Average: 4.8 (36 votes)

August 21, 1969

Framingham, MA US

Carousel Theatre

Setlist:

Includes: Train Kept a Rollin', I Can't Quit You Baby, Dazed and Confused, White Summer / Black Mountainside, What Is And What Should Never Be, You Shook Me, How Many More Times.

Notes:

'69 Programme

Click here to view the 1969 Tour Book

(interactive flipbook)

Robert Plant introduces a new track to the sell-out crowd, What Is and What Should Never Be, performed live for the first time.

News Report: Zeppelin takes off at Carousel

Led Zeppelin is the British rock quartet whose appearance at the Newport Jazz Festival last month was an off-again, on-again affair. It seems the producer of that show, in an attempt to get gate crashing rockers out of town, denied that the group would ever appear; yet, in the end, it did.

Apparently, Carousel Theater's Frank Conley had such trepidations last night, even with the massed lurking on the hill that overlooks his Framingham tent. Before a packed house of 2,600, the Zeppelin proved to be made of something more than of air.

The first half of the program featured Orpheus, a Boston based group that is turning up everywhere these days. A sort of East Coast (hard) version of the Beach Boys, they ran through a tight set that featured rich vocal blendings.

Then the Zeppelin flew in, total theater of blues-rock, lead singer Robert Plant was the shrieking flight engineer, guiding the ship (imagine, if you will, a male Janis Joplin). Lead guitarist Jimmy Page was the orange-bedecked pilot, the man really in charge. Drummer John Bonham was the engine, always roaring lest the Zeppelin crash. And bassist John Paul Jones was the-passenger, seemingly along for the ride.

Most of the tune's came from the group's album (Atlantic SD 8216). There was Willie Dixon's Down and 'dirty Blues, "I 'Can't Quit You Babe," featuring a fine Jimmy Paige solo, Later came Paige's own earthy "Dazed and Confused," to be greeted by a standing ovation. Next there was a zinging Indian-influenced solo tune by Page again; then "But 'What Is and What Should Be" (never before done on stage); and at last Dixon's "You Shook Me."

The Zeppelin flew high all right, and therein may be its problem; it has a tendency to soar, rather than keep on a straight flight plan. In short, many of the tunes wander, and some people feel the blues should be played only straight ahead. But, after all, Zeppelins are flying machines. Even the kids on the hill must have liked the takeoff. (Aug. 1969 | N.COBB, Globe Staff)
 

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Comments

Submit your personal review of a particular show you attended, updates, corrections, etc., which will be considered for addition to the official online archive.You may also contact the webmaster at: webmaster@ledzeppelin.com

The stage is gone but the memory lives on

I had just graduated from Wellesley High School two months before and was college bound the following week when I went to hear Led Zeppelin with a girlfriend at the Carousel theater in Framingham, Massachusetts, on August 21, 1969. It was a perfect New England summer night. I have no memory of Orpheus as the opening act, but I had seen them at our high school the previous year anyway. In my eyes, they did not hold a candle to Led Zeppelin. I was a dyed-in-the-wool Yardbirds fan, a guitar player myself, following Jimmy Page into his next phase! I remember that at some point in the set the band had sound problems, and when they fixed them Robert Plant appropriately announced "Communication Breakdown" as their next number. When they ran out of tunes, they played some 1950's rockers and Yardbirds songs. It was a great concert in an intimate setting! I saw Led Zeppelin at the old Boston Garden two years later after they had achieved huge acclaim. They played a much louder show featuring "Stairway To Heaven" for a way bigger audience, and I can honestly say that the show at the Carousel eclipsed that later performance. The greatest irony: I now work in an office building that occupies the spot where the Carousel Theater once stood, forty-two years ago.