July 24, 1973
Pittsburgh, PA US
Rock and Roll, Celebration Day, (Bring It On Home intro) Black Dog, Over the Hills and Far Away, Misty Mountain Hop, Since I've Been Loving You, No Quarter, The Song Remains the Same, Rain Song, Dazed and Confused (incl. San Francisco), Stairway to Heaven, Moby Dick, Heartbreaker, Whole Lotta Love (incl. Let That Boy Boogie), The Ocean.
Led Zeppelin draws 40,000 fans in attendance, earning a reported $120,000 for the show. The band hires a film crew to capture some footage of the event, in preparation for the three night finale at Madison Square Garden - up to four 35mm cameras (depending on which night) - Arriflex 35BL with 400' film cartridges. The crew met at the Drake Hotel in the afternoon of July 24th and took some footage in the lobby. They traveled with with the band to Newark Airport and filmed the famous shots outside the Starship before their departure. Apparently, a considerable amount was filmed at the Pittsburgh concert, from the limo ride to Three Rivers Stadium, throughout the concert & offstage. (Publicly, there's only been some very short clips seen).
A 16mm Éclair ACL camera was occasionally used for insert shots / offstage and crowd shots. The camera crew would take notes & photos through each of these last gigs (from July 24-29), to learn the song order and the stage lighting etc. The film would be taken to Aquarius Transfer in NYC - the dailies watched with the Director of Photography as well as Peter Grant, Robert and JP.
Press Review: Led Zeppelin Sails So High
You’ve heard Ike and Tina Turner's version of 'Proud Mary’, the one where she says, “We never ever play anything nice and easy; we play it nice-and rough."?
The same boast holds true for Led Zeppelin, the four British lads who defied a 30 per cent chance of rain last night and held a Three River Stadium crowd of about 40,000 enthralled for almost three hours with their nice, rough music.
All tickets were gone earlier In the day including 6,000 places in the infield in front of the stage - and therein lay the rub that almost grounded Zeppelin. Barrels of water had been placed two-deep along the first and third base lines expressly to keep fans without infield seating tickets off the field.
At 8 p.m., when the show was supposed to start, the migration began, and as more and more youths ignored requests to stay where they were, scooting over the railing and dugouts, barrels were knocked over and one irate guard, sans cap, picked up an empty barrel and slugged a boy on the back.
The concert was delayed 53 minutes until some semblance of order has been restored but then came Zeppelin powerhouse rock n, roll personified and order was gone with the cool night breeze.
Zeppelin’s led by Robert Plant -bare-chested blondmaned, jeans so tight they could have been a decal, a mighty man of machismo he and guitarist Jimmy Page, Yardbird successor to Clapton and Beck and equally deserving of the highest accolades.
Plant’s an incredible leather-lunged yowler; his work on ' Black Dog ' and 'Dazed and Confused’ evidenced that. His spotlight-mate Page demonstrated his virtuosity on almost every number and outdid himself when he played his guitar with a bow producing eerie, piercing wails and groans like bagpipes, sitar, synthesizer and violin sounding simultaneously.
Bassist-keyboard man John Paul Jones and drummer John Bonham need take no back seats, however. They provided excellent backup on "Over The Hills," and each had his moment of glory, Jones on synthesized piano for “No Quarter” and Bonham on "Moby Dick," where he finally transcended the confines of regular rhythm.
Every song was heavy, heavy, from rock to blues to boogie - and could you ever hear. The decibel level probably felled a few "Quiet, Please” signs over at Allegheny General (Jazz Festival promoters, please note).
“This is the final blastoff; you’ve got no roof,” cracked Plant before the final medley, featuring the throbbing, twochord ''Whole Lotta Love'' and blastoff it was, complete with boneheads who pitched lighted firecrackers into the infield crowd.
"We travel so much, but everywhere we go, one thing remains the same - the people," said Plant.'
And why shouldn't they , Robert, as long as they've treated to quality, energy- packed shows like yours? [by P.BISHOP | July 1973 | Pittsburgh Press]