PDA

View Full Version : The Roots of Led Zeppelin


zharth
01-30-2005, 12:24 AM
I understand that there has been quite a bit of debate about the originality of Zeppelin's songwriting, that is certainly no secret. My personal opinion on the matter is that although the members of Led Zeppelin ripped quite a few things off, in most cases they managed to add enough to the song to at least deserve recognition for their contributions, as much as the original artists deserve writing credit. The band might not have always been original, but they were dreadfully talented, and that's what we all remember them for, right?

Anyway, I thought it might be helpful to have a place to discuss topics related to this issue, since lately I have been very interested in finding the earlier versions of songs Led Zeppelin performed, mostly for curiosity's sake. I found this one site (http://www.turnmeondeadman.net/Zep/Originals.html) that has quite a bit of info about Zep's specific inspirations, including details about 5 cd's that have been available at one time which compile a bunch of originals that may have served as inspiration to some of Zep's material. I picked up Early Blues Roots and Sources of Inspiration, being the only ones I could get my hands on right away, and I am fascinated so far listening to these early songs that bear more or less resemblance to quite a few Zeppelin songs. I recently tracked down potential sources for two of the other cd's listed on the above site, The Roots and Zeppelin Classics, though I haven't secured them yet. I can't seem to find Led Astray anywhere, though.

Especially when the Yardbirds are concerned, credit issues become rather complicated, seeing as Led Zeppelin formed out of the ashes of the Yardbirds, of whom Jimmy Page was a good friend and even member of towards the end of their run. The site I already mentioned had a link to another site (http://www.furious.com/perfect/yardbirds2.html) which has some more information, albeit more accusatory, and I'm wondering just how much of what it claims is really true. I knew that the Yardbirds performed Dazed and Confused before Zeppelin recorded it, but I had no idea that Zeppelin's Tangerine originally comes from something the Yardbirds composed. Plus you have pieces of songs that show up in other songs, like the solo from the Yardbird's Think About It that becomes a solid piece of the solo from Zeppelin's recorded version of Dazed and Confused, and according to this site, pieces of the Train Kept A Rollin' solo showing up in Rock and Roll (hadn't noticed it myself), and supposedly a slowed down version of the Shapes of Things solo in Zeppelin's How Many More Times (haven't verified that, either). This site does give an interesting side to side comparison of Jeff Beck's Truth with Led Zeppelin's debut album. Very interesting points.

As you can see, there is much to discuss, and I am quite curious in finding obscure and rare facts about the origin of some of Zeppelin's material. If you have any information of that sort, it would be great if you could share it with fellow Zeppelin fans (Spike's history of The Gallow's Pole (http://www.crf2.com/showthread.php?t=345) is an excellent example). But there's still one specific thing that I wanted to ask. I haven't seen this mentioned anywhere, so I'm curious if I'm the only one who's noticed it (I know I can't be). But the opening notes to the Yardbirds' New York City Blues (recorded with Jeff Beck), are strikingly similar to the immortal opening notes to Led Zeppelin's Since I've Been Loving You (of course, the latter song is, in the end, much more beautiful than the former, but the connection is still intriguing - I can't help but wonder if that was intentional or not...). So has anyone else noticed this? (And if you haven't, go listen to the very beginning of both songs right now, you'll be shocked.)

P.S. After I acquire enough songs and knowledge, I'm planning on doing a radio special on my own classic rock radio show, celebrating the Roots of Led Zeppelin, where I plan on playing a bunch of blues, folk, and other originals, side by side with Zeppelin's versions. I can't wait.

Deja Vu
01-30-2005, 09:12 AM
That radio show sounds awesome!

Anyway, you make some good points and your perspective seems solid.

One thing that often gets me about this business is that sometimes there are huge questions as to who the first person was to play something that Zep later played, there could be 2 or more people in the past that both supposedly wrote it. To some people that might not matter, since either way Zep didn't write it, but to me that shows exactly what kind of business this is.

My personal policy is - if you can play it, cool. It makes sense that Jimmy could have picked up a lot of things from The Yardbirds since he probably played the old songs at live shows (or maybe not, I don't know for sure). And about Tangerine, the word on Zep.com is that Tangerine was a song Jimmy wrote in the Yardbirds days. Supposedly the subject matter is even about a girlfriend he had had. But that may not be right, because Zep.com once told me that the original Dazed and Confused was a blues song called "I'm Confused." My personal view of 'originality' is pretty cynical, but liberating too. No one has experienced everything so no one knows what is original or not, that's my final line. To us, originality is based entirely on our frame of reference and with what ways & factors we evaluate things. I think Silvertide is original because I've never heard anything like that before, but some people think they're a carbon copy of things that have already occured. To the victor go the spoils, everything comes from something so it's all just a matter of if you can pick it out or not. It's all one song.

But away from originality rants, back to the topic. I think it's particularly interesting that some Zep intros like that of Since I've Been Loving You and Stairway To Heaven are from other places. (Although Stairway is hardly a "borrow" at all, if you ask me, since they aren't even extremely similar). There are only so many who would argue that Stairway To Heaven and Since I've Been Loving You aren't great songs. I'd say they are easily some of the greatest songs, and their predecessors in New York City Blues and Taurus don't at all compare. Also, in my humblest opinion - Truth doesn't hold a candlestick to Led Zeppelin I. But few things can. There are definite similarities. And Truth is good. So if the only thing Led Zeppelin ever did was take previous works and turn them into Led Zeppelin's catolouge, they're still the best. I have nothing against that kind of thing. And I still consider Zep to be master songwriters.

Spike
01-30-2005, 01:13 PM
Thank you for starting this thread. And the radio show sounds cool. My hobby -- or, as my family might say, obsession -- is tracking the roots of all kinds of classic rock & soul music. My appreciation of this music is enhanced by understanding its connections to blues, country, pop, gospel, folk, etc. It puts the music that we love within the context of a broader tapestry of time. And the fact that some things are not entirely original does not diminish their value in any way.

But I do have two problems when people claim full credit for something that others have helped to create. The first is economic; no one should claim full songwriter's credit when someone else has a clear claim on authorship. The second is about tradition; even if no living person has a rightful legal claim, it is disrepectful of tradition to claim full authorship when your work is based on a tradition that stretches far into the past. Zeppelin has been accused of both of these sins in the past. IMHO, such criticisms are often justified. And my respect is diminished for anyone who fails to show proper respect for tradition. But that is just one person's opinion.

Spike

zeppboy
01-30-2005, 01:16 PM
Yeah but they did end up paying royalties for many of those songs. On another note many of the old bluesmen stole the songs too. It was common from what I have read for them to claim copyright to songs they did not write.

Spike
01-30-2005, 02:27 PM
On another note many of the old bluesmen stole the songs too. It was common from what I have read for them to claim copyright to songs they did not write.

We've been around this block before, haven't we? ;)

Of course, that happened. But, IMHO, there's a fundamental difference between claiming songwriter's credit when you are the first to record a song in 1927 and doing the same when you are the umpteenth to record the same song by the time you do so in 1970.

Spike

zeppboy
01-30-2005, 02:30 PM
On another note many of the old bluesmen stole the songs too. It was common from what I have read for them to claim copyright to songs they did not write.

We've been around this block before, haven't we? ;)

Of course, that happened. But, IMHO, there's a fundamental difference between claiming songwriter's credit when you are the first to record a song in 1927 and doing the same when you are the umpteenth to record the same song by the time you do so in 1970.

Spike
I guess we will just have to agree to disagree as I see no difference in it :smile: .

FredHampton
01-30-2005, 03:47 PM
There's a difference between rewriting some folkloric tunes, and having a substantial fraction of your catalogue being rip-off versions of songs written by your contemporaries, and fail to pay tribute to the original creators.

You cannot point to a blues player that has a repertoire consisting of that much music written by other uncredited songwriters.

Not only is there a difference, what Led Zeppelin did was pretty nasty. Huge turn off for me. But how can I stay mad at Zeppelin? They're still one of my favorite bands. This kind of stuff just makes it a bit harder for me to like 'em.

zeppboy
01-30-2005, 03:49 PM
Many of those songs where in the public domain and no one really knows who wrote them originally though. So I don't see your point.

FredHampton
01-30-2005, 03:54 PM
Yet many were not
http://www.furious.com/perfect/yardbirds2.html

zeppboy
01-30-2005, 03:56 PM
I'll still take the Zeppelin versions. They took those songs and transformed them into works of art.

zharth
02-05-2005, 04:09 AM
So here's a bit of what I've learned through my research thus far. I encourage you to back up or dispute the following statements, as you see fit, since I could use as much help as I can get trying to put the pieces of the puzzle together. By the way, my research is certainly not finished yet, so some of these facts I have yet to verify (but am planning to, if possible).

Let's start with the first album.

Good Times Bad Times [Jimmy Page, John Bonham, John Paul Jones]
As far as I can tell, this is an original tune.
Babe I'm Gonna Leave You [Anne Bredon (Earthchild), Jimmy Page, Robert Plant]
Credited to Anne Bredon (a.k.a. Anne Briggs). Was recorded by Joan Baez. Jimmy Page supposedly recorded a version with Marianne Faithful. Page also allegedly recorded a version with Steve Winwood that never saw the light of day. Quicksilver Messenger Service also recorded a song of the same name.
You Shook Me [J.B. Lenoir, Willie Dixon]
Written by Willie Dixon, performed by Muddy Waters. Jeff Beck recorded a version on his album Truth shortly before Led Zeppelin's debut album was released. The lyrics about the birds that whistle and sing is from a Robert Johnson song titled Stones In My Passway.
Dazed and Confused [Jimmy Page]
A song by Jake Holmes, from his album "The Above Ground Sound Of Jake Holmes." Jake Holmes apparently shared the bill with the Yardbirds at some point, and this song became a live Yardbirds number. [The Yarbirds version was released with the incorrect title of "I'm Confused" on the Live Yardbirds Featuring Jimmy Page album that was quickly recalled by Page. Another version was released on the late Yardbirds album Cumular Limit.] Page then recorded it for release with Led Zeppelin. Parts of the solo in the version on Led Zeppelin's debut album can be heard in the guitar solo of the Yardbirds song Think About It.
Your Time Is Gonna Come [Jimmy Page, John Paul Jones]
As far as I can tell, this is an original tune.
Black Mountain Side [Jimmy Page]
An original song titled Black Waterside by Bert Jansch. I believe it was also recorded by Anne Briggs.
Communication Breakdown [Jimmy Page, John Bonham, John Paul Jones]
Possibly inspired by Eddie Cochran's "Nervous Breakdown".
I Can't Quit You, Baby [Willie Dixon]
Written by Willie Dixon. It is my understanding that Otis Rush recorded a version of this song in 1956, and then rerecorded it in 1968. Another version was recorded (in 1968) by Little Milton, who also recorded a live version in 1970 on the album Grits Ain't Groceries.
How Many More Times [Jimmy Page, John Bonham, John Paul Jones]
Inspired by Howlin' Wolf's No Place To Go, also called You Gonna Wreck My Life. Also allegedly inspired by Howlin' Wolf's How Many More Years (though beyond the title I can't see the similarity). Some of the lyrics are from Albert King's The Hunter. I have also seen references to a song called How Many More Times by Gary Farr and the T-Bones and another song titled Kisses Sweeter than Wine by Jimmy Rodgers, though I'm not entirely sure in what context.

Again, please make comments as necessary. I intend to update this information as I acquire more data, and listen to more songs. And information on the rest of the albums is coming as well!

infidel
02-05-2005, 02:08 PM
I'm a huge Zep fan. They were my first and will always be my favorite rock band. But I do have to acknowledge a lot of how they handled writing credits was messed up, though in many cases they have corrected things, in some they haven't. But nevertheless I have to honestly say it doesn't affect my love for their music much.

Black Mountain Side
Probably inspired by a song titled Black Waterside by Bert Jansch. I believe it was also recorded by Anne Briggs.


But you have to call a spade a spade. Black Mountain Side is more than inspired by the Jansch tune, it's practically identical except that it has no lyrics. Definitely a lift.

On the up side in the case of Boogie with Stu the song is basically Ritchie Valens's Ooh My Head. In this case they credited all four of themselves but also "Mrs. Valens" who I *think* is Ritchie's mother, so she would get some money from the song. I think they did this rather than credit him so she'd get the money directly. That was pretty cool.

BTW: it would be good for your analysis if you included who the songs were actually credited to. And I understand in some cases this changed over time as new versions were released.

zharth
02-05-2005, 03:32 PM
But you have to call a spade a spade. Black Mountain Side is more than inspired by the Jansch tune, it's practically identical except that it has no lyrics. Definitely a lift.

Thanks, I haven't been able to listen to the song, yet.

BTW: it would be good for your analysis if you included who the songs were actually credited to. And I understand in some cases this changed over time as new versions were released.

That's a good idea.

