When Led Zeppelin hit the music scene at the end of 1968, the decade of peace, love, and flower power was pretty much already dead. Indeed, Led Zeppelin’s pair of vinyl record albums released in 1969, with their crashing chord changes, licentious leads, and wailing vocals, were, in their own way, the first nails in the coffin of the decade of the hippie. But this heavy metal band was different, grounded as much in the folk music of a mythological Middle Earth England as the blues of Mississippi Delta America.

The band’s eponymous first album was reportedly recorded in just 36 hours. Most of it was just captured live in the studio, with minimal overdubs. From the first chords of “Good Times Bad Times,” listeners knew they were about to hear something completely different, melding the heroic architecture of riff-rock with guitar chops that rivaled Jimi Hendrix's. The album featured not one but two tunes by bluesman Willie Dixon. When Robert Plant’s otherworldly vocals were added to this heady mix, the result was an assault on the rock orthodoxy that, of course, quickly became the new norm.

The cover of “Led Zeppelin” on the Atlantic label featured the image of the Hindenburg airship just as it was catching fire on its last voyage in 1937. While most copies feature the band and label names in orange, some feature each in red while others are in turquoise. Collectors look for such differences as well as the credits on the records themselves (the band’s “Superhype Music” publishing arm gets credit on some copies; others pressed in the U.K. are credited to Warner Bros.).

Even more dear are 45s, which Led Zeppelin’s manager forbade in the U.K. Thus, promo singles are widely sought by Led Zep fans, including ones for “Communication Breakdown” and "Dazed and Confused,” both off the band’s first album. A withdrawn 45 for “Whole Lotta Love” from “Led Zeppelin II” is also highly prized.

“Led Zeppelin II” is actually an interesting album from a record collector’s point of view. Unlike the LP that preceded it, “II” was recorded in numerous studios in the U.K., U.S., and Canada, as the band struggled to capitalize on its sudden fame by touring while recording. It obviously worked because “II” went straight to number-one in three countries.

Albums “III” and “IV” followed, the latter containing such hist as “Black Dog,” “The Battle of Evermore,” and “Stairway to Heaven,” and that was just on side one! “Houses of the Holy” followed in 1973, even though it had been recorded in 1972—it was the last album Led Zeppelin produced for Atlantic. “Physical Graffiti” in 1975 on the band’s Swan Song label, came next, a double-LP consisting of new material and previously unreleased tracks from earlier in the decade.

After the death of drummer John Bonham in 1980, the band’s surviving members busied themselves with solo efforts. Page and Plant collaborated on “The Honeydrippers” in 1984 and t...

In 2007, along with John Paul Jones and John Bonham’s son, Jason, Led Zeppelin played a benefit for the late Atlantic Records executive Ahmet Ertegün’s Education Fund. Naturally, they opened with the first song on their first album, whose words begin: “In the days of my youth, I was told what it means to be a man. Now I've reached that age, I've tried to do all those things the best I can.” The band has not played together since.

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Recent News: Led Zeppelin Records

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Spice Girls, Westlife, Led Zeppelin to reform?
Unreality TV, August 27th

With Paul Weller categorically denying that The Jam will get back together, William Hill offer 50/1 that he goes back on his word and performs in the band before the end of 2016. The bookies have looked into their crystal ball to see which bands are...Read more

Led Zeppelin tribute band Zoso visiting Richmond twice
Richmond Times-Dispatch, August 26th

However, fans of Led Zeppelin can still experience the essence of Zeppelin's heyday through the band Zoso, a Led Zeppelin tribute band that captures the look, sound and nuances of the music. Zoso is celebrating its 20th anniversary this year, giving ...Read more

The 10 Greatest Led Zeppelin Songs
Guitar World Magazine, August 26th

With the recent-ish release of Celebration Day, the concert film immortalizing Led Zeppelin's historic and most likely final reunion concert at London's O2 Arena on December 10, 2007, guitarist-producer Jimmy Page reminded the world just how profoundly ...Read more

Led Zeppelin's John Bonham (Photo: Robert Knight Archive/Redferns, Getty Images)
A.V. Club Denver/Boulder, August 25th

Recorded in a centuries-old estate in Hampshire, England, this Led Zeppelin IV track obtained its opening titanic drum sound when movers set up John Bonham's brand new Ludwig kit at the bottom of the mansion's cavernous stairwell. The resulting natural ...Read more

Providence record store robbed of Led Zeppelin and Pink Floyd vinyl, thieves ...
Vanyaland, August 25th

The Providence Journal reports that What Cheer Records on College Hill was robbed last week of its stock of Led Zeppelin vinyl, with thieves only bypassing a few Robert Plant solo releases. The incident follows up a first strike around Easter that saw...Read more

Critic's Pick: Led Zeppelin - 'Presence,' 'In Through the Out Door,' 'Coda'
Lexington Herald Leader, August 24th

The final three editions in Jimmy Page's exhaustive overhaul of Led Zeppelin's studio catalog represent the cornerstone band's least championed work. While eclipsed by the greatness of everything that came before them, the new editions of 1976's...Read more

Personality Quiz: Which Member of Led Zeppelin Are You?
Anglophenia, August 21st

It's a rite of passage for rock lovers everywhere, to listen to the four distinct strands of interwoven music from the hands of the four members of Led Zeppelin and wonder which one best represents your abilities and achievements (albeit on a...Read more

Jimmy Page on 'Coda,' Led Zep's Indian Sojourn and His Next Big Project
RollingStone.com, August 4th

It is, Jimmy Page declares proudly, "the mother of all Codas – an absolute celebration of Led Zeppelin, all things bright and beautiful, all of the curios." The Led Zeppelin guitarist pauses and grins. "It's cool." Over his morning coffee in a New York...Read more