Roy Harper Remembers How Led Zeppelin Drew Killer Crowds
via The Playlist / Youtube
Roy Harper, who was part of Led Zeppelin‘s entourage or was also known as the “emotional protection unit,” recalled watching from backstage as the band conquered America during their 1973 tour.
Harper also described how Led Zeppelin evolved into a “monster.” He explained that as the band played on bigger venues, their performances became more powerful, culminating in the three Madison Square Garden concerts that were later turned into the movie and album The Song Remains the Same.
Harper stated that Zeppelin was unique. He explained:
“They pulled a crowd because of the bite, the sheer bite, of that. It became a thing – a walking, talking monster – and as the venues got bigger, they got better, heavier, because they could exercise control.
“It was a kind of magic and you were blasted into the middle of next week. You paid attention, because attention was being demanded. That wasn’t the same as being in England. You couldn’t pull that off in the Marquee [Club in London].”
While Eddie Kramer, the famed rock producer and engineer also shared his memory of taping the Madison Square Garden shows from outside in Wally Heider’s Mobile Studio Truck. He added:
“I was in the truck with my hands on the fader and all of a sudden it began moving up and down.
“It was like an earthquake. The audience was going crazy, cheering and stomping. When you can feel 20,000 people jumping up and down…well that gives you a moment to remember.”
Meanwhile, Robert Plant also reflected on the iconic tour. He said:
“None of us really knew what we were doing.
“We’d had a great deal of success, but it didn’t follow there would be more success as times move on. We wanted to spend time doing it properly and it was time well spent.”