Led Zeppelin http://www.guitarworld.com/taxonomy/term/489/all en Whole Lotta Sound Effects: Michael Winslow Covers Led Zeppelin — Video http://www.guitarworld.com/whole-lotta-sound-effects-michael-winslow-covers-led-zeppelin-video <!--paging_filter--><p>We know this isn't exactly a new video, but it seems the 4-year-old clip was randomly "discovered" and shared—several thousand times—on Facebook earlier this week.</p> <p>It's a bizarre, brief but nifty cover of Led Zeppelin's "Whole Lotta Love" featuring actor/comedian Michael Winslow—that guy from <em>Police Academy, Spaceballs</em> and <em>Gremilns</em>.</p> <p>Winslow is known as the "Man of 10,000 Sound Effects," and it's easy to see why in this clip.</p> <p>The (real) guitar player is a fellow named Odd Nordstoga, and the clip is from a Norwegian talk show called <em><a href="http://www.tv2.no/underholdning/senkveld/">Senkveld med Thomas og Harald</a></em>. Enjoy!</p> <p>P.S.: If you want to see and hear more of this sort of thing, check out <a href="http://www.guitarworld.com/video-michael-winslow-covers-jimi-hendrix-his-mouth">Michael Winslow Covers Jimi Hendrix ... with His Mouth — Video</a>.</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/QxcCC2g1Ke0" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <fieldset class="fieldgroup group-additional-content"><legend>Additional Content</legend><div class="field field-type-nodereference field-field-related-artist"> <div class="field-label"><p><strong>Related Artist:</strong>&nbsp;<p></div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/led-zeppelin">Led Zeppelin</a> </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> http://www.guitarworld.com/whole-lotta-sound-effects-michael-winslow-covers-led-zeppelin-video#comments Led Zeppelin Michael Winslow WTF Videos News Fri, 24 Apr 2015 17:11:43 +0000 Damian Fanelli 22433 at http://www.guitarworld.com "Whole Lotta Love" on a Dulcimer: Check Out This Crazy Led Zeppelin Cover — Video http://www.guitarworld.com/whole-lotta-love-dulcimer-check-out-crazy-led-zeppelin-cover-video <!--paging_filter--><p>Whole Lotta Dulcimer! (Insert your own Led Zeppelin dulcimer puns here.)</p> <p>Below, check out a new video of Led Zeppelin's classic "Whole Lotta Love" performed on a three-string electric mountain dulcimer by <a href="https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCkgy6zm0O3D7C_2TSb5xoug">Sam Edelston.</a></p> <p>Here's an edited version of the info Edelston posted with his video:</p> <p>"The dulcimer can be a very sweet, tender instrument — but it's also great for rocking out. Tuned 1-5-8, it's loaded with power chords. Through a stack of Marshalls ... hmmm ... that would be fun!</p> <p>"Note to dulcimer players: This arrangement doesn't require extra frets. I've got a single high C at 8+, in the break, which could be replaced or played elsewhere."</p> <p>Edelston is playing a Robert Force model "Black Wolf" hollow-body electric dulcimer built by Rod Matheson, tuned DAd. (Yes, all that sound is coming from just three strings.) Capo on the first fret, played in Am.</p> <p>One pickup is running through an octave pedal, overdrive and chorus. The second pickup is running through a phase shifter, compressor-sustainer and Blues Driver distortion pedal. The two channels merge in a digital delay, and there's a volume pedal at the end.</p> <p><strong>Instrumental break: 1:29; third verse at 1:52; beginning of the ending at 2:28.</strong></p> <p>If you enjoyed this and want to hear more, check out <a href="https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCkgy6zm0O3D7C_2TSb5xoug">Edelston's YouTube channel.</a></p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/e1nzkYr_JDM" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <fieldset class="fieldgroup group-additional-content"><legend>Additional Content</legend><div class="field field-type-nodereference field-field-related-artist"> <div class="field-label"><p><strong>Related Artist:</strong>&nbsp;<p></div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/led-zeppelin">Led Zeppelin</a> </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> http://www.guitarworld.com/whole-lotta-love-dulcimer-check-out-crazy-led-zeppelin-cover-video#comments Led Zeppelin Sam Edelston Videos News Mon, 23 Mar 2015 20:19:46 +0000 Damian Fanelli 21673 at http://www.guitarworld.com Robert Plant and Jack White Play Led Zeppelin's "The Lemon Song" — Video http://www.guitarworld.com/robert-plant-and-jack-white-play-led-zeppelins-lemon-song-video <!--paging_filter--><p>Over the weekend (Saturday night, to be exact), Robert Plant and Jack White found themselves on the same stage at the Lollapalooza Argentina festival.</p> <p>Below, you can watch the former Led Zeppelin singer and former White Stripes frontman perform "The Lemon Song," a bluesy classic from 1969's <em>Led Zeppelin II.</em></p> <p>Although the Zeppelin classic had twice popped up during White's 2014 sets, this was the first time Plant has sung "The Lemon Song" live since Plant and Jimmy Page performed it in 1995 in Norway. </p> <p>Since both Plant and White are booked for this year's Lollapalooza Brazil fest (March 28 and 29), we might even be treated to a reprise of sorts.</p> <p>By the way, "The Lemon Song" was written by Chester Arthur Burnett, better known as Howlin' Wolf. Oh, and let's not forget its <em>other</em> writers, Page, Plant, John Paul Jones and John Bonham. Enjoy!</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/UeItSpR2134" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <fieldset class="fieldgroup group-additional-content"><legend>Additional Content</legend><div class="field field-type-nodereference field-field-related-artist"> <div class="field-label"><p><strong>Related Artist:</strong>&nbsp;<p></div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/robert-plant">Robert Plant</a> </div> <div class="field-item even"> <a href="/led-zeppelin">Led Zeppelin</a> </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> http://www.guitarworld.com/robert-plant-and-jack-white-play-led-zeppelins-lemon-song-video#comments Jack White Led Zeppelin Robert Plant Videos News Mon, 23 Mar 2015 12:10:59 +0000 Damian Fanelli 23772 at http://www.guitarworld.com The 1969 Album Jimmy Page, Robert Plant, John Paul Jones and John Bonham Recorded Before 'Led Zeppelin' http://www.guitarworld.com/listen-1969-album-jimmy-page-robert-plant-john-paul-jones-and-john-bonham-recorded-led-zeppelin <!--paging_filter--><p>Our semi-recent story about <a href="http://www.guitarworld.com/little-games-jimmy-pages-five-best-guitar-solos-yardbirds">Jimmy Page's five best guitar solos as a member of the Yardbirds</a> got us thinking about another legendary pre-Led Zeppelin recording featuring Page.</p> <p>This project, however, features all four members of Led Zeppelin—Page, Robert Plant, John Paul Jones and John Bonham—recording together before there even was a Led Zeppelin.</p> <p>While still in "New Yardbirds" mode, the four pre-Zeps took part in the August 1968 recording sessions for P.J. Proby’s 1969 album, <em>Three Week Hero.</em></p> <p>Page and Jones were successful session musicians at this point, and when Jones got the Proby gig, he invited his fellow New Yardbirds along. A recent <a href="http://dangerousminds.net/comments/the_album_led_zeppelin_recorded_before_led_zeppelin">Dangerous Minds</a> story quotes Jones as saying, “I was committed to doing all the arrangements for the album. As we were talking about rehearsing at the time, I thought it would be a handy source of income. I had to book a band anyway, so I thought I’d book everybody I knew.”</p> <p>The sessions started August 25, 1968, and led to an album that didn't cause much of a stir when it was released the following April.</p> <p>“The boys told me they were going over to play in San Francisco and all that, and I said, ‘Look, from what I’ve heard and the way you boys played tonight, not only are you not going to be my backing band, I’m going to say goodbye right now, because I don’t think I’m ever going to see you again'," Proby says in the DM story. </p> <p>"'That’s how successful you’re going to be. You’re exactly what they want, you play all that psychedelic stuff and everything.' I said, ‘You’re going to go over there and go down so great I don’t think you’re ever going to come home.’ They didn’t ever come back until they changed their name to Led Zeppelin and stayed over there and came back huge huge stars. … I said goodbye that day when I cut that album, and I haven’t seen one of them since.”</p> <p>Check out some samples from the album (and a non-album B-side) below.</p> <p><strong>"Jim's Blues"</strong></p> <p>Is there any doubt this is Led Zeppelin? This is part of the eight-minute medley that closed the album. I admit, this track really "shook me" ... all night long.</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/LXud3tpDKAI" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe><br /> <br /><br /> <strong>“The Day That Lorraine Came Down”</strong></p> <p>Here's track two from the Proby album, which was released on CD in 1994. It's easy to picture Plant on vocals — not that there's anything wrong with Proby's voice.</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/eXrhPAUr4u8" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe><br /> <br /><br /> <strong>"Mery Hopkins Never Had Days Like These"</strong></p> <p>Here's a non-album B-side from the same sessions. This song is interesting because Proby calls out each member of the band, who then plays a little solo, starting with bassist John Paul Jones. By the way, for a little more info about about the album, check out good ol' <a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Three_Week_Hero">Wikipedia.</a> (PS: It seems the word "Mery" in the song title is supposed to be spelled like that; it's obviously a fun reference to then-popular Welsh singer Mary Hopkin.)</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/W31fraN8lgs" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <p><em>Damian Fanelli is the online managing editor at </em>Guitar World.<em> <a href="https://twitter.com/damianfanelli">Follow him on Twitter.</a></em></p> <fieldset class="fieldgroup group-additional-content"><legend>Additional Content</legend><div class="field field-type-nodereference field-field-related-artist"> <div class="field-label"><p><strong>Related Artist:</strong>&nbsp;<p></div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/led-zeppelin">Led Zeppelin</a> </div> <div class="field-item even"> <a href="/jimmy-page">Jimmy Page</a> </div> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/robert-plant">Robert Plant</a> </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> http://www.guitarworld.com/listen-1969-album-jimmy-page-robert-plant-john-paul-jones-and-john-bonham-recorded-led-zeppelin#comments Jimmy Page Led Zeppelin PJ Proby Robert Plant Blogs News Wed, 04 Mar 2015 14:57:46 +0000 Damian Fanelli 18492 at http://www.guitarworld.com Jimmy Page and Soundgarden's Chris Cornell Talk Led Zeppelin History and More — Video http://www.guitarworld.com/jimmy-page-and-soundgardens-chris-cornell-talk-led-zeppelin-history-and-more-video <!--paging_filter--><p><strong>NOTE: This story was updated Monday, March 2, with a new video!</strong></p> <p>To celebrate the release of Jimmy Page’s new photo book, <em>Jimmy Page by Jimmy Page</em>, the guitar legend appeared with Chris Cornell, guitarist and singer for Soundgarden, at the Theater at Ace Hotel in downtown Los Angeles for a relaxed question-and-answer session that spanned the entirety of Page’s 50-year career.</p> <p>Sponsored by Genesis Publications, Gibson Custom, <em>Guitar World</em> and <em>Guitar Aficionado</em>, the hour-and-a-half event, which took place last November, enthralled a packed house of 1,400 fans as Cornell quizzed Page about the rare photos and memorabilia—many drawn from Page’s personal archives—which were projected on an enormous screen hovering above both men.</p> <p>The 70-year-old Page, with his silver hair, scarf and black leather jacket, looked as sharp as a James Bond super villain, while Cornell, in thick-rimmed glasses, evoked a hipster newsman. </p> <p>The subject matter ran the gamut from extremely light and frothy to the serious matter of drummer John Bonham’s untimely death, of which Page commented, “when we lost 25 percent of the band, we really lost the whole thing.”</p> <p>Among the more humorous moments was when Cornell took note of a photo of Page wearing a bright—but very tight—red sweater emblazoned with his “Zoso” symbol. Page explained that a friend’s girlfriend had knit it for him, but when he sweated onstage, it immediately started to shrink. </p> <p><strong>Below, we present parts 1, 2, 3 and 4 of this <em>Guitar World</em> video series. Be sure to check back every week for the next episode!</strong></p> <p><strong>PART FOUR (Posted March 2):</strong></p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/BXbvlMqYh20" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe><br /> <br /><br /> <strong>PART THREE (Posted February 23):</strong></p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/14ol9XXsS7Q?feature=player_embedded" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe><br /> <br /><br /> <strong>PART TWO (Posted February 16):</strong></p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/w8p5jf1aEQI?feature=player_embedded" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe><br /> <br /><br /> <strong>PART ONE (Posted February 9):</strong></p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/j0Q5V3k46xA" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <fieldset class="fieldgroup group-additional-content"><legend>Additional Content</legend><div class="field field-type-nodereference field-field-related-artist"> <div class="field-label"><p><strong>Related Artist:</strong>&nbsp;<p></div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/jimmy-page">Jimmy Page</a> </div> <div class="field-item even"> <a href="/led-zeppelin">Led Zeppelin</a> </div> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/soundgarden">Soundgarden</a> </div> <div class="field-item even"> <a href="/chris-cornell">Chris Cornell</a> </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> http://www.guitarworld.com/jimmy-page-and-soundgardens-chris-cornell-talk-led-zeppelin-history-and-more-video#comments Chris Cornell Jimmy Page Led Zeppelin Soundgarden Videos News Features Mon, 02 Mar 2015 17:49:00 +0000 Guitar World Staff 23474 at http://www.guitarworld.com Six Hidden Gems Made Magnificent in Headphones http://www.guitarworld.com/six-hidden-gems-made-magnificent-headphones <!--paging_filter--><p>Okay, so you have your headphones out—what do you want to listen to? </p> <p>Something beautiful? Something cool? Something you’ve never heard before? How about all three? </p> <p>The following are six tracks by five of your favorite bands worth putting under the microscope for reasons listed below. Enjoy!</p> <p><strong>Joe Satriani — “Surfing with the Alien”</strong></p> <p>For the lead guitar tone on <em>Surfing with the Alien’s</em> title track, Joe Satriani used a wah-wah pedal and a harmonizer. The former worked perfectly, but the latter was acting a little weird and wonky. </p> <p>Satriani told <em>Guitar World</em>, “The sound that came out of the speakers blew us away so much that we recorded the melody and the solo in about a half-hour and sat back and went, ‘Whoa! This is a song, man!’” Then the harmonizer broke down and couldn’t be fixed. </p> <p>“We couldn’t do anything,” he said. “We lost our tone. When we finally got it working again, we weren’t able to recreate the original effect. It just sounded different. So rather than screw up a wonderful-sounding performance that may have had a couple of glitches, we decided to just leave it, because it was just swinging.”</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/uoERl34Ld00" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <p><br /><br /> <strong>Metallica — “The Four Horsemen”</strong></p> <p>One of the most unique features of Metallica’s classic track “The Four Horsemen” is its distinctive simultaneous two-headed guitar solo, heard from 4:10 to 4:30. </p> <p>You can hear two Kirk Hammetts, one in each speaker, playing roughly similar but still quite different solos. In 1991 Hammett told <em>Guitar World</em> this cool effect was entirely a fluke. After recording two takes of the solo, Hammett and Co. were trying to decide which one to use. </p> <p>“I listened to both tracks at once, to see if one would stand out,” Hammett said. “But playing both tracks simultaneously sounded great, and we decided to keep it like that on the record. Some of the notes harmonized with each other, and I remember Cliff [Burton, bassist] going, ‘Wow, that’s stylin’—it sounds like Tony Iommi!’”