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 A withdrawn 45 for “Whole Lotta Love” from “Led Zeppelin II” is also highly prized.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

317X

317X

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]

Mybeatles.net

Mybeatles.net

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    

Led Zeppelin Genuine Original 1969 Uk Press - Turquoise Text & Superhype CreditsLed Zeppelin ~ S/t ** 1969 Uk 1st Plum Atlantic Lp Superhype Uncorrected MatrixLed Zeppelin Ii Lp Uk 1st Press A2 B2 Red / Plum Lemon Song Jimmy Page Superb!Led Zeppelin - Red & Plum - A1/b1 Uk Press - Excellent Audio - Outstanding CoverThe R.l. "hot Mix" 1969 Led Zeppelin Ii ~ Hard Heavy Blues Psych Page Yardbirds Led Zeppelin Houses Of The Holy Ex+++ 1st Ever Uk Press Obi Strip Top Audio~~ Led Zeppelin Ii - Red & Plum Uk Press - Outstanding, Near Mint Vinyl & AudioLed Zeppelin I ~ Original 1969 Atlantic Lp Factory Sealed!Led Zeppelin-ii,atlantic,robert Ludwig Hot Press! Rare!!! Vg++!Led Zeppelin ~ Four Symbols Zoso ** 1971 Uk Plum Atlantic LpLed Zeppelin Iv Lp Uk Atlantic 1971 Stereo First Pressing Plum Label GatefoldLed Zeppelin Lot Of 3 Lps 2 Sealed 2 Lp Reissues Zep 4 Houses + Yardbirds FeatLed Zeppelin Physical Graffiti Ex/ex Swan Song Ssk89400 Classic Rock BritishLed Zeppelin Debut Lp Atlantic K 40031 Debut Red Maroon Label Jimmy Page Rare LpMfsl Mobile Fidelity Sound Lab Led Zeppelin Ii Lp Record Led Zeppelin - Led Zeppelin 3 - "peter Grant" Label - Beautiful ConditionLed Zeppelin 3 ** 1970 Uk Plum Atlantic LpLed Zeppelin Lp Lot + Rare 10'' Inch RecordLed Zeppelin 2 ** 1969 Uk 1st Plum Atlantic Lp Lemon SongLed Zeppelin 6 Lp Box Set ~ Original 1990 Atlantic Box Set Factory Sealed!Led Zeppelin Houses Of The Holy ~ Original 1973 Atlantic Lp Factory Sealed!Led Zeppelin Iii - Red & Plum - Celebration Misprint - Ex+ Audio - E.j Day CoverLed Zeppelin One.orange Print.atlantic 588171.1969.a//1-b//1.red & Plum.ex/vinylLed Zeppelin Lp Ii Turkey Turkish Edition Ps 100% Original Sleeve No ReserveLed Zeppelin 11 Lp Lot W. 8 X 11 Glossy Photo, 2 Cd's & Uncut MagazineLed Zeppelin-live On Blueberry Hill,2 Lp Set,one Blue Wax,one Red Wax!Bought Sealed Played Once Near Mint In Shrink2015 Led Zeppelin Physical GraffitiBought Sealed Played Once In Shrink 2014remaster Led Zeppelin Houses Of The HolyLed Zeppelin In Through Out Door ~ Original 1979 Swan Song Lp Factory Sealed!Led Zeppelin-i Cat#sd-8216 1969 Original Pressing In ShrinkLed Zeppelin "nm Wax / Poster" Led Zeppelin Ii P-8042 Obi Lp As8129Led Zeppelin 2 ** 1969 Uk Plum Atlantic Lp Killing FloorLed Zeppelin 8lp Lot I Ii Iii Iv In Through Out Door Presence Song Remains SameLed Zeppelin Physical Graffiti 1975- Uk First Press -swan Son )- ExLed Zeppelin "nm Wax / Poster" Led Zeppelin Ii P-10101a Obi Lp At2036Led Zeppelin - Physical Graffiti Original Vinyl 2 Lp Us PressingLed Zeppelin 3 1970- Uk First Press - Atlantic Red Plum Lab(a5;b5) -ex+Lot Of 4 Rock Lps Hendrix Axis; Clash; Led Zeppelin Iii; Creedence ClearwaterLed Zeppelin Houses Of The Holy Og Uk Stereo Atlantic Lp K50014 A2/b2 + InnerLed Zeppelin Iii Vinyl Album First Uk PressingLed Zeppelin "nm Wax" Houses Of The Holy P-10107 Obi Lp As8128Led Zeppelin Physical GraffitiLed Zeppelin "nm Wax" Houses Of The Holy P-10107 Obi Lp As8128Led Zeppelin ~ Presence ** 1976 Uk 1st Swan Song Lp Top Copy!!Led Zeppelin 3 Atlantic Deluxe Red Plumb 1970 First Pressing WheelLed Zeppelin And Pink Floyd Albums Led Zeppelin Iv Reissue 12" Lp 33rpm 1977 **vinyl Close To Mint Condition**Led Zeppelin In Through The Out Door Orig Lp Rare W/orig Bag Rock British Ex/exLed Zeppelin 3 1970- Uk First Press - Atlantic Red Plum Lab(a5;b5) -v/gLed Zeppelin Live At L.a. Forum Not Tmoq Double AlbumLed Zeppelin Physical Graffiti Swan Song K 89400 Double Inners Insert Album RareLed Zeppelin - Stairway To Heaven. Uk Promo 45'. Jukebox Only. Atlantic. Ex!Led Zeppelin11Led Zeppelin Debut S/t Australian Vinyl Lp Green Atlantic Mega Rare Ex 1st PressRarest The Yardbirds N 2 Lp Italy First Press Not Tmoq Takrl Led Zeppelin Nr!!!!Led Zeppelin Physical Graffiti LpLed Zeppelin "poster" Led Zeppelin Iii P-10106 Obi Lp As1219Led Zeppelin Signs 1971 Uk Press A2/b2 Atlantic Records K50008 Ex/exLed Zeppelin - Iv Four Original Vinyl Lp Glossy Cover German PressingLed Zeppelin In Through The Out Door Lp Record W Bag Swan Song 16002 Vg/ex

