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 A withdrawn 45 for “Whole Lotta Love” from “Led Zeppelin II” is also highly prized.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.

About our sources | Got something to add?

▼ Expand to read the full article ▼

Best of the Web (“Hall of Fame”)

Vinyl Divas

Vinyl Divas

Vinyl Divas pays homage to international female opera singers of the LP era. Chronicling more than 800 singers, the… [read review or visit site]



Despite its mysterious title, 317X is plain and simple—an online gallery of vintage LPs, with a 1950s vintage fee… [read review or visit site]



Jesse Barron's collection of Beatles 45s, picture sleeves, magazines, books, and memorabilia. Browse singles and al… [read review or visit site]

Association of Vogue Picture Record Collectors

Association of Vogue Picture Record Collectors

This great site, from the Association of Vogue Picture Record Collectors, offers detailed background information an… [read review or visit site]

The Remington Site

The Remington Site

Since 1999, the Remington Site has offered classical music collectors a glimpse into Remington Records, an independ… [read review or visit site]

Clubs & Associations

Discussion Forums

Other Great Reference Sites

Most watched eBay auctions    

Rare Original Led Zeppelin I Turquoise Lettering Atlantic Plum/red Label Vinyl Rare Sealed Lp - Led Zeppelin - Physical Graffiti W/ Hype Sticker ! Ss 2-200 Led Zeppelin Iv Lp 1971 Uk 1st Press Atlantic 240102 Red Plum Zoso Rare MintRock White Label Promo Led Zeppelin Led Zeppelin Iii 1970 Lp W/sticker AtlanticRare 1st Pressing Led Zeppelin Iii 2401002 Rotating Wheel 12" Lp - 185 S70Led Zeppelin Ii 2 Lp Atlantic Sd 8236 (1969) 1841 Broadway Rl Ss Hot MixLed Zeppelin Physical Graffiti Lp X2 Uk 1975 1st Press Swan Song Ssk 89400 MintLed Zeppelin Ii 1st Uk Press On The Red/plum Label.excellent Audio!Led Zeppelin I-1st Album Promo Sd8216 Stereo 1969 White Label Promo Wlp RockLed Zeppelin Turquoise 1st Press Wonderful Condition And Audio Superhype !!2nd Pressing Led Zeppelin Self Titled 1969 Atlantic 588171 12" Vinyl Lp- 185 S70Led Zeppelin - Live At The Chicago Stadium 1975 - Mega Rare Digger 2 Lp Live Ex+Led Zeppelin Iii Og Uk Stereo Plum/orange Atlantic Records Lp Kaleidoscope CoverRare Sealed Lp - Led Zeppelin - The Song Remains The Same W/ Hype Sticker OrigVicki Vinyl Rock & Roll Festival ~ Beatles Stones The Who Zeppelin Buffalo TmoqLed Zeppelin ‘led Zeppelin Ii’ 1969 Uk 1st Press Lp With Livin’ Lovin’ Wreck.25 Classic Rock Albums Lots Bob Dylan Led Zeppelin The Beatles The Doors VinylBeverley Martyn Happy New Year Rare Denmark 45 Jimmy Page Garage Mod Girl GroupLed Zeppelin Physical Graffiti 2lp 1975 Swan Song Sealed Orig W/ Hype Sticker30 Lp Lot Rock Led Zeppelin Rolling Stones Pink Floyd Van Halen Jethro TullLed Zeppelin Collection Of 9 Vinyl Lp Records Rare Led Zeppelin 2 Lp Set Live On Blueberry Hill Collector's Colored Vinyl Vg++Lot (20) Rock Lp's Led Zeppelin Beatles Rolling Stones Neil Young Police Boston Led Zeppelin - Led Zeppelin Ii (1969 Lp) Red Plum Atlantic 58819860s & 70s Rock 18 Lp Lot - The Beatles, Led Zeppelin, Pink Floyd, Rolling StonesRare 1st Press Lp~led Zeppelin Ii~rl & Ss On Trail Off~atlantic~niceLot (20) Rock Lp's Pink Floyd Beatles Led Zeppelin David Bowie Neil Young Gogo'sRare Led Zeppelin Live Lp The Way You Squeeze My Lemon Vg++ Vg++Rare Led Zeppelin Lp Live Hamburg 3/11/70 Vg Vg Lot (20) Rock Lp's Led Zeppelin Beatles Mccartney Doors Ratt Billy Joel Elton Led Zeppelin - Led Zeppelin 1969 Spanish Press 12" Vinyl Record Album Ex/exRare Led Zeppelin Lp The Jack Daniel's Sessions Led Zeppelin - Physical Graffiti 1975 Uk Double Lp Swan Song 1stLed Zeppelin - Led Zeppelin Iii Uk Lp Atlantic 1stLed Zeppelin "2" Orig Vinyl Album 588198 Red Plum Label Lemon SongLed Zeppelin Ii Og Uk Stereo Split Plum / Orange Atlantic Records Lp 588198 2/2Led Zeppelin - Remasters 1990 Uk 3 X Vinyl Lp Set AtlanticLed Zeppelin - Red Plum(1971 Lp) Uk Atlantic 2401012Led Zeppelin - Physical Graffiti Ssk 89400 Uk 2lp 1975 Swan SongLed Zeppelin First Lp - Orig - Matrix A1/b1 - Ex- Atlantic 588171Led Zeppelin Houses Of The Holy Lp 1973 In Shrink W/ Hype Stickers+obi SterlingLed Zeppelin Houses Of The Holy (1973) 12" Vinyl Lp Sealed ~ No CutsLed Zeppelin In Through The Out Door Lp 1979 Swan Song Sealed OrigLed Zeppelin Physical Graffiti Ss 2 200 Shrink Hype Sticker Piros Mastered Nm! Rare Led Zeppelin Live 2 Lp Set Zoso 80 Mannheim 7/2/80 Vg++Led Zeppelin Physical Graffitti Lp Original 1975 1st Press In Shrink+ Sticker NmLed Zeppelin - Houses Of The Holy [super Deluxe Edition Cd&vinyl] - New + SealedLed Zeppelin Iv 1971 Vinyl Album-atlantic Plum Red First Press/label-porky PeckoLot (44) 1970's-80s Rock/prog/psych 12"/33rpm Vinyl Record Zeppelin/sabbath/rushWith Jimmy Page! Orig 1968 Shrink ~ Donovan ~ Hurdy Gurdy Man Mod Psych FolkLed Zeppelin Huge 10 Lp Lot - Includes All Albums From 1969-1982! Entire DiscogThe Yardbirds ~ "live Yardbirds Featuring Jimmy Page" (epic) Us 1968 Led Zeppelin 2 Original 1969 Uk 1st Press Lp ExLed Zeppelin Houses Of The Holy Atlantic P-10107a Japanese Pressing Vinyl LpLed Zeppelin Iv Vinyl Remastered Deluxe 2xlp 180 Gram Sealed NewLed Zeppelin - Juke Box / Promo Stairway To Heaven - Whole Song 2 Sides!!!Led Zeppelin Celebration Day 3lp Vinyl Box Set - New And SealedLot (20) Rock Lp's Pink Floyd Beatles Led Zeppelin Doors Santana Benatar Brand XLed Zeppelin "poster" Physical Graffiti P5163n 2lp Ed6343Rare Led Zeppelin 2 Lp Set Live Zeppelin Over Europe "eye Thank Yew" Limited