</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/C4nCy5CITc8" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe><br /> <br /><br /> <strong>Led Zeppelin — “Misty Mountain Hop” and “Babe, I’m Gonna Leave You”</strong></p> <p>Led Zeppelin albums are filled with little slips and clams, but none of that really mattered to producer/guitarist Jimmy Page who justifiably valued vibe over perfection. He called it being “tight but loose.” </p> <p>The following are two headphone-worthy accidents that somehow add a touch of funky magick to these Zep classics. If you listen closely to “Misty Mountain Hop” at about 1:15, you can hear Jimmy play the heavy part too soon. He then fumbles and jumps back in. </p> <p>hen, on “Babe I’m Gonna Leave You,” you can hear a ghostly voice at 1:43. Is it a friendly Page poltergeist? Nah, it’s actually the sound of Robert Plant singing along with drummer John Bonham during basic tracking. Whether that’s his actual naked voice leaking through the drum mics, or perhaps being blasted through Bonzo’s headphones, we may never know.</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/7joxOe76vCE" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/iP9xMobANJM" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe><br /> <br /><br /> <strong>Radiohead — “Creep”</strong></p> <p>One of the most memorable and dramatic guitar moments of the Nineties is the stuttering rhythm part that sets up the chorus of Radiohead’s “Creep.” And if Jonny Greenwood’s attitude-filled flourish (played at 0:58 and again at the two-minute mark) reflects the song’s angst-filled lyrics, there’s a reason. </p> <p>“That’s the sound of Jonny trying to mess the song up,” explained co-guitarist Ed O’Brien. “He really didn’t like it the first time we played it, so he tried spoiling it. And it made the song.”</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/XFkzRNyygfk" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe><br /> <br /><br /> <strong>The Kingsmen — “Louie, Louie”</strong></p> <p>This last pick is a strange one. </p> <p>If there was never a song designed for headphones, it’s the poorly recorded garage classic “Louie, Louie.” But there are so many hilarious mistakes in this shambolic mess, with a good set of ear buds the tune becomes a brilliant piece of audio theater. </p> <p>Just close your eyes and you almost see and smell these drunken bozos having the time of their lives as they struggle to play their three chords right. Just dig the drummer yelling “F@#K! in the background because he hit his hand on the edge of one of his drums at 0:57. Or laugh as the singer comes in too early at 1:55 while barging in at the end the songs surprisingly great guitar solo. </p> <p>Truth is, this is actually what headphones were made for!</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/4V1p1dM3snQ" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <p><em>Brad Tolinski is the editor-in-chief at </em>Guitar World.</p> <fieldset class="fieldgroup group-additional-content"><legend>Additional Content</legend><div class="field field-type-nodereference field-field-related-artist"> <div class="field-label"><p><strong>Related Artist:</strong>&nbsp;<p></div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/joe-satriani">Joe Satriani</a> </div> <div class="field-item even"> <a href="/metallica">Metallica</a> </div> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/radiohead">Radiohead</a> </div> <div class="field-item even"> <a href="/led-zeppelin">Led Zeppelin</a> </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> http://www.guitarworld.com/six-hidden-gems-made-magnificent-headphones#comments Joe Satriani Led Zeppelin Metallica Radiohead The Kingsmen News Features Wed, 25 Feb 2015 15:56:07 +0000 Brad Tolinski 23579 at http://www.guitarworld.com Awesome Xylophone Led Zeppelin Cover — Video http://www.guitarworld.com/awesome-xylophone-led-zeppelin-cover-video <!--paging_filter--><p>Who else but the Louisville Leopard Percussionists could so successfully translate Led Zeppelin into a xylophone-and-marimba opus?</p> <p>The video below shows a rehearsal session for the group, all of whom are between the ages of 7 to 12. </p> <p>In fluid succession, they cover Led Zeppelin's “Immigrant Song,” “The Ocean” and “Kashmir.” </p> <p>Even Jimmy Page was impressed, writing, “Too good not to share” on his Facebook page last week.</p> <p>The Louisville Leopard Percussionists began in 1993. They’re a performing ensemble of approximately 55 student musicians living in and around Louisville, Kentucky. Each student learns and acquires proficiency on several instruments, including marimbas, xylophone, vibraphone, drum set, timbales, congas, bongos and piano. Enjoy! </p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/JYuOZnAqQCY" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <fieldset class="fieldgroup group-additional-content"><legend>Additional Content</legend><div class="field field-type-nodereference field-field-related-artist"> <div class="field-label"><p><strong>Related Artist:</strong>&nbsp;<p></div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/led-zeppelin">Led Zeppelin</a> </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> http://www.guitarworld.com/awesome-xylophone-led-zeppelin-cover-video#comments Led Zeppelin Louisville Leopard Percussionists WTF Videos News Mon, 23 Feb 2015 16:55:19 +0000 Damian Fanelli 23576 at http://www.guitarworld.com The 25 Greatest Acoustic Songs In Hard Rock http://www.guitarworld.com/acoustic-nation-25-greatest-acoustic-songs-hard-rock <!--paging_filter--><p>Slash might've said it best: "There's no lying with the acoustic guitar. There's something very pure, and very humbling, about it." </p> <p>A profound statement coming from one of rock 'n' roll's most celebrated electric guitarists. </p> <p>But strip away all the muck of multi-layered overdubs, rack effects and endless symphonies of tracks, and you separate the dodgers hiding behind studio wizardry and the artists who know a great song only needs six strings and a melody. </p> <p>Here are 25 of hard rock's best acoustic rockers. Some are pure acoustic jams, others only start out out that way before ascending into grand opuses. But what makes these songs iconic is their elemental simplicity. </p> <p>In other words, all you need to bring them to life is an acoustic guitar and a little feeling. And from the looks of these rockers, some gaudy jewelry helps. Note that these songs are not presented in any particular order. </p> <p><strong>"STAIRWAY TO HEAVEN," LED ZEPPELIN<br /> <em>Led Zeppelin IV</em> (1971)</strong> </p> <p><em>Led Zeppelin III</em> was largely an unplugged affair, but "Stairway to Heaven," from the band's follow-up, wins the prize for acoustic guitar excellence. </p> <p>Jimmy Page's delicately fingerpicked arpeggios made the song Zeppelin's-and rock's-definitive acoustic moment. </p> <p>Over the years, "Stairway to Heaven" has dominated countless "greatest rock song ever" lists, thanks to its spellbinding mix of lyrical mysticism, compositional and production genius and instrumental virtuosity. </p> <p>But its most celebrated moment remains Page's unaccompanied intro: whether heard on a radio or played by some pimply kid in a guitar store, all it takes is those first few acoustic guitar notes and you can instantly name that tune.</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/BcL---4xQYA" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <hr /> <p><strong>"MORE THAN A FEELING," BOSTON<br /> <em>Boston</em> (1976)</strong> </p> <p>Tom Scholz's soaring leads (recorded with an early version of his Rockman amp unit) and crunchy, multi-tracked electric guitar rhythms have more than a little to do with "More Than a Feeling" becoming one of classic rock's most enduring anthems.</p> <p> But it is the song's lilting, arpeggiated acoustic intro that puts fans in the mood. Working as something of a one-man band in his basement, Scholz, one of music's first DIY dudes, played all the guitar parts on "Feeling." </p> <p>For the arpeggiated intro and verses, he used a Yamaha 12-string; the more fully strummed choruses called for a Guild D-40. A bit of trivia: Noting the similarities between "More Than a Feeling" and "Smells Like Teen Spirit," Kurt Cobain teased fans at Nirvana's 1992's Reading Festival performance with a few bars of the Boston classic.</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/SSR6ZzjDZ94" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <hr /> <p><strong>"DUST IN THE WIND," KANSAS<br /> <em>Point of Know Return</em> (1977)</strong> </p> <p>When Vicci Livgren overheard her husband, Kansas guitarist Kerry, practicing finger exercises on his acoustic one day, she told him she heard a song there and suggested he add some lyrics. He listened, and the result was "Dust in the Wind." </p> <p>A departure from Kansas' characteristic prog-rock bombast, "Dust in the Wind" was a stark, plaintive meditation on the meaning of life. </p> <p>While many assume that the track features a 12-string acoustic, the rich unplugged sound is actually the result of multiple six-strings (a few in Nashville tuning), played by Livgren and co-guitarist Rich Williams. </p> <p>The song became Kansas' only Top-10 single, charting at Number Six in 1978. In the years since, it has become something of a cultural touchstone, popping up everywhere from TV shows like <em>The Simpsons</em> and <em>Family Guy</em> to movies like <em>Bill &amp; Ted's Excellent Adventure</em> and <em>Old School</em>.</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/tH2w6Oxx0kQ" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <hr /> <p><strong>"STREET FIGHTING MAN," THE ROLLING STONES<br /> <em>Beggars Banquet (1968)</em></strong><em> </em></p> <p>One might assume this rebel yell, released during the tumultuous summer of 1968, would rage with the sound of electric guitars. </p> <p>Not so: with the exception of an electric bass, played by Keith Richards, the track is 100 percent acoustic. </p> <p>Preparing a demo for the song, Richards miked two acoustics and recorded them into a cheap Phillips mono cassette recorder. The guitarist was so enamored of the resulting distortion (the machine had no limiters, causing the signal to overload) he decided to go au naturale and ditch the electrics. </p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/jFvtMp7hRF8" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <hr /> <p><em><strong>"PINBALL WIZARD," THE WHO<br /> <em>Tommy</em> (1969)</strong> </em></p> <p>By 1969, Pete Townshend was known as much for smashing guitars as for playing them. But on the Who's ground breaking <em>Tommy</em>, he demonstrated some astonishing six-string skills.</p> <p> And with an acoustic in his hands (check out "It's a Boy" for some deft blues-meets-flamenco work), he was unstoppable. </p> <p>Although electrics bolster the verses and choruses of the album's centerpiece, "Pinball Wizard," a 1968 Gibson J-200 acoustic is the dominant instrument throughout. Townshend's furiously strummed barre chords (which he deemed "mock baroque"), heard in the intro and breakdown section, provide the kind of power and majesty befitting a genuine rock opera. </p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/d4TF9YBi5ck" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <hr /> <p><strong>"FEEL LIKE MAKIN' LOVE," BAD COMPANY<br /> <em>Straight Shooter</em> (1975)</strong> </p> <p>As the first band signed to Led Zeppelin's Swan Song label, Bad Company, led by former Free Singer Paul Rodgers and former Mott the Hoople guitarist Mick Ralphs, followed their bosses' lead and specialized in sweaty, swaggering blues rock. </p> <p>Taking another lesson from the Zepmen, Ralphs juxtaposed chiming acoustics with explosive power chords on this Top 10 smash, to wondrous effect. </p> <p>The bright, jangly acoustics lend a relaxed, down-home country vibe to the verses, while the electric guitars in the chorus scream with big, brash British rock. Presumably, quite a few people felt like doing the nasty after hearing this cut. </p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/mQfTe6ta36I" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <hr /> <p><strong>"YOU CAN'T PUT YOUR ARMS AROUND A MEMORY," JOHNNY THUNDERS<br /> <em>So Alone</em> (1978)</strong> </p> <p>As a member of the proto-punk glam-rockers the New York Dolls, and later with his own band, the Heartbreakers, Johnny Thunders knew how to dish out rough-and ragged three-chord rock. </p> <p>And with a Les Paul Junior slung well below his waist, he had "cool" written all over him. So it came as a surprise when Thunders, on his debut solo album, issued this poetic acoustic ballad. </p> <p>Tempering his patented pounding style, the singer-songwriter lays out his junkie lifestyle with unflinching candor, practically caressing his guitar strings in the process. Melancholic and remorseful, the song has come to serve as an elegy of sorts for the troubled Thunders, who died of an apparent drug overdose in 1991. (The song's title, it should be noted, was lifted from a line spoken in an episode of the Fifties TV sitcom <em>The Honeymooners</em>. Punk rock, indeed .) </p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/TknY89kECq0" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <hr /> <p><strong>"CLOSER TO THE HEART," RUSH<br /> <em>A Farewell to Kings</em> (1977)</strong> </p> <p>By 1977, Rush had firmly established themselves as fine purveyors of glorious 20-minute sci-fi opuses that could fill entire album sides.</p> <p> But on this, their fifth studio release, the Canadian prog trio demonstrated their ability to be hooky, concise and, with "Closer to the Heart," radio-friendly. Perhaps the most surprising aspect of the song's gentle, ringing 12-string acoustic guitar intro is that it was written by bassist Geddy Lee, rather than guitarist Alex Lifeson. </p> <p>The same figure is later repeated after a particularly ripping electric guitar solo-only this time the 12-string acoustic is smartly doubled by a six-string electric. When it comes to Rush, of course, the contributions of drummer extraordinaire Neil Peart can never be overlooked. Here, he adds plenty of bells and whistles throughout. Okay ... they're actually chimes. </p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/quBCjo2rUZg" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <hr /> <p><strong>"ROUNDABOUT," YES<br /> <em>Fragile</em> (1971)</strong> </p> <p>Pick up a Martin 00-8 acoustic, pluck octave harmonics at the 12th fret (essentially comprising an Em chord) and voila!-you'll have a whole room of guitar dudes sitting up and taking notice. </p> <p>And with good reason-this simple move is Steve Howe's signature opening line to "Roundabout," Yes' breakthrough 1971 hit. </p> <p>Make it past Howe's harmonic-heavy unaccompanied intro, and you just might have a chance at mastering this intricate prog-rock masterpiece, in which acoustics and electrics, played in classical, jazzy and rocking splendor, weave in, out and "roundabout." As for the lyrics, this is prog-you're on your own there. </p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/qjvGzxnUDuM" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <hr /> <p><strong>"DEE," RANDY RHOADS<br /> <em>Blizzard of Ozz</em> (1980)</strong> </p> <p>With his inventive, neoclassical spin on Eddie Van Halen's already established bag of tricks, Randy Rhoads became the new heavy metal guitar king after fans heard his work on Ozzy Osbourne's 1980 solo debut ,<em>Blizzard of Ozz</em>. </p> <p>But while electrified Ozz rockers like "Crazy Train" and "I Don't Know" wowed the metal masses, it was the solo classical piece "Dee" that was Rhoads' true masterpiece. </p> <p>Rhoads grew up in a musical family-h is mother, Delores, runs a music school in North Hollywood, California-so it was only fitting that "Dee," all 49 seconds of it, paid tribute to the woman who inspired and nurtured his dreams. Fingerpicked on a nylon-strong acoustic, the piece is by turns playful, melancholy, heartbreaking and hopeful. </p> <p>Tragically, Rhoads was killed in a 1982 plane crash, at the age of 25. Five years later, Ozzy Osbourne included an extended, studio outtake version of "Dee" on his album Tribute, reminding us all of Rhoads' immense and largely untapped talent. </p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/EWSUD3ZmqT8" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <hr /> <p><strong>"COULD THIS BE MAGIC?," VAN HALEN<br /> <em>Women and Children First</em> (1980)</strong> </p> <p>Eddie Van Halen gave acoustic-shred fetishists much to chew on in 1979 with "Spanish Fly," a hummingbird-fast flamenco instrumental from <em>Van Halen II</em>. But guitarists of all stripes found a lot to like in the bluesy-and boozy, slightly off-kilter "Could This Be Magic?" </p> <p>The track, which marks the guitarist's first recorded bottleneck moment, finds Eddie's whimsical acoustic slide playing expertly shadowing David Lee Roth's vocal on the verses. </p> <p>The idea to use a slide came from producer Ted Templeman, and while Eddie was initially leery of trying it, he practiced for a few days and, in typical VH style, pulled off the part with aplomb. Another first: "Could This Be Magic?" represents the debut of an outside singer on a Van Halen album. </p> <p>Templeman suggested a different sound for one of the choruses and brought in country Singer Nicolette Larson, who was working in a neighboring studio, to lend vocal support. Listen closely following Eddie's slide so lo to hear Larson and Diamond Dave make sweet harmonized magic. </p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/CBsBiqBPvoQ" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <hr /> <p><strong>"WANTED DEAD OR ALIVE," BON JOVI<br /> <em>Slippery When Wet</em> (1986)</strong> </p> <p>The story is legend: Jon Bon Jovi and Richie Sambora ride into the 1989 MTV Video Music Awards, do the acoustic-duo thing on "Wanted Dead or Alive," and before you can say "dreadnought," the Unplugged series is born. The song is no slouch either. </p> <p>On it, Sambora lays down some fancy acoustic finger work, picking out descending arpeggios and bluesy bends as JBJ rolls his fascination with the Old West into a story about the weariness of life on the road. The result was a smash hit, insuring that Bon Jovi would see a million faces and rock them all for many years to come. </p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/Mqyrt7RCgsg" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <hr /> <p><strong>"FADE TO BLACK," METALLICA<br /> <em>Ride the Lightning</em> (1984)</strong></p> <p>Recorded way back in the early days of thrash, "Fade to Black" is rightly acknowledged as the genre's first "power ballad."