Deja Vu
02-05-2005, 04:16 PM
Little nit pick - the Jake Holmes album isn't the Under Ground Sound but rather the [I]Above Ground[I] Sound. It's an ironic title, considering how below ground both Jake Holmes's sound and the album itself are, but whatever. :D

Zep's all about the music, baby. ;)

zharth
02-05-2005, 04:21 PM
Little nit pick - the Jake Holmes album isn't the Under Ground Sound but rather the [I]Above Ground[I] Sound. It's an ironic title, considering how below ground both Jake Holmes's sound and the album itself are, but whatever. :D

Wow, good call. I can't believe I actually wrote Under Ground... It just got into my subconscious, ya know. Crazy...

zharth
02-07-2005, 07:06 PM
Ok, here's the second album:

Whole Lotta Love [Jimmy Page, John Bonham, John Paul Jones, Robert Plant, Willie Dixon]
You Need Love was originally written by Willie Dixon and performed by Muddy Waters. The Small Faces recorded a version before Zeppelin got to it, and Steve Marriott's vocals in the Small Face's version are the likely source for Robert Plant's treatment of the song. Led Zeppelin added a catchy new riff, a killer guitar solo, and retitled the song, giving Willie Dixon no credit, until his daughter noticed the similarity, leading to a law suit, after which Willie Dixon was credited for the song.
What Is And What Should Never Be [Jimmy Page, Robert Plant]
As far as I can tell, this is an original tune, and also one of Robert Plant's first original lyrical compositions.
The Lemon Song [Jimmy Page, John Bonham, John Paul Jones, Robert Plant]
Originally titled Killing Floor, by Howlin' Wolf, this version also features the famous 'lemon' lyrics from Robert Johnson's Traveling Riverside Blues (which Led Zeppelin also covered in complete). Jimi Hendrix also performed his own version of Killing Floor live in the late 60's (at least as early as Feb. 4 1968) - there's a version on Jimi Hendrix's BBC Sessions release.
Thank You [Jimmy Page, Robert Plant]
As far as I can tell, this is an original tune, though one might notice the similarity of the lyrics "If the sun refused to shine, I would still be lovin' you, when mountains crumble to the sea, there will still be you and me" in this song, to the lyrics "If the sun refused to shine, I don't mind, I don't mind, if the mountains fell in the sea, let it be, let it be' in Jimi Hendrix's If 6 Was 9, released on his second album Axis: Bold As Love. I'm not sure if this is just a coincidence.
Heartbreaker [Jimmy Page, John Bonham, John Paul Jones, Robert Plant]
As far as I can tell, this is an original tune.
Living Loving Maid [Jimmy Page, Robert Plant]
As far as I can tell, this is an original tune.
Ramble On [Jimmy Page, Robert Plant]
As far as I can tell, this is an original tune, and an excellent lyrical composition by Robert Plant.
Moby Dick [Jimmy Page, John Bonham, John Paul Jones]
The guitar riff in this song resembles that of a song called Watch Your Step by Bobby Parker. This riff was allegedly developed from Zeppelin's cover of The Girl I Love She Got Long Curly Hair by Sleepy John Estes (which Zeppelin titled The Girl I Love She Got Long Black Wavy Hair).
Bring It On Home [Jimmy Page, Robert Plant]
Written by Willie Dixon, and recorded by Sonny Boy Williamson. Zeppelin added a high-energy rock'n'roll middle section to the song, but the blues opening and closing are very similar to the original.

infidel
02-07-2005, 07:09 PM
Good stuff, zharth. One thing:

What Is And What Should Never Be [Jimmy Page, Robert Plant]
As far as I can tell, this is an original tune, and also one of Robert Plant's first original lyrical compositions.


Not sure, but if you're saying that because Plant was uncredited on the first album, that's only because he was still under contract to CBS Records at the time. I have a feeling he had a hand in writing some of the lyrics from the first album, too.

zharth
02-07-2005, 07:24 PM
Not sure, but if you're saying that because Plant was uncredited on the first album, that's only because he was still under contract to CBS Records at the time. I have a feeling he had a hand in writing some of the lyrics from the first album, too.

You're right. I guess what I was trying to say is that it marked a point where Plant began to deviate from the old cliched blues phrases and the countless derivations thereof and began to write his own words, in a rather poetic sense, as can be seen on this track and Ramble On, for example.

infidel
02-07-2005, 07:28 PM
Gotcha.

Deja Vu
02-07-2005, 09:02 PM
Good stuff, zharth. One thing:

What Is And What Should Never Be [Jimmy Page, Robert Plant]
As far as I can tell, this is an original tune, and also one of Robert Plant's first original lyrical compositions.


Not sure, but if you're saying that because Plant was uncredited on the first album, that's only because he was still under contract to CBS Records at the time. I have a feeling he had a hand in writing some of the lyrics from the first album, too.

Thanks, that clears something up for me - On a Jake Holmes related site when Jimmy Page was 'confronted' with the authorship of Dazed and Confused at an interview he mentioned that he thought Robert had written some of the lyrics. Although it seemed just like a dodge to me at the time since Robert hadn't been credited on Dazed. But from what I know Dazed was tweaked twice, once by the Yardbirds and again for it's Zep release. So unless the lyrics on Zep I are the same as on Yardbirds recordings, it's very possible for Plant to have written the lyrics of Dazed & Confused (in part, at least) since the Zep lyrics are entirely different from Jake Holmes'. (Not "entirely" as if I'm saying Zep wrote the lyrics before they ever heard Jake's song, I just mean that none of the lines are identicle, even Jakes' "I'm Dazed and Confused..." was turned into "Been Dazed and Confused...")

As for What Is And What Should Never Be - incredible lyrics by Plant. One of my (many) favorite Zep lyrical works. If you wake up with the sunrise and happinness is what you need so bad, girl the answer lies with you. Dude, that's good! :)

As for Moby Dick.... bad news Zharth, but although Led Zep tweaked the Moby Dick riff, I've heard a (lyriced) blues song that used that same riff. Unless you've already heard this and debunked it somehow or decided it wasn't similar... but I'm pretty sure I heard it on Led-Zeppelin.com's archived influence file. Either that or Led-Zeppelin.org.

zharth
02-07-2005, 09:17 PM
Thanks, that clears something up for me - On a Jake Holmes related site when Jimmy Page was 'confronted' with the authorship of Dazed and Confused at an interview he mentioned that he thought Robert had written some of the lyrics. Although it seemed just like a dodge to me at the time since Robert hadn't been credited on Dazed. But from what I know Dazed was tweaked twice, once by the Yardbirds and again for it's Zep release. So unless the lyrics on Zep I are the same as on Yardbirds recordings, it's very possible for Plant to have written the lyrics of Dazed & Confused (in part, at least) since the Zep lyrics are entirely different from Jake Holmes'. (Not "entirely" as if I'm saying Zep wrote the lyrics before they ever heard Jake's song, I just mean that none of the lines are identicle, even Jakes' "I'm Dazed and Confused..." was turned into "Been Dazed and Confused...")

You are right on track. The Yardbirds version features lyrics slightly tweaked but for the most part identical to Jake Holmes' version, whereas Led Zeppelin's version has quite a bit of unique lyrics.

As for Moby Dick.... bad news Zharth, but although Led Zep tweaked the Moby Dick riff, I've heard a (lyriced) blues song that used that same riff. Unless you've already heard this and debunked it somehow or decided it wasn't similar... but I'm pretty sure I heard it on Led-Zeppelin.com's archived influence file. Either that or Led-Zeppelin.org.

Hm. I have come upon no mention of this similarity. Do you have any more concrete evidence or information? I've been through .org's roots section, and I didn't find anything of that sort. I just did a quick search through .com and didn't come across anything of that sort. I know this is a stupid question, but are you sure it wasn't Led Zeppelin's performance of The Girl I Love She Got Long Black Wavy Hair?

Deja Vu
02-07-2005, 09:43 PM
I haven't been able to find it, but I know that I heard it. It very well could have been The Girl I Love She Got Long Black Wavy Hair or whatever, but I doubt it. I remember distinctly because on one of those big uproar sites that listed like 90% of Zep's catolouge and connected it to every possible thing, I saw Moby Dick on there and thought "Ha, now that one can't be true, it's a drum solo." and then I found something on one of the Zep sites about the riff of Moby Dick and I listened to it and sure enough it was the riff. I also believe that I've heard refference to this song on the board before.

I'll keep my eyes open... try to see what I can find. Maybe look around on some Zep bashing sites.

zharth
02-07-2005, 09:46 PM
Maybe look around on some Zep bashing sites.

Haha, rough but true. That one site I linked in my first post on this thread, the Thieving Magpies, has somewhat of an anti-Page aura, but it provided a lot of information. The only problem is weeding out how accurate the information is. And so far, as far as I can tell, I've been getting mostly accurate tips.

Deja Vu
02-07-2005, 09:59 PM
Yeah, that site does have a negative tone. What's your take on the oh so common "...what they added to the song is debatable." Do you think it contains a good bit of truth or are they just being stubborn to acknowledge the fact that reworking a song involves rewriting?

Update: still unable to find the Moby Dick thing. But I'm not good at searching the net. Oh and also what's your take on the suggestion that Moby Dick is a cover of Cream's Toad? I frankly don't think it holds wait, Pat's Delight is also said to be a cover of Toad.

zharth
02-07-2005, 11:29 PM
Good questions.

What's your take on the oh so common "...what they added to the song is debatable." Do you think it contains a good bit of truth or are they just being stubborn to acknowledge the fact that reworking a song involves rewriting?

Well, first of all, it depends on a case by case basis. Certainly, and this includes all musical acts, some songs add more to the original than others, and some are practically carbon copies. In the case of Led Zeppelin, I think those boys had enough unique talent, and such a great energy between them, that the songs they played were unique, just by the fact that it was them playing them. Nobody else has quite the same energy and talent that Led Zeppelin had. It's one of those beautiful mysteries of life.

Concerning the Thieving Magpies site specifically, I think a lot of what that site was trying to communicate was the previous existence of things that Led Zeppelin capitalized on. And I think knowledge of that is a good thing - it just so happens that because there is so much bias towards ignorance on this matter, and Zeppelin's crediting habits have much to do with this, it's natural that some people would take the opposite bias in order to get their point across. And there's nothing wrong with this, either, as long as the information being portrayed is either accurate, or if it is opinion, it is not passed off for fact.

Dazed and Confused, for example, is a huge Led Zeppelin hit. Just from a live standpoint, it was perhaps one of their biggest numbers, regularly exceeding twenty minutes from start to end, featuring the now immortal image of Jimmy Page playing his guitar with a bow. Most people who know Dazed and Confused don't realize that it was originally written by one Jake Holmes, as a personal folk-acid type of number. That's where the original bass line came from, which is so decidedly 'Zeppelin', along with the very nature of the piece as a whole. Even people who have heard that Dazed and Confused was originally written by someone other than Led Zeppelin, maybe they don't realize that The Yardbirds, whom Jimmy Page was a member of before Led Zeppelin, performed the song live. The general structure of the song was created by Jake Holmes, and most of the details that define the version we all know from Led Zeppelin's debut album were actually crystallized by the Yardbirds, though Jimmy Page was one of them at the time, credit also deserves to go to the other members.

There are two important factors. Credit should be given where it is due. What if you got a one-off deal with a record company, recorded a particular song that was picked up and covered by a huge band, but never got credit for writing the song in the first place, while this other band gets rich and famous off of your composition? The other factor is that this kind of information should be available to those who are interested. It's fun to hunt down the influences of your favorite bands like this, and it's a great way to learn about music from many different angles, but there's no real benefit to hiding information like 'oh, I got the idea for this song from this other song I listened to way back', or something of that sort.

All of this having been said, anyone who states that what Led Zeppelin added to the songs they covered is negligible, is probably either bitter for some reason about Zeppelin's lack of crediting the originals, never heard Zeppelin's versions, or just really don't get rock n roll. Even if Zeppelin didn't get any credit for writing their songs, and they did do a bit of writing of their own (some excellent tracks, too), they still deserve recognition for their raw talent as musical artists. Writing music is a huge part of the music business, and it deserves its part of the pie. But the most brilliant lyrics and the most beautiful chord structure means nothing if it's not played by a person that has the ability to turn those notes and words into feeling. In other words, performance is a huge part of the music business as well as writing or creating. Led Zeppelin did any band's share of creating music, lyrics and otherwise. Sure, they also borrowed a lot of music from other artists, but even when they did, they took those songs and gave them new life. Not to say that they didn't have life before, but they were given new life by Zeppelin, and boy could Zeppelin bring life to a piece of music. Just look at what they turned Dazed and Confused into. It started out as this 4-minute folksy acid trip, but transformed into an epic, 30-minute plus monster. You gotta give anyone credit who could do something like that. Still don't believe me? Get your hands on some version of As Long As I Have You (Garnet Mimms is a good bet), and then grab some early live Zeppelin bootleg featuring that same song. Compare the two. That is what Led Zeppelin was capable of, and they deserve credit for it.

Oh and also what's your take on the suggestion that Moby Dick is a cover of Cream's Toad? I frankly don't think it holds wait, Pat's Delight is also said to be a cover of Toad.

No way to be sure, but my gut instinct is that whoever said that is trying to find a few too many connections between his/her favorite songs. The classic rock era was one where the drum solo was an appreciated staple, and many bands were doing it. Even Deep Purple had their Mule and Ten Years After had their Hobbit. Now, I could still be wrong, but I'd be surprised if Moby Dick was in any direct way a cover of Cream's Toad. Same with Pat's Delight. Led Zeppelin had an outstanding drummer, and they wanted to showcase his skills. That's how these numbers came about. I dunno who was the first one to come up with the idea that a live band should feature a song with an extended drum solo, but even if that word was passed along from group to group in that day, I don't see how that makes Moby Dick a cover of Toad. At best, I'd call it stylistic influence, although that would kind of be like saying that a country singer sounds country because he plays country, or something...

Deja Vu
02-08-2005, 05:54 PM
I asked Zep.com and here's what my inquiry returned -

Check out the song Watch Your Step by Bobby Parker.

Also worthy of note -

huw: "Acording to Page, when they were recording sessions for the BBC they threw some of the stuff together very quickly - he'd go 'I've got a riff', JPJ & Bonzo would join in & jam on it, & RP would squeal something over the top. That's basically how TGILGLBWH came togather: Page said that until they brought out the BBC sessions CD he didn't even realise that RP had been singing bits of a Sleepy John Estess number. They never really did TGIL... much again, but they developed the riff a bit & used it for MD."

zharth
02-08-2005, 10:23 PM
Good call, Deja Vu. I missed that totally. There's even a section of .org that has very limited information, that I hadn't noticed before, but it mentioned Watch Your Step. I'll have to try to get a hold of that song.

zharth
02-08-2005, 10:40 PM
Let's continue the madness with Zeppelin's third album.

