Led Zeppelin History – Oct 14

This is actually post-Led Zeppelin history…

Today in 1994 Jimmy Page and Robert Plant released their first (since Led Zeppelin) collaborative album, No Quarter. The album is basically the live “soundtrack” to their October 12, 1994 appearance on MTV’s Unplugged series. Called “Unledded”, the 90-minute MTV project was recorded in Morocco, Wales and London.

The album debuted at #4 on Billboard’s Pop Albums chart. In addition to acoustic numbers, it features a reworking of Led Zeppelin classics, along with four Middle-Eastern and Moroccan-influenced songs: “City Don’t Cry”, “Yallah”, “Wonderful One”, and “Wah Wah”. The album was released in the U.S. with the following tracks (on international releases and on the 2004 re-issue, “Wah Wah” was included before “That’s the Way”):

  1. Nobody’s Fault but Mine
  2. Thank You
  3. No Quarter
  4. Friends
  5. Yallah
  6. City Don’t Cry
  7. Since I’ve Been Loving You
  8. The Battle of Evermore
  9. Wonderful One
  10. That’s the Way
  11. Gallows Pole
  12. Four Sticks
  13. Kashmir 

quarterIt was not a reunion of Led Zeppelin though, as former Zeppelin bassist and keyboardist John Paul Jones was not present. In fact, Jones was not even told about the reunion by his former band mates; he only learned of the project through media reports. He later commented that he was unhappy about Plant and Page naming the album after “No Quarter”, a Led Zeppelin song which was largely his work. “I just thought I should have been informed about it,” Jones said. “To find out about it in the papers was a bit odd.” At the group’s 1995 induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, Jones offered a cutting retort: “Thank you, my friends, for finally remembering my phone number.”

Along the way, both Page and Plant indicated that one of the principal reasons they hadn’t invited Jones was because of the inescapable pressure (to reform Led Zeppelin) that having all three of them together would have engendered.

The 10th anniversary of the Unledded performance was commemorated by a DVD release which included a bonus interview, a montage of images from Morocco, and performances of “Black Dog” (from Dick Clark’s American Music Awards), “What Is and What Should Never Be” and “When the Levee Breaks”. To compensate for their voluntary absence from the 2004 Live Aid DVD release, Page and Plant donated a portion of their proceeds to the Band Aid Trust.

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