Led Zeppelin frontman Robert Plant was a spunky 23-year-old when Led Zeppelin released their 1971 album Led Zeppelin IV. Now, aged 73, the rock star likens himself to the crooked old man carrying a burden on the cover artwork of the LP.
Reflecting on the making of Led Zeppelin III on his Digging Deep with Robert Plant podcast, the singer remembered moving to the Bron-Yr-Aur cottage in Snowdonia, Wales to write in an isolated and tranquil environment. The band returned to the cottage when writing new material for the fourth studio album.
“It was fine; it was really good. It was a beautiful place, and all those things were part of the bargain,” Plant explained, referring to the cottage’s lack of electricity and running water. “You’re there for a reason, and you’re just in it, so all that actually adds to it — the idea of going outside and bringing in kindling.”
“In fact, the old guy with the sticks on his back on Zeppelin IV — I’m now that guy!” Plant said jovially. “I pick up kindling everywhere I go and wrap it around with a piece of baling twine and shunt it on my back just in case anyone’s driving by and they go, ‘There’s that bloke from the Led Zeppelin IV album cover!’”
Plant has previously opined that legacy bands look “sadly decrepit” if they stay together to perform into their sunset years, but it seems the legend doesn’t shy from joking about his age. While Plant no longer fronts Led Zeppelin, he keeps busy touring with Allison Krauss, promoting the duo’s second collaborative album, Raise the Roof.
Listen to the full Digging Deep with Robert Plant podcast episode below.