Hear this rare 1970 version of Led Zeppelin's 'No Quarter'
(Credit: Jim Summaria)

The Led Zeppelin song Jimmy Page calls his favourite

It must be hard to pick your favourite child and we imagine that Led Zeppelin’s Jimmy Page has the same difficulty when picking his favourite song. But, in an interview, that’s exactly what he did.

The huge plethora of rocking Led Zeppelin tracks means that Jimmy Page has got a lot of songs to pick from when selecting his favourite. The guitarist’s incredible catalogue may make choosing difficult but Page managed to pick the ultimate Led Zeppelin track.

Now, we know what you’re thinking. There are literally hundreds of songs that could be put down here as some of Led Zeppelin’s best. ‘Whole Lotta Love’ may have been one of the most influential riffs of all time, something Page commented on in 2014 saying, “We felt the riff was addictive, like a forbidden thing,” a similar case can be made for ‘Black Dog’, too—but it’s not his favourite.

He was asked by Rolling Stone in 2012 which song he felt contained the greatest Led Zeppelin riff and his response may well not be what you’re expecting. Page, famed for his evolving blues-rock sound instead picked his Eastern-influenced gem from Physical Graffiti, the brilliant ‘Kashmir’ “has to be the one.”

He acknowledges that while his riff may well be the biggest moment on some Zpepplin songs, without the rest of the band’s input Zep would never have reached the heights they did. “It’s difficult to be asked, ‘What’s your favorite Zeppelin track?’ They all were,” Page told Fricke of Rolling Stone. “They were all intended to be on those albums.” But he decided to narrow it down soon after. “I suppose ‘Kashmir’ has to be the one,” he said.

“All of the guitar parts would be on there,” he said. “But the orchestra needed to sit there, reflecting those other parts, doing what the guitars were but with the colours of a symphony.” John Paul Jones scored the orchestral part of the track with Page working closely with him.

Page was asked how he delivered such sounds, his reply was naturally coy “Riffs come out of the ether, out of nowhere,” he said. “Will you tell me where that is? Because no one knows.” Well, not quite. ‘Kashmir’ had begun its life during some sessions at Headley Grange in 1973 where Page and Zep’s drummer John Bonham, “It’s the first thing I ran through with Bonzo,” Page said.

“I just know that [Bonham] is gonna love it, and he loves it, and we just play the riff over and over and over, because it’s like a child’s riff,” Page remembered.

Jimmy Page’s favourite Led Zeppelin song of all time

‘Kashmir’ (1974)

Subscribe to our newsletter
Delivering curated content