one of my favorite Led Zeppelin albums and a real asset to the history of Hard Rock. That is why I am giving this record five stars out of Five for a final grade.