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Roberts Stadium - April 16, 1970

  • Includes: 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, Whole Lotta Love.
srapallo's picture
on November 22, 2007 - 9:53am
Rate this show: 
Average: 4.7 (82 votes)
April 16, 1970
Evansville
IN
United States
us
Setlist: 

Includes: 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, Whole Lotta Love.

Note: 

News Report: Rock Group Fans Get Over-Turned On

The lead singer of Led Zeppelin is a lean, young man with thick shoulder-length hair named Robert Plant. His cool handling of a frenzied audience last night at Roberts Stadium prevented the British acid-rock group’s concert from turning into a riot.

The 3,400 fans, mostly high school students, had taken most of the evening to come alive, but in the last 30 minutes of the two-hour concert, many left their seats and pushed toward the stage area. A few wanted to jump up on the stage with Led Zeppelin and dance. The 20 security guards assigned to the event tried in vain to hold back the enthusiastic youths who were pulsating with the heavy rock beat.

On the main floor, everyone was on his feet and those in the back were standing on chairs to get a better view of the hard-working, turned-on performers. The crowd was grooving to the music – clapping, shaking their heads and bodies and rhythmically flashing peace signs with the fingers at Led Zeppelin.

As the crowd surged forward, civil defense officers jumped up on the stage to avoid being crushed. When one of them drew his night stick and waved it threateningly at the audience, it made the crowd even more excited.

At that point lead singer Plant, recognizing a potentially dangerous situation, told his audience: “Easy, easy – you stay where you are and we’ll all have a good time. Let’s show the police everything can stay cool.”

The officers were then asked to leave the stage amidst cheers from the audience and Led Zeppelin resumed its acid-rock beat. By this time, the audience was wild and it was easy to imagine the feeling at rock festivals since the performers and audience were communicating so beautifully.

As Led Zeppelin ended the concert and the exhausted foursome left the stage, they were brought back by cries of “more, more” for an encore and the song most of the crowd waited all evening to hear. The crowd recognizing the first few bars of “Whole Lotta Love”, just broke loose.

The last 30 minutes saved the show from being just another expensive rock concert. People left with the feeling that they really got their money’s worth. Two untidy events of the night were the arrest of an 18-year-old for drunkenness and a request for extra police patrol cars to prevent youths from sneaking into the stadium.

A bright spot in the evening was drummer John Bonham’s solo which lasted 20 minutes, allowing the other members of Led Zeppelin to take a break. Bonham’s great beat brought him a standing ovation and wild cheers – it was at this point half-way through the evening that the audience began warming up.

Jimmy Page played his electric guitar with a violin bow, creating some eerie sounds and John Paul Jones was featured in a well-received organ solo.

Although Led Zeppelin fans were spared listening to a warm-up group or an intermission, they still had to wait 30 minutes past the announced starting time for the beginning only to have sound equipment failure early in the show. -Elen Soo Hoo.

Notes: 

News Report: Rock Group Fans Get Over-Turned On

The lead singer of Led Zeppelin is a lean, young man with thick shoulder-length hair named Robert Plant. His cool handling of a frenzied audience last night at Roberts Stadium prevented the British acid-rock group’s concert from turning into a riot.

The 3,400 fans, mostly high school students, had taken most of the evening to come alive, but in the last 30 minutes of the two-hour concert, many left their seats and pushed toward the stage area. A few wanted to jump up on the stage with Led Zeppelin and dance. The 20 security guards assigned to the event tried in vain to hold back the enthusiastic youths who were pulsating with the heavy rock beat.

On the main floor, everyone was on his feet and those in the back were standing on chairs to get a better view of the hard-working, turned-on performers. The crowd was grooving to the music – clapping, shaking their heads and bodies and rhythmically flashing peace signs with the fingers at Led Zeppelin.

As the crowd surged forward, civil defense officers jumped up on the stage to avoid being crushed. When one of them drew his night stick and waved it threateningly at the audience, it made the crowd even more excited.

At that point lead singer Plant, recognizing a potentially dangerous situation, told his audience: “Easy, easy – you stay where you are and we’ll all have a good time. Let’s show the police everything can stay cool.”

The officers were then asked to leave the stage amidst cheers from the audience and Led Zeppelin resumed its acid-rock beat. By this time, the audience was wild and it was easy to imagine the feeling at rock festivals since the performers and audience were communicating so beautifully.

As Led Zeppelin ended the concert and the exhausted foursome left the stage, they were brought back by cries of “more, more” for an encore and the song most of the crowd waited all evening to hear. The crowd recognizing the first few bars of “Whole Lotta Love”, just broke loose.

The last 30 minutes saved the show from being just another expensive rock concert. People left with the feeling that they really got their money’s worth. Two untidy events of the night were the arrest of an 18-year-old for drunkenness and a request for extra police patrol cars to prevent youths from sneaking into the stadium.

A bright spot in the evening was drummer John Bonham’s solo which lasted 20 minutes, allowing the other members of Led Zeppelin to take a break. Bonham’s great beat brought him a standing ovation and wild cheers – it was at this point half-way through the evening that the audience began warming up.

Jimmy Page played his electric guitar with a violin bow, creating some eerie sounds and John Paul Jones was featured in a well-received organ solo.

