I can still remember buying Led Zeppelin IV from the local branch of Woolworths in the ‘village’ square. I say ‘village’ – that’s what we called it; but Southwick was a really a small town. Big enough to have a Woolworths store with a music department though. It was late November 1971 and the album had only been out for a couple of weeks. But, having heard ‘Black Dog’ on the record-player at the ‘Old Barn’ youth club in St Julian’s Lane, I was hooked. Someone told me the band didn’t release singles, so I’d raided my money box and scraped together just enough to splash out on my first ever album.
Not a bad way to start a record collection. And I’ve still got that original pressing (along with two CD versions, a second vinyl copy and the 2014 remaster). Hard to pick a favourite on such a classic album – all eight tracks fit the bill – but ‘Four Sticks’ probably has the edge.
One song per day along with an explanation of why you picked it. Day 9 – a song that makes you hopeful
Led Zeppelin – Going to California (1971)
I still remember buying my first copy of Led Zep IV about a month after it was released. It was the first album (actually the first record) I ever bought – so a good one to start with. Broke open my money box, cycled down to the village and watched the assistant behind the record counter in Woolworths count out the pennies and pass back the threepenny bits which were no longer legal tender. And from that day on those precious vinyl sides got play after play, firstly on my father’s monogramme and then on my Dansette a year later. Every track is as well known to me as any track could be, and each has a special place for different reasons. But ‘Going to California’ has always for me been a song of hope – it’s final line helping me through those teenage ‘angst’ years at first and on several subsequent occasions when I’ve felt a bit down in the dumps about one thing or another.
…telling myself it’s not as hard, hard, hard as it seems…
A couple of blogs back I posted Part 1 of the Jemtunes ‘Desert Island discs’ featuring Led Zeppelin 4. As well as covering a number of classic blues artists themselves, since they folded with the passing of John Bonham, a host of others have covered Led Zeppelin.