The Immigrant Song [Jimmy Page, Robert Plant]
As far as I can tell, this is an original tune, likely inspired by a trip to Iceland.
Friends [Jimmy Page, Robert Plant]
Concerning this song, I've heard references to Gustav Holst's 'Mars' from The Planets Suite as well as Crosby Stills Nash & Young's Carry On, though I'm not sure how exactly they may be connected.
Celebration Day [Jimmy Page, John Paul Jones, Robert Plant]
As far as I can tell, this is an original tune, and with rather creepy lyrics if you actually listen to them.
Since I've Been Loving You [Jimmy Page, John Paul Jones, Robert Plant]
There are some startling similarities between this song and Moby Grape's Never, including some of the lyrics. Word has it that Robert Plant was a Moby Grape fan. Also, the opening notes to the song are hauntingly similar to the opening notes in the Jeff Beck-era Yardbirds song New York City Blues.
Out On The Tiles [Jimmy Page, John Bonham, Robert Plant]
As far as I can tell, this is an original tune, inspired by a little Bonham ditty, that went like this:
"I've had a pint of bitter and now I'm feeling better and I'm out on the tiles.
We're going down the rubbers and we're going to pull some scrubbers because we're out on the tiles."
Gallow's Pole [Traditional {arr. Page/Plant}]
A traditional song, recorded as Gallis Pole by Leadbelly and also covered by Fred Gerlach. Page was allegedly inspired by Fred Gerlach's version. (Check Spike's thread (http://www.crf2.com/showthread.php?t=345) for a more complete history of this song.)
Tangerine [Jimmy Page]
Originally written with the Yardbirds, was nearly released as Knowing That I'm Losing You on the Yardbirds album Cumular Limit, but didn't make the cut.
That's The Way [Jimmy Page, Robert Plant]
As far as I can tell, this is an original tune, and a beautiful acoustic piece, originally titled The Boy Next Door.
Bron-Y-Aur Stomp [Jimmy Page, John Paul Jones, Robert Plant]
Started out as an instrumental titled Jenning's Farm Blues before it evolved into this version. The intro to this song resembles that of The Waggoner's Lad by Bert Jansch.
Hats Off To (Roy) Harper [Traditional {arr. by Charles Obscure}]
Tribute to Roy Harper, who was a friend of and performed with Jimmy Page. The song bears close resemblance to a Bukka White song titled Shake 'Em On Down, and was allegedly inspired by Mississippi Fred McDowell's version of that song. (Charles Obscure was supposedly a pseudonym for Jimmy Page.)

Deja Vu
02-08-2005, 11:21 PM
When I met the Primatives I kinda felt that Friends would be a good song for them to perform. (Actually they do have a song called Friends but it's completely unrelated) As for connections to Carry On... eh... that sounds excruciatingly far-fetched. Although, I love the overdriven live Carry On the most, I guess they could have/maybe did do an even more layed back version of the song that would mirror the style of Friends, that would sound pretty sweet probably.

Now that you mention trips to Iceland.... thinking about Immigrant Song couldn't you just imagine bouncing across the lake in a speed boat? Dude I have to try that sometime!

Have you heard an early version of Tangerine/That I'm Losing You? Also, have you listened to the demo version of Hats Off To Harper? It's on Zep.com I think. I've never been able to successfully listen to it on my computer but some say it's much better than the album version and I think it might have different lyrics (maybe not though).

And I trust that you will eventually put up a website detailing what you've learned, since you appear to have learned a good bit? (Plus through checking & discussion it can be an "end all" to end silly notions that have arisen such as the "I'm Confused" blues song that I had been told was D&C's origin) All it takes is someone to do stuff right; you could make a great website with the info you compile.

Celebration Day = Supreme Overlord of Lyrical Scariness

Oh and do you know of the blues Since I've Been Loving You? I heard it on one of those websites once, probably Zep.com. It was very similar but it didn't have one iota of Zep's power or emotion, if I remember correctly.

Also on Zep.com they gave me a nifty link. Check it out - http://pyzeppelin.free.fr/download.htm

Also came across an eighties album called "Left For Dead" by Crazy Horse. I wonder if it rocks.... I wonder if it's THE Crazy Horse... it took 18 whole albums to connect Crazy Horse with Buffalo Springfield on BandToBand.com

zharth
02-09-2005, 01:17 AM
Have you heard an early version of Tangerine/That I'm Losing You? Also, have you listened to the demo version of Hats Off To Harper? It's on Zep.com I think. I've never been able to successfully listen to it on my computer but some say it's much better than the album version and I think it might have different lyrics (maybe not though).

I haven't heard any early versions of Tangerine, only speculated remarks, especially from the Thieving Magpies site. Haven't heard the demo of Hats, either. Looks like Zep.com's got a lot of cool clips, but the problem is they are all real audio. Big mistake. I downloaded a bunch and I could only get one to work on my computer - Sunshine Woman, which was pretty good. But real audio...ugh...

And I trust that you will eventually put up a website detailing what you've learned, since you appear to have learned a good bit? (Plus through checking & discussion it can be an "end all" to end silly notions that have arisen such as the "I'm Confused" blues song that I had been told was D&C's origin) All it takes is someone to do stuff right; you could make a great website with the info you compile.

I'll admit, that is indeed my ultimate objective. I plan on putting a thorough database of my findings up on my website once I've finished my research (or at least accomplished a considerable amount). I am thankful for being able to debut this information here on crf2, and see how it goes over with other zep fans, so I can get my information as straight as possible before I finalize it at all. Just the fact that I am finding different pieces of the story here and there makes me feel like there needs to be a more extensive document in one place, and that's what I hope to accomplish.

As for I'm Confused, I believe that on the quickly recalled Live Yardbirds Featuring Jimmy Page album, Dazed and Confused was incorrectly titled I'm Confused. I have no idea why, but that might be why some people got the impression that the original song was called I'm Confused. I could be wrong, but it seems like the most likely source for that misunderstanding. On a related note, check out my radio show playlist for today if you haven't already.

Oh and do you know of the blues Since I've Been Loving You? I heard it on one of those websites once, probably Zep.com. It was very similar but it didn't have one iota of Zep's power or emotion, if I remember correctly.

Haven't heard it. What is it? Is it not performed by Zeppelin? Was it done before or after Zeppelin? Or is it another one of those mysteries shrouded in foggy clouds of riddles? Maybe it was Moby Grape's Never?

Also on Zep.com they gave me a nifty link. Check it out - http://pyzeppelin.free.fr/download.htm

Well done. Amazing. Too bad some of the songs aren't complete though. I'm surprised, there's even one on there I haven't heard about elsewhere.

Also came across an eighties album called "Left For Dead" by Crazy Horse. I wonder if it rocks.... I wonder if it's THE Crazy Horse... it took 18 whole albums to connect Crazy Horse with Buffalo Springfield on BandToBand.com

I remember coming across a Crazy Horse album or something at one point (probably in a store somewhere). I determined for myself that there was no way it was the same as Neil Young's Crazy Horse. Of course, I could be wrong, but I got the feeling it was similar to The Rockets that aren't the Rockets that became Crazy Horse.

Deja Vu
02-09-2005, 06:11 PM
Drat, I was certain that Since I've Been Loving You was a blues song prior to Zep's doing it. I'll have to try and find it.

About CH - Weird.... long story short, the Crazy Horse that made that eighties album is partially legitimate - containing Billy Talbot, Ralph Molina, and Matt Peuci. No Poncho. I wonder how it sounds.

Also something I think would be worthwhile to note for each song that comes from other songs - it'd be good to specify what part of the song it is. Like if they took blues lyrics and did different music or took music and wrote different lyrics. Supposedly the music is usually new. And if that's true then that's pretty redeeming, considering that apparently all of Zep's best lyrics are original, thus far at least.

zharth
02-09-2005, 06:21 PM
That's a good idea. And in a lot of cases, Zep was pretty original musically even with their covers. Though you still might be surprised about little things that are nicked here and there. Like the general feel of guitar licks at the beginning of I Can't Quit You Baby, for example, which aren't entirely original.

Deja Vu
02-09-2005, 06:32 PM
^ oh wow that radio show sounds sweet. I didn't know you had got that album?

As for I Can't Quit You Baby, I wouldn't necessarily expect the licks to be entirely original, considering the general style of the tune. :)

zharth
02-09-2005, 08:41 PM
I Can't Quit You Baby caused me a bit of distress. At first I was confused by the difference between the Willie Dixon version and the Otis Rush version, seeing as I had two different versions of the song credited to those two. Apparently a version was recorded in the 50's (1956 I believe) and another in the 60's (1968 I believe), but the confusion came when I came to the conclusion that both versions were supposedly recorded by Otis Rush, at least one of which (the earlier one I believe?) featured Willie Dixon himself playing bass. I thought I had that all sorted out, but then there's a clip of the song on .org that's similar, but distinctly a different recording. The opening 'we-ell, I can't quit you babe' is more extended than both versions I have. So I can't help but wonder what this other version is...grah, and it's too bad .org only has a clip and not the entire file. Lots of research to do, sortin' things out, but it's quite the learning experience. And it feels good to be exerting energy learning about something I'm interested in for no other reason than pure curiosity, with nobody or nothing forcing me.

Dr. Weber
02-10-2005, 01:34 AM
I Can't Quit You Baby caused me a bit of distress. At first I was confused by the difference between the Willie Dixon version and the Otis Rush version, seeing as I had two different versions of the song credited to those two. Apparently a version was recorded in the 50's (1956 I believe) and another in the 60's (1968 I believe), but the confusion came when I came to the conclusion that both versions were supposedly recorded by Otis Rush, at least one of which (the earlier one I believe?) featured Willie Dixon himself playing bass. I thought I had that all sorted out, but then there's a clip of the song on .org that's similar, but distinctly a different recording. The opening 'we-ell, I can't quit you babe' is more extended than both versions I have. So I can't help but wonder what this other version is...grah, and it's too bad .org only has a clip and not the entire file. Lots of research to do, sortin' things out, but it's quite the learning experience. And it feels good to be exerting energy learning about something I'm interested in for no other reason than pure curiosity, with nobody or nothing forcing me.

Little Milton, also on Chess Records, recorded "I Can't Quit You Baby" in late 1968. It opens with, "I can't do it baby, oh I've tried so hard but I just can't do it baby."

Dr. Weber

zharth
02-10-2005, 02:01 AM
Little Milton, also on Chess Records, recorded "I Can't Quit You Baby" in late 1968. It opens with, "I can't do it baby, oh I've tried so hard but I just can't do it baby."

Dr. Weber

Awesome, thanks for the tip. Do you have any idea what album that was released on? I've located a version on the album Grits Ain't Groceries that looks to be live and released in 1970. I found another version on The Chess Box (Box Set): Willie Dixon, but I'm curious where that particular version came from...

Dr. Weber
02-10-2005, 02:59 AM
Little Milton, also on Chess Records, recorded "I Can't Quit You Baby" in late 1968. It opens with, "I can't do it baby, oh I've tried so hard but I just can't do it baby."

Dr. Weber

Awesome, thanks for the tip. Do you have any idea what album that was released on? I've located a version on the album Grits Ain't Groceries that looks to be live and released in 1970. I found another version on The Chess Box (Box Set): Willie Dixon, but I'm curious where that particular version came from...

My copy is on the Dixon box set. It is a studio recording (very clear, apparently remastered from the original mastertape), 6:39 in length with a fade-out. The booklet says, "originally released as Checker LPS 3011." (Checker was a subsidiary of Chess.) LPS stands for Long Playing Single. The Grits Ain't Groceries version is the first time the song appeared on album. Of interest, the personnel list is sparse compared to the other tracks on the Dixon box set. No specific notes were kept at the recording studio (by 1968 this was uncommon in the industry because of union regulations).

It is also available on The Complete Checker Hit Singles.

