With the recent victory over court proceedings regarding Led Zeppelin’s most famous tune still ringing in our ears, we thought we’d take a look back at one of it’s most curious performances.
Here, we see Jimmy Page and Robert Plant take to Japanese TV in the mid-90s to give a rarely heard acoustic performance of Zeppelin’s iconic number.
When Led Zeppelin burst on to the scene i the late sixties there were few bands as monstrous. With John Bonham pounding drums in the back and John Paul Jones delivering rhythm by the bucket load, it allowed the stunning talents of Jimmy Page and Robert Plant to run wild.
Jimmy Page was the wizard with a guitar and Plant was the spellcasting siren upfront, it was a winning combination which saw the group flourish into one of the greatest rock acts of all time before Bonham’s untimely demise in 1980. It brought an end to the band as we knew it and cast Zeppelin to the history books, for the time being at least.
It appeared as though morbidly the break up had come at the right time for the band. It allowed the different pillars of the group to explore their own creativity and indulge in their solo material. But there was still a big draw to play with the musicians with whom you’d shared so much success.
In 1988, Page admitted to having grown weary of singing Zeppelin’s most beloved song, ‘Stairway to Heaven’, “I’d break out in hives if I had to sing it every show,” he told the Los Angeles Times. “I wrote those lyrics and found that song to be of some importance and consequence in 1971, but 17 years later, I don’t know. It’s just not for me… No more ‘Stairway to Heaven’ for me.”
But on November 10th in 1994 Page and Plant, about to embark on a new duo venture together, decided to break out the track for another trip across the airwaves. But not as we knew it.
Page and Plant instead provided a mesmerising acoustic performance of the track in promotion of their world tour. It’s a sumptuous rendition of the song and offers new textures to the otherwise stadium-sized tune. Watch below as Jimmy Page and Robert Plant perform an acoustic version of ‘Stairway To Heaven’ on Japanese TV in 1994