</p> <p> A seven-minute rumination on despair and suicide, the song is built around singer and guitarist James Hetfield's mournful, arpeggiated acoustic picking, over which Kirk Hammett adds some beautiful and soaring electric leads. </p> <p> Of course, this being Metallica, things remain sweet and mellow for only so long. Midway through, the song builds in intensity, shifting rhythms and adding plenty of heavily distorted six-strings, culminating in an extended and explosive Hammett solo. </p> <p>While hardcore metalheads at the time accused Metallica of selling out by recording a ballad, "Fade to Black" remains one of the group's most well-known and beloved songs, and it is a concert staple to this day. Besides, as Hetfield has said, "Limiting yourself to please your audience is bullshit." </p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/WEQnzs8wl6E" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <hr /> <p><strong>"EVERY ROSE HAS ITS THORN," POISON<br /> <em>Open Up and Say ...Ahh!</em> (1988)</strong> </p> <p>When you think of Eighties power ballads, one song stands head, hair and shoulders above the rest: "Every Rose Has Its Thorn."</p> <p> Penned by singer Bret Michaels after he discovered that his stripper girlfriend had been cheating on him, the 1988 smash hit proved that glam-metal dudes have feelings, too. </p> <p>While the recorded version features a typically histrionic electric guitar solo from Poison's C.C. DeVille, Michaels' lyrical directness, solid song construction and strong acoustic playing rule the day. </p> <p>Michaels has said that "People related to the song because I related to the song," and indeed, "Every Rose Has Its Thorn," which hit Number One in 1988, has since become a defining tune of the era. As for that stripper girlfriend, she's now a hedge fund investor. </p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/gYeZJ9_Hmwg" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <hr /> <p><strong>"PATIENCE," GUNS N' ROSES<br /> <em>GN'R Lies</em> (1988)</strong> </p> <p>Although <em>GN'R Lies</em> features a number of acoustic tracks, including the country-ish, darkly comedic "Used to Love Her" ("but I had to kill her" ... ), it was the lovelorn "Patience," a glacial-paced ballad, that marked the most radical left turn for the normally hard-rocking group, and also gave them one of their biggest hits. </p> <p>The song was recorded in a single take, with guitarists Slash and Izzy Stradlin and bassist Duff McKagan all on acoustics. Axl Rose, for his part, contributes some fine whistling at the intro. </p> <p>The final two minutes stand as Gn'R's "Kumbaya" moment, with the whole band cooing the song's title in sweet harmony. Then everybody got in a fight, but that's another story. </p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/ErvgV4P6Fzc" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <hr /> <p><strong>"JANE SAYS," JANE'S ADDICTION<br /> <em>Nothing's Shocking</em> (1988)</strong></p> <p> It's five minutes long, features just two chords (G and A) and, with its steel drum ornamentation, sounds like something Jimmy Buffett might have conjured up after a three-day orgy of sponge cake and margaritas. </p> <p>Nonetheless, "Jane Says" remains one of the L.A. punk-metal band's most enduring songs. Perhaps its durability can be attributed to the fact that it doesn't fit neatly in the group's canon. </p> <p>In place of frenzied, psychedelic metal dispatched with tectonic force, we get a wistful, straightforward acoustic ditty, tailor-made for campfires and backyard cookouts. Coming from Perry Farrell, Dave Navarro and Co., that's pretty shocking. </p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/gPsorSm1PpQ" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <hr /> <p><strong>"MORE THAN WORDS," EXTREME<br /> <em>Extreme II: Pornograffitti</em> (1990)</strong></p> <p>In the late Eighties, Extreme carved out a niche as the funkiest hard rockers on the block, with a sound that, thanks to guitar hero Nuno Bettencourt, straddled the line between Van Halen shred and Aerosmith strut. </p> <p>And so it was something of a kick in the head when Bettencourt and singer Gary Cherone unleashed the Everly Brothers homage "More Than Words." </p> <p>Aside from a couple of finger snaps, the only accompaniment to Cherone and Bettencourt's harmonizing voices was Bettencourt's fingerpicking on a Washburn acoustic and the percussive knocking of his hand against the guitar's top. The result was a smash hit: "More Than Words" hit Number One on the <em>Billboard</em> charts in 1991, and led a generation of would-be shred heroes to put down the electric, grab an acoustic, and knock the hell out of it. </p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/UrIiLvg58SY" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <hr /> <p><strong>"SHE TALKS TO ANGELS," THE BLACK CROWES<br /> <em>Shake Your Money Maker</em> (1990)</strong> </p> <p>"Jealous Again," "Twice as Hard" and "Hard to Handle" put Atlanta's Black Crowes on the map as a raucous, genuine-article blues-rock ensemble.</p> <p>But it was this soulful acoustic-driven number about the ravages of heroin addiction that put the band over the top-and gave it a Number One song. </p> <p>For the recording, guitarist Rich Robinson (who wrote the music to the song when he was just 15) played a Martin D-28 in open D tuning. Although he capoed the 2nd fret, effectively giving him an open E tuning, there's a certain feel and texture to his sound that fits the wrenching nature of the track. Add in brother Chris Robinson's soulful, yearning vocal, and you have something truly heavenly. </p> <hr /> <p><strong>"SILENT LUCIDITY," QUEENSRYCHE<br /> <em>Empire</em> (1990)</strong> </p> <p>Let's say you're a proggy metal band (from Seattle, of all places), best known for releasing a kitchen-sink concept album (1988's <em>Operation: Mindcrime</em>) about government overthrow ... or something like that. What do you do for an encore? </p> <p>If you're Queensryche, you whip up a kitchen-sink acoustic song about dream consciousness ... or something like that. "Silent Lucidity" features songwriter and QueensrYche guitarist Chris DeGarmo on Spanish six-string guitar in the intro and verses, playing a sweetly arpeggiated pattern that beautifully mixes fretted notes and open strings. </p> <p>The song drifts steadily along, adding electrics, voice-overs and swelling orchestration until practically busting at the seams with sound. And yet it ends as it began, with DeGarmo's lone acoustic. And then, silence. </p> <hr /> <p><strong>"NO EXCUSES," ALICE IN CHAINS<br /> <em>Jar of Flies</em> (1994)</strong> </p> <p>With their 1992 mostly acoustic EP, <em>Sap</em>, Alice in Chains served notice that they had more to offer than merely distorted grunge. </p> <p>Melodic and full of somber beauty, Sap set the stage for Jar oj Flies, which firmly established AIC.as a band of uncommon, if very bleak, depth. </p> <p> "No Excuses" marked something of a departure for the band. With its gentle, easygoing pace and hopeful (for Alice in Chains, at least) lyrics about enduring life's hills and valleys, "No Excuses" is practically toe-tappin' and good-timey. But the real revelation is guitarist Jerry Cantrell's wide-a s-the-Grand-Canyon acoustic sound-full, ringing and droning for days. No excuses needed for that at all. </p> <hr /> <p><strong>"GOOD RIDDANCE (TIME OF YOUR LIFE)," GREEN DAY<br /> <em>Nimrod</em> (1997)</strong></p> <p> When recording what would be the album version of this acoustic ballad, Green Day leader Billie Joe Armstrong flubbed the opening G/D chord - twice - and after the second time deadpanned, "Fuck." </p> <p>Fortunately, he soldiered on, and, despite the uttered expletive, "Good Riddance (Time of Your Life)" enjoyed huge crossover success and stands as the band's biggest hit to date. Which was hardly anticipated. </p> <p>At the time, Green Day were considered little more than snot-nosed, albeit multi-Platinum, Bay Area ruffians, and an acoustic guitar-and-strings ballad wasn't what most people expected to hear from them. For that reason bassist Mike Dirnt called the song the "most punk" thing they could have done. Which just goes to show that even punks can wear their hearts on their sleeves. </p> <hr /> <p><strong>"LAKE OF FIRE," NIRVANA<br /> <em>MTV Unplugged in New York</em> (1994)</strong> </p> <p>For their appearance on MTV's Unplugged, Nirvana abstained from playing some of their biggest hits (no "Smells Like Teen Spirit," for one) in favor of lesser-known material and covers of songs from artists they knew and admired. </p> <p>One such artist was Arizona's Meat Puppets, a particular favorite of Kurt Cobain's. And so, on the night of November 18, 1993, on a stage decorated with flowers and black candles, Cobain invited the Puppets' Curt and Cris Kirkwood out for, among other tunes, a mellow run-through of their swampy "Lake of Fire." </p> <p> With Krist Novoselic, Dave Grohl and the Kirkwoods holding down the accompaniment, Cobain put aside his guitar to hone in on the vocals, howling his way through the impressionistic lyrics. The performance became one of the highlights of the show, and to this day the song is as associated with Nirvana as it is with its originators. </p> <hr /> <p><strong>"EVERLONG," (ACOUSTIC) FOO FIGHTERS<br /> <em>Skin and Bones</em> (2006)</strong> </p> <p>The full-band version of "Everlong," that appeared on the Foo Fighters' 1997 album, <em>The Colour and the Shape</em>, was a raging slab of rock that seemed hard to beat.</p> <p> But when Dave Grohl appeared on Howard Stern's radio show later that year and performed an impromptu acoustic version, listeners went wild, and bootlegs soon abounded. (David Letterman would later call "Everlong" his "favorite song.") </p> <p>Musically, the composition is positively Townshend-esque, built around a simple, movable progression in a drop-D (D-A-DG-B-E) tun ing. The studio version features Dave Grohl pumping wildly on the drums (Taylor Hawkins had not yet joined the band), but it is his ten se, driving solo acoustic reading that truly sets pulses quickening. </p> <hr /> <p><strong>"OUTSIDE," STAIND<br /> <em>Break the Cycle</em> (2001)</strong> </p> <p>Sludgy, down-tuned electric guitars bulldoze the choruses of the official recording, but originally this song was an all-acoustic ballad: Staind lead singer Aaron Lewis used to perform a half-finished version of "Outside" during solo shows. </p> <p>One night in Biloxi, Mississippi, as Staind were preparing to open for Limp Bizkit on the 1999 <em>Family Values Tour</em>, the singer was asked to do a number with Fred Durst providing backing vocals. </p> <p> Onstage, Lewis came up with the lyrics to complete the tune he'd been laboring over for months. Radio stations picked up on the live acoustic version and helped build a buzz for "Outside" months before the official version was released on <em>Break the Cycle</em>. The song-and the album's success launched a thousand nu-metal power ballads in its wake. </p> <hr /><strong>"PHOTOGRAPH," NICKELBACK<br /> <em>All the Right Reasons</em> (2005)</strong> <p> It sold more than 1.4 million digital downloads in the U.S., reached Number Two on the Billboard Hot 100 and was voted the fifth "most annoying song of all time" in a <em>Rolling Stone</em> poll. </p> <p>Such is the case with Nickelback's "Photograph": love it or hate it, the tune gets a reaction. Like many a country-tinged power ballad, electric guitars fire up the song's choruses, but the backbone of "Photograph" rests in the heartfelt strumming of an unplugged ax. </p> <p>And if it's a formula that Chad Kroeger and Co. have repeated to great success, so have scores of modern rock bands that have followed in the band's wake. Chances are when a power ballad with big guitars and an even bigger chorus works its way up the charts today, there's a little bit of that "Photograph" magic in there somewhere.</p> <fieldset class="fieldgroup group-additional-content"><legend>Additional Content</legend><div class="field field-type-nodereference field-field-related-artist"> <div class="field-label"><p><strong>Related Artist:</strong>&nbsp;<p></div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/led-zeppelin">Led Zeppelin</a> </div> <div class="field-item even"> <a href="/boston">Boston</a> </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> http://www.guitarworld.com/acoustic-nation-25-greatest-acoustic-songs-hard-rock#comments Acoustic Nation Boston GW Archive Kansas Led Zeppelin Rolling Stones Blogs News Features Wed, 18 Feb 2015 17:10:51 +0000 Joe Bosso 12775 at http://www.guitarworld.com The Top 10 Songs That'll Get You Lucky http://www.guitarworld.com/top_10_songs_that_will_get_you_lucky <!--paging_filter--><p>When you first started playing guitar, it was to get girls, right? </p> <p>Perhaps you were influenced by the party scene in <em>Animal House</em> where the collegiate folkster attracts a gaggle of swooning females by strumming his acoustic and singing “I Gave My Love a Cherry." </p> <p>Of course, there are plenty of other songs that work just as well, and rock a bit harder. We've compiled the 10 listed below to help you up your game. </p> <p>Seriously, though: If you intend to add these pieces to your act, God love you, but don’t blame us if you meet up with your own personal John Belushi.</p> <fieldset class="fieldgroup group-additional-content"><legend>Additional Content</legend><div class="field field-type-nodereference field-field-related-artist"> <div class="field-label"><p><strong>Related Artist:</strong>&nbsp;<p></div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/led-zeppelin">Led Zeppelin</a> </div> <div class="field-item even"> <a href="/allman-brothers-band">Allman Brothers Band</a> </div> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/eric-clapton">Eric Clapton</a> </div> <div class="field-item even"> <a href="/peter-frampton">Peter Frampton</a> </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> http://www.guitarworld.com/top_10_songs_that_will_get_you_lucky#comments Eric Clapton Extreme Goo Goo Dolls Led Zeppelin Peter Frampton Guitar World Lists News Features Fri, 13 Feb 2015 15:11:47 +0000 Guitar World Staff 1795 at http://www.guitarworld.com Led Zeppelin Premiere "Brandy & Coke," an Early Mix of "Trampled Under Foot" http://www.guitarworld.com/led-zeppelin-premiere-brandy-coke-early-mix-trampled-under-foot <!--paging_filter--><p>Below, check out Led Zeppelin's premiere of "Brandy &amp; Coke," an early version of "Trampled Under Foot," a classic <em>Physical Graffiti</em> track.</p> <p>It's from the new remastered and expanded version of the album, which will be released February 24.</p> <p>This rough mix bears a number of distinct differences from the version we're become accustomed to over the past four decades, with Robert Plant moving into the foreground, Jimmy Page receding and John Bonham‘s backbeat taking a more prominent role.</p> <p>Tell us what you think in the comments or on Facebook!</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/P9uTmnQn_4c" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <fieldset class="fieldgroup group-additional-content"><legend>Additional Content</legend><div class="field field-type-nodereference field-field-related-artist"> <div class="field-label"><p><strong>Related Artist:</strong>&nbsp;<p></div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/led-zeppelin">Led Zeppelin</a> </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> http://www.guitarworld.com/led-zeppelin-premiere-brandy-coke-early-mix-trampled-under-foot#comments Led Zeppelin News Thu, 12 Feb 2015 18:41:51 +0000 Guitar World Staff 23495 at http://www.guitarworld.com Jimmy Page: How Led Zeppelin's "Stairway to Heaven" Came Together — Video http://www.guitarworld.com/jimmy-page-how-led-zeppelins-stairway-heaven-came-together-video <!