Dr. Weber

zharth
02-10-2005, 07:10 PM
Ok, well that clears up a few things. Thanks a lot. I picked up both versions of the song mentioned and they are both really good.

zharth
02-10-2005, 08:39 PM
Now for a look at Zeppelin's immortal untitled fourth album:

Black Dog [Jimmy Page, John Paul Jones, Robert Plant]
This seems to be an original tune, however, the vocal call/band response format of the song was inspired by Fleetwood Mac's song Oh Well. Apparently John Paul Jones, who came up with the riff for this song, was inspired after listening to a Muddy Waters album titled Electric Mud, released in 1968, which was something like blues on acid - psychedelic music from the blues man Muddy Waters himself.
Rock and Roll [Jimmy Page, John Bonham, John Paul Jones, Robert Plant]
Around the time Led Zeppelin recorded material for their fourth album, Fleetwood Mac was playing a live cover of Keep A Knockin' by Little Richard. As the story goes, the band was working on Four Sticks, but Bonham was having trouble, so he took a break and started pounding out the opening to Keep A Knockin', then Page joined in and the song was born. So that's where the drum intro comes from. It's been said that the solo in this song uses pieces from the solo of the Yardbirds' Train Kept A Rollin', but I have yet to pick up on those similarities.
The Battle of Evermore [Jimmy Page, Robert Plant]
A beautiful and original tune, featuring the incredible Sandy Denny on backup vocals.
Stairway To Heaven [Jimmy Page, Robert Plant]
The opening to this song bears a mysterious similarity to a song by Spirit titled Taurus. I believe that Spirit were on tour with Zeppelin at some point, so the similarity may not be coincidental. I've also heard that the song bears some resemblance to a song titled And She's Lonely by Chocolate Watchband, though I have yet to get my hands on this song. Most likely unrelated, but Procol Harum had a song titled Skip Softly My Moonbeams released on the 1968 album Shine On Brightly featuring the lyric "the stairs to heaven lead straight down to hell." Also likely unrelated, Neil Sedaka had a song titled Stairway To Heaven in 1960.
Misty Mountain Hop [Jimmy Page, John Paul Jones, Robert Plant]
As far as I can tell, this is an original tune.
Four Sticks [Jimmy Page, Robert Plant]
As far as I can tell, this is an original tune, and was supposedly meant to be a psychedelic number.
Going To California [Jimmy Page, Robert Plant]
This song was written with Joni Mitchell in mind, as Robert Plant and Jimmy Page both respected her as artists. Robert Plant even said once, "when you're in love with Joni Mitchell, you've really got to write about it now and again". Joni had a song titled California on her album Blue, which has a similar mood. Also, the intro to Go Your Way My Love by Bert Jansch bears a resemblance. This song might very well have been written with Haight-Ashbury/San Francisco/capitol of hippie idealism in mind, a place having plenty of girls with "love in [their] eyes and flowers in [their] hair", a fact that is reinforced by Scott McKenzie's song San Francisco, written for the Monterey International Pop Festival during the summer of love (June 1967), whose lyrics, including "if you're going to california, be sure to wear flowers in your hair", showed up in some of Zeppelin's extended jams, such as their performance of Dazed and Confused at The Song Remains The Same concert.
When The Levee Breaks [Jimmy Page, John Bonham, John Paul Jones, Memphis Minnie, Robert Plant]
This song was originally performed by Memphis Minnie and Kansas Joe, but Zeppelin turned it into a studio masterpiece. (The universal advice for this song is: listen to it through headphones.)

FredHampton
02-10-2005, 10:12 PM
Great posts, zharth.
I don't have much input, but I'd just like to say that I really appreciate you bringing this up. Obviously you've put quite some time into this and it's excelent. Great job, man.

zharth
02-10-2005, 11:19 PM
Great posts, zharth.
I don't have much input, but I'd just like to say that I really appreciate you bringing this up. Obviously you've put quite some time into this and it's excelent. Great job, man.

Thanks a lot, I'm glad that I'm not the only one that is benefiting from my efforts. It's a lot of work cross-referencing the tips I get, and even more work tracking down some of these songs, but it's a lot of fun, too. I'm still constantly working things out, and listening to songs that are potential sources of inspiration, in between homework and sleep, and I'm probably spending too much money on rare cd's and such, but I believe it's worth it. I'm really looking forward to the radio show I'm gonna do sometime before the end of this semester, where I can spend some time on the air, tracing Zeppelin's sources of inspiration and playing the original tracks alongside Zeppelin's. It's gonna be great!

Dr. Weber
02-11-2005, 07:31 AM
Since titles can't be copyrighted under American and international copyright laws, I wouldn't give much importance to the origin of the title "Stairway To Heaven." I daresay that at the time, Plant kept a notebook of ideas, titles, lines, and drafts. "Stairway To Heaven" ... simple and common words... could have originated anywhere and been jotted in the notebook for future use. Plant has said in an interview that he was reading Celtic history books at the time and that the lyric developed from those stories rather than from The Lord of the Rings, as many listeners have believed for decades. The irony is that those Celtic history books likely influenced Tolkien.

"House On the Hill" by Audience has been cited as another possible inspiration for "Stairway To Heaven." I haven't studied this link other than noting the similarities in length and basic construction.

Dr. Weber

Dr. Weber
02-11-2005, 10:59 PM
Zharth, by way of explanation... I read your "Stairway To Heaven" note as... the first two acts, Spirit and Chocolate Watchband, were possible musical inspirations or models, and the last two acts, Procol Harum and Neil Sedaka, based on the quoted lyric and title reference, were possible lyrical inspirations or models. I realized after posting my last note that maybe you weren't making such distinctions.

You will notice as you continue with each successive album - and I commend you for your interest and labors - that there are generally fewer and fewer obvious "borrowings." To my understanding, "When the Levee Breaks" is the only significant "borrowing" on IV, but because they had done it so much and so blatantly on previous albums, notably raiding the Chess Records catalog, people tried to find connections where there weren't any... with "Stairway To Heaven" as a example.

Dr. Weber

zharth
02-11-2005, 11:50 PM
You will notice as you continue with each successive album - and I commend you for your interest and labors - that there are generally fewer and fewer obvious "borrowings." To my understanding, "When the Levee Breaks" is the only significant "borrowing" on IV, but because they had done it so much and so blatantly on previous albums, notably raiding the Chess Records catalog, people tried to find connections where there weren't any... with "Stairway To Heaven" as a example.

That's a good point, both about the later albums and about Stairway specifically. There are certainly less covers and more original material on the later albums. It's fascinating to watch Led Zeppelin grow, as they evolve from covering songs, to borrowing lyrical and musical ideas, to doing their own original take on specific genres, to their own entirely original material. And in every case, they always show such incredible talent.

zeppboy
02-11-2005, 11:57 PM
That's a good point, both about the later albums and about Stairway specifically. There are certainly less covers and more original material on the later albums. It's fascinating to watch Led Zeppelin grow, as they evolve from covering songs, to borrowing lyrical and musical ideas, to doing their own original take on specific genres, to their own entirely original material. And in every case, they always show such incredible talent.
:thumbsup:

zharth
02-13-2005, 04:00 AM
Let's keep this going with Led Zeppelin's fifth album, Houses of the Holy...

The Song Remains The Same [Jimmy Page, Robert Plant]
Looks like this song is a continuation of a form Jimmy Page was experimenting with back in his Yardbirds days. The main chord structure resembles the Yardbirds song Tinker Tailor Soldier Sailor, which also features Jimmy Page experimenting with a bow.
The Rain Song [Jimmy Page, Robert Plant]
Rumour has it that George Harrison mentioned that Led Zeppelin never did any ballads, so they retaliated with this song, quoting Harrison's Something in the opening chords.
Over The Hills And Far Away [Jimmy Page, Robert Plant]
There's no telling if this has anything to do with the song, but I have heard reference to a poem written in 1955 by WH Auden that goes something like this:
"It is nonsense: the Myth of an Open Road
Which runs past the orchard gate and beckons
Three brothers in turn to set out over the hills
And far away, is an invention"
The Crunge [Jimmy Page, John Bonham, John Paul Jones, Robert Plant]
This was apparently Led Zeppelin's attempt at funk. The song loosely resembles the James Brown song titled "Get Up (I Feel Like Being A) Sex Machine." In the song, James Brown asks the band, "can I take it to the bridge? Let's take it to the bridge," and it's likely that this mannerism is what Robert Plant is imitating in The Crunge. However, Zeppelin's song is obviously lacking in a bridge and it therefore just stops, without really ending. Zeppelin intended for this to be a dance song, perhaps jokingly, seeing as the song is in an odd time signature that makes it impossible to dance to. However, they wanted to put dance steps on the cover of the album.
Dancing Days [Jimmy Page, Robert Plant]
As far as I can tell, this is an original tune.
D'yer Mak'er [Jimmy Page, John Bonham, John Paul Jones, Robert Plant]
It is my understanding that Zeppelin were originally going for a 50's doo wop sound with this song, but it ended up with a kind of reggae feel.
No Quarter [Jimmy Page, John Paul Jones, Robert Plant]
As far as I can tell, this is an original tune. The band first played it faster than we are all familiar with, but then slowed it down to give it the right feeling.
The Ocean [Jimmy Page, John Bonham, John Paul Jones, Robert Plant]
As far as I can tell, this is an original tune.

Not as much borrowed material on this album. In fact, there are no direct covers. In some cases, the band was playing around with a certain sound, trying to emulate a certain genre, but the end result is a respectable original product.

Harold
02-13-2005, 04:54 AM
Something I've been wondering . . . at what point did the Zeps began to notice that people were watching and researching and calling them on anything approaching "borrowing"? It seems that as time and albums went on there was less and less questionable crediting. When did the press start asking questions about song sources? And what were the answers they were giving?

zharth
02-13-2005, 05:21 AM
I don't know for sure, but I think the reason the covers disappeared over time was more a result of the band having time to play together and develop their own original ideas. When any band is fresh and new, it's not unusual for them to play a lot of covers, and it's not really that surprising that Led Zeppelin started out with a lot of blues covers, and quite a bit of material that was recycled from the Yardbirds, which the band more or less took the place of. As far as I've read, issues concerning credit didn't crop up until after the fact. According to a story I've read, Anne Bredon didn't get credit for Babe I'm Gonna Leave You until sometime in the 80's when her son heard her playing the song, wondering why she was playing a Led Zeppelin song. Willie Dixon didn't get any credit for Whole Lotta Love until the 80's when his daughter noticed the similarities to Dixon's You Need Love.

Led Zeppelin had an incredible talent, and that gave them recognition by a large base of fans, so when they did a lot of covers in the beginning, and weren't careful about giving credit where it was due, they got in trouble for it later on down the line. They started out in concert, filling some dates for the recently broken up Yardbirds. They recorded their first album at a record pace. They were touring almost constantly. They didn't really have time to sit down and write much of their own material until the Bron-Y-Aur sessions that preceded Led Zeppelin III, and the Headley Grange sessions that preceded their fourth album. So naturally, I think that's the reason why the covers began to be replaced by originals as time went on - as they began to give themselves time to actually write music, and gained a reputation as a band with some incredible songwriters. That, more than legal pressures, probably had a lot more to do with it, I think.

When did the press start asking questions about song sources? And what were the answers they were giving?

Although, as something of an answer to this question...first of all, I get the impression that Led Zeppelin wasn't all that communicable with the press. I'm not really sure how much they talked with each other in those days. But in general, when asked about citing sources and such, the impression I've got is that the band is fairly defensive, with Jimmy Page constantly quoting his guitar parts as original and laying the blame on Plant for using other people's lyrics, while Robert Plant tends to shrug it off in a sense, believing that what he did was rather common and not such a huge problem.

Deja Vu
02-13-2005, 03:23 PM
Like Zharth said, I don't think Zep stopped covering so much because they were being caught. I don't think that kind of stuff happened until after the band had already ended in 1980, but I don't know for sure.

As for the press, the only specific time I can recall (not as if I would be one who would know a lot of interviews) that calls a specific Zep citation into account is the one on the Jake Holmes CD site where Jimmy seems ambigious and acts "what does <Jake Holmes> have, the riff?" and said that "I think Plant wrote some of the lyrics for that one." Interestingly enough... both of those statements appear to be true, since the bass riff is the thing that came from Jake Holmes's song, and most likley Robert Plant did have some hand in rewriting the lyrics for Dazed.

As for Zep IV... great stuff. I put in my battered old ZoSo CD yesterday to listen to Going To California and it actually worked for the first time in at least a year. Going To California is another one of Zep's lyrical masterpieces. Four Sticks may not be particularly psychadelic, but it's pretty progressive, not to mention awesome.

disraelimoon
02-13-2005, 04:36 PM
It seems to me that for the first album or two the band was just trying to do what they did best and play some electric blues and some cool folk stuff. After that, they found their groove. Over the next set of albums, I believe the level of "creative borrowing" dropped significantly, and they felt comfortable enough to do their own thing.

Dr. Weber
02-14-2005, 07:29 AM
Something I've been wondering . . . at what point did the Zeps began to notice that people were watching and researching and calling them on anything approaching "borrowing"? It seems that as time and albums went on there was less and less questionable crediting. When did the press start asking questions about song sources? And what were the answers they were giving?

In the Light, a thin, trade-sized paperback with a slight text and ample photographs by Howard Mylett and Richard Bunton, published in 1981, says: "'You Shook Me' and 'I Can't Quit You Babe' were the group's soulful musical workouts of two of Willie Dixon's original blues numbers..." And, "They managed to include a blues number they particularly liked , Robert Johnson's 'Traveling Riverside Blues.'" And, "'Gallows Pole' contains some fine drumwork and tortured vocals set against the old Leadbelly blues number." In other words, [i]some of the sources were mentioned in the rock press as early as 1981, but the authors fail to question the songwriting credits. The Dixon copyright infringement was widely known in the rock community prior to the lawsuit.

Zharth, there is a bootleg titled Studio Sessions that you would find fascinating... a guarantee. Among much else, it contains a rehearsal take of "Stairway To Heaven" that shows the creative process. At this point, the song is unfinished. They more or less have the shape designed, and a sense of the dynamics, but the final three stanzas haven't been written. Basically, they have the first 3 1/2 stanzas written, both the lyrics and the music. Plant rewrote the last few lines of the fourth stanza from what he sings on this rehearsal take. The "and it makes me wonder" refrain is "but I really want to know." Then in what is now known as the fifth and sixth stanzas - "bustle in your hedgerow" and "your head is humming and it won't go" - Plant breaks out into a series of "la-la-las" in synch with the music. They know where the guitar solo goes, but Page hasn't finalized it yet, meaning that his solo on this take differs from the album version... and sounds rather ineffectual except as a diagram. During Page's solo, the bassline sounds more prominent, and interesting, certainly different. That might be in the recording as much as in the performance. The climatic seventh stanza - "and as we wind on down the road" - hasn't been written. Plant ends the song with "and she's buying the stairway to heaven." This tells us that the title didn't come last in the compositional process.

Dr. Weber

disraelimoon
02-15-2005, 02:25 AM
[QUOTE=Harold]
Zharth, there is a bootleg titled Studio Sessions that you would find fascinating... a guarantee.
Dr. Weber

Where do you suggest I find this?