Recent News: Led Zeppelin Records

Source: Google News

Enter for a Chance to Win Deluxe Led Zep Prizes in 'Physical Graffiti' Giveaway
RollingStone.com, March 4th

"All of us knew that it was a monumental piece of work, just because of the various paths that we'd trodden along to get to this," Led Zeppelin's Jimmy Page tells Rolling Stone, talking about the band's 1975 album Physical Graffiti. "It was like a...Read more

Led Zeppelin concert event arrives in movie theaters March 30
cleveland.com, March 4th

Robert Plant onstage at the Coliseum in Richfield, April 1977. Led Zeppelin's two-night stand at the Coliseum in Richfield on April 27-28, 1977, has achieved mythic status among diehard fans of of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame rock quartet. (Photo...Read more

Cover Alert | White Denim Tackle Led Zeppelin
JamBase, March 3rd

White Denim is among an all-star lineup of artists who will appear on MOJO magazine's Led Zeppelin tribute album Physical Graffiti Redrawn, celebrating the 40th anniversary of the landmark double LP. Other artists including Syd Arthur, Laura Marling, ...Read more

KIM THAYIL Says SOUNDGARDEN Resisted Early LED ZEPPELIN Comparisons
BLABBERMOUTH.NET, March 2nd

According to The Pulse Of Radio, SOUNDGARDEN guitarist Kim Thayil said in a new essay which he wrote for Rolling Stone that his band at first resisted early attempts to compare them to acts like LED ZEPPELIN. Thayil explained, "We started getting that...Read more

The Louisville Leopard Percussionists Love Led Zeppelin
NPR, March 1st

The Louisville Leopard Percussionists Love Led Zeppelin. March 01, 2015 5:19 PM ET. Audio for this story from All Things Considered will be available at approximately 7:00 p.m. ET. Diane Downs teaches music to the Louisville Leopard Percussionists, ...Read more

Xtina Does Britney, Led Zeppelin on Xylophone and More Viral Videos
Daily Beast, March 1st

Led Zeppelin's classic double album Physical Graffiti turned 40 this week. To celebrate, here's a rendition of its signature track—the epic “Kashmir”—as performed by kids with xylophones. The Louisville Leopard Percussionists first posted their cover...Read more

Fans fill the Midland Theatre for Led Zeppelin's music
The Newark Advocate, February 28th

NEWARK – Fans who miss Led Zeppelin — and others who missed them altogether in their heyday — flocked to the Midland Theatre on Saturday night to hear Philadelphia-based Get the Led Out recreate the songs and sounds of the seminal British band...Read more

Jimmy Page Reflects On 40 Years Of Led Zeppelin's 'Physical Graffiti'
NPR (blog), February 25th

Forty years ago this week, Led Zeppelin released the band's monumental sixth album, the double LP Physical Graffiti. It was, as guitarist Jimmy Page himself tells us in this interview, "the mother of all double albums," with some of the band's most...Read more