--paging_filter--><p>If Jimmy Page is the Steven Spielberg of guitarists, then “Stairway to Heaven” is his <em>Close Encounters</em>. </p> <p>Built around a solid, uplifting theme—man’s quest for salvation—the epic slowly gains momentum and rushes headlong to a shattering conclusion. The grand finale in this case is the song’s thrill-a-second guitar solo.</p> <p>In the new BBC video below, Page, who is relaxing in a comfy-looking easy chair, listens to "Stairway to Heaven" (on vinyl, of course), and then goes on to explain how it was written.</p> <p>If you'd like a bit more history, read on. If not, head straight for the video!</p> <p>Page remembers: “I’d been fooling around with the acoustic guitar and came up with several different sections which flowed together nicely. I soon realized that it could be the perfect vehicle for something I’d been wanting to do for a while: to compose something that would start quietly, have the drums come in the middle, and then build to a huge crescendo. I also knew that I wanted the piece to speed up, which is something musicians aren’t supposed to do.</p> <p>“So I had all the structure of it, and ran it by [bassist] John Paul Jones so he could get the idea of it—[drummer] John Bonham and [singer] Robert Plant had gone out for the night—and then on the following day we got into it with Bonham. You have to realize that, at first, there was a hell of a lot for everyone to remember on this one. But as we were sort of routining it, Robert started writing the lyrics, and much to his surprise, he wrote a huge percentage of it right there and then.” </p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/DDo4CA13LbY" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <fieldset class="fieldgroup group-additional-content"><legend>Additional Content</legend><div class="field field-type-nodereference field-field-related-artist"> <div class="field-label"><p><strong>Related Artist:</strong>&nbsp;<p></div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/jimmy-page">Jimmy Page</a> </div> <div class="field-item even"> <a href="/led-zeppelin">Led Zeppelin</a> </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> http://www.guitarworld.com/jimmy-page-how-led-zeppelins-stairway-heaven-came-together-video#comments Jimmy Page Led Zeppelin Videos News Fri, 16 Jan 2015 16:02:47 +0000 Guitar World Staff 23302 at http://www.guitarworld.com Foo Fighters Enlist Van Halen's David Lee Roth, Slash, Kiss' Paul Stanley and More for Dave Grohl's Birthday Show http://www.guitarworld.com/foo-fighters-enlist-david-lee-roth-slash-paul-stanley-and-more-dave-grohls-birthday-show <!--paging_filter--><p>Late last week, when Foo Fighters told the universe about frontman Dave Grohl's "surprise" birthday show scheduled for this past Saturday at the Forum in LA, we knew we'd have some interesting clips to share with you this morning. Turns out we were correct!</p> <p>Below, check out freshly posted, fan-filmed videos of Foo Fighters performing with:</p> <p>01. A newly bald <strong>David Lee Roth</strong> for a version of Van Halen's "Panama" and "Ain't Talkin' Bout Love"</p> <p>02. <strong>Tenacious D</strong> and <strong>Slash</strong> for Led Zeppelin's "Immigrant Song"</p> <p>03. <strong>Paul Stanley</strong> for a version of Kiss' "Do You Love Me?" </p> <p>Of course, we'll have more videos for you as they become available on YouTube. In the meantime, enjoy the following three clips!</p> <p>According to <em>Rolling Stone,</em> Zakk Wylde, Lemmy Kilmeister of Motorhead, Perry Farrell of Jane's Addiction and Trombone Shorty also made appearances during the marathon set. That didn't stop the band from making their way through a host of Foo Fighters hits, including "Learning to Fly" and "Everlong."</p> <p><strong>DAVID LEE ROTH, "Panama" and "Ain't Talkin' Bout Love"</strong></p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/OuctDsNYjNE" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe><br /> <br /><br /> <strong>TENACIOUS D and SLASH, "Immigrant Song":</strong></p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/jHMsO-5VRqY" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe><br /> <br /><br /> <strong>PAUL STANLEY, "Do You Love Me?":</strong><br /> <iframe width="620" height="365" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/w31y2MYkUUw" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <fieldset class="fieldgroup group-additional-content"><legend>Additional Content</legend><div class="field field-type-nodereference field-field-related-artist"> <div class="field-label"><p><strong>Related Artist:</strong>&nbsp;<p></div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/foo-fighters">Foo Fighters</a> </div> <div class="field-item even"> <a href="/david-lee-roth">David Lee Roth</a> </div> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/slash">Slash</a> </div> <div class="field-item even"> <a href="/led-zeppelin">Led Zeppelin</a> </div> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/paul-stanley">Paul Stanley</a> </div> <div class="field-item even"> <a href="/kiss">Kiss</a> </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> http://www.guitarworld.com/foo-fighters-enlist-david-lee-roth-slash-paul-stanley-and-more-dave-grohls-birthday-show#comments David Lee Roth Foo Fighters Kiss Led Zeppelin Paul Stanley Slash Tenacious D Van Halen Videos News Mon, 12 Jan 2015 15:40:07 +0000 Damian Fanelli 23263 at http://www.guitarworld.com Whole Lotta Editing: Five Awesome Led Zeppelin Mashups http://www.guitarworld.com/whole-lotta-editing-five-awesome-led-zeppelin-mashups <!--paging_filter--><p>Recently, the eternally surprising Jimmy Page streamed a track called "Ramblize" at his official website. </p> <p>It was an unlikely mashup of Led Zeppelin's "Ramble On" and Notorious B.I.G.'s "Hypnotize."</p> <p>Several news outlets reported that it was a brand-new track, but it actually has been available on good ol' YouTube for more than two years—and you can hear it below. That's because the song is one fifth of our brief but mesmerizing list of cool Led Zeppelin mashups, most of which revolve around "Whole Lotta Love."</p> <p>Mashups are nothing new. They've been happening since those dudes in the old Reese's Peanut Butter Cups commercials kept getting chocolate in the other guy's peanut butter (and peanut butter in the chocolate, of course). Mashups require a great deal of editing and patience—and it helps when the songs being mashed are in the same key. </p> <p>Anyway, check out our five choices for the best Led Zeppelin mashups. Mind you, some of these get into "remix" territory, which brings up the old "What's the difference between a remix and a mashup?" argument. </p> <p>Fortunately, we don't care—and we really don't have time to delve into that at the moment. Just enjoy these five tracks!</p> <p>P.S.: We've started things off with the best. The Zeppelin/Sabbath mashup is brilliant, and the video is top notch! </p> <p><strong>01. "Whole Lotta Love" with Black Sabbath's "War Pigs"</strong></p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/ThU9BOWcmjM" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe><br /> <br /><br /> <strong>02. "Whole Lotta Love" with the Beatles' "Helter Skelter"</strong></p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/aY2bWyiaei4" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe><br /> <br /><br /> <strong>03. "Whole Lotta Love" with James Brown's "Sex Machine"</strong></p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/3XeI9H2__gM" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe><br /> <br /><br /> <strong>04. "Ramble On" with Notorious B.I.G.'s "Hypnotize"</strong></p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/BOSu53-HaRg" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe><br /> <br /><br /> <strong>05. "When the Levee Breaks" with the Beach Boys' "Sloop John B"</strong></p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/kX0oQcXe4Mk" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <fieldset class="fieldgroup group-additional-content"><legend>Additional Content</legend><div class="field field-type-nodereference field-field-related-artist"> <div class="field-label"><p><strong>Related Artist:</strong>&nbsp;<p></div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/led-zeppelin">Led Zeppelin</a> </div> <div class="field-item even"> <a href="/jimmy-page">Jimmy Page</a> </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> http://www.guitarworld.com/whole-lotta-editing-five-awesome-led-zeppelin-mashups#comments Jimmy Page Led Zeppelin Blogs Features Fri, 09 Jan 2015 13:24:01 +0000 Damian Fanelli 19801 at http://www.guitarworld.com Jimmy Page Revisits Two of Led Zeppelin’s Most God-like Albums, 'IV' and 'Houses of the Holy' http://www.guitarworld.com/jimmy-page-revisits-two-led-zeppelin-s-most-god-albums-iv-and-houses-holy <!--paging_filter--><p>It’s a beautiful Indian Summer day, and I’m standing on Queens Gate Road in London, England, a stone’s throw from the legendary Royal Albert Hall, where Led Zeppelin played in 1970, a performance immortalized on 2003’s <em>Led Zeppelin</em> DVD. </p> <p>It’s a fitting landmark, considering that I’ve just finished a productive hour chatting with the band’s guitarist and producer, Jimmy Page, about the new deluxe editions of 1971’s <em>Led Zeppelin IV</em> (the third best-selling album in U.S. history) and its 1973 follow-up, <em>Houses of the Holy. </em></p> <p>I’m searching in vain for a taxi when, suddenly, a middle-aged man holding a sizable video camera on his shoulder walks up and politely introduces himself to me. In tentative English, he explains he’s with a Dutch television station that is producing a segment on the lasting importance of Zep’s classic “Stairway to Heaven.” At least, that’s what I think he says.</p> <p> “So, vat is da meaning of dis song?” he asks.</p> <p> Good question. I’ve written an entire book on Jimmy Page and have had a good three or four decades to think about it, so I should be able to say something relatively intelligent on the matter. But the truth is, it isn’t an easy task. There’s an elusive quality to the song that defies a simple explanation, which probably explains its extraordinary durability. </p> <p>I surprise myself by speaking quite passionately about the song’s theme of spiritual yearning and redemption. I concede that the lyrics are pretty vague, filled with lines like “sometimes words have two meanings,” “there are two paths you can go by” and “there walks a lady we all know/who shines white light and wants to show/how everything still turns to gold.” But, like any other mystical text, the song’s virtue is in its ambiguity—it’s designed to draw you in and “make you wonder."</p> <p> I conclude by telling him that the enduring popularity of the entire <em>Led Zeppelin IV</em> album is probably due to the strange timelessness buried within its musical DNA. Songs like “Battle of Evermore,” “When the Levee Breaks,” “Rock and Roll” and “Stairway” are profound in their ability to shift between the pagan rituals of Stonehenge and some unspecified space age where “all is one and one is all.” </p> <p> “It’s not an album—it’s a work of comparative mythology,” I sputter.</p> <p> The Dutch cameraman smiles and seems satisfied, if not a little puzzled, by my response. After he leaves, I’m a little mad at myself for not bringing up these ideas to Page during our interview an hour earlier, but as a guitar journalist, I was on a different mission. </p> <p>Last June, Led Zeppelin launched an ambitious campaign to reissue their catalog, releasing remastered versions of their first three albums, each accompanied by a second disc of entirely unreleased music related to that album. As the holidays approach, a second round begins with special editions of their fourth and fifth albums, <em>IV</em> and <em>Houses of the Holy.</em></p> <p> The <em>Led Zeppelin IV</em> deluxe edition includes unreleased versions of every song on the original album, including alternate mixes of “Misty Mountain Hop” and “Four Sticks,” stripped-down guitar/mandolin instrumental versions of “Battle of Evermore” and “Going to California” and the much-speculated original Sunset Sound Studios mix of “Stairway to Heaven.”</p> <p> The Houses of the Holy companion disc offers rough and working mixes of “The Ocean” and “Dancing Days” as well as revealing guitar-heavy mixes of “Over the Hills and Far Away,” “The Rain Song” and a cool alternate take of “The Song Remains the Same.”</p> <p> It’s a ridiculous amount of ground to cover in 60 minutes, but Page seems game. Well…pretty game. As an interview, Jimmy is as dynamic and quirky as his music. He’s a highly original thinker who can dazzle with his clarity and insight, but when he wants, he can be as secretive and mysterious as King Solomon. Just the mention of a song title will have him enthusiastically holding forth in great detail, while seemingly innocent questions about guitars or effects can be met with a succinct, “I’m not going to answer that.” </p> <p> But, hey, it’s all cool. Just like “Stairway to Heaven,” a little bit of mystery always makes you wonder.</p> <p><strong>GUITAR WORLD: One of the biggest bits of news is that you’ve included some of the original Los Angeles mixes of <em>IV</em> on one of the bonus discs. The story has always been that, aside from “When the Levee Breaks,” the mixes done at Sunset Sound Studios were a disaster. However both “Stairway to Heaven” and “Misty Mountain Hop,” both included in the companion disc, sound pretty damn good.</strong></p> <p>After we completed most of our work on the fourth album at Island Studios and Headley Grange [a remote three-story stone farmhouse that Zeppelin used as a recording facility], [engineer] Andy Johns and I went to Sunset Sound in Los Angeles to mix. The tapes included most of the music that would end up on <em>IV,</em> including “Stairway,” “Going to California,” and even a few things that ended up on <em>Physical Graffiti,</em> like “Down By the Seaside” and “Boogie with Stu”—but not “Battle of Evermore” which wasn’t finished yet. </p> <p> We did some great work there, and I was particularly impressed with their wonderful echo and reverb facilities. The only problem was, they also had a rather “colorful” studio monitoring system. While we were mixing, everything sounded huge and the low end sounded especially massive. But when we returned to England and played our work back, the sound was nothing like what we had heard in Los Angeles. It was deflated…a pale echo of what we’d heard in L.A. </p> <p> Around that period of time, there were alarming stories of tapes that had been damaged or slightly erased or interfered with by magnets used by airport security. We all wondered whether anything had happened to them. In actual fact, nothing had happened to them. Regardless, the band was not particularly enamored with the way things sounded, so I agreed to remix everything. </p> <p> There were exceptions. The Sunset Sound mix of “When the Levee Breaks” had a density that we could not be replicated when we remixed it in England. It didn’t have that space—that black hole. So we put that one on the original album. We’ve included the remix on the companion disc so you can decide for yourself. </p> <p><iframe width="620" height="365" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/4m2FhRv8xF0" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <hr /> <p><strong>You also included the Sunset mix of “Stairway,” which also sounds pretty good. </strong></p> <p>Yeah, it’s also pretty superb. </p> <p><strong>When you were putting together the companion disc, did you have any second thoughts? Did you think any of the alternatives would’ve been better to put on the original albums?</strong></p> <p><em>Weeeeeellll,</em> I don’t know about that. I think it is what it is. I suppose you could look at it this way: you wouldn’t have the versions that you know, and you wouldn’t have had the possibility to use these wonderful versions for the bonus disc! [laughs] It might’ve took 30 or 40 years to manifest, but Zeppelin runs on sidereal time—or time you can stretch—within the music and in the general ambience of the band.</p> <p><strong>On the original version of “Rock and Roll,” the beginning of the solo is almost buried, and then slowly emerges as it unfolds. On the companion disc, the alternative mix offers more clarity, but it begs the question: why did you bury it in the first place?</strong></p> <p>It makes you listen harder! I didn’t want it to be vulgar and punch the listener in the nose, I wanted to play with them a little bit and draw them in. It’s actually pretty interesting what’s being played.</p> <p><strong>The new version of “Four Sticks” also offers more clarity in certain areas, particularly in John Bonham’s drums. There is so much going on in that song. Was it difficult to achieve a final mix?