January 15, 1969
Iowa City, IA US
Songs performed during this period include: Train Kept a Rollin', I Can't Quit You Baby, Dazed and Confused, As Long As I Have You, Killing Floor, White Summer / Black Mountainside, Babe I'm Gonna Leave You, You Shook Me, How Many More Times, Communication Breakdown, Pat's Delight (drum solo).
Support Act: Mother Blues.
June Harris (NME, Jan. 1969) – I called Jimmy out in Iowa this week, prior to his first university date in that state. The group had been completely hemmed in by snow and ice, making the 100-mile drive from the closest airport a dangerous trek across treacherous roads. “Yeah, really, it’s been incredible,” he said. “We’re all so knocked out. All the kids keep telling us they’ve heard the album and how quickly can they get it and all that. And we haven’t even done half the tour yet!”
Press Review: Dusk to Dawn - Concert at a Glance: The Led Zeppelin
For what must have been two numbers into the Led Zeppelin’s show at the Union, it looked like the Mother Blues might just steal the evening show. For an hour the Blues had almost made us forget there was a main attraction. But the Zeppelin, overcoming a shaky start and inadequate equipment, quickly caught fire.
The CPC concert on the most unlikely of nights, Wednesday, was Iowa’s first mass exposure to the subterranean sound, a mixed of acid and raga rock and blues. Accordingly, curiosity brought several hundreds to see what it was all about. When it was all over, no one appeared to be disappointed as the Zeppelin was accorded a standing ovation and did an encore.
The group wasn’t as exciting as its individual members, three of whom must be considered standards in their profession. Jimmy Page, a former member of the Yardbirds, is group leader, although the way he slinked around the stage hunched paralytically over his guitar he didn’t look the part. But leader or not, he is one incredible talent. He is to the electric guitar what Adres Segovia is to the classical guitar or Chet Atkins to the folk guitar.
He could make his instrument speak words if he wanted to, and did. He could play guitar with one hand tied behind his back, and did virtually that too, picking with the same finger he formed the chords with.
John Bonham, drums, is said to have created a sensation with his solos when he accompanied Tim Rose on and England tour last year. Wednesday night he turned the trick again as he captivated the audience with what must have been 15 minutes of percussional gymnastics.
Robert Plant is the Janis Joplin of the group, a blues belter par excellence who is in indefatigable despite a voice constantly strained to its limitations.
These three have the makings of idols, although perhaps not as the Zeppelin. They seem to lack identity as a group, although that is not to say they are uncompelling. But with time and material they could command quite as much attention as some of the established groups do. (by William L. Seavey, Jan. 1969)