Digging into the history of Led Zeppelin, you can’t help but read about when Jimmy Page wanted to start a new band and first asked this young guy if he’d be lead singer, but the fella declined because he had other commitments, and instead recommended Robert Plant. This guy was called Terry Reid, and when I looked up some of his songs, I was instantly in love! His vocals are just right op there with Plant’s, and even though people will call him crazy for ‘missing’ a huge shot at fame and stardom, I think it was for the best. Terry was not made to be a front man in glitter suits to a massive group, letting someone else do all the guitar work. He was a born singer-songwriter. He toured with the Stones when he was just a teenager and Graham Nash produced one of his albums. He had tons of potential, so it’s a terrible shame that he never got the recognition he deserved! He had some trouble with his manager Micky Most and so was unable to play his own music for quite some time. Still, I find it shocking how nobody knows him! It sort of became my mission to spread his music and have people acknowledge the genius that is Terry Reid!
Like Robert Plant, he had a powerful voice that has lost it’s strength over the years. Yet he also still performs! But let me introduce you to his stuff when he was on top of the game: From the start, my favorite song was Seed of Memory (1976), from the same-name album that was produced by Graham Nash. His voice just sends shivers up my spine, especially in the final lines. He was such a strong vocalist and lyricist, and this song proves it.
Now this Donovan cover from the 1969 Terry Reid album is why he got his nickname: ‘Superlungs’
Just one more! (For now, because he has so many great songs and covers, it’s ridiculous!) This song always reminds me of driving up the Big Sur coastline, when I was introducing my hosts there to his music. The sun was setting, we were tired after a long day, but still a little excited about seeing wales pass by. I was happy in that moment, and I love this song not just for the memory it holds, but because it’s just plain beautiful.
So there you’ve had it; a little taste of Terry Reid. I’m also glad I’m not the only one who thinks the world of Terry, because a documentary is being made about him: http://www.mysuperlungs.com/ ! At least, there was. Last I heard they had trouble with the good man himself, who drinks. He lives very humble, by the way, he never got rich from the albums he made. They are also still looking for funds to finish the film, but already have loads of interviews with people who think highly of him, like Robert Plant. Hopefully they will be able to finish and get Terry the recognition he should’ve gotten years ago!
I had no idea what I was in for when I started to listen to Led Zeppelin. My dad had the Remasters CD in his car, of course, and it was always fun having Whole Lotta Love on cause the guitar’s racing sound would be going from left to right. I didn’t mind the music at all, but it wasn’t until I met some people in my first year of film school who thought the world of them and Pink Floyd, that I started to really listen. BANG. Mind = blown. I don’t know if it went fast or slow, all I know is that I have become obsessed with Zeppelin. They seemed to have had it all: A killer voice, killer musicians, long defining guitar solos, bang, everything, I mean, I can’t even write. I have bought all of their albums, DVDs, books, I even have a Physical Graffiti image up on the wall.
I would like to say they don’t have a single song I hate, but if there’s one I just can’t listen to, it’s definitely The Battle Of Evermore, their only song to star a guest singer. That was easy, but it’s hard to choose one song that I love the most, even as I am writing this I’m thinking: which one shall I post? So for now I’m gonna go with two songs I really wanna say something about: First there’s the final song on their first album, and it’s called How Many More Times (1969). What I like about it, is that the song is like a book with chapters, all with a different feel, yet it doesn’t sound disconnected. I think it shows what they are capable of, as does their whole debut album, I might say. So I used to call this one my favorite, but there’s this other song that really, really, REALLY, gets to me: Since I’ve Been Loving You (1970). Heart wrenching ballad, all four musicians carry out the same feeling of love and sadness and helplessness, it is just devastatingly beautiful. I always call it the best broken heart song ever. And I’ve recently come to love the live version from the DVD The Song Remains The Same, so here goes. Enjoy! More Zeppelin will be featured on this blog for sure.
That feeling that’s left everybody; the cosmic energy… Everybody goes “yaaaaaaay” BASH!
When I was 14 years old, our music teacher asked us to give a presentation about our favorite band and play our classmates a song of theirs, this was my pick:
At age 13 one day I was sitting in my dad’s car and I heard this song on the radio I liked. When I was a child I always used to say old music made me nauseous, but this time I really liked the band, and so I asked my dad who this was. He told me it was the Police and he proudly put on their Greatest Hits album. From that moment on, this Britney Spears fan turned into a Police nut.
My favorite album was always Reggatta De Blanc (1979), which contains some of my absolute favorites like Walking On The Moon, The Bed’s Too Big Without You, and Bring On The Night. They remained my favorite band for 5 years and I couldn’t believe my luck when, even though I was convinced I’d never be able to see them play live, they decided to do a reunion tour in 2007! I remember my sister had to buy me the tickets online in the morning, but the website kept crashing and so I thought I didn’t get any! I’d lay in my bed all day crying and listening to their music like a moron, until my sister decided to check her mailbox and turned out; we DID get the tickets!
I went to the concert in Antwerp and saw these old men perform all the songs I love, while they used to be young blond fellas in their video clips and on album covers. Sting was unable to sing Roxanne as the grand finale, because he had problems with his voice and the concert the next day was even cancelled. I remember the following morning in religion class when the teacher brought up the concert for some reason, and I was so proud to be able to say I was there! It was the best day of my young life.