Jimmy Page: Am I missing out! Seriously am I?

smokermaker

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I mean the section in the lead track that starts at 1:33, that has to be a strat and whammy abuse.
 

ChickenLover

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Watch some Zeppelin videos and watch JPJ and Bonham; they keep constant eye contact and frequently laugh/smile/roll eyes when Jimmy goes off into Jimmy-Page-timing. Zeppelin was my favorite band in the mid 70s but for guitar I wanted to be Billy Gibbons/Robin Trower/Peter Frampton. The only Zeppelin stuff I learned was mostly acoustic. Love him for what he wrote but as a player he was just very sloppy.
 

sahhas

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when the LZ dvd came out in the 00s, i probably watched it a 1000 times, there is some good stuff on there, the one thing that i really noticed, watching the live stuff was how much bonham really drove that band. can see when he passed how everything would change and it wiuld be gard to continue on w/o him!!!!

Watch some Zeppelin videos and watch JPJ and Bonham; they keep constant eye contact and frequently laugh/smile/roll eyes when Jimmy goes off into Jimmy-Page-timing. Zeppelin was my favorite band in the mid 70s but for guitar I wanted to be Billy Gibbons/Robin Trower/Peter Frampton. The only Zeppelin stuff I learned was mostly acoustic. Love him for what he wrote but as a player he was just very sloppy.
 

Drkorey

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I got the DVD's from 2003, with the desert scene cover, when they were released.
There is a lot of great stuff on there.
I found it interesting that he seemed to be a much cleaner acoustic player vs. "electric" when you compare the acoustic and electric sets on the DVDs.
 

70 Mach 1

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I grew up a huge page fan.
Wanted to play just like him.
Copied all his licks off the albums
Bought an LP because that's what he played

Fast forward 45 or so years later and I don't give two hoots about him anymore

I find my self even flipping off the radio station when songs come on
 

gigs

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Love everything musical about JP. The song writing, arranging, producing is off the charts. The live sloppiness is also what I love. It's rock n roll, it's live, the songs are complicated guitar songs to play on one guitar and he does a great job live trying to put it all together on the fly. Huge respect.

If you want to hear the studio version, put your headphones on and listen. If you want to hear the studio version played live.... I don't know what to tell you, I don't think that is what live music is about.
 

Beyer260

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I came up in the '80s, when rock guitarists were judged almost entirely by how many notes they could cram into a solo. Then, I heard Zeppelin's "Heartbreaker". I couldn't believe it, this guy sounded like he was falling all over himself with choked out notes and sloppy timing. What a mess! But for some reason, I wanted to hear it again.... and again. There was something there that all the technical shredders of the day lacked, and I couldn't put my finger on it. Soul? Feel? Attitude? Whatever you call it, Jimmy Page had it in spades and none of the technical guys had it at all (I don't count EVH in that category, he had it too). It was then that I realized technical perfection was irrelevant, because music is an emotional exercise, not a technical one. Sure it's great to be able to play quickly and flawlessly, but if you're just spewing gobbledygook in an arms race to out shred the next guy, who cares?
 

hawk101

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I suspect there was at least some chance he may not have been completely sober during this performance. It’s easier to play “creatively” when one is only loosely tethered to reality.
 

Joe Robinson

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I'm not the biggest LZ or Jimmy Page fan, and I think it's because, aside from the over saturation of the band on radio, Page, Plant, Jones and Bonzo were all they needed for composition, but they really needed more musicians to bring it live. I could see at least 2, maybe 3 guitar players (including Page) and dedicated bass and keys. It could of been orchestral, but it was really just kind of thin. The studio recordings are far better than the live stuff.

That being said, I can't think that a silky smooth legato player would sound great on LZ tracks. There is a lot of personality in that mix.
 

DontheMon

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I'm not the biggest LZ or Jimmy Page fan, and I think it's because, aside from the over saturation of the band on radio, Page, Plant, Jones and Bonzo were all they needed for composition, but they really needed more musicians to bring it live. I could see at least 2, maybe 3 guitar players (including Page) and dedicated bass and keys. It could of been orchestral, but it was really just kind of thin. The studio recordings are far better than the live stuff.