Speaking of, where do people find their bootlegs?

zeppboy
02-15-2005, 02:31 AM
[QUOTE=Harold]
Zharth, there is a bootleg titled Studio Sessions that you would find fascinating... a guarantee.
Dr. Weber

Where do you suggest I find this?

Speaking of, where do people find their bootlegs?
Sometimes you canfind them on ebay. I have got numerous Zeppelin bootlegs off of ebay. You can also try file sharing programs like Soul Seek. I have got boots off of Soul Seek before.

Spike
02-15-2005, 09:38 PM
Drat, I was certain that Since I've Been Loving You was a blues song prior to Zep's doing it. I'll have to try and find it.


Maybe you're thinking of "Ain't That Lovin' You Baby" by Jimmy Reed.

Spike

Spike
02-15-2005, 09:54 PM
I Can't Quit You Baby caused me a bit of distress. At first I was confused by the difference between the Willie Dixon version and the Otis Rush version, seeing as I had two different versions of the song credited to those two. Apparently a version was recorded in the 50's (1956 I believe) and another in the 60's (1968 I believe), but the confusion came when I came to the conclusion that both versions were supposedly recorded by Otis Rush, at least one of which (the earlier one I believe?) featured Willie Dixon himself playing bass.

Otis Rush originally recorded "I Can't Quit You Baby" (Cobra 5000) in Chicago in 1956 in a session produced by Willie Dixon. It featured Rush on vocal and guitar; Lucius Washington and Harold Ashby on tenor sax; Lafayette Leake on piano; Dixon on bass; and Al Duncan or Wayne Bennett on drums.

Spike

Spike
02-15-2005, 10:07 PM
Apparently John Paul Jones, who came up with the riff for this song, was inspired after listening to a Muddy Waters album titled Electric Mud, released in 1968, which was something like blues on acid - psychedelic music from the blues man Muddy Waters himself.


Stay away from Electric Mud. If I recall correctly, it said on the back "This is Muddy Waters' new album. He doesn't like it." For good reason. The record company was forcing him to play some awful music in a feeble attempt to sell records.

Spike

Spike
02-15-2005, 10:21 PM
This song might very well have been written with Haight-Ashbury/San Francisco/capitol of hippie idealism in mind, a place having plenty of girls with "love in [their] eyes and flowers in [their] hair", a fact that is reinforced by Scott McKenzie's song San Francisco, written for the Monterey International Pop Festival during the summer of love (June 1967), whose lyrics, including "if you're going to california, be sure to wear flowers in your hair", showed up in some of Zeppelin's extended jams, such as their performance of Dazed and Confused at The Song Remains The Same concert.


While sung by Scott McKenzie, the song was actually written by John Phillips of the Mamas and the Papas. Phillips and McKenzie had played together in The Journeymen, an early 60s folk trio.

Spike

Spike
02-15-2005, 10:55 PM
When The Levee Breaks [Jimmy Page, John Bonham, John Paul Jones, Memphis Minnie, Robert Plant]
This song was originally performed by Memphis Minnie and Kansas Joe, but Zeppelin turned it into a studio masterpiece. (The universal advice for this song is: listen to it through headphones.)

Technically, the original was by Kansas Joe and Memphis Minnie, at least that's how it's listed in Dixon, Goodrich and Rye.

Spike

Spike
02-15-2005, 11:14 PM
Great posts, zharth.
...I'd just like to say that I really appreciate you bringing this up. Obviously you've put quite some time into this and it's excelent. Great job, man.

Let me add my voice to Mr. Hampton's, zharth. Great thread. This site benefits from your good work. Thank you.

Spike

zharth
02-15-2005, 11:32 PM
Wow, a string of posts!

Otis Rush originally recorded "I Can't Quit You Baby" (Cobra 5000) in Chicago in 1956 in a session produced by Willie Dixon. It featured Rush on vocal and guitar; Lucius Washington and Harold Ashby on tenor sax; Lafayette Leake on piano; Dixon on bass; and Al Duncan or Wayne Bennett on drums.

Thanks, that clears that up.

Stay away from Electric Mud. If I recall correctly, it said on the back "This is Muddy Waters' new album. He doesn't like it." For good reason. The record company was forcing him to play some awful music in a feeble attempt to sell records.

I got the impression they were trying to get a real blues player to do the kind of psychedelic acid rock treatment that other bands of the time were doing to classic blues songs. An interesting idea for an experiment, and I can understand the reservations, but I can't help but be a little interested.

While sung by Scott McKenzie, the song was actually written by John Phillips of the Mamas and the Papas. Phillips and McKenzie had played together in The Journeymen, an early 60s folk trio.

Indeed, I was considering mentioning that, though I had gotten to a point where the sentence seemed to be more than long enough already. :lol:

Let me add my voice to Mr. Hampton's, zharth. Great thread. This site benefits from your good work. Thank you.

And thank you for your consideration. I never know when my ideas will get a favorable response or not, so in this case I am ecstatic. I will mention again that it's so much fun doing research on something that you have a true interest in, without any pressure from anyone but yourself to do it.

As a side note, does anybody have any idea where I might be able to get a hold of an album that was released in 1969, self-titled, by a band called Fear Itself, featuring Ellen McIlwaine? They did a cover of In My Time Of Dying, and I've gotten a tip that it ends with 'my dying cough.' The possibility is mesmerizing.

zharth
02-16-2005, 07:17 PM
Double album time - Physical Graffiti!

Custard Pie [Jimmy Page, Robert Plant]
This song may be loosely inspired by Bukka White's Shake 'Em On Down. It also features lyrics from Sleepy John Estes' Drop Down Mama [Drop Down Daddy?] (which was also covered by Big Joe Williams). The song bears some lyrical resemblance to Sonny Terry's Custard Pie Blues and Blind Boy Fuller's I Want Some Of Your Pie. Some of the history of these songs is a little confusing.
The Rover [Jimmy Page, Robert Plant]
As far as I can tell, this is an original tune.
In My Time Of Dying [Jimmy Page, John Bonham, John Paul Jones, Robert Plant]
This song was originally recorded as Jesus Make Up My Dying Bed by Blind Willie Johnson, which was also covered by Josh White. Bob Dylan also recorded a version of the song titled In My Time Of Dying on his debut album in 1962. A band called Fear Itself covered the song (with the title In My Time Of Dying) on their self-titled 1969 album, possibly with the ending "my dying cough." I have yet to acquire this version of the song, however, so I cannot be sure.
Houses of the Holy [Jimmy Page, Robert Plant]
As far as I can tell, this is an original tune.
Trampled Under Foot [Jimmy Page, John Paul Jones, Robert Plant]
The theme of this song, likening a car to a woman, quite possibly has its roots in a song by Robert Johnson titled Terraplane Blues. Also, the riff may be loosely inspired by Stevie Wonder's Superstition, released on his 1972 album Talking Book. (I dunno how likely the connection is, but the riff in Superstition does have a generally similar feel to Trampled Underfoot).
Kashmir [Jimmy Page, John Bonham, Robert Plant]
As far as I can tell, this is an original tune, though its sound was likely influenced by the exotic indian music that Led Zeppelin (especially Robert Plant) had a creative interest in at the time. I've also heard that the origin of the main riff was actually developed from a pattern Jimmy would play while tuning his guitar. I find that rather fascinating, since I myself have a kind of groove I get into when I'm tuning my guitar, and I almost spontaneously broke into song one time...
In The Light [Jimmy Page, John Paul Jones, Robert Plant]
As far as I can tell, this is an original tune.
Bron-Yr-Aur [Jimmy Page]
As far as I can tell, this is an original tune.
Down By The Seaside [Jimmy Page, Robert Plant]
As far as I can tell, this is an original tune. I have, however, read that it could have in some way been a nod to Neil Young. Whether or not this is true, I do not know, but I do know that Robert Plant was at least aware of Neil Young's music, seeing as he was a fan of Buffalo Springfield, even covering their popular song For What It's Worth in some of Zeppelin's jams (though this 'cover' was hardly more than the use of the lyrics from the song). An interesting note is that, the Neil Young song whose title bears similarity to this song, namely Down By The River, has actually been quoted by Plant in some of Zeppelin's jams, specifically the line 'be on my side or be on your side, there is no reason for you to hide,' which Plant actually speaks *twice* on the Royal Alberts Hall section of the Led Zeppelin DVD, as you can check for yourself. Personally, I've never thought of this song being in any way similar to Neil Young's music, but if anything the similarity could be as little as just the title.
Ten Years Gone [Jimmy Page, Robert Plant]
As far as I can tell, this is an original tune.
Night Flight [Jimmy Page, John Paul Jones, Robert Plant]
As far as I can tell, this is an original tune.
Wanton Song [Jimmy Page, Robert Plant]
As far as I can tell, this is an original tune.
Boogie With Stu [Jimmy Page, John Bonham, John Paul Jones, Robert Plant, Ian Stewart, Mrs. Valens]
This is actually a song titled Ooh! My Head by Ritchie Valens, which was actually a rip-off of Ooh! My Soul by Little Richard. Led Zeppelin credited Mrs. Valens because they had supposedly heard that she wasn't getting any royalties from her late son's music.
Black Country Woman [Jimmy Page, Robert Plant]
As far as I can tell, this is an original tune.
Sick Again [Jimmy Page, Robert Plant]
As far as I can tell, this is an original tune.

Deja Vu
02-16-2005, 07:34 PM
A nod to Neil Young, eh? Well that's, needless to say, a concept that I enjoy. I agree that there's virtually nothing in common between Down By The Seaside and Neil Young aside from the similarity to Down By The River (which are in fact two song titles I have mixed up before in speech). Wasn't Down By The Seaside recorded back in the days of Led Zeppelin III or possibly Led Zeppelin II (maybe Houses, but I think it was III)? That would place it closer to Neil Young's classic material, I guess.

Worthy of mention - Neil Young and Led Zeppelin (Page/Plant/Jones) jammed with Neil Young at the Rock N Roll Hall of Fame induction ceremony (I think '94). I had the When The Levee Breaks performance from Kazaa at one time. If I recall accurately, the performance was terrible, but if I were to hear it today I bet I'd like it.

Black Country Woman astounds me. It is a song that I listened to on Phys and decided it was one of Led Zeppelin's worst songs. Then... one day... I listened to it again. Oh my! It's become for me a symbol of Zeppelin's supremecy because it is such an amazing song despite it's devience from the things that make Led Zeppelin traditionally great. A similar thing happened to me with Friends off of III.

Spike
02-16-2005, 09:43 PM
Custard Pie [Jimmy Page, Robert Plant]
This song may be loosely inspired by Bukka White's Shake 'Em On Down. It also features lyrics from Sleepy John Estes' Drop Down Mama [Drop Down Daddy?] (which was also covered by Big Joe Williams). The song bears some lyrical resemblance to Sonny Terry's Custard Pie Blues and Blind Boy Fuller's I Want Some Of Your Pie. Some of the history of these songs is a little confusing.


I don't see much connection between this track and Bukka White's Shake 'Em on Down, other than lifting a phrase or two. To me, it borrows much more from Sleepy John's Drop Down Mama. (I don't have the Sonny Terry or Blind Boy Fuller tracks.)

Spike

zharth
02-16-2005, 11:24 PM
I don't see much connection between this track and Bukka White's Shake 'Em on Down, other than lifting a phrase or two. To me, it borrows much more from Sleepy John's Drop Down Mama. (I don't have the Sonny Terry or Blind Boy Fuller tracks.)

I'd be inclined to agree with you there, especially since Shake 'Em On Down was already largely used for Hats Off To (Roy) Harper. But considering the list of songs I've found with a connection to Custard Pie, and all the similar titles and various covers that confused me so much, I figured it'd be worth mentioning the title. It makes it hard when I can't even find lyrics to some of these songs, but I listened to Shake 'Em On Down earlier today and I remember hearing some sort of 'drop down' lyric, which might warrant a connection, albeit if you ignore Drop Down Mama (or Drop Down Daddy, whichever one it's actually called).

A nod to Neil Young, eh? Well that's, needless to say, a concept that I enjoy. I agree that there's virtually nothing in common between Down By The Seaside and Neil Young aside from the similarity to Down By The River (which are in fact two song titles I have mixed up before in speech). Wasn't Down By The Seaside recorded back in the days of Led Zeppelin III or possibly Led Zeppelin II (maybe Houses, but I think it was III)? That would place it closer to Neil Young's classic material, I guess.

I seem to recall reading that it was recorded around the time of the fourth album (along with Boogie With Stu and Night Flight). I also remember thinking how different the fourth album would have been if they'd included Down By The Seaside on it...

Spike
02-16-2005, 11:48 PM
I listened to Shake 'Em On Down earlier today and I remember hearing some sort of 'drop down' lyric, which might warrant a connection, albeit if you ignore Drop Down Mama (or Drop Down Daddy, whichever one it's actually called).

It's Drop Down Mama. It's a favorite of mine. This is from memory, but part of the lyric is "these women make me so tired/a hand full of gimme/and a mouth full of much obliged." It was recorded by Sleepy John Estes, accompanied by Hammie Nixon on harp, on July 17, 1935 in Chicago.

