Average: 4.5 (27 votes)

April 17, 1970

Memphis, TN US

Mid-South Coliseum

Setlist:

We're Gonna Groove, Dazed and Confused, Heartbreaker, Bring It On Home, White Summer / Black Mountainside, Since I've Been Loving You, Organ solo / Thank You, What Is and What Should Never Be, Moby Dick, How Many More Times (medley incl. Boogie Chillen', Bottle Up 'n Go, Memphis Tennesee, For What It's Worth, Ramble On, Tobacco Road, Long Distance Call, Honey Bee / "Lemon Song", That's Alright Mama), Whole Lotta Love.

Notes:

While in Montreal a few days earlier, the group is told the mayor of Memphis plans to honour them with keys to the city.


Click here to read Phillip Rauls' story of his day with Zeppelin in Memphis 1970. (Phillip was an Atlantic Record's Regional Promotion & Marketing Director)


Press Review: The Led Zeppelin: My! My! Groovy

The lyrics of Led Zeppelin’s opening song went “Set my soul on fire. We’re Gonna Groove – my, my, my – we’re gonna groove” And with the help of 10,732 Memphis fans these four British blues men did exactly that at Mid-South Coliseum last night.

Jimmy Page, lead guitar, captured the audience on Dazed and Confused by playing his guitar with a violin bow. Page also exhibited his enormous playing ability on Heartbreaker. At one point in the song, Page allowed down to such a point that it sounded like easy-listening music.

The slowness didn’t last for long. Robert (“Platt”) lead vocalist and harmonica player, began Bring it on Home with – “you got it. Just a little louder. This is where the beat comes from.” The audience listened intently as (“Platt”) sand and played his harmonica for 10 minutes.

Jimmy Page and drummer John (“Benham”) were responsible for the group’s first standing ovation. Page was featured in a 12-minute version of White Summer.

A member of the audience screamed a request for one of his favorite songs and Robert (“Platt”) calmly replied, “Easy, easy. Don’t scream. It’s all gonna come. Scream at the end.” He then mentioned that he had seen Elvis Presley perform in Las Vegas and really liked his performance. He wanted to dedicate Since I’ve Been Loving You to Memphis’ most celebrated musician.

John Paul Jones, organist and bass player, hot his chance to show his ability on the organ and on a song that resembled church music at times. Jones’ solo brought another standing ovation.

The crowd stood and roared their approval long before “Benham” was through with his drum solo in Moby Dick. After this 20-minute song, “Platt” asked, “Does everybody feel alright?” They obviously did.
Before Led Zeppelin’s supposedly last song, “Platt” said “Put your hands together for this good city. Get loose.” When the group began their potpourri of Memphis, Tobacco Road and others, some of the audience came out of their seats to the front of the stage and began clapping, giving the peace sign and moving about. This action brought on the house lights and some of the crowd was pushed back by police officers.

They tried to leave the stage but were brought back by a screaming crowd. They sang their biggest hit Whole Lotta Love. Led Zeppelin obviously fulfilled the expectations of Pam Palmer, 18, a student at Kingsbury, who said “Fantastic, just fantastic.” Becky Schneider, 17, also a student at Kingsbury and a friend of Pam’s said with delight in her eyes, “It’s the best I’ve ever seen.” [M. Hughes, Press-Scimitar, April 18, 1970] 

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Concert description

A really spectacular show ... the entire band is on fire and Robert's voice is amazing! From the opening blasts, the band is out to crush the crowd, and they certainly do! "We've waited for a long time to come to Memphis, in fact ever since we were born I think!" said Plant. The bass/drum/guitar interplay is unreal and Page plays some breathtaking figures in Heartbreaker, which also has a spaced-out intro and finale where Page makes the Theremin sound like a scratched record ... it's too much! Jimmy plays a riff in Black Mountain Side that will later be developed into Kashmir ... five years later! During How Many More Times things were out of control so Plant tried to diffuse the situation: "I want the policemen to put their hands together. Put those lights down! You're beautiful - even with the light on!" And during the medley he tried to calm things down again: "All we wanna do is save our manager! Save Mr Peter Grant! Don't stand on the chairs 'cos they'll give you such shit! And also, please don't step on the rails, because your parents paid rates for them as well. They are yours but don't stand on them. They're for the hockey." And "Everybody must get off those chairs - really must! They're taking our manager away! Please get off the chairs - it's no joke! ... Listen, you must respect the fact that we've come from England and everything and we weren't paid. Just please get off everything that might not be cool!" It was reported that during as Plant tried to calm down the rowd, backstage, the local promoter tried to coerce Peter Grant into pulling Zeppelin off the stage and when Grant refused, a gun was pulled and thrust at his stomach! The story goes Grant response is blunt and to the point: "You can't shoot me, ya cunt. They've just given us the fucking keys to the city." The jams are amazing, and this tape features the bootlegger himself introducing and closing the tape with comments about the show .. .spectacular!