Led Zeppelin History – June 13

Today in 1969 Led Zeppelin started their first proper UK tour, at Birmingham Town Hall, with support from Liverpool Scene and Blodwyn Pig.

According to the ads, the only way to fly is by Led Zeppelin. On Friday night at Birmingham Town Hall, at the start of a five date tour, the group certainly took off all right. The passengers were Blodwyn Pig, the Liverpool Scene and a full house.

An almighty wall of sound and a huge crashing of drums signaled the start of the group’s act which eventually overran by quite some time. Jimmy Page wore his guitar at hip level, crouching over it and occasionally walking about a-la Keith Richard. John Paul Jones held his side and fired long bursts of heavy bass lines. Robert Plant stretched, reached out and leaned as he belted out and literally screamed the vocals. Barefoot Robert squeezed all sorts of notes out of “Dazed and Confused” from the first album and Jimmy played partly with a bow to get a weird bouncing effect.

Joan Baez’s “Babe I’m Gonna Leave You” was followed by Jimmy’s solo “White Summer”, for which he sat down and proved his virtuosity. The last number, “How Many More Times”, was received wildly and at the end the audience rose as one and cheered and clapped for moments.  (New Music Express, R. Green, June ’69)



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