</strong></p> <p>There were a number of attempts to get that song right. I know, because I just reviewed them all! You’d get to the point where you could hear all the textures…and then realize there wasn’t enough bass. [laughs] Back in those days, it was all manual mixing, so every mix is different, which is really rather good. Getting a great mix was a kind of performance itself. We didn’t start having automated mixes until <em>In Through the Out Door. </em></p> <p>I suppose you could argue which one is better, but on both versions of “Four Sticks”—the original and the alternate version—you really get the feel of the ride of the mix and how we’re trying to get all the textures to organically move throughout the song. I’ve always felt that “Four Sticks” was very abstract, so it was particularly important to get the soundscape right. In some ways, the textures are the song.</p> <p>But regarding hearing John’s performance, or some of the other nuances, I was very diligent during this whole process to release things that had real musical value. A lot of thought went into what we were going to use to compliment the original tracks. </p> <p><strong>Going back over both of these albums, it’s striking how much electric 12-string you used. What was the primary guitar?</strong></p> <p>Well, on “Stairway” I used both my Vox Phantom that I used on “Thank You” and my Fender Electric XII.</p> <p><strong>Did you use them for tonal differences?</strong></p> <p>Not really. They both sort of sounded the same. It was more about how they played. They felt different. On “Song Remains the Same,” it’s just the Fender. </p> <hr /> <p><strong>Listening to the dramatic, stripped-down version of “Battle of Evermore” on the companion disc, something occurred to me. What came first, the mandolin or the guitar part?</strong></p> <p>The mandolin part. I was at Headley Grange one evening and started playing John Paul Jones’ mandolin. I had never really played a violin or a ukulele or any instruments with those kinds of tunings, but before I knew it I had written the whole thing—the verses, the chorus and the breakdown. The rhythm guitar was created later because I had to work out what the chords were and the correct inversions—because I didn’t know what chords I was playing on the mandolin.</p> <p><strong>Why fade the track halfway through?</strong></p> <p>It’s a vignette. It’s similar to how I handled “The Song Remains the Same” on the companion disc. I wanted to give the listener a sense of how the track evolved, but didn’t feel the need to belabor the point. Same with “Going to California”—that’s not the full-length version, either. It’s about illustrating the texture and vibe. </p> <p><strong>I think you’ve said each album is essentially a reflection of what you were feeling at that particular time and space. <em>Houses of the Holy</em> is the most celebratory album in your catalog. It’s the only album without a blues. </strong></p> <p>Well, I’m not sure I’ve ever said it was a summing up of where we were at that point in time; it’s more about what we’re managing to achieve musically under the roof of a recording facility. I think it’s more about how we’ve managed to push things, and we’d been pushing all the way through. </p> <p> Here’s the interesting thing: if we had been forced by the record company to make singles, we would’ve never been able to explore like we did or make albums like <em>IV</em> or <em>Houses of the Holy.</em> Because we created each album as an independent production, we could actually dictate that there would be no singles. And when you look at the whole of the catalog, my god, you realize what a saving grace that was not to have to comply with commercial radio. </p> <p>Our attitude was, “Here’s the album, and if you want to give something to radio, then fair enough, but don’t bother asking us to follow it up with something similar.” </p> <p><strong><em>Houses</em> features some of your most layered and complex guitar arrangements. Around this time you had installed a home multitrack studio. Did that influence the material on <em>Houses</em>?</strong></p> <p>Yes, I did have a home multitrack recorder, and I was experimenting quite a bit, and certainly some of it was done with Zeppelin in mind. “The Rain Song” was one of the tracks that I had developed at home. My demo features a Mellotron and everything—I didn’t play it as well as John Paul Jones, of course—but the whole idea, with all the various movements, was done at home. </p> <p><strong>What about “Over the Hills and Far Away”?</strong></p> <p>No, because that was easy to convey to the band with just a guitar. What I wanted to achieve with “The Rain Song” I felt was less evident from just performing the guitar part, so creating a demo was important.</p> <p> To be honest, I just usually taped things to remind myself. One of the most important things to remember is that musicians of our generation—before there were cassette recorders—had to remember everything. Most of the time I didn’t really need to record demos because I had already committed the idea to memory.</p> <p><strong>“The Song Remains The Same” is genuinely unusual. It’s almost a compendium of folk and country guitar techniques presented in a completely different context—the opening solo features straight flat-picking, the bends behind the vocals are reminiscent of country guitarist <a href="http://www.guitarworld.com/white-lightning-ode-original-b-bender-clarence-white-byrds">Clarence White,</a> and there’s a healthy amount of hybrid picking on your Fender XII.</strong></p> <p>That’s fair enough. It wasn’t intentionally any one of those things. It was just the result of me listening to all these alternative six-string things at the time and summing them up…or perhaps reprogramming them. [laughs] But it’s all a question of taste—of what you put in or leave out to make the most of your technique relative to the song. </p> <p>I was so OCD then that, by the time it came for me to record my guitar parts, I was completely absorbed by what I was doing and the right parts just seem to come out. And most of the solos were pretty spontaneous. I’d warm up and then immediately record, and then I’d do the next one. I never wanted to labor the point of anything. </p> <hr /> <strong>Continuing with the uplifting theme of <em>Houses,</em> I’d like to talk about “Dancing Days.” </strong> <p>Yes, that whole song is like a celebration—it’s jubilant. </p> <p>But I would say <em>Houses of the Holy</em> is an album of many moods. Each song captures an essence of a feeling, an emotion or sensitivity, and you can hear the band maturing as we play all these different styles. I feel there’s a logical progress from each album. You can see the expansion and risks we were taking. Or should I say, the new territory that is there to be civilized and conquered. [laughs]</p> <p> “Dancing Days” is interesting because I remember exactly where I was when I laid down those slide guitar parts. I was at Olympic in Studio One, and I stationed myself in the control room and fed my lead out to an amp in the studio. I wanted it really loud, and you could get the ambience of the whole room. I just roared. I hadn’t even worked out what the part was going to be. But I guess I was so on top of my playing that I could just sort of do that. </p> <p> It sounds like the arrangement to that song was all sort of meticulously worked out, but it all just came out, and all I had to do was a few little drop-ins and the song was done. And then I double-tracked it as well. It was pretty spontaneous. When the rest of the band came in later, I said, “I hope you’re gonna like this.” They were like, “Wow!” </p> <p><strong><em>Houses of the Holy</em> sounds different than any of your other albums. Your guitar sounds brighter, and the drums are a more refined version of the groundbreaking sound you created on <em>IV.</em></strong></p> <p>I thought it was important to make each Led Zeppelin album sound radically different than the one before. All the changes were intentional. That’s why we used different engineers and different locations.</p> <p> I don’t want to go into detail, but I used a lot of different guitars on Houses, which might account for some of what you are hearing. And although we used some of the same techniques to record John’s drums that we developed at Headley on <em>IV,</em> most of <em>Houses</em> was done in a traditional studio, which is why it sounds brighter. You wouldn’t have the same expansion and headroom that we had with the high ceilings in Headley. </p> <p><strong>Why isn’t the song “Houses of the Holy” on <em>Houses of the Holy</em>?</strong></p> <p>Because it comes out on the next album. [laughs] It’s meant to be a little mischievous.</p> <p><strong>This hiss is quite audible on the version of “No Quarter” on the companion disc. Did you hesitate to use it, or did you try to eliminate it using modern technology? </strong></p> <p>It was such a great take by John Paul Jones, I wasn’t about to let a little hiss stop me from using it. In some ways, it adds to the ambience of the time and place. </p> <p><strong>The guitar solo on the original version of “No Quarter” is one of your more unusual statements. It’s jazzy without being jazz.<br /> With the piano being the way it is, the last thing I wanted to do was play a jazz homage. It would’ve been too obvious. I wanted to show the guitarist hasn’t gone to sleep—he’s thinking about presenting the composition in a different way, using different colors and tones and figures that are…spritely. It’s like water nymphs or something coming through.</strong></p> <p><strong>While the music on Houses is primarily upbeat, your use of dissonance on the opening riff of “Dancing Days,” and the rather sour use of seven chords on sections of “The Ocean,” undercuts the happy subject matter and keeps them from sounding too…</strong></p> <p>…cozy. I never really wanted to take the easy way out. Those harmonies you are talking about are stretching and pushing those songs and making them a bit angular. You’re not in a comfort zone when you are listening to the opening riff of “Dancing Days,” but I think it feels natural in a dark way.</p> <p><strong>It’s “Dancing Days,” but it’s not disco!</strong></p> <p>It’s not the norm. It’s not a chug-along thing. It’s got intent in its attitude. It’s an attack. Although it’s not as extreme, that idea also appears on the solo to “Misty Mountain Hop.” I was pushing myself to explore new areas of harmony. I wanted to investigate those outside edges—maybe push myself over the edge! I’m surprised, really, that I’m here to tell the tale.</p> <p><em>Photo: Atlas Icons/Jeffrey Mayer</em></p> <fieldset class="fieldgroup group-additional-content"><legend>Additional Content</legend><div class="field field-type-nodereference field-field-related-artist"> <div class="field-label"><p><strong>Related Artist:</strong>&nbsp;<p></div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/led-zeppelin">Led Zeppelin</a> </div> <div class="field-item even"> <a href="/jimmy-page">Jimmy Page</a> </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> http://www.guitarworld.com/jimmy-page-revisits-two-led-zeppelin-s-most-god-albums-iv-and-houses-holy#comments Brad Tolinski Holiday 2014 Jimmy Page Led Zeppelin Interviews News Features Magazine Fri, 09 Jan 2015 13:19:43 +0000 Brad Tolinski 23245 at http://www.guitarworld.com The 50 Greatest Led Zeppelin Songs http://www.guitarworld.com/50-greatest-led-zeppelin-songs <!--paging_filter--><p><strong>From “Dazed and Confused” to “You Shook Me” … from “Tangerine” to “The Lemon Song” … from “Trampled Under Foot” to “Stairway to Heaven” … <em>Guitar World</em> presents a critical analysis of the classic-rock group’s best tracks.</strong></p> <p>With the recent release of <em>Celebration Day</em>, the concert film immortalizing Led Zeppelin’s historic and most likely final reunion concert at London’s O2 Arena on December 10, 2007, guitarist-producer Jimmy Page reminded the world just how profoundly great and enduring his band’s music is. </p> <p>In homage to what is arguably hard rock’s most innovative group (and certainly its most influential), what follows is a tour of 50 of the most celebrated Led Zeppelin songs, with a focus on the guitar playing, songwriting and arranging genius of the quartet’s visionary founder. </p> <p>Compiling such a finite list presents tough choices for anyone, as the band’s recorded output of great music during its heyday was impressively prolific by any standard and includes well over 50 gems.</p> <p><strong>50. “D’yer Mak’er” (<em>Houses of the Holy</em>)</strong></p> <p>This lighthearted but heavy-sounding song, the title of which is intended to be pronounced “D’you Make Her,” was conceived as a playful melding of a Fifties doo-wop-style repeating chord progression and the quirky, syncopated rhythms of Jamaican reggae. </p> <p>Page makes good use of sliding sixth intervals on the song’s verse riff, providing a thin-textured but catchy and harmonically effective accompaniment to Plant’s vocals. His guitar solo, like so many of his others, is noteworthy for its tasteful, lyrical phrasing and emotive use of bends and finger vibratos.</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="360" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/aoxQBvcKa9Y" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <hr /> <p><strong>49. “Tangerine” (<em>Led Zeppelin III</em>)</strong></p> <p>Like “Thank You,” this folky ballad, written exclusively by Page, offers good bang for your musical buck, in terms of packing a lot of expression into a handful of melodically embellished open “cowboy” chords. </p> <p>Jimmy achieved a rich texture by performing the song’s main guitar part on a 12-string acoustic and handsomely decorated the chorus with authentic country-style pedal-steel licks, for which he used lots of oblique bends and a wah pedal to accentuate their weeping sound. </p> <p>The chorus, played in the happy-sounding key of G, provides a welcome contrast to the somber feel of the verse and solo sections, which are in A minor. Also noteworthy is Page’s short and sweet slide solo, played with a thick, overdriven tone that effectively sustains his vibrato-ed notes and enhances their singing quality. </p> <p>He thoughtfully describes the underlying chord changes in his slide melody by closely following the chord tones as he works his way up to the highest note on the neck.</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="360" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/WCFDo3XSUsQ" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <hr /> <p><strong>48. “Custard Pie” (<em>Physical Graffiti</em>)</strong></p> <p>This opening track from <em>Physical Graffiti</em> features a punchy, Les Paul–through-Marshall–driven “crunch riff” behind Plant’s sexually euphemistic lyrics, many of which were borrowed from songs by early American bluesmen of the Robert Johnson era, specifically “Drop Down Mama” by Sleepy John Estes, “Shake ’Em on Down” by Bukka White, and “I Want Some of Your Pie” by Blind Boy Fuller. </p> <p>Like “Houses of the Holy,” “Custard Pie” is built around a repeating two-bar riff based on an open A chord. </p> <p>As in other songs, Page makes great use of rests in the song’s main riff, which allows it to “breathe” nicely and draws attention to the vocals and drums. Jimmy’s penchant for jazz/R&amp;B harmony is manifested in the G11 chord he plays—in place of the perfectly acceptable straight G chord—near the end of each of the song’s verses, which are loosely based on the 12-bar blues form. </p> <p>The guitarist makes clever use of the wah pedal in his solo, which he begins with a repeating oblique-bend phrase that, with added wah-wah inflections, sounds like a toddler throwing a tantrum. The solo is also noteworthy for the way Page melodically acknowledges the chord changes by touching upon their chord tones as opposed to simply riffing away on the key’s major and minor pentatonic scales.</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="360" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/0VH6kF8jlwA" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <hr /> <p><strong>47. “That’s the Way” (<em>Led Zeppelin III</em>)</strong></p> <p>Like “Bron-Yr-Aur,” this mellow acoustic song was inspired by the serenity and pastoral beauty of the Welsh countryside during Page and Plant’s working vacation at the remote Bron-Yr-Aur cottage in 1970. </p> <p>The band performed the song live in open G tuning, but the studio version sounds in G flat, which is most likely the result of the instruments being tuned down a half step (or a possible manipulation of the tape speed in the mastering process, similar to what Page did with “When the Levee Breaks”). </p> <p>Jimmy strums the song with a pick and makes great use of ringing open strings within his chord voicings, even as he moves away from the open position. Particularly cool are the reverb-soaked pedal-steel licks that Page overdubbed, for which he alternates between major and minor pentatonic phrases—again, a fine example of “light and shade.” </p> <p>Also noteworthy is the climbing outro progression, for which Jimmy again combines open strings with notes fretted in the middle region of the neck to create unusual, lush-sounding chord voicings. </p> <p><iframe width="620" height="360" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/TANKvE3sI3w" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <hr /> <p><strong>46. “In the Light” (<em>Physical Graffiti</em>)</strong></p> <p>Jimmy broke out his violin bow once again and put it to great use in this song’s extended intro, providing a low, eerie, sitar-style drone as a backdrop to Jones’ mystical, echoing “bagpipe” melodies, creatively conjured on a synthesizer.