Recent News: Led Zeppelin Records

Source: Google News

Pro-Shot Video: Prince Covers Led Zeppelin's 'Whole Lotta Love'
JamBase, April 29th

Professionally shot video of Prince performing another classic rock hit recently surfaced on YouTube. The clip showcasing a cover of Led Zeppelin's “Whole Lotta Love” was uploaded on the day The Purple One passed away. As noted by Guitar World, the ...Read more

Lawyer Fighting Led Zeppelin Cited for “Flagrantly Unprofessional and ...
Digital Music News, April 29th

Last month, attorneys representing the estate of Spirit filed an aggressive lawsuit against Led Zeppelin, alleging that 'Stairway to Heaven' was actually a rip-off of 'Taurus' by the band Spirit. Immediately after that suit was filed, DMN readers...Read more

Meet 3-Year Old Led Zeppelin Expert, Lily
100.7 WZLX Classic Rock, April 28th

Lily doesn't look like your typical Led Zeppelin fan. Instead of pleather, Lily dons princess dresses from Frozen. And instead of having a three-year-old, or a kid who has a three-old, she is a three-year-old. Despite her age, the young Zeppelin...Read more

Led Zeppelin Can Settle "Stairway to Heaven" Lawsuit for $1
Guitar World Magazine, April 28th

Or, as Bloomberg explains it, a filing by Malofiy in the Led Zeppelin case cites a 2008 agreement that Page and Plant made with Warner/Chappell Music. Under this deal, the songwriters are getting $60 million over 10 years for the company's right to...Read more

Breaking: Led Zeppelin Is About to Win Its 'Stairway to Heaven' Case…
Digital Music News, April 27th

Last week, a commenter on Digital Music News single-handedly dismantled a massive copyright infringement case against Led Zeppelin involving 'Stairway to Heaven'. Now, attorneys bringing the case against Zeppelin appear to be desperately trying to ...Read more

Your Song Changed My Life: Led Zeppelin's Jimmy Page On Lonnie Donegan
NPR, April 26th

NPR Music's Bob Boilen talks with Jimmy Page of Led Zeppelin about a song that changed his life, "Rock Island Line," by Lonnie Donegan. AUDIE CORNISH, HOST: Jimmy Page is a guitar legend. Just to refresh your memory... (SOUNDBITE OF LED ...Read more

Beyonce Samples Led Zeppelin on New Album
Ultimate Classic Rock, April 26th

The credits on Beyonce's just-released sixth album Lemonade read like a who's who of current stars, including the Weeknd, Jack White and Kendrick Lamar. Dig deeper, however, and you'll find none other than Led Zeppelin. Turns out Beyonce has joined a ...Read more

Led Zeppelin To Climb The Stairway To Court
Here And Now, April 21st

Led Zeppelin band members Jimmy Page and Robert Plant are expected in court on May 10 for the beginning of a trial to determine whether their iconic song “Stairway to Heaven” was partially plagiarized from the song “Taurus” by a little-known 1960s band ...Read more