Spike

zharth
02-18-2005, 09:52 PM
This is beginning to get easy. Here's Presence:

Achilles Last Stand [Jimmy Page, Robert Plant]
As far as I can tell, this is an original tune, written especially about Plant's trip to Morroco.
For Your Life [Jimmy Page, Robert Plant]
As far as I can tell, this is an original tune.
Royal Orleans [Jimmy Page, John Bonham, John Paul Jones, Robert Plant]
This tune was likely inspired by the New Orleans brand of funky rock n rollers, specifically a band called The Meters. This song has been compared to both Chicken Strut and Cissy Strut by The Meters. Although there are no direct similarities, of the two, Cissy Strut sounds closer to Royal Orleans, although in general Chicken Strut is the more entertaining song (rather humorous actually).
Nobody's Fault But Mine [Jimmy Page, Robert Plant]
This song was original recorded by Blind Willie Johnson, and it was about reading the bible to save the soul. John Renbourn also covered the song.
Candy Store Rock [Jimmy Page, Robert Plant]
As far as I can tell this is an original tune, possibly written with classic 50's rock n roll a la Elvis Presley, on the mind.
Hots On For Nowhere [Jimmy Page, Robert Plant]
As far as I can tell, this is an original tune.
Tea For One [Jimmy Page, Robert Plant]
As far as I can tell, this is an original tune.

mikewiz
02-22-2005, 01:09 AM
Hello,

I saw Zeppelin on their first tour of the US in Chicago at the Kinetic Playground. The bill that night was The Litter, a local Chicago group, Savoy Brown, a blues group from England, Jethro Tull, which were just starting out and very bluesy at the time, and Led Zeppelin. I think the ticket for the show was between $5 to $7. It was a GREAT show because, all those groups were hungry to conquer America and they played their hearts out.

In later years, when Zep released Houses of the Holy, I had a chance to see them again in Chicago. And the hungry years were over, they had already conquered the world. Unfortunately, the show was a disaster. The sound was horrible (a week or two early I had seen Jethro Tull in the same hall and their sound was perfect), the playing was extremely sloppy, especially from Jimmy Page, and Robert Plant wasn’t cutting it that night. It was just a bad show.

Any, about Stairway to Heaven . . . . .

The guys in Zeppelin were fans of an American group from California by the name of Spirit. When Spirit toured Europe in 68 or 69, the boys from Zep were right up their in the front rows to see the group and their guitar player, Randy California (Hendrix gave him the name and wanted him in the Experience but…..that’s another story).

Randy California wrote a song for the first Spirit album (Spirit) by the name of Taurus, which they performed on their European tour. And it was this song that strongly influenced Page to write the opening guitar intro to Stairway to Heaven. Just have a listen to Taurus and you’ll recognize the opening to Stairway immediately.

All the best,

Mike Wiz

Dr. Weber
02-24-2005, 02:54 AM
Over The Hills And Far Away [Jimmy Page, Robert Plant]
There's no telling if this has anything to do with the song, but I have heard reference to a poem written in 1955 by WH Auden that goes something like this:
"It is nonsense: the Myth of an Open Road
Which runs past the orchard gate and beckons
Three brothers in turn to set out over the hills
And far away, is an invention"

Tom, Tom, the piper's son,
He learned to play when he was young.
But all the tune that he could play
Was "Over the hills and far away."
-anonymous, "Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son" nursery rhyme

If with me you'd fondly stray.
Over the hills and far away.*
-John Gay (1685-1732), from The Beggar's Opera (1728)
* nicked from Thomas D'Urfrey, Pills To Purge Melancholy (1719)

And 'o'er the hills and far away
Beyond their utmost purple rim
Beyond the night, across the day
Through all the world she followed him
-Alfred, Lord Tennyson (1809-1892), from The Day Dream (1842)

Unless you have a primary source for the Auden reference, I wouldn't give it much weight considering the long history of the phrase in English literature.

That reminds me: what is your source for the bit about manipulating the tape speed of "No Quarter"? Is this from a primary source, say an interview with Jones or Page, or a secondary source that might be accurate? Or is it conjecture? I've learned that in the studio Jones played a Hohner Electra Piano processed through a VCS3 synthesizer. This combination seems sufficient to create the wobbly sound without manipulating the recording tape. Curious.

Keep up the good work.

Dr. Weber

zharth
02-24-2005, 02:50 PM
Wow, thanks for the material, Dr. Weber. You're probably right about the title, however, the fact that the Auden poem also mentions 'the Myth of an Open Road' makes me wonder about Plant's ramblings about the open road. Hard to say, but it struck me as something worth mentioning.

As for the No Quarter slow down thing, I'll have to check back through my resources to determine the reliability.

And thanks for the story, mikewiz. Always good to hear from people who had a chance to see Zeppelin perform in person.

zharth
02-25-2005, 10:22 PM
As for the No Quarter slow down thing, I'll have to check back through my resources to determine the reliability.

Here's what I found:

http://home.att.net/~chuckayoub/No_Quarter_lyrics.html
The version that made it to the album evolved out of a faster version they recorded earlier at Headley Grange, an old mansion in a remote part of England where they wrote and recorded many of their songs, including "Stairway To Heaven."

http://www.buckeye-web.com/ifmtl1.html
"No Quarter" - In a _Guitar_World_ interview Page revealed he
lowered the track half a tone to make "the track sound so much
thicker and more intense." Plant's voice is also slightly
flanged, while Page uses a theremin to create the moaning of
"the dogs of doom" that Plant sings about.

http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/tg/detail/-/1560251883/qid=1109380898/sr=1-3/ref=sr_1_3/002-1427853-0622447?v=glance&s=books
Dazed and Confused: The Stories Behind Every Song by Chris Welch
"Loose, not tight, 'No Quarter' had its origins in a piece tried out at Headley Grange, then slowed down in its final recorded version" (82).

Dr. Weber
02-25-2005, 11:42 PM
Here's what I found:

Just an acknowledgement note for now. Hope you didn't go to too much trouble. Will explore each source thoroughly. The Welch book sounds promising by the title alone.

I have a rehearsal take of "No Quarter" - live in the studio without tape manipulations - that, to these ears, sounds better than the final version. I have given thought to starting a "Zeppelin bootlegs" thread to discuss not only live performances but the construction and evolution of their songs in the studio.

Take care, Dr. Weber

Deja Vu
02-26-2005, 01:10 AM
One absolutely meaningless note - the phrase Over The Hills and Far Away also found it's way into Tom Sawyer. It seems kind of odd placement to me, it's like "Tom left the school yard and went over the hills and far away." or something like that. :)

zharth
02-26-2005, 01:30 AM
I have a rehearsal take of "No Quarter" - live in the studio without tape manipulations - that, to these ears, sounds better than the final version. I have given thought to starting a "Zeppelin bootlegs" thread to discuss not only live performances but the construction and evolution of their songs in the studio.

I think that sounds like a great idea. I mean, it's definitely hard stuff to get your hands on, but for people who do have bootleg material of pre-production stage songs, that would be a great thing to discuss. Besides live stuff, I myself only have a version of In The Light and a version of The Rover in preliminary stages. I would love to get my hands on some more if that were possible, though.

Harold
02-26-2005, 01:43 AM
As a side note, does anybody have any idea where I might be able to get a hold of an album that was released in 1969, self-titled, by a band called Fear Itself, featuring Ellen McIlwaine? They did a cover of In My Time Of Dying, and I've gotten a tip that it ends with 'my dying cough.' The possibility is mesmerizing.

You can buy a used copy of that Fear Itself album (cd or lp) at Gemm.com

zharth
02-26-2005, 02:29 AM
You can buy a used copy of that Fear Itself album (cd or lp) at Gemm.com

Thanks for the tip, I'm looking into it. :smile:

Dr. Weber
02-27-2005, 06:40 PM
I would love to get my hands on some more if that were possible, though.

An excellent place to start is Led Zeppelin Sessions, an 11CD bootleg set of works-in-progress, rehearsal takes, rare live performances, etc. Another good boot is The Stairway Sessions, a 2CD set modest in scope. It concentrates on the third and fourth albums and contains, as examples, an instrumental track of "Stairway To Heaven" as well as vocal takes.

Saw on another crf2 thread that you play guitar and, specifically, the intro of "Stairway To Heaven." On the rehearsal take I mentioned earlier in this thread, Page plays the intro as a coda after Plant sings "and she's buying the stairway to heaven."

Dr. Weber

zharth
03-02-2005, 12:09 AM
Let's round it out with the last album Zeppelin released while they were still together, In Through The Out Door...

In The Evening [Jimmy Page, John Paul Jones, Robert Plant]
As far as I can tell, this is an original tune.
South Bound Saurez [John Paul Jones, Robert Plant]
As far as I can tell, this is an original tune. Saurez is actually a misspelling of Suarez (how that managed to slip past I have no idea, yet it makes it all feel more real, and more human, kind of like the way that Jimmy's solos might hit odd notes here and there, but it adds to the realism of the playing...or something).
Fool in the Rain [Jimmy Page, John Paul Jones, Robert Plant]
As far as I can tell, this is an original tune, with some Samba influences.
Hot Dog [Jimmy Page, Robert Plant]
As far as I can tell, this is an original tune, though it is supposedly a rockabilly 'tribute', and borderlines on the satirical.
Carouselambra [Jimmy Page, John Paul Jones, Robert Plant]
As far as I can tell, this is an original tune.
All My Love [John Paul Jones, Robert Plant]
As far as I can tell this is an original tune, written by Robert Plant about his son Karac's death in 1977.
I'm Gonna Crawl [Jimmy Page, John Paul Jones, Robert Plant]
Supposedly this song was inspired by Wilson Pickett. I'm not sure of the validity, but I have heard that "there are references in the lyrics to songs by Wilson Pickett, O.V. Wright and Otis Redding."

zharth
03-10-2005, 03:51 AM
And now let's bring it on home with Led Zeppelin's CODA:

We're Gonna Groove [Ben E. King, James Bethea]
Originally written by Ben E. King and James Bethea, though I haven't managed to get my hands on any pre-Zeppelin versions as of yet.
Poor Tom [Jimmy Page, Robert Plant]
This is actually a take on an original song by Robert Wilkins titled That's No Way To Get Along. You might notice that the song Prodigal Son by the Rolling Stones is also a cover of this Robert Wilkins song. As the story goes, the seventh son in the family is supposedly stricken with bad luck, but to make up for it, he is given supernatural powers. The seventh son of the seventh son has even greater powers.
I Can't Quit You Baby [Willie Dixon]
(See Led Zeppelin's first album.)
Walter's Walk [Jimmy Page, Robert Plant]
As far as I can tell, this is an original tune.
Ozone Baby [Jimmy Page, Robert Plant]
As far as I can tell, this is an original tune.
Darlene [John Bonham, John Paul Jones, Jimmy Page, Robert Plant]
As far as I can tell, this is an original tune.
Bonzo's Montreux [John Bonham]
As far as I can tell, this is an original tune.
Wearing And Tearing [Jimmy Page, Robert Plant]
As far as I can tell this is an original tune, and was supposedly meant to pass off as a punk hit. Led Zeppelin apparently wanted to release the song under an alias, hoping that the song would be received by the punk audience for what it was, without being immediately labeled as Led Zeppelin, who were by this time considered 'dinosaurs of rock.' Zeppelin wanted to prove that they were still relevant, even among this new wave of punk.

Deja Vu
03-10-2005, 04:41 PM
Wearing And Tearing [Jimmy Page, Robert Plant]
As far as I can tell this is an original tune, and was supposedly meant to pass off as a punk hit. Led Zeppelin apparently wanted to release the song under an alias, hoping that the song would be received by the punk audience for what it was, without being immediately labeled as Led Zeppelin, who were by this time considered 'dinosaurs of rock.' Zeppelin wanted to prove that they were still relevant, even among this new wave of punk.

Sweet! It's always awesome when a band goes under an alias to release cool stuff.


Let's round it out with the last album Zeppelin released while they were still together, In Through The Out Door...

(how that managed to slip past I have no idea, yet it makes it all feel more real, and more human, kind of like the way that Jimmy's solos might hit odd notes here and there, but it adds to the realism of the playing...or something).

For, the record, I like Jimmy's "odd" notes. :):headbange

zharth
03-10-2005, 09:38 PM
Sweet! It's always awesome when a band goes under an alias to release cool stuff.

To me, it seems to carry the same kind of ideology that went behind Zeppelin releasing their fourth album without a title, and with no information on the cover (originally). They wanted people to listen to the music, without having preconceptions about who made it under what circumstances. They wanted people to pick up the album because they wanted to hear the music, not simply because it was Led Zeppelin's new album. And I think the fact that Zeppelin didn't like to release singles also follows that line of thought. They wanted people to listen to the music on their albums, not just the songs they liked. Led Zeppelin really was a remarkable group. I love how they play, but I also like how they think.

swandown
03-20-2005, 07:53 AM
Hi,

I'm new to this site (and a bit late to the party, it seems) but I'm a longtime Led Zeppelin fan/collector/historian/scholar/trivia geek and I think I can help fill in some of the missing pieces of zharth's puzzle.

Here's what I can add to your research (going album-by-album):

Dazed and Confused [Jimmy Page]
A song by Jake Holmes, from his album "The Above Ground Sound Of Jake Holmes." Jake Holmes apparently shared the bill with the Yardbirds at some point

It was 8/25/67 at New York's Village Theater (later renamed The Fillmore East). The Yardbirds immediately went about re-working it for their own use. The Yardbirds' version recycles about 90% of Holmes' lyrics while Zep's version uses about 10% of the original's lyrics.

Black Mountain Side [Jimmy Page]
An original song titled Black Waterside by Bert Jansch.

Not an original, but a traditional song dating back (possibly hundreds of) years. Page says he first heard the song from Annie Briggs, although Al Stewart claims he taught the song to Page in 1966, and Bert Jansch had recorded it around this time as well.

Communication Breakdown [Jimmy Page, John Bonham, John Paul Jones]
Possibly inspired by Eddie Cochran's "Nervous Breakdown".

As far as I know, only the song title was inspired by Cochran. The two songs are 100% different in terms of music and lyrics.

How Many More Times [Jimmy Page, John Bonham, John Paul Jones]

Other likely influences: "Steal Away" by Alexis Korner & Robert Plant (1968) and "Oh Rosie" (a traditional song).

