Thursday, August 17, 2006

The Foundation: Volume 2

As I said in the last post, the first two posts would be dedicated to the two events that had a profound and lasting affect on my love for music. The first, as discussed in the last post, was Pearl Jam. The second, which will be discussed in this post, was Led Zeppelin.

Now, as I mentioned already, my love for Led Zeppelin actually preceded my love for Pearl Jam. For some reason, unknown to me, a good number of my memories from my childhood involve music. A song playing in the background. An album that was being played a lot at the time. Some form of music playing as the soundtrack to these memories. There was a substantial amount of classic rock surrounding me when I was growing up. Everything from the Beatles, to the Who, to the Beach Boys. The one band I didn't get much exposure to was Led Zeppelin. I guess neither of my parents were all that into Led Zeppelin. Sure they enjoyed their music, but I don't ever remember any of their albums being played or anything like that.

I remember driving in my dad's car, a gray Jeep Cherokee to be exact, on the way to a basketball game. I must've been in 7th grade or so. We were listening to The Q, as usual, and this song came on that completely blew me away. It was one of those moments where you can feel a song penetrating into the deepest recesses of your brain. The experience is almost surreal and I am sure I'm not the only one who has had this experience. The song played for maybe a minute and I had to ask my dad who it was. It wasn't that I wanted to know...I NEEDED to know. He said he was pretty sure it was Led Zeppelin, but didn't know the name of the song or what album it was on. For days, that song was stuck in my head. It wouldn't leave. I couldn't remember the words. I could barely even remember the melody. It was haunting me and I knew I needed to hear it again. Again, this was before the internet, iTunes, and the like. To find a song, you basically had to sing it to someone and hope they knew what in God's name you were singing, but that was going to be quite a problem because I couldn't sing it. It was just floating around my brain, but not in any tangible form. It would only reveal itself upon being heard again.

I needed to get to the record store as soon as possible, but being 12 years old, I basically had to wait for the next time my mom was going to the mall. I hopped on board the first opportunity I got. I remember going to the record store and going to the Led Zeppelin section. In my naive brain, I hadn't realized how difficult this was going to be. I hadn't really given much thought to how many albums they had made. So there I was, facing ten albums or so, with no song title to go on. My thought process at the time was to randomly pick one and just hope it was on there. If it wasn't on the one I picked, buy a different one next time. I chose Led Zeppelin IV that day, basically because I knew Stairway and figured that if it wasn't on there, at least I knew one song. Needless to say, the song wasn't on there. To save this from being any longer than it already is, I will condense the rest of the story. Bought another album or two, to no avail. I think it was the fourth album I bought, Houses of the Holy, when I finally heard it again. I knew instantly, "This is it!!!" After all this, if you are even still reading, you must be just dying to know what song it was. Ok, probably not, but whatever. It was "Over the Hills and Far Away," still one of my favorite Zeppelin songs.

That was entirely longer that I expected. I am aware that the first couple posts were a tad verbose, but I promise that from here on out, they will not be as long. Alright, I can't promise, but I will try my best. Anyway, finally onto the songs. Here is a little Zeppelin for you to enjoy...

Led Zeppelin - Over the Hills and Far Away (live)

Led Zeppelin - Going to California (live)

Page & Plant - Kashmir (live)

If you are interested in obtaining the full shows and don't know how to go about doing so, feel free to leave me a comment or send me a message and I'd be happy to introduce you to the world of Dime-A-Dozen.

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