Led Zeppelin by Alexander Stylianou
Originally named the New Yardbirds, Led Zeppelin was formed in London, England 1968. The band consisted of four members. Robert plant (singer), Jimmy page (guitarist), John Paul Jones (bassist), and finally John Bonham (drummer). Between the four they manage to create a unique rock and roll sound that was influenced from folk and blues.
In 1969 Led Zeppelin released their first and self titled album Led Zeppelin. It was recorded in Olympic studios in London through Atlantic records. With songs like “Babe I’m Gonna Leave you”, “Communication Breakdown”, and “Dazed and Confused”, Led Zeppelin and their first album quickly became popular. Their first album reached in America number 10 on the Billboard chart and was number 6 in the United Kingdom. While touring for their first album completing four tours in the United States and four in the United Kingdom, they spent no time in waiting to release their second album in 1969. The sequel to Led Zeppelin, Led Zeppelin II was almost completely recorded while they were on tour in America. With songs like “Whole Lotta Love”, “HeartBreaker”, and “Bring It On Home”, Led Zeppelin II would reach number four on the American Billboard charts and would go on to sell over a million copies.
Continuing their great success, Led Zeppelin would continue to tour throughout the United States. In 1970 Jimmy page and Robert Plant would begin working on the bands third album Led Zeppelin III. Some of the more famous songs of theirs from this album being “Immigrant Song” and “ Bron-Y-Aur Stomp”. Despite it being more acoustic than the previous two albums, Led Zeppelin III reached number one both in the United States and in the United Kingdom. But although reaching number one, Led Zeppelin III wouldn’t hold number one for too long and will become the shortest duration out of Led Zeppelin’s first five albums. Led Zeppelin continued on writing and in 1971 their fourth album released. Although Led Zeppelin never gave their fourth album an official name, it will become know as Led Zeppelin IV. Containing so many of Led Zeppelins top songs, Led Zeppelin IV would become one of the best selling albums in history. When it was released it totaled 37 million copies sold. By 2006 the album sold 23 million copies in just the United States alone.
In 1974 Led Zeppelin would release there fifth album Houses of the Holy and create their own record label called Swan Song. Houses of the Holy just like all their previous albums became a hit with songs like The Song Remains the Same” and “Over the Hills and Far Away”. In 1975 they released their sixth album Physical Graffiti and their seventh album Presence in 1976. By now the band was considered without any argument the number one rock band and would be breaking records for attendants at concerts, and outselling bands like the Rolling Stones. In 1976 we would also get a concert film of Led Zeppelin called The Song Remains. They would then continue to tour until in November of 1978 where they recorded their eighth album In Through Out The Door in Sweden. It would reach number one on the charts in both the U.S and U.K despite the mix reviews.
On September 24, 1980 drummer John Bonham would be found dead by manager Benji LeFevre and band member John Paul Jones. It would turn out Bonham died from asphyxiation from his own vomit. The next day the group would decide to no longer continue and disband as the band. A ninth album would be released in 1982 called Coda which would consist of songs the band recorded but never used in previous albums. Coda was given its name in order to reflect the death of Bonham and the end of the band. This because Coda means a passage that ends a musical piece following the main body. The group would perform just a few more times for reunions with John Bonham’s son Jason replacing his father on drums.
Led Zeppelin changed rock and roll and influence so many generations of rockers to come. Today, Led Zeppelin is still popular with all fans of rock and roll, to the point were there is a great demand for them to reunite and still perform. Also, although for so many years they were considered a rock and roll or heavy rock group, it is only quite recent where many including myself would categorize them as one of the descendants or progenitors to the metal genre.