</p> <p> Also particularly cool is the ominous-sounding descending blues-scale-based guitar riff that comes crashing in at the end of the intro (at 2:45) and the menacing, angular verse figure that follows, against which Page overdubbed a twangy, ringing open G note, played in unison with the D string’s fifth-fret G and treated with a shimmering tremolo effect.</p> <p>The song’s bright, triumphant-sounding final theme, introduced by Jones on a Clavinet at 4:09, stands in stark contrast to the hauntingly dark minor key-based sections that precede it—another example of “light and shade.” </p> <p>Also worth noting is the ascending major scale-based lead melody Page plays over the theme’s repeating progression at 4:25 and the way it moves in contrary motion to the descending bass line, a compositional technique regarded as one of classical music’s slickest moves.</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="360" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/C3jRK-sdTSE" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <hr /> <p><strong>45. “For Your Life” (<em>Presence</em>)</strong></p> <p>Page broke out his 1962 Lake Placid Blue Fender Stratocaster for this darkly heavy song about the excesses of drug use in the L.A. music scene, tastefully employing its whammy bar to create well-placed, woozy sonic nosedives. </p> <p>The song’s midtempo groove features sparse and restrained but fat-sounding guitar-and-bass riffs that include wide, dramatic “holes of silence” that are crossed only by the drums, vocals and a shaken tambourine. </p> <p>The arrangement really starts to develop at 2:07, as Page introduces a more ambitious new riff in a new key that’s propelled by a short machine-gun burst of triplets that further enhances the tune’s earthy midtempo groove. Jimmy’s solo, beginning at 4:17 is noteworthy for its melodic inventiveness, quirky phrasing and wailing, drooping bends.</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="360" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/YSAtGNFPLXk" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <hr /> <p><strong>44. “Friends” (<em>Led Zeppelin III</em>)</strong></p> <p>As mentioned earlier, Page employed the same open C6 tuning on this song that he used on “Bron-Yr-Aur” (low to high, C A C G C E), again employing the open strings as drones to create a mesmerizing, hypnotic effect. </p> <p>In this case, Jimmy is strumming heartily with the pick, as opposed to fingerpicking, and plays double-stop figures against ringing open notes to create hauntingly beautiful melodies, making extensive use of the exotic-sounding sharp-four interval (Fs in this case), as well as the bluesy flat-three (Ef) and Arabic-flavored flat-nine (Df), conjuring an intriguing East-meets-West kind of vibe. </p> <p>As he later did in “The Rain Song” and “Kashmir,” the guitarist moves a compact two-finger chord shape up and down the fretboard, played in conjunction with ringing open strings, in this case to craft an enigmatic-sounding octave-doubled countermelody to Plant’s vocals. As a finishing touch, a string ensemble, arranged by Jones, was brought into the studio to double and dramatically reinforce the countermelody.</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="360" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/D8240QPQrNI" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <hr /> <p><strong>43. “Trampled Under Foot” (<em>Physical Graffiti</em>)</strong></p> <p>Inspired by the cleverly euphemistic lyrics of Delta blues legend Robert Johnson’s 1936 composition “Terraplane Blues” and the funky grooves of James Brown and Stevie Wonder, this muscular song features Jones stretching out on a Hohner Clavinet keyboard and a hard-stomping, almost relentless one-chord vamp that’s broken up periodically by a brief string of accented chord changes, over which Page plays wah-inflected, Steve Cropper–style sixth intervals. </p> <p>Jimmy uses his wah pedal very creatively throughout the song and creates exciting aural images by treating his guitar with ambient reverb, backward echo and stereo panning effects, especially toward the end.</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="360" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/jBku3rJ0Xe0" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <hr /> <p><strong>42. “Houses of the Holy” (<em>Physical Graffiti</em>)</strong></p> <p>Built around a fat-sounding strut riff, this song is nothing but a good time. Particularly cool is the way Page and Bonham shake up the riff’s solid eighth-note groove throughout by playing off each other with quirky, syncopated 16th-note fills, such as those at 0:38 and 0:42. </p> <p>Also noteworthy is Page’s resourceful use, during the verses, of progressively descending triad inversions on the top three strings (not unlike those used by Pete Townshend in the Who’s “Substitute”), which provide an effective contrast to both Jones’ angular bass line during this section and the meaty main guitar riff.</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="360" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/sn_3s9wmZuQ" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <hr /> <p><strong>41. “The Rover” (<em>Physical Graffiti</em>)</strong></p> <p>This song’s sexy main riff, introduced at 0:23, embodies that trademark “Led Zeppelin swagger,” resulting from Page’s clever application of pull-down bends on the lower four strings, which he uses to “scoop up to” target pitches from a half step below and make his guitar sing, just as he had done earlier on the low E string in his main riff to “Dazed and Confused” and with whole-step bends in the previously mentioned “Over the Hills and Far Away” inter-verse riff. </p> <p>The effect is accentuated in this case by the use of a phaser, which makes Jimmy’s guitar sound almost as if it’s played through a talk box. </p> <p>Also noteworthy are Page’s elegantly crafted, flamenco-flavored solo and the decorative second guitar part heard during the song’s choruses, for which Jimmy arpeggiates the underlying chord progression, in the process adding an attractive countermelody to the theme without obscuring Plant’s vocals.</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="360" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/XikK2RJdZ18" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <hr /> <p><strong>40. “Dancing Days” (<em>Houses of the Holy</em>)</strong></p> <p>Page takes a riff-building approach on this light-hearted yet powerful rocker similar to that used by Keith Richards on many Rolling Stones classics, such as “Brown Sugar,” “Honky Tonk Women” and “Can’t You Hear Me Knocking.” </p> <p>Making great use of open G tuning (low to high, D G D G B D) and the convenient one-finger major barre-chord shapes it affords, he uses his fret hand’s available middle finger, ring finger and pinkie to add harmonic “extensions” and embellishments to index-finger barre chords. </p> <p>Page’s fascination with the Lydian mode, specifically its s4 interval, manifests itself in a musically compelling way in both the song’s sassy intro riff and its punchy verse and chorus riffs, all three of which convey a strong feeling of tension-and-release, as the harmonically turbulent s4 resolves downward in each case to the stable major third. </p> <p>Particularly cool is the soaring slide melody, a neatly executed overdub first appearing at 0:56, which requires quick position shifts and carefully attention to intonation (pitch centering).</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="360" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/jBku3rJ0Xe0" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <hr /> <p><strong>39. “Bron-Yr-Aur” (<em>Physical Graffiti</em>)</strong></p> <p>Conceived during Page and Plant’s legendary 1970 retreat to Bron-Yr-Aur cottage in rural Wales and recorded during the sessions for Led Zeppelin III, this ingenious fingerstyle-folk instrumental is performed in the same open C6 tuning as “Friends” (low to high, C A C G C E). </p> <p>Page weaves the tune’s melodic themes into an impeccably uninterrupted stream of forward and backward 16th-note arpeggio rolls across the strings, with lots of droning open notes and unisons creating a rich natural chorusing effect and a lush, pastoral soundscape that puts the piece on par with the works of renowned late 19th-century impressionistic composers Claude Debussy and Maurice Ravel.</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="360" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/Gi76yMCXxtQ" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <hr /> <p><strong>38. “No Quarter” (live version, <em>The Song Remains the Same</em>)</strong></p> <p>This fully realized, extended performance of John Paul Jones’ keyboard showcase piece packs the same kind of dynamic punch and slow-jam rhythmic drama as “Since I’ve Been Loving You” and demonstrates both Jones’ and Page’s penchant for modal jazz and their respective skills at building extended, story-like solos over a one-chord vamp. (Incidentally, it is performed in standard tuning, a half step higher than the studio version from <em>Houses of the Holy</em>, for which the instruments sound a half step below concert pitch.) </p> <p>Also noteworthy are the two jarring, prog-rock-flavored chords in the song’s pre-chorus, Bfadds11 and Efadds11, first heard at 0:58 and 1:06, respectively.</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="360" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/k5R9MB-edJ8" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <hr /> <p><strong>37. “The Wanton Song” (<em>Physical Graffiti</em>)</strong></p> <p>Like “Immigrant Song,” this composition’s main riff demonstrates how alternating octaves combined with a strong, syncopated rhythm can create a compelling, heavy-sounding riff, and it’s safe to say that it probably inspired bands like Living Colour and Rage Against the Machine to pen their similarly styled riffs. </p> <p>And like “Out on the Tiles” and “The Ocean,” the use of wide, recurring “holes of silence” in the guitar and bass parts while the drums and vocals continue, creates pronounced dynamic and textural contrasts, which add to the song’s appeal. </p> <p>The instrumental interlude section that ensues after the second and fourth verses (at 0:59 and 2:03, respectively) provides a stark contrast to the raw power of the alternating-octaves riff and introduces a surprisingly jazzy chord progression within such a heavy rock song, with overdriven diminished seventh chords—something few other rock guitarists outside of Yes’ Steve Howe or Dean DeLeo from Stone Temple Pilots would have the vision and daring to use—employed as harmonic pivots to modulate to new keys. </p> <p>Page’s Leslie-treated minor-seven chord riff that ensues brings to mind the Isley Brothers’ 1973 R&amp;B hit “Who’s That Lady” and further demonstrates the breadth of Page’s stylistic influences.</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="360" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/nrfQZ_anNYM" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <hr /> <p><strong>36. “How Many More Times” (<em>Led Zeppelin</em>)</strong></p> <p>This lengthy final track from Led Zeppelin’s debut album and live set-closer in their early days was a favorite improvisational vehicle for the band, with open-ended jam sections that allowed Page to stretch out with scorching lead licks, reverb-drenched violin bow excursions and wah-wah-inflected chord strumming. </p> <p>As Jimmy told <em>Guitar World</em> in 1993, the song “was made up of little pieces I developed when I was with the Yardbirds, as were other numbers, such as ‘Dazed and Confused.’ ” He adds, “It was recorded live in the studio with cues and nods.” </p> <p>Embodying an eclectic blend of stylistic elements, the song features an interesting variety of rhythmic grooves, from a jazzy swing feel, to a straight-eighths funk beat, to a Latin bolero rhythm somewhat reminiscent of the previously recorded Jeff Beck instrumental “Beck’s Bolero,” on which both Page and Jones had played.</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="360" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/NBqbuGgt0Us" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <hr /> <p><strong>35. “Gallows Pole” (<em>Led Zeppelin III</em>)</strong></p> <p>Led Zeppelin’s creative arrangement of this sardonic, centuries-old, storytelling Celtic folk song titled “The Maid Freed from the Gallows” begins very modestly, with Plant’s pleading vocals accompanied solely by Page’s quiet acoustic strumming. </p> <p>It builds in stages to a full-blown bluegrass-style “hoe-down,” with a mandolin and acoustic 12-string joining the fray midway through, followed by bass, drums and, finally, banjo (played by Page) and overdriven electric lead guitar, on which Page cleverly plays major pentatonic licks to conjure the sound of a country fiddle. </p> <p>The arrangement’s ambitious development is not unlike that of “Stairway to Heaven” in its magnitude and creates a similarly dramatic effect.</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="360" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/Tza0zaJUW9w" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <hr /> <p><strong>34. “Out On the Tiles” (<em>Led Zeppelin III</em>)</strong></p> <p>This “forgotten classic” features another of Led Zeppelin’s signature octave-doubled, single-note “stomp riffs,” this one played at a faster tempo than most of their other similarly crafted songs, with Bonham grooving on one of his favorite funky drumbeats as Page and Jones lock-in on a tricky bass melody that drops an eighth note at the end of the first and third verses (at 0:24 and 1:40, respectively). </p> <p>Particularly cool- and powerful-sounding are the accented pulled bends on the low E string between the A power chords in the intro riff. It’s also worth pointing out that this is one of the very few uptempo Led Zeppelin songs that does not include a guitar solo; it doesn’t need one. </p> <p><iframe width="620" height="360" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/Uv2E8-Irn6c" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <hr /> <p><strong>33. “You Shook Me” (<em>Led Zeppelin</em>)</strong></p> <p>Led Zeppelin’s convincingly worthy cover of this Chicago-style slow blues song (written by Willie Dixon and J.B. Lenoir) showcases their thorough assimilation of and deep adulation for the style and ability to take it to the next level of intensity through each band member’s musical virtuosity and artistic depth of feeling. </p> <p>Page’s slide work, performed in the challenging and potentially unforgiving mode of standard tuning, is impeccable here, as he shadows Plant’s vocal melody with spot-on intonation and coaxes sublime vibratos from many of his sustained notes. </p> <p>Equally laudable is Jimmy’s wailing guitar solo, played without a slide, for which he employed tape echo and epic reverb effects to create breathtakingly soaring trails of cascading, screaming licks during the solo’s and song’s climax.</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="360" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/dbwG0u3hb7M" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <hr /> <p><strong>32. “Celebration Day” (<em>Led Zeppelin III</em>)</strong></p> <p>This playful, uptempo rocker was built around a slinky slide riff conceived by Jones, the genesis of which he described in his column in Guitar World July 1997: “I came up with the intro/verse riff to “Celebration Day” while playing and old Danelectro baritone guitar like a lap steel, using an unusual, low open A7 tuning (low to high: A A A E G Cs), a steel bar and a nut saddle to raise the strings.” When performing the song live, Page would adapt this riff to standard-tuned guitar. </p> <p>On the recording, Page crafted a complementary and similarly slinky bend lick to play over the song’s main A-riff following each verse (initially at 0:24). </p> <p>Similar to what he later did between the verses in “Over the Hills and Far Away,” the guitarist uses pulled bends on the bottom two strings to reach up to the last note of each phrase he plays, in this case adding a bold, shimmering vibrato to each bend.