That being said, I can't think that a silky smooth legato player would sound great on LZ tracks. There is a lot of personality in that mix.
I'm a big fan and definitely see your point. The LZ behemoth killed Zeppelin. Would have been cool if they pulled a Beatles and were like no more live stadium stuff but I think Page and Bonzo were kinda addicted to the life as well as the money as was everyone else on that front...kinda not a big Knebworth fan but it was important for them to bring it when some people were sort of questioning them and they kinda brought it but still was beastly thing...

But wasn't Page playing pretty high and drunk toward the middle and end and sometimes it worked but most of it is a kind of a hammering mess...then Plant and his wife had such terrible smash up in Greece...I think Page was still nailing the studio stuff for the most part but just getting worse as a live player...I always liked the early bluesy live stuff and then when it got a little heavier it was still great but...
 

Motterpaul

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I look at it this way - there used to be a common saying in Hollywood that "You're only as good as the last thing you've done."

But logically that doesn't make sense - you are as good as the best thing you have ever done. And while not all of JP's solos (especially live) were good (some were stinkers), his ability to find the right sound and feel for studio recording, especially for LZ I and II, was stellar.

And not all of his recorded solos are amazing note for note, but some definitely are. Many of them are kind of buried in the mix - but that was on purpose, so you didn't dissect the playing, but rather just let it fulfill the need for the right guitar sound and feel in that spot. There were clams, but with repeated listenings, you got used to them and they became part of the song.

Eddir Kramer says in that video above "leave the mistakes in, leave some hair on it
 
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Kurt L

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Yeesh. Until that video, I'd almost forgotten just how close Ovation and the piezo came to making the acoustic guitar and certain musical productions of the era completely unlistenable.
Couldn't have said it better myself. Al DiMeola managed to sound good, Adrian Legg managed to sound good... but to me, in general, Ovation meant brittle high end and weak lows. I think a lot of people were so thrilled at not having to mic an acoustic guitar that they put up with it.

Thankfully, piezos have gotten better since then.

Regarding Jimmy Page, yes OP is missing out. Page, at his worst, was out of time, sloppy, seemingly in his own universe.

At his best, he was a master class in writing great guitar parts, recording them in creative and innovative ways, arranging them with other instruments, and mixing the end result. And that far outweighs his foibles in my book. The guy is a genius and a true innovator.

I love listening to isolated tracks because they're proof that things can sound horrible in isolation and incredible in a full mix. (And vice versa.)

It's easy to get burned out on Zeppelin and forget the reason so many LZ songs were overplayed is that they were really, really good.
 
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Albion9

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He saw what was happening in America with FM radio (it was new and somewhat underground in 68-69), and he put a band together (boy did he ever) and conquered the world. The first two albums came out in 69 and the second was recorded between live dates on the road. Listen to the bootleg from 8-31-69 Tx. Pop Festival and think about being the band that had to follow this.
 

guitarjazz

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He saw what was happening in America with FM radio (it was new and somewhat underground in 68-69), and he put a band together (boy did he ever) and conquered the world. The first two albums came out in 69 and the second was recorded between live dates on the road. Listen to the bootleg from 8-31-69 Tx. Pop Festival and think about being the band that had to follow this.

Nothing but slackers on that bill.
 