Moby Dick [Jimmy Page, John Bonham, John Paul Jones]
The guitar riff in this song resembles that of a song called Watch Your Step by Bobby Parker. This riff was allegedly developed from Zeppelin's cover of The Girl I Love

Actually, the riff is not present in the Sleepy John Estes original. There's no direct connection to Estes' song and "Moby Dick".

Bring It On Home [Jimmy Page, Robert Plant]
Written by Willie Dixon

Dixon wrote the intro & outro but his song has no connection to the middle section of Zep's song.

Since I've Been Loving You [Jimmy Page, John Paul Jones, Robert Plant]
There are some startling similarities between this song and Moby Grape's Never, including some of the lyrics.

Plant also "borrows" some lines from Elmore James' "Mean Mistreatin' Mama" (1961). And yes Plant was a huge Moby Grape fan, having covered at least 4 of their songs over the years.

Out On The Tiles [Jimmy Page, John Bonham, Robert Plant]
As far as I can tell, this is an original tune, inspired by a little Bonham ditty

I believe that ditty is taken from an old English drinking song -- a classic example of one song inspiring another without really influencing the music or lyrics.

Tangerine [Jimmy Page]
Originally written with the Yardbirds, was nearly released as Knowing That I'm Losing You

From what I have read, the two songs are fairly different. One verse in "Tangerine" is borrowed from the Yardbirds song, but the rest of the lyrics (including the "Tangerine..." chorus) are unique. Also, it has yet to be confirmed if Keith Relf wrote all the lyrics on the original song.

Stairway To Heaven [Jimmy Page, Robert Plant]
The opening to this song bears a mysterious similarity to a song by Spirit titled Taurus.

True, although it also bears a similarity to several other songs -- "And She's Lonely" by the Chocolate Watch Band, "Ice Cream Dreams" by Cartoone, and even "Babe I'm Gonna Leave You" by Led Zeppelin. I tend to doubt that any one of those sources was the sole inspiration for that opening guitar run.

Going To California [Jimmy Page, Robert Plant]
This song was written with Joni Mitchell in mind, as Robert Plant and Jimmy Page both respected her as artists. Robert Plant even said once, "when you're in love with Joni Mitchell, you've really got to write about it now and again". Joni had a song titled California on her album Blue, which has a similar mood.

I have read of a link between "Going To California" and "California" before......but.......I believe Mitchell's song wasn't released until June 1971 (several months after the Zep song was recorded).

The Crunge

In addition to James Brown, the song also makes references to Wilson Pickett ("Mr. Pitiful") and Otis Redding ("Respect").

Dancing Days [Jimmy Page, Robert Plant]
As far as I can tell, this is an original tune.

Yes, although Page & Plant were inspired to write the song after hearing some musicians playing on the streets of Bombay, India.

Custard Pie [Jimmy Page, Robert Plant]
This song may be loosely inspired by Bukka White's Shake 'Em On Down. It also features lyrics from Sleepy John Estes' Drop Down Mama [Drop Down Daddy?] (which was also covered by Big Joe Williams). The song bears some lyrical resemblance to Sonny Terry's Custard Pie Blues and Blind Boy Fuller's I Want Some Of Your Pie. Some of the history of these songs is a little confusing.

As far as I know, the lyrics are taken mostly from "Drop Down Mama" by Sleepy John Estes (1935) and "Custard Pie Blues" by Sonny Terry (1953). But Terry's song was actually a re-write of Blind Boy Fuller's "I Want Some Of Your Pie" (1939).

Boogie With Stu [Jimmy Page, John Bonham, John Paul Jones, Robert Plant, Ian Stewart, Mrs. Valens]
This is actually a song titled Ooh! My Head by Ritchie Valens, which was actually a rip-off of Ooh! My Soul by Little Richard. Led Zeppelin credited Mrs. Valens because they had supposedly heard that she wasn't getting any royalties from her late son's music

Correct. According to Page, Valens' publishers later tried to sue for 100% of the song's royalties -- they settled for a fairly hefty sum but I don't know if Valens' mom saw a dime of it.

Nobody's Fault But Mine [Jimmy Page, Robert Plant]
This song was original recorded by Blind Willie Johnson

Robert Plant once claimed that the song pre-dates Johnson and that it's public domain. I don't know if that's true but there's only a 4-year gap between Johnson's song (1927) and the cutoff date for songs in the public domain (1923).

Poor Tom [Jimmy Page, Robert Plant]
This is actually a take on an original song by Robert Wilkins titled That's No Way To Get Along.

I'm not sure it's fair to call it a "take" so much as a "variation on a similar theme". I should also note that the music in "Poor Tom" bears some resemblance to an obscure track by Owen Hand called "She Likes It".

We're Gonna Groove [Ben E. King, James Bethea]
Originally written by Ben E. King and James Bethea, though I haven't managed to get my hands on any pre-Zeppelin versions as of yet.

Look for an obscure Ben E. King B-side called "Groovin'", from 1963. Manfred Mann also did a version (1964).

Anyway, I hope you find this information to be helpful. :smile:

Dr. Weber
03-21-2005, 07:09 PM
Hi,

I'm new to this site (and a bit late to the party, it seems) but I'm a longtime Led Zeppelin fan/collector/historian/scholar/trivia geek and I think I can help fill in some of the missing pieces of zharth's puzzle.

Stairway To Heaven [Jimmy Page, Robert Plant]
The opening to this song bears a mysterious similarity to a song by Spirit titled Taurus.

True, although it also bears a similarity to several other songs -- "And She's Lonely" by the Chocolate Watch Band, "Ice Cream Dreams" by Cartoone, and even "Babe I'm Gonna Leave You" by Led Zeppelin. I tend to doubt that any one of those sources was the sole inspiration for that opening guitar run.

Anyway, I hope you find this information to be helpful. :smile:

Greetings and welcome to the forums. We might appear to be slow to respond to your fine, informative post, but make no mistake, it has been, and continues to be, read. In fact, I'm busy taking notes. (I believe zharth is a college student on spring break.)

I noticed that you never mentioned Audience in the "Stairway To Heaven" quote. What's your take? I refer to "House On the Hill" in an earlier post, and the subject popped up on the "Audience" thread in the '70s section, where a member mentions "Maiden's Glory."

Dr. Weber

Deja Vu
03-21-2005, 11:25 PM
Thanks swandown! You've give a ton of great info!

About Dazed and Confused... that's one of the few songs that I actually know well in its pre-Zep vesion and I tend to think that the lyrics were completely re-written other than "...Dazed and Confused..." so I'd say it's less than 10%. I think both Jake's and Zep's had great lyrics but that the two different versions of the song were about different things. :)

A couple of questions that were sparked while reading that big post, for anybody -

So how much of Since I've Been Loving You is original? For a very long time I've considered it a cover since I heard a clip of an old blues version of it on one of the Zep sites (does Moby Grape's Never sound old or bluesy?) If SIBLY is actually an original tune then that's pretty sweet.

So Nobody's Fault But Mine is a cover, then? I had heard that it was a cover and then heard that the original had little resemblence to the Zep song. Ooooh, one thing that you should do, Zharth, for your mega-sweet ultimate info site, you should explain what common misconceptions are about a song, because there are tons of common misconceptions about all of this stuff. If you type in "Jake Holmes Dazed And Confused" into Google you'll come up with at least one site that claims Dazed And Confused was a song called I'm Confused that was about a bad acid trip.

As for Black Mountainside... I've heard that there are like 4 songs that it has possible relation to and that it is indeed a very old song...

zharth
03-22-2005, 06:31 PM
(I believe zharth is a college student on spring break.)

Indeed, you are correct. But now I am back, not only to immerse myself in my [annoying] collegiate studies, but also into my studies of Zeppelin's various influences. Looks like this project is going to take longer than I had planned, but that's fine, I'm still determined to digest all the information I can find.

On that note, thank you very much for your contribution, swandown. Quite a few of your tips are new information to me, so I am looking forward to investigating each one.

As far as your comment on SIBLY, Deja Vu, I can't be sure as I haven't heard the clip you refer to, but Moby Grape's version is definitely bluesy (don't know about it sounding old, though). Never is a slow, rather quiet blues, and although some of the lines and general lyrical ideas are similar to SIBLY, it wouldn't feel right to me to call SIBLY a cover. Certainly, beyond the blues format (which has been played with countless times in countless ways by blues and rock bands) and the opening notes, the music itself is original. I'd tell you to listen to the clip they have at .org but I can't seem to access the site at the moment.

swandown
03-24-2005, 02:11 PM
I noticed that you never mentioned Audience in the "Stairway To Heaven" quote. What's your take? I refer to "House On the Hill" in an earlier post, and the subject popped up on the "Audience" thread in the '70s section, where a member mentions "Maiden's Glory."

I presume you're referring to "Maiden's Cry". It does have a similar feel to "Stairway", what with the mythical lyrics and the flute and all. But the actual melody bears little resemblance to any part of "Stairway To Heaven". Spirit's "Taurus" is a bigger influence, IMO.

So how much of Since I've Been Loving You is original?

It's hard to find a truly original blues tune! The music in SIBLY is much more original than the lyrics (although the opening notes do seem to be taken from The Yardbirds' "New York City Blues"). The first verse of the lyrics is taken from Moby Grape's "Never". From there, Plant seems to quote from numerous blues cliches ("you didn't mean me no good", "lose my worried mind", "back door man", etc.) The only line I think is a direct lift is Do you remember mama when I knocked upon your door/I said you had the nerve to tell me you didn't want me no more which is definitely a variation on "Mean Mistreater Mama" by Leroy Carr (1934) (later popularized by Elmore James, among others).

The music in SIBLY is much different than the music in Moby Grape's "Never".

So Nobody's Fault But Mine is a cover, then? I had heard that it was a cover and then heard that the original had little resemblence to the Zep song.

They didn't have electric guitars in 1927! LOL

zeppboy
03-24-2005, 05:44 PM
I presume you're referring to "Maiden's Cry". It does have a similar feel to "Stairway", what with the mythical lyrics and the flute and all. But the actual melody bears little resemblance to any part of "Stairway To Heaven". Spirit's "Taurus" is a bigger influence, IMO.


Thank you, I have said that before on here. I am glad someone else sees this.

zharth
03-26-2005, 04:07 AM
And now for some odds & ends:

From Led Zeppelin's BBC Sessions:

The Girl I Love She Got Long Black Wavy Hair [Jimmy Page, John Bonham, John Paul Jones, Robert Plant, Sleepy John Estes]
An original tune by Sleepy John Estes' titled The Girl I Love She Got Long Curly Hair, Robert Plant tweaked the lyrics slightly to suit his situation. The lyrics are from this classic song, but the music performed by Zeppelin is original.
Traveling Riverside Blues [Jimmy Page, Robert Plant, Robert Johnson]
Traveling Riverside Blues is a song by Robert Johnson, and for Led Zeppelin's version, they added some influences from other songs as well. Also by Robert Johnson, some lyrics from Kindhearted Woman and Come In My Kitchen make their way into Zeppelin's version, in addition to Milk Cow Blues by Kokomo Arnold. The music Zeppelin played for this song is apparently similar to a song by Johnny Winter titled Leavin' Home Blues (Leavin' Blues?), though I have yet to track down this song.
Somethin' Else [Eddie Cochran, Sharon Sheeley]
This is a song by Eddie Cochran.

And some misfits that can be found somewhere in the box sets:

White Summer [?]
This song was part of Jimmy Page's repertoire back in his days with the Yardbirds, and was actually recorded as an instrumental acoustic track with the Yardbirds. It was also performed live in concert with the Yardbirds, much like the way Led Zeppelin would not much later. The song itself comes from a Bert Jansch song titled 'She Moved Through The Fair' (or alternately She Moved Thru the Bizarre). In addition to Black Mountain Side, Jimmy Page tended to add sections of other songs to the instrumental jam, including Bert Jansch's Casbah and Anne Brigg's Go Your Way My Love (also recorded by Bert Jansch), and even the unreleased (uncompleted) Swan Song in later years, apparently.
Hey Hey What Can I Do [?]
As far as I can tell, this is an original tune, though it makes a brief reference to John Lee Hooker's Boogie Chillun.
Baby Come On Home [Berns/Page/Plant?]
I'll be honest, there's not much I can say about this song, as I don't think I've ever even heard it. Anybody else have any info?

disraelimoon
03-26-2005, 04:58 AM
I would love to get my hands on some more if that were possible, though.

An excellent place to start is Led Zeppelin Sessions, an 11CD bootleg set of works-in-progress, rehearsal takes, rare live performances, etc. Another good boot is The Stairway Sessions, a 2CD set modest in scope. It concentrates on the third and fourth albums and contains, as examples, an instrumental track of "Stairway To Heaven" as well as vocal takes.

Saw on another crf2 thread that you play guitar and, specifically, the intro of "Stairway To Heaven." On the rehearsal take I mentioned earlier in this thread, Page plays the intro as a coda after Plant sings "and she's buying the stairway to heaven."

Dr. Weber


Where can I purchase this?

Satchmo
03-29-2005, 03:41 AM
And now for some odds & ends:

From Led Zeppelin's BBC Sessions:

The Girl I Love She Got Long Black Wavy Hair [Jimmy Page, John Bonham, John Paul Jones, Robert Plant, Sleepy John Estes]
An original tune by Sleepy John Estes' titled The Girl I Love She Got Long Curly Hair, Robert Plant tweaked the lyrics slightly to suit his situation. The lyrics are from this classic song, but the music performed by Zeppelin is original.
Traveling Riverside Blues [Jimmy Page, Robert Plant, Robert Johnson]
Traveling Riverside Blues is a song by Robert Johnson, and for Led Zeppelin's version, they added some influences from other songs as well. Also by Robert Johnson, some lyrics from Kindhearted Woman and Come In My Kitchen make their way into Zeppelin's version, in addition to Milk Cow Blues by Kokomo Arnold. The music Zeppelin played for this song is apparently similar to a song by Johnny Winter titled Leavin' Home Blues (Leavin' Blues?), though I have yet to track down this song.
Somethin' Else [Eddie Cochran, Sharon Sheeley]
This is a song by Eddie Cochran.