</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="360" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/o5cgrsWnPvo" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <hr /> <p><strong>31. “Four Sticks” (<em>Led Zeppelin IV</em>)</strong></p> <p>Named after Bonham’s literal use of four sticks on the track (two in each hand), this tribal dance–like song features exotic rhythms and harmonic modalities that conjure images of Near Eastern and North African wildernesses from an earlier century. </p> <p>The arrangement is built around three guitar riffs, each incorporating an open-string bass pedal tone, or drone. As mentioned previously, Page used, for the song’s primary riff, the same “bending away from a unison” trick he employed in his “Whole Lotta Love” riff, with equally haunting results. In this case, he strums the open G string together with that note’s fretted equivalent on the D string’s fifth fret and pushes the fretted G slightly sharp by bending it upward (away from the palm).</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="360" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/jyZc2Xqav_4" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <hr /> <p><strong>30. “Thank You” (<em>Led Zeppelin II</em>)</strong></p> <p>Before “Stairway to Heaven” or “The Rain Song” were ever conceived, this well-written, timeless love song displayed, along with “Babe I’m Gonna Leave You,” a sensitive, emotional side of Led Zeppelin, one that didn’t have to do with sexual lust or scorn. (Gee, what was George Harrison complaining about in commenting to Led Zeppelin that their songbook was lacking ballads?) </p> <p>Layering tracks of acoustic and clean 12-string electric guitars, Page weaved a tapestry of warm harmony behind Plant’s tender, low-key vocals and crafted an elegant single-note acoustic solo, one often celebrated and emulated for its melodic appeal by players such as Slash. </p> <p>Also noteworthy in “Thank You” are Page’s melodic 12-string runs behind Plant’s vocals during the song’s final two verses, specifically at 2:31 and 3:14.</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="360" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/28BAZ_EFSt8" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <hr /> <p><strong>29. “Bring It On Home” (<em>Led Zeppelin II</em>)</strong></p> <p>Like their other blues covers, Led Zeppelin’s reading of this Willie Dixon blues song has their unique artistic, stylistic stamp all over it, from its funky bass-and-drums groove, octave-doubled single-note riffs and Page’s soulful use of string bends, which, incidentally, Jones aggressively mirrors an octave lower on bass during the song’s main riff. </p> <p>Page added to the riff, at 1:54, a decorative high harmony line, as he would later do with riffs in “Black Dog,” “The Ocean” “Achilles Last Stand” and other songs, in each case further building the arrangement and enhancing its appeal. His harmony notes here form sweet-sounding sixth and third intervals based on the E Mixolydian mode.</p> <p>The song’s middle verse sections sport a particularly bad-ass guitar riff, first appearing at 2:04 and built around sixth-interval double-stops, again based on the decidedly bluesy-sounding E Mixolydian mode. Notice how Page divides and orchestrates this riff into two separate guitar tracks, which he pans hard left and right in the stereo mix, accentuating the riff’s call-and-response quality.</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="360" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/N_zTz5A_7Aw" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <hr /> <p><strong>28. “Living Loving Maid (She’s Just a Woman)” (<em>Led Zeppelin II</em>)</strong></p> <p>Following on the heels of “Heartbreaker,” this playful and more light-hearted rocker features some of Jimmy’s most tasteful “power-pop” guitar parts. He recorded the song’s primary rhythm tracks on his Fender electric 12-string (the same guitar he used in the studio on “Stairway to Heaven” and “The Song Remains the Same”). </p> <p>As in “Heartbreaker,” “Good Times Bad Times,” “Communication Breakdown” and other songs, he liberally employs his go-to “Hendrix-style” thumbed chord “grips,” which, lacking the low fifth of a conventionally fretted major barre chord, add sonic clarity to his chord voicings. </p> <p>Jimmy’s solo in this song is short and sweet, featuring emotive bends and vibratos and culminating in one of his trademark chromatic climbs up the B string.</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="360" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/OKI1k7LSAIE" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <hr /> <p><strong>27. “Going to California” (<em>Led Zeppelin IV</em>)</strong></p> <p>Page also used open strings and unison notes to great effect on this acoustic folk masterpiece. Tuning both his low and high E strings down to D (in what is known as double drop-D tuning), the guitarist plays dreamy hypnotic arpeggio figures that feature lots of ringing, repeated notes played on different strings. </p> <p>With its blend of English and American folk-guitar styles (think Bert Jansch meets Merle Travis), “Going to California” is a finger stylist’s delight. Particularly compelling is the dramatic bridge section beginning at 1:41, played by Page in the parallel minor key, D minor. If you listen closely, you’ll hear two acoustic guitars fingerpicking different inversions of the same chords, thirds apart.</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="360" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/S0Kbbjw28P4" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <hr /> <p><strong>26. “What Is and What Should Never Be” (<em>Led Zeppelin II</em>)</strong></p> <p>Like “Ramble On,” this song is another masterwork study in dynamic and textural contrasts. Page begins each verse by strumming a breezy two-chord vamp using jazzy, George Benson–approved dominant ninth and 13th chords with a clean, mellow tone, as Jones plays one of his celebrated brilliantly lyrical, complementary bass lines. </p> <p>Taking advantage of the wide range of gain and overdrive afforded his Les Paul/non-master–volume Marshall tube amp pairing, Page cranks up his guitar’s volume on the choruses, resulting in a beefy crunch tone that perfectly suits the powerful riff he crafted for that section. </p> <p>The song also features one of Jimmy’s most tasteful slide solos, carefully executed in standard tuning and thus without the harmonic safety net that an open tuning affords.</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="360" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/doKNr52rHdk" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <hr /> <p><strong>25. “The Ocean” (<em>Houses of the Holy</em>)</strong></p> <p>On par with “Heartbreaker” and “Black Dog,” in terms of embodying that trademark Led Zeppelin octave-doubled single-note “stomp groove,” this song’s iconic intro/main riff demonstrates just how effectively heavy-sounding rests, or “holes of silence,” can be when sandwiched between notes in just the right places. </p> <p>This riff, as well as the power-chord-driven and similarly punctuated verse figure, are made to sound even more dramatic by the ambient room sound surrounding John Bonham’s drums, to which Page, the producer, rightfully deserves credit for his visionary use of distant miking techniques.</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="360" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/JvoG36nUcSU" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <hr /> <p><strong>24. “Rock and Roll” (<em>Led Zeppelin IV</em>)</strong></p> <p>The ultimate hot rod–driving song and tribute to Chuck Berry, this uptempo, straight-eighths blues-rock anthem features irresistibly boogie-woogie-like rhythms and a killer guitar solo that begins with Page playfully pulling off to open strings before ascending the neck with a daringly acrobatic chromatic climb somewhat reminiscent of his climactic lead in “Communication Breakdown.”</p> <p>Particularly artistic is the way Page lays back rhythmically during the song’s verses with sustained power chords, providing an effective, welcome contrast to the relentless eighth notes of the bass and drums.</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="360" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/GonQSHxzb1k" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <hr /> <p><strong>23. “The Lemon Song” (<em>Led Zeppelin II</em>)</strong></p> <p>Borrowing from Howlin’ Wolf’s 1964 blues hit and eventual standard, “Killing Floor,” Led Zeppelin created a derivative work that became a classic unto itself, showcasing their own renowned Memphis soul–style interactive blues-rock jamming, dynamic sensibilities and each individual musician’s fat tones. </p> <p>Not content to just play the song’s climbing intro riff on his low E string, Page employs hybrid picking (pick-and-fingers technique) to pair each low melody note with the open B string, creating a pleasing midrange “honk.” </p> <p>Also noteworthy in this arrangement is Page’s substitution, on the five chord in the song’s repeating 12-bar blues progression, of a minor seven chord, Bm7, for the customary dominant seven chord, which would be B7 in this case, creating a darker, more melancholy sound.</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="360" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/Zyhu2ysqKGk" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <hr /> <p><strong>22. “Babe I’m Gonna Leave You” (<em>Led Zeppelin<em>)</em></em></strong></p> <p>Another acoustic masterpiece, this song features a bittersweet circular chord progression presented as ringing, fingerpicked arpeggios. Particularly noteworthy is the way Page spins numerous subtle melodic variations on the theme throughout the song (check out the one at 3:40), sweetening the aural pot with dramatic dynamic contrasts. </p> <p>This may be one of the most perfectly recorded and mixed acoustic guitar tracks ever. Notice how, in the song’s intro, the “dry” (up-front and un-effected) acoustic guitar is in the left channel while the right channel is mostly “wet,” saturated in cavernous reverb.</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="360" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/iP9xMobANJM" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <hr /> <p><strong>21. “When the Levee Breaks” (<em>Led Zeppelin IV</em>)</strong></p> <p>This track is revered for, among other things, its epic drum sound, resulting from the cavernous acoustics of Headley Grange and Page’s ingenious distant microphone placement, as well as his decision, as producer, to slow down the tape speed in the mastering process. </p> <p>Led Zeppelin’s cover of this blues song, written and first recorded in 1929 by Kansas Joe McCoy and Memphis Minnie, also features great slide playing by Page in open G tuning (low to high, D G D G B D). Due to the slowing of the tape speed, however, the pitch of the recording was lowered by a whole step, so the song actually sounds in the key of F.</p> <p>Page performed this song’s two guitar tracks on his Fender electric 12-string. Its additional strings, in conjunction with the open tuning, enhanced the unison and octave-doubling effect of many of the notes in the guitar parts, which already incorporate unison notes. The result is a huge wall of droning G and D notes with a natural chorusing effect that mesmerizes the listener in a way akin to the chorus chords in “Kashmir.”</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="360" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/wEKkJHSO8A0" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <hr /> <p><strong>20. “The Battle of Evermore” (<em>Led Zeppelin IV</em>)</strong></p> <p>For this mystical-sounding folk-rock gem, Page and Jones traded the instruments they play on “Going to California,” with Page taking up the mandolin and Jones strumming acoustic guitar. According to Page, “ ‘The Battle of Evermore’ was made up on the spot by Robert and myself. I just picked up John Paul Jones’ mandolin, never having played one before, and just wrote up the chords and the whole thing in one sitting.”</p> <p>Page’s mandolin sound on this song is epic, which is partially the result of his taking advantage of the cavernous, majestic natural reverb of the location where he recorded his tracks, which was in the foyer of a large, old stone house in rural Wales called Headley Grange. (This location, by the way, is where several other tracks on <em>Led Zeppelin IV</em> and <em>Physical Graffiti</em> were recorded, most notably Bonham’s drums on “When the Levee Breaks.”) </p> <p>Page additionally doubled/layered his mandolin tracks on this arrangement and employed a tape echo effect, with a single repeat, timed to echo in an eighth-note rhythm relative to the song’s tempo, resulting in a continuous stream of percolating eighth notes.</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="360" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/WGAKeHQUx-U" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <hr /> <p><strong>19. “Immigrant Song” (<em>Led Zeppelin III</em>)</strong></p> <p>With its fiercely galloping rhythms, jagged backbeat accents and ominous-sounding flat-five intervals, this ode to Viking pillage no doubt helped fuel the lustful creative fire behind hordes of heavy metal bands like Iron Maiden, Celtic Frost and Mastodon that came of age in the years following the song’s 1970 release. </p> <p>Particularly sinister-sounding is the way Page plays, during the song’s outro, an atypical second-position G minor chord shape over Jones’ C-note accents, in the process creating a highly unusual voicing of C9(no3).</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="360" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/Q1lzfz_TjWI" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <hr /> <p><strong>18. “Good Times Bad Times” (<em>Led Zeppelin</em>)</strong></p> <p>This punchy opening track from the band’s debut album set the stage for Zeppelin’s juggernaut conquest of the world of hard rock. Page octave-doubles Jones’ nimble, angular bass line on his slinky-strung Fender Telecaster, adding shimmering finger vibrato at just about every opportunity. </p> <p>The guitarist’s scorching, Leslie-effected lead licks, with their gut-wrenching bends and tumbling triplets, convey a man on fire and poised to win the West.</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="360" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/6TdDqv0qRqw" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <hr /> <p><strong>17. “Nobody’s Fault but Mine” (<em>Presence</em>)</strong></p> <p>Led Zeppelin’s turbo-charged reinvention of this traditional American gospel blues, or Negro spiritual, song was inspired primarily by singer and acoustic slide guitarist Blind Willie Johnson’s 1927 recording of it. Zeppelin’s version is built around a mesmerizing, laser beam-like guitar melody, which Page played with distortion and a flanger effect and doubled, both in unison and an octave higher, with Robert Plant additionally scat singing the line, adding to its mesmerizing, bigger-than-life quality. </p> <p>Page’s aggressive exploitation of string bending and vibrato techniques, in both the main riff and his solo, adds to the soulfulness of the band’s arrangement. Also noteworthy are Jones and Bonham’s lock-step bass-and-drum syncopations, which further add to the power and drama of the band’s arrangement.</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="360" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/esZ15n6_5JY" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <hr /> <p><strong>16. “Black Dog” (<em>Led Zeppelin IV</em>)</strong></p> <p>“Black Dog” was built around a snakey blues riff, initially written on bass by John Paul Jones and doubled an octave higher on guitar by Page. The rhythmic orientation of the song’s main riff to the beat has been the subject of heated debate among working musicians over the years, the point of contention being specifically where “one” is. </p> <p>When pressed for an explanation, Page was vague. But Jones, in his Lo and Behold column in <em>Guitar World</em> December 1996, states that this deceptive riff should be counted with the first A note — the root note of the song’s key and the fourth note of the riff—falling squarely on beat one. (Drummer John Bonham’s big cymbal crash on beat two is one of the things about this riff that throws a lot of people off.) </p> <p>Page enhanced the riff later in the song, at 3:18, by overdubbing a parallel-thirds harmony line. In the 1993 GW interview, the guitarist noted, “Most people never catch that part. It’s just toward the end, to help build the song. You have to listen closely for the high guitar parts.”</p> <p>Page and recording engineer Andy Johns tried a novel and ultimately successful experiment by triple-tracking the song’s rhythm guitar parts. As Page explained, “Andy used the mic preamp on the mixing board to get distortion. Then we put two 1176 Universal compressors in series on that sound and distorted the guitars as much as we could and then compressed them. Each riff was triple-tracked: one left, one right, and one right up the middle.”