CFB85

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Listen to the solo above. I don't give a damn about sloppiness or even if it's comp'd from multiple live shows. Then listen to this again at night driving through a snowstorm in the Alps. This was July '73. I've never heard Hendrix reel this type of lyrical solo off and while poor Clapton had the taste, tone and studied technique he never had the material, fire or lyricism of Pagey at his best in my view. Rock n'roll should be ridiculous, theatrical, primal, unstudied, reckless, raunchy and yes sexy. Slowhand does not embody any of this. Too smooth; the self-appointed arbiter of what is good and bad blues. I mean the guy dismissed EVH for heaven's sake... always a day late and a dollar short! Yes Plant's lyrics get a little cringe. Yes it is excessive but who cares, it was Page's band. Jimmy was playing like the example above consistently through 70-73. People talk about sloppiness as if they could do what Page did in their sleep because they can nail some Vai licks. If there's a present rock player who can improvise and reel off a solo like the one above on a consistent basis in front of 15'000 people i haven't heard them. So what if things got a little bloated in the late 70s. In the words of the great man it's better to live one day as a lion than a lifetime as a lamb and this guy did it to the max. Should be knighted for services to the guitar and Les Paul sales. No player i've heard played on the edge like Page - that is right on the edge of your technical ability and trying to push for something that you may not be even capable of. For instance I always got the feeling with EVH (certainly in his prime) that he had more in the tank. With Page I can feel it teetering right on the edge of collapse and that's the genius and fearlessness in his playing. Bonus example below - this is in front of 20'000 people at Earl's Court - 1975 - Page (according to some) slipping off the top of his game and the whole thing still sounds outrageous like the whole stage is going to collapse over and on top of the audience. A massive part of this is of course Jones / Bonham. Could you imagine a band like this today? Licence to print millions. If Page was so sloppy someone else should play like this and steal all these blues riffs and make a killing.

Pure swagger. Nobody sounded like Pagey. Forget the burnt out later years Puff Daddy and Fred Durst miss-steps and focus on the power from 69-75!

 
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jbd3

Please Don't Sell Me Any More Gear
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I don't know if the solo to Dazed and Confused "tells a story" but for me it's always been the most perfect solo ever composed and played. The dissonance that precedes it...then JP kicks in that intro like "put on your seatbelt for what's coming". Then the descending bends while Robert joins in. Can Robert keep up with that G string bent behind the nut? sure can! Then here comes the prelude to the main event, where it gets sexual, then hold, hold, hold, an OMG I didn't mean to do that I was just too excited pinch harmonic, and queue Bonzo, here comes the explosion and BAM!

SIBLY, the whole thing is solo story. He came in to the studio and laid that down in one take (or was it two I can't recall).

A frolic down memory lane solo in 10 Years Gone.

Every solo he ever did fit the song perfectly...no random scales and finger acrobatics, just pure rock and roll.

Granted heroin doesn't make for great live performances but he did this on a half a bottle of Jack before the heroin habit. Can't play live my ass:



"Since I've Been Loving You" and "Ten Years Gone" are two Jimmy Page highlights. His playing is so deeply embedded in my guitar DNA--that little solo break in "Whole Lotta Love" is why I started playing, as a kid--that it's hard for me to make a case for him; his playing is so much a part of mine. (Tho his is 100x better, needless to say...) He also had so much swagger--those riffs are monstrous.
 
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Beyer260

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523
I'm not the biggest LZ or Jimmy Page fan, and I think it's because, aside from the over saturation of the band on radio, Page, Plant, Jones and Bonzo were all they needed for composition, but they really needed more musicians to bring it live. I could see at least 2, maybe 3 guitar players (including Page) and dedicated bass and keys. It could of been orchestral, but it was really just kind of thin.

Or not-

 

jbd3

Please Don't Sell Me Any More Gear
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I'm not the biggest LZ or Jimmy Page fan, and I think it's because, aside from the over saturation of the band on radio, Page, Plant, Jones and Bonzo were all they needed for composition, but they really needed more musicians to bring it live. I could see at least 2, maybe 3 guitar players (including Page) and dedicated bass and keys. It could of been orchestral, but it was really just kind of thin. The studio recordings are far better than the live stuff.

That being said, I can't think that a silky smooth legato player would sound great on LZ tracks. There is a lot of personality in that mix.

If you want to get some idea of how LZ would have sounded with another couple of guitars in the mix, check out the record Jimmy Page did with Black Crowes, I think it's called "Live At The Greek." Once you get over it not being Robert Plant singing, it's quite good.
 




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