9 comments on “1970s Historic & Classic Rock Albums . . . . . . . . . . . LED ZEPPELIN . . . Led Zeppelin IV . . . . . . . November 8, 1971

  1. Another great post! I think The Battle of Evermore is an astounding and magical song which stands out from all of the great songs on the album. I’d love to know the inside story of how Plant selected Sandy Denny as his accompanying vocalist. I loved her singing with Fairport Convention and Fotheringay and she did seem to be the perfect choice but I’d love to know the whole story.

    Its interesting how every one of us, far and wide, felt the change in the culture during that time. There was no proclamation from our protagonists, no conspicuous cultural algorithm, no collective decision which underlined the de-generation of our culture. There was an unsettling feeling that the dream was over and we gradually awoke to the unhappy fact that our culture was changing. The legacy was established but the world no longer followed in our footsteps and the prospect that we would have to merge with the establishment as individuals, alone and ill-equipped was depressing.

    • After the release of their first album and on their 2nd tour of the USA, Led Zeppelin was not yet playing stadiums. In May of ’69 they played the Fillmore East in NYC. The Fillmore is located in the East Village, the show was sold out and I didn’t have a ticket. I lived about 45 minutes from NYC and along with four friends we decided to drive to the city to see them. Our only hope was the promise of one Betsy Cornwall, a lady among ladies, a freak among freaks and one of those well traveled hippies who seemed to know everyone and who always managed to be at every seminal event during our culture’s halcyon days. I always enjoyed Betsy’s company and despite having joined her on several adventures, I had little hope that we’d get to see Zep that particular night.

      While waiting for Betsy to locate her contact in the Fillmore, I sat on a car fender and enjoyed the circus show that was on view at St Mark’s Place. Dealers, speed freaks, runners, look out’s, old ladies, young bloods relaying messages, stoned bikers, obvious weekend hippies and a vendor selling black helium filled balloons, all mingled on the street. It was worth the drive just to spend an hour hanging out there.

      After a while I was told that Betsy had once again worked her magic and we were going to get in to see the Zep show. I was instructed to wait at one of the Fillmore’s front doors and while I was there someone offered to sell me some acid. Anyone who’s spent any time in Greenwich Village knows never to buy drugs from strangers. Rip off artists were notorious for taking advantage of tourists and anyone foolish enough to think they could cop real dope from a NYC street dealer. The acid dealer, who told me he was also waiting to enter the Fillmore, convinced me he was on the level. I took a chance, paid him a couple of dollars and split the tab with my friend Wayne. It turned out to be the best leap of faith that I had ever taken! I later saw the guy during the concert, he actually sought me out during a break to ask if the acid was good, ’twas and my faith in humanity was restored!

      Page and Plant, who wore gender defying brightly colored satin outfits, were having a screaming good time playing every song from their first album while cleverly mixing in segments of songs by the Buffalo Springfield, Howlin’ Wolf and The Beatles.

      Soon enough, the building separated itself from its foundation and as it shot through the night sky, thick colors dripped from the ornate ceiling, drizzling notes of music splashed and danced throughout the crowd. Shimmering bubbles burst in the air, releasing glowing sprinkles which fell, seesaw, anointing the heads of every head in the room. The audience became a unified hierarchy of devotees bestowing honorifics upon the psychedelic seers who were blessing us from their sacred alt with new visions born from the rarefied ether of another dimension. Page, revealing his violin bow, transformed into a medieval sorcerer, his silhouette bathed in a dazzling, electrifying and ecclesiastical light, played liquid strings, illuminating an ancient cosmic manuscript which gave me a deeper meaning to Dazed and Confused 😉

      I don’t remember when we touched back down to earth or how I got home that night but thanks to Betsy, I got to see Led Zeppelin for free at the Fillmore East and I got some of the best acid I’d ever taken (from a street dealer no less). All of this occurring in Greenwich Village during one magical night! I saw Zep play live four times after that night, each time at a different venue but none of those concerts came close to the impact of that show.

  2. Pingback: Top 79 Historic & Classic 1970s Rock Albums | 00INDIVIDUAL

  3. Pingback: 1960s Historic & Classic Rock Albums . . . . . . . . . . . 1970s Historic & Classic Rock Albums . . . . . . . . . . 1960’s and 1970’s Culture Archives . . . . . . . . . . . . . The “Pinnacle of Classic Rock Equation: 4 + 4 = 7” The

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s