Although Led Zeppelin fans were spared listening to a warm-up group or an intermission, they still had to wait 30 minutes past the announced starting time for the beginning only to have sound equipment failure early in the show. -Elen Soo Hoo.

Setlists: 

Includes: 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, Whole Lotta Love.

Comments

Mike Titzer's picture

Still remember the Les Paul & violin bow,drum solo too.Second album,wore it out.Got The 10 CD set now, Led Zepplin to Coda.........Still >>>>>>>>>>>>WEAR N UM OUT

Steve DeMoss's picture

This was my first real concert experience at the tender age of seventeen. What a great band to provide that experience! I had seats in the seventh row and was accompanied by a friend who was suitably impressed. I remember the sound system problem mentioned in the newspaper article. There was a loud 60Hz hum shortly after the show began and after a brief interval the band began to jam in a key that was close to the key of the hum (B, I think it was). The audience appreciated the effort.

What I remember was a band in its prime that exemplified what is meant by the phrase "greater than the sum of its parts". I also remember Robert's unbuttoned shirt and his unbelievable voice and stage presence (did the engineers, I wondered later, really have to wrap the microphone in a towel in the studio to keep him from overpowering the preamps in the mixing desk, as some of my young bandmates had heard?), Bonzo's solo in Moby Dick (complete with a section performed sans sticks, which I had been eagerly awaiting), Jimmy's violin bow/Echoplex antics and his overall tone and technique, and John Paul Jones's wonderful bass work and also his keyboard playing on Since I've Been Loving You. Here were my heroes, previously only worshipped from afar, now just a few feet away and giving it their all for us Yanks! I was euphoric beyond belief and hardly able to contain my excitement. Even now, the thought of the show still gives me a thrill.

I had forgotten that there was no opening act, but now I remember that I was happy that there was none. I also would have guessed the audience to be much larger than the 3,400 given in the Evansville Press article, but then the passage of time does things to one's ability to recall events. In any case, this show inspired me to go home and work even harder on my bass playing, and to continue to try new and different things musically. Thank you, gentlemen, for a wonderful evening. I only wish that I were able to see the reunion performance at O2 Arena on 10 December. I'll be there in spirit though, cheering you on just as I was 37 years ago. I know you won't disappoint. . .

Philip Prenzel's picture

Hello,
Believe it or not, at the tender of 17 my mother and a few of her friends went with me to see Zeppelin at Roberts Stadium. I had seen them for the first time at The Atlanta Pop Festival in 1969 and my bass playing was never the same.

Rick Kissel's picture

The first concert I ever saw I was in the seventh grade at the time what a way to start I've seen many concerts since but none i remember more

David Frasier's picture

I was in the 6th row floor seats for this incredible show and will never forget when the electricity cut out. Plant raised the mic stand above his head and shouted "We're the heaviest band in the world!" They still are. A week doesn't go by without me remembering their incredible performance.

Jim Jaquess's picture

I was at this concert and was in the front row. I have a bunch of photos from this concert that I would be more than willing to post online if I knew how.

Robert Bruner's picture

I was fifteen, and had managed to BS my way back stage. Was back stage during their encore (Whole Lotta Love) and got to meet all of them, get their autographs, and tell them how overwhelmed I was with their performance.

Actually they were all quite cool, and didn't rush me. Later they left in a Limo stranding Robert Plant, who was mad as hell. Some guy offered him a ride back to the Executive Inn. Not sure how it ended, my dad was waiting for me in the parking lot, the show was obviously over, and I had to split.

An amazing night though, I'll never forget it.

Tom Kissinger's picture

This was the first concert I ever attended. I was 15 years old and it was a long time before i attended another that even came close, The reviewer seems to have missed the fact that John Bonham layed down his sticks and danced up behind one of the officers then pushed him off the stage. That's when the other officers left.

Lynne Mills's picture

I was there, and at Atlanta too! Philip I need to talk to you! Send a message back, please!

Bruce Griffin's picture

I was only 12 yrs. old when I attended this concert. My oldest brother, John, was supposed to take his girlfriend to this concert. They had primo seats on the floor midway back! John gave my older brother, George, and I the tickets, and I think I know why. My Mother had ran off with some idiot from the neighborhood just the week before...and I think he just felt bad for us and decided to give up those tickets so we could just forget about my mom leaving that note then taking off for good. That was over 45 years ago. As far as the concert goes...of course, it was a great experience. Although, I believe most of the people around us were spaced out on some serious drugs. I remember one guy asking us, "Hey man, do y'all like Led Zeppelin?" Funny stuff...and yes, we liked Led Zeppelin!

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Memorabilia:

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Comments

re: Led Zepplin concert in Evansville, IN! by Bruce Griffin (not verified)
Evansville, Indiana Concert at Roberts Stadium by Jim Jaquess (not verified)
My First Concert by Tom Kissinger (not verified)
I was there, and at Atlanta by Lynne Mills (not verified)
Still remember the Les Paul by Mike Titzer (not verified)
Met Them by Robert Bruner (not verified)
Led Zeppelin by Philip Prenzel (not verified)
Evansville concert by David Frasier (not verified)
led zeppelin at roberts stadium 4/16/1970 by Rick Kissel (not verified)