Robert Plant tonight. I can’t remember the last time I posted a Led Zeppelin concert, and I don’t think I ever have. Not that I was never a fan of the band, but that it’s been my assumption that Led Zeppelin, along with most of the Major Mainstream Bands going back to the 60s, have been pretty well covered by just about every other website on the Internet. And one of the things I strive to do is showcase bands that need to be checked out or bands that sometimes slip off the radar and need to be played as a reminder. It’s one of the main reasons I never run any Beatles concerts – they have all been well exposed in other places and they don’t need Past Daily to add to the glut.
But Robert Plant has become an institution, these past 20+ years. Yes, he was a key element in the success of Led Zeppelin, but more than that, Robert Plant had (and still has) a unique and compelling voice – and always has, even going back to his early pre-Zeppelin singles. But where many artists voices get craggy with age, Plants voice still evokes and stirs. And even though he slips into a couple Zeppelin-era songs in the course of a show, as a kind of nod to all things passing, what he’s doing now is more exciting, because he’s doing it with a lot of different people, and stirring up the musical pot, going in many new directions.
Let’s face it – if Robert Plant’s solo career consisted of doing strictly Led Zeppelin songs, the audience and the experience would be limited – and to a degree, self-parody – that’s the sad part about bands who insist on staying frozen in time to maintain the nostalgia factor. The fact that Robert Plant is out there reaching and trying new things, keeps him and his music fresh. And this 1993 Glastonbury show offers ample proof.
Lots of miles left to go and no point in resting on laurels. Keeping it fresh keeps it vital.
And this one really benefits from being played loud – whether you’re a fan or someone who has never heard Robert Plant before.