And some misfits that can be found somewhere in the box sets:

White Summer [?]
This song was part of Jimmy Page's repertoire back in his days with the Yardbirds, and was actually recorded as an instrumental acoustic track with the Yardbirds. It was also performed live in concert with the Yardbirds, much like the way Led Zeppelin would not much later. The song itself comes from a Bert Jansch song titled 'She Moved Through The Fair' (or alternately She Moved Thru the Bizarre). In addition to Black Mountain Side, Jimmy Page tended to add sections of other songs to the instrumental jam, including Bert Jansch's Casbah and Anne Brigg's Go Your Way My Love (also recorded by Bert Jansch), and even the unreleased (uncompleted) Swan Song in later years, apparently.
Hey Hey What Can I Do [?]
As far as I can tell, this is an original tune, though it makes a brief reference to John Lee Hooker's Boogie Chillun.
Baby Come On Home [Berns/Page/Plant?]
I'll be honest, there's not much I can say about this song, as I don't think I've ever even heard it. Anybody else have any info?


Baby, Come On Home was written by Bert Berns for Solomon Burke's record King Solomon.

swandown
03-29-2005, 11:22 AM
Hi again -- I'm back with more corrections/comments. :)

The Girl I Love She Got Long Black Wavy Hair [Jimmy Page, John Bonham, John Paul Jones, Robert Plant, Sleepy John Estes]
An original tune by Sleepy John Estes' titled The Girl I Love She Got Long Curly Hair, Robert Plant tweaked the lyrics slightly to suit his situation. The lyrics are from this classic song, but the music performed by Zeppelin is original.

Actually, only the first verse is from Estes' song. The rest of the lyrics are taken from random blues songs/themes, including Willie Dixon's "Let Me Love You".

Traveling Riverside Blues [Jimmy Page, Robert Plant, Robert Johnson]
Traveling Riverside Blues is a song by Robert Johnson, and for Led Zeppelin's version, they added some influences from other songs as well. Also by Robert Johnson, some lyrics from Kindhearted Woman and Come In My Kitchen make their way into Zeppelin's version, in addition to Milk Cow Blues by Kokomo Arnold. The music Zeppelin played for this song is apparently similar to a song by Johnny Winter titled Leavin' Home Blues (Leavin' Blues?), though I have yet to track down this song.

I've heard "Leavin' Blues" and the similarity (one slide riff, really) is tenuous at best. As for the lyrics, here's a rundown of Zep's version:

*Asked sweet mama, let me a-be her kid
*She said, ah, "You might get hurt, if you do you'll a-keep it hid"
Well ah-hah, I know my baby if I see her in the dark
I said I know my rider if I see her in the dark
#Now, I'm goin' to Rosedale, take my rider by my side
#Still barrelhouse, but it's on the riverside, yeah
I know my baby, Lord, I said, is really sloppy drunk
I know my mama, Lord, a brownskin, but she ain't no bum, ah-hah.
See my baby, tell her, tell her hurry home
Had no lovin', since my baby get born, yeah
See my baby, tell hurry on home
I ain't had, no, my right mind since my rider's been gone.
Hey, I wanna say, she's my rider
I wanna tell you, she's my rider
I know you're mine, she's my rider
She ain't but sixteen, but she's my rider.
#I'm goin' to Rosedale, take my rider by side
Anybody argue with me man, I keep them satisfied
%Well see my baby, tell her, tell her the shape I'm in
Ain't had no lovin', Lord, since you know when.
@Ah, why don't you come in my kitchen
+She's a kindhearted baby, she studies evil all the time
+She's a kindhearted woman, studies evil all the time
#Squeeze my lemon 'till the juice runs down my leg
#Squeeze it so hard I fall right out of bed, will you
#Squeeze my lemon 'till the juice runs down my leg
#I wonder if you know what I'm talkin' about
#Oh, well the way that you squeeze it girl
#I swear I'm gonna fall right out of bed
Ah, she's a good rider, hey yeah
+She's my kindhearted baby
#I wanna take my rider by my side yeah
+I said her front teeth are lined with gold
+She's gotta mortgage on my body, gotta lien on my soul
~She's my brownskin sugar plum, she make me

* derived from Sleepy John Estes' "Milk Cow Blues"
# Robert Johnson's "Travelling Riverside Blues"
% variation on St. Louis Jimmy Oden's "Goin' Down Slow"
@ Robert Johnson's "Come Into My Kitchen"
+ Robert Johnson's "Kindhearted Woman"
~ derived from Blind Boy Fuller's "Brownskin Sugar Plum"

swandown
03-29-2005, 11:45 AM
Baby, Come On Home was written by Bert Berns for Solomon Burke's record King Solomon.

Berns had produced an earlier version of the song (1964) by Hoagy Lands, and I believe it was Lands' version that influenced Zep....for the following reasons:

1. The guitar riff in Lands' version sounds a lot more like Zep's version. (Burke's version has a more generic, blues-based riff, without the trademark echo/reverb).

2. Lands' version featured Jimmy's old session buddy Mike Leander on guitar (perhaps Leander told Jimmy about the song?)

By the way, Zep completely changed the lyrics for their version of the song -- aside from the similar guitar riff (and the title), the two songs are worlds apart.

zharth
03-30-2005, 02:25 AM
Wow, that's impressive, swandown. Thanks a lot for your contributions. My research has been going slowly the last few weeks, as I've been very busy (with no let-up in sight), but I'm doing my Roots of Led Zeppelin radio show in a couple of weeks, so I'll be trying to get as much information processed as possible before then. Keep the tips coming! :thumbsup:

Satchmo
03-30-2005, 02:42 AM
Baby, Come On Home was written by Bert Berns for Solomon Burke's record King Solomon.

Berns had produced an earlier version of the song (1964) by Hoagy Lands, and I believe it was Lands' version that influenced Zep....for the following reasons:

1. The guitar riff in Lands' version sounds a lot more like Zep's version. (Burke's version has a more generic, blues-based riff, without the trademark echo/reverb).

2. Lands' version featured Jimmy's old session buddy Mike Leander on guitar (perhaps Leander told Jimmy about the song?)

By the way, Zep completely changed the lyrics for their version of the song -- aside from the similar guitar riff (and the title), the two songs are worlds apart.


I completely forgot about the Lands' version. What makes it even worse, is that I have that version. I blame the neurons. They seem to be playing games with me as the 6th approaches.


Good catch! YO! :thumbsup:

zharth
03-31-2005, 05:44 PM
By the way, has anyone here ever heard the Barry Mason single titled 'Over The Hills And Far Away'? Seeing as it was produced by Paul Samwell Smith of the Yardbirds, and in 1966, I'm curious about any possible connections to the Zeppelin song of the same name. Thanks.

zharth
04-05-2005, 03:46 AM
I got my hands on Fear Itself. I'll have to listen to it while I'm in the studio doing my radio show tomorrow evening. I'll let you know how it turns out, especially the verdict on In My Time Of Dying. I'm excited, I can't wait to listen to it!

zharth
04-05-2005, 10:52 PM
I got my hands on Fear Itself. I'll have to listen to it while I'm in the studio doing my radio show tomorrow evening. I'll let you know how it turns out, especially the verdict on In My Time Of Dying. I'm excited, I can't wait to listen to it!

Well, it's a totally awesome album. Excellent music. Very rocking, but also very nice to hear a female vocalist at the helm. Crawling King Snake features incredible harp playing. In My Time Of Dying was really good, and even featured a drum solo. I might have missed it, but I didn't hear anything about a cough though.

Deja Vu
04-16-2005, 07:54 PM
Dammit that album sounds cool, Zharth, I gotta hear it sometime. :)

I really support this project. There is SOOOO much misinformation out there, a comprehensive look at it is more than just a nice idea, it's necessary. I should try to help more.

ReTro_Girl
04-16-2005, 08:57 PM
Nobody's fault but mine has its roots in blues. It was sung by Charlie Patton who had a raw, raspy Delta blues sound to his voice.

I heard that Charlie was once a preacher! But definately lots of blues influence in Led Zeppelin music.

zharth
04-19-2005, 09:49 PM
Nobody's fault but mine has its roots in blues. It was sung by Charlie Patton who had a raw, raspy Delta blues sound to his voice.

Really? Are you sure it wasn't Blind Willie Johnson? Because that's who I have it credited to.

Anyway, I did the first part of my Roots of Led Zeppelin radio show tonight and it was a huge success! Check out the playlist here - http://www.geocities.com/sept25_1980/4_19_05.html. Part II is coming next Tuesday. I got the show on tape, so it would be awesome if I could convert it to cd or computer and have interested parties listen, perhaps.

zeppboy
04-19-2005, 10:35 PM
Nobody's fault but mine has its roots in blues. It was sung by Charlie Patton who had a raw, raspy Delta blues sound to his voice.

Really? Are you sure it wasn't Blind Willie Johnson? Because that's who I have it credited to.

Anyway, I did the first part of my Roots of Led Zeppelin radio show tonight and it was a huge success! Check out the playlist here - http://www.geocities.com/sept25_1980/4_19_05.html. Part II is coming next Tuesday. I got the show on tape, so it would be awesome if I could convert it to cd or computer and have interested parties listen, perhaps.
:thumbsup:

zharth
04-26-2005, 09:12 PM
Anyway, I did the first part of my Roots of Led Zeppelin radio show tonight and it was a huge success! Check out the playlist here - http://www.geocities.com/sept25_1980/4_19_05.html. Part II is coming next Tuesday. I got the show on tape, so it would be awesome if I could convert it to cd or computer and have interested parties listen, perhaps.

I did the second part of my show tonight and again it was a success! Here's the playlist - http://www.geocities.com/sept25_1980/4_26_05.html. I couldn't finish like I had originally planned (wasn't even close), so I'll have to wrap things up next week in a third installment, which will also be my last radio show of this semester (I won't be back on the air until the fall).

zharth
05-06-2005, 03:13 PM
For those of you who are still keeping track, I finished up The Roots of Led Zeppelin with the third installment on Tuesday of this week. You can check out the playlist here: http://www.geocities.com/sept25_1980/5_03_05.html. That was also my last radio show of the semester, and summer break starts for me next week! I've still got lots and lots of research on the Roots of Led Zeppelin project to do, and I'll be working on that over the summer. Stay tuned to my website for the eventual debut of my findings.

Deja Vu
05-06-2005, 05:27 PM
Sounds good. I'd like to hear the original for Babe I'm Gonna Leave You, that's awesome how you got that record. I was just thinking how amazing it'd be for you to learn Babe, I'm Gonna Leave You and for me to sing it. I'd also like to do Black Dog, heheheh...

Deja Vu
06-13-2005, 04:27 PM
Zharth personally I think you should put your work up on a webpage even though it isn't finished yet. I keep refferencing people to your work on Led-Zep.com since it seperates the myths from the facts and stuff, but there's no simple home base for them to view it from (they'd have to cruise through the thread to find the various albums).

Deja Vu
07-27-2005, 06:31 PM
I hope you're not ashamed that I CONSTANTLY use your ever-so-helpful knowledge to argue with people on led-zeppelin.com

By the way how about the connection between Baby Won't You Let Me Rock N Roll You to Misty Mountain Hop. Is that anything?

zharth
08-06-2005, 08:38 PM
By the way how about the connection between Baby Won't You Let Me Rock N Roll You to Misty Mountain Hop. Is that anything?

Only worth mentioning. My hunch is that it's a pure coincidence.

You should hold me to this, otherwise it might not happen, but I'm gonna try to make it a goal to get my findings, however incomplete they may be, onto my webpage in the next week and a half or so before Otakon.

Deja Vu
08-06-2005, 08:47 PM
I'll definetly hold you to that if I remember it myself. :D

troggy
08-07-2005, 01:37 AM
Great thread. Not really a lot to add except that Will Shade, a buddy of mine, wrote the Thieving Magpies piece.


Todd

Rock
12-13-2005, 08:15 PM
I'm a huge Zep fan. They were my first and will always be my favorite rock band. But I do have to acknowledge a lot of how they handled writing credits was messed up, though in many cases they have corrected things, in some they haven't. But nevertheless I have to honestly say it doesn't affect my love for their music much.

Black Mountain Side
Probably inspired by a song titled Black Waterside by Bert Jansch. I believe it was also recorded by Anne Briggs.


But you have to call a spade a spade. Black Mountain Side is more than inspired by the Jansch tune, it's practically identical except that it has no lyrics. Definitely a lift.

Jansch didn't write "Black Waterside". It's a pre-twentieth century English folk song that Jansch covered, as have many other artists in the song's centuries old history.

The song has always been in the public domain, so Zep owes nobody any royalties. They should've acknowledged that "Black Mountainside" was only their arrangement of "Black Waterside". But since the song is traditional and not copyrighted, they weren't screwing anybody out of any royalties.

There are a few well-publicized instances where Zep "lifted" various tunes and riffs, but in virtually every case the Zep version took the song to a whole new level.

The basic tune to "Whole Lotta Love" was lifted from Willie Dixon's "You Need Love". But anybody who has heard Dixon's original version, knows that the Zep version leaves the original in a cloud of dust. Just like Hendrix's version of "All Along the Watchtower" was head and shoulders above Dylan's original.

In several unpublicized instances that Zep critics ignore, the band actually did credit other musicians, and paid the proper royalties. Of course, the critics also ignore that most of Zep's material was their own, and was some of the greatest classic rock in history.