</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="360" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/npQbPpDF6hA" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <hr /> <p><strong>15. “Ramble On” (<em>Led Zeppelin II</em>)</strong></p> <p>This song is all about contrasts, or as Page likes to say, “light and shade.” It begins with a mellow, folky acoustic strum riff pitted against a highly melodic Fender bass line for the verse sections, which lead up to a hard-hitting and highly inventive electric guitar–driven chorus riff. </p> <p>Page broadened the definition of the term “power chord” here by using the seemingly odd two-note combination of root and flatted seventh (Fs and E, respectively, played right after Plant sings “Ramble on!”), a pairing made even more unlikely by the fact that he plays it over John Paul Jones’ E bass note. The theoretical discord notwithstanding, it sounds great.</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="360" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/a3HemKGDavw" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <hr /> <p><strong>14. “Black Mountain Side” (<em>Led Zeppelin</em>)</strong></p> <p>Page spices up this traditional Celtic folk melody with East Indian musical flavors, hiring a bona fide tabla drummer to accompany him on the track and injecting his own fiery Indian-style acoustic lead break into the arrangement. </p> <p>Check out <a href="http://store.guitarworld.com/collections/guitar-world/products/guitar-world-jan-13-led-zeppelin">the January 2013 issue</a> of <em>Guitar World</em> to learn the secrets to this iconic song.</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="360" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/z0OYZm4RhFE" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <hr /> <p><strong>13. “In My Time of Dying” (<em>Physical Graffiti</em>)</strong></p> <p>This 11-minute track was inspired chiefly by Blind Willie Johnson’s reading of the traditional blues-gospel song “Jesus Make Up My Dying Bed” as well as a similarly titled rendition from the same era by Delta bluesman Charlie Patton. </p> <p>Zeppelin’s inspired interpretation of the song features some of Page’s best slide guitar work (performed in open A tuning: low to high, E A E A Cs E), as well as one of the fattest-sounding drum tracks in this or any other band’s catalog, the result of Bonham’s unique touch and feel and Page’s miking and mixing techniques.</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="360" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/yZgblTKscX0" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <hr /> <p><strong>12. “Kashmir” (<em>Physical Graffiti</em>)</strong></p> <p>Played in DADGAD tuning, which Page had previously used to great effect on both the Yardbirds’ “White Summer” and Led Zeppelin’s “Black Mountain Side,” “Kashmir” is built around four mesmerizing riffs, three of which involve the use of open-string unison- and octave-doubled notes, which create a natural chorusing effect and a huge wall of sound. </p> <p>Particularly noteworthy is the way Jimmy overlaid, at 0:53, the song’s menacing, ascending riff—the James Bond–theme-flavored part—on top of the recurring descending sus4 chord sequence. </p> <p>Page explained in the previously mentioned GW interview, “The descending chord sequence was the first thing I had—I got it from tapes of myself messing around at home. After I came up with the da-da-da, da-da-da part, I wondered whether the two parts could go on top of each other, and it worked! You do get some dissonance in there, but there’s nothing wrong with that. At the time, I was very proud of that, I must say.”</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="360" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/nQH3LtNePgI" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <hr /> <p><strong>11. “Over the Hills and Far Away” (<em>Houses of the Holy</em>)</strong></p> <p>This song is another study in contrasts, specifically between English/Celtic-flavored acoustic folk and Les Paul–driven hard rock. It begins with a playful, folk-dance–like acoustic riff, which Page initially plays on a six-string and then doubles on a 12-string, that gives way, at 1:27, to crushing electric power chords and a clever single-note riff, for which Jimmy incorporates pulled bends on the bass strings (first heard at 1:37). </p> <p>Particularly cool is the way the guitarist reconciles this electric riff with the strummed acoustic chords previously introduced at 1:17. </p> <p>Also noteworthy is the grooving James Brown–style funk riff behind the guitar solo and the rhythmically peculiar, harmonized ascending single-note ensemble melody that follows at 3:00. To top it all off, Page, the producer, concludes the song with a “false ending.” </p> <p>As the band fades out, at 4:10, a lone guitar emerges with a final variation of the folk riff from the intro, but all you hear is the 100 percent “wet” reverb “return” signal, which creates a mystical, otherworldly, “faraway” effect.</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="360" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/6bD9t44JUD4" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <hr /> <p><strong>10. “Heartbreaker” (<em>Led Zeppelin II</em>)</strong></p> <p>With its menacing, octave-doubled blues-scale riffs and sexy string bends, this song epitomizes the “Led Zeppelin swagger.” Interestingly, the verse riff features Jones strumming root-fifth power chords on bass, treated with overdrive and tremolo, while Page alternately lays back on decidedly thinner-sounding thumb-fretted octaves — a signature technique heard in his and Jimi Hendrix’s rhythm guitar styles — and punches barre-chord accents together with the bass and drums. </p> <p>Page recorded the song with his 1959 Gibson Les Paul Standard, which he had recently bought from Joe Walsh, playing the guitar through his newly acquired 100-watt Marshall amplifier. The song also showcases some of Jimmy’s most aggressive, inspired soloing, including a free-form, tantrum-like a capella breakdown section. </p> <p>Page recorded the breakdown while the band was touring the U.S., using a studio different from the one where the rest of the song’s tracks were cut. He was unaware that his guitar on that particular section was tuned slightly sharp of the rest of the tracks, which are at concert pitch. The discrepancy goes unnoticed to most listeners and only becomes obvious if one goes to play along with the entire recording.</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="360" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/npoYQMPCOvU" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <hr /> <p><strong>09. "The Rain Song" (<em>Houses of the Holy</em>)</strong></p> <p>Performed in an unusual tuning (low to high, D G C G C D) with lots of ringing open strings and unison-doubled notes, this beautiful song features a sophisticated chord progression that was initially inspired by Beatle George Harrison, who challenged Page to write a ballad. </p> <p>After playfully evoking the verse section of Harrison’s “Something” on the first three chords of “The Rain Song,” Page veers off into an ultimately more ambitious and original progression. Particularly inventive and cool sounding is the Hawaiian-flavored dominant-ninth chord slide that precedes the first lyric line of each verse.</p> <p>When asked to explain why the studio version of “The Rain Song” is in the key of G while the live version, as heard in the film <em>The Song Remains the Same</em>, is in A, Page replied, “It surprises me to hear you say that, because I thought they were both in A. Okay, the [live] tuning is [low to high] E A D A D E. </p> <p>The only two strings that change are the G, which goes up to A, and the B, which goes up to D.” Page explained how he arrived at this unusual tuning. “I altered the strings around so that I’d have an octave on the A notes and an octave on the D notes, and still have the two Es,” he said. “Then I just went to see what finger positions would work.”</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="360" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/h1d4TLWmmcE" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <hr /> <p><strong>08. “Ten Years Gone” (<em>Physical Graffiti</em>)</strong></p> <p>Like “The Rain Song,” this heart-warming yet heavy ballad demonstrates Page’s intuitive harmonic depth and sophistication, as he employs jazzy, “expensive”-sounding maj7, maj13, min9, dim7 and maj6/9 chords as effortlessly as Burt Bacharach, minus the associated schmaltz. </p> <p>The song’s instrumental interlude, which begins at 2:31, is particularly sweet and rich sounding. It features a laid-back, phaser-treated lead guitar melody with soulful double-stops over a bass, drums and clean, jangly rhythm guitar accompaniment. Also noteworthy is Page’s doubling of the chorus riff, first heard at 0:32, with an electric sitar.</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="360" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/jYpydtdlWxA" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <hr /> <p><strong>07. “Communication Breakdown” (<em>Led Zeppelin</em>)</strong></p> <p>With its down-picked “pumping” eighth notes and syncopated power-chord stabs, this song’s urgent verse riff embodies the spirit of Chuck Berry–style rock and roll. Not surprisingly, it served as the quintessential prototype for both heavy metal and punk rhythm guitar. </p> <p>Page’s piercing, well-crafted solo, with its climactic, chromatically ascending unison bends, is like Berry on steroids and demonstrates that Page, on his new band’s freshman outing, was already thinking “outside the box,” both figuratively and literally (the physical “box” being a pentatonic fretboard shape).</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="360" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/gOZCAjcYurE" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <hr /> <p><strong>06. “Since I’ve Been Loving You” (<em>Led Zeppelin III</em>)</strong></p> <p>Jimmy’s impassioned guitar solo in this highly dramatic Chicago-style slow blues song is among his most inspired and emotive. </p> <p>The song’s chord changes and structure are truly original, and in his rhythm guitar part Page plays an inventively slick turnaround phrase at the end of each chorus (initially from 1:06–1:12) that mimics a steel guitar, with a bent note woven into and placed on top of two successive chord voicings. </p> <p>What makes this phrase so interesting and enigmatic is how, over the second chord, Dfmaj7 (played on organ by John Paul Jones) Page bends a C note up to D natural—the flat nine of Dfmaj7—and manages to make it sound “right.” It’s something few musicians apart from Miles Davis would have the guts to do.</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="360" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/8RfOaAj7E5g" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <hr /> <p><strong>05. “Whole Lotta Love” (<em>Led Zeppelin II</em>)</strong></p> <p>This song has one of the coolest intro and verse riffs ever written. Not content to play it “straight,” as his blues-rock contemporaries might have done, Page inserts a subtle, secret ingredient into this part, giving it that x factor and a spine-tingling quality. </p> <p>Instead of playing the riff’s second and fourth note—D, on the A string’s fifth fret—by itself, he doubles it with the open D string (akin to the way one would go about tuning the guitar using the traditional “fifth-fret” method), then proceeds to bend the fretted D note approximately a quarter step sharp by pushing it sideways with his index finger. </p> <p>The harmonic turbulence created by the two pitches drifting slightly out of tune with each other is abrasive to the sensibilities and musically haunting, but the tension is short-lived and soon relieved, as Page quickly moves on to a rock-solid E5 power chord. “I used to do that sort of thing all over the place,” said Page. “I did it during the main riff to ‘Four Sticks’ too.”</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="360" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/OhmmAFHwlEk" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <hr /> <p><strong>04. “The Song Remains the Same” (<em>Houses of the Holy</em>)</strong></p> <p>Like a getaway chase on a stolen horse, this ambitiously arranged song, with its galloping rhythms and fleet-footed solos, is guaranteed to give you an adrenaline rush. Particularly noteworthy is Page’s decision to overlay two electric 12-string guitars during the song’s opening chord punches, each playing different and seemingly irreconcilable triads, such as the pairing of C major and A major. </p> <p>“I’m just moving the open D chord shape up into different positions,” Page told <em>Guitar World</em> in 1993. “There actually are two guitars on this section. Each is playing basically the same thing, except the second guitar is substituting different chords on some of the hits.”</p> <p>He adds, “ ‘The Song Remains the Same’ was originally going to be an instrumental, like an overture to ‘The Rain Song,’ but Robert [Plant] had some other ideas about it! I do remember taking the guitar all the way through it, like an instrumental. It really didn’t take that long to put together — it was probably constructed in a day. And then of course I worked out a few overdubs.”</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="360" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/mmQ35xMxzd4" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <hr /> <p><strong>03. “Stairway to Heaven” (<em>Led Zeppelin IV</em>)</strong></p> <p>Jimmy Page trampled over two rules of pop music with this masterpiece: it’s more than eight minutes long, a previously prohibitive length for pop radio formats, and the tempo speeds up as the song unfolds. </p> <p>“Stairway” is the epitome of Page’s brilliance as not only a guitarist, but also as a composer and arranger, as he layers six-string acoustic and 12-string electric guitars throughout the song in a gradual crescendo that culminates in what many consider to be the perfect rock guitar solo, performed on his trusty 1959 Fender “Dragon” Telecaster (his go-to guitar in the early days of Led Zeppelin).</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="360" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/9Q7Vr3yQYWQ" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <hr /> <p><strong>02. “Dazed and Confused” (live version, <em>The Song Remains the Same</em>)</strong></p> <p>Clocking in at more than 28 minutes, this marathon performance marks the apex of this song’s evolution and showcases some of Led Zeppelin’s most intense jamming and collective improvisation in a variety of styles. Page is at the height of his powers here, in terms of both chops and creative vision, never at a loss for a worthwhile musical idea. </p> <p>The otherworldly violin-bow interlude, beginning in earnest at 9:10 and spanning nearly seven minutes, is particularly inspired, and Page’s use of tape echo and wah effects in conjunction with the bow is absolutely brilliant.</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="360" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/ZQgYn23Xvck" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <hr /> <p><strong>01. “Achilles Last Stand” (<em>Presence</em>)</strong></p> <p>This epic, 10-minute song is Page’s crowning achievement in guitar orchestration. </p> <p>The ensemble arrangement, bookended by a swirling, unresolved arpeggio loop, really begins to blossom at 1:57, and from this point on, Page spins numerous melodic variations over top of the jangly, plaintive Em-Cadd9s11 chord progression that underpins most of the composition. </p> <p>Interestingly, Page previewed this chord vamp in the 1973 live version of “Dazed and Confused” that appears on <em>The Soundtrack to The Song Remains the Same</em>, beginning at 5:52.</p> <p>Thoughtful consideration was put into the stereo image of each guitar track, which keeps the entire recording crisp despite the dense arrangement. The song also features one of Page’s most lyrical guitar solos (and one of his personal favorites).</p> <p><iframe width="620" height="360" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/p6S9oqJRclo" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe></p> <fieldset class="fieldgroup group-additional-content"><legend>Additional Content</legend><div class="field field-type-nodereference field-field-related-artist"> <div class="field-label"><p><strong>Related Artist:</strong>&nbsp;<p></div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/led-zeppelin">Led Zeppelin</a> </div> <div class="field-item even"> <a href="/jimmy-page">Jimmy Page</a> </div> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/robert-plant">Robert Plant</a> </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> http://www.guitarworld.com/50-greatest-led-zeppelin-songs#comments GW Archive January 2013 Jimmy Brown Jimmy Page John Paul Jones Led Zeppelin Robert Plant Guitar World Lists News Features Magazine Fri, 09 Jan 2015 13:17:17 +0000 Jimmy Brown 17825 at http://www.guitarworld.com