April 25, 1977
Louisville, KY US
The Song Remains The Same, (The Rover intro) Sick Again, Nobody's Fault But Mine, In My Time of Dying, Since I've Been Loving You, No Quarter, Ten Years Gone, Battle of Evermore, Going to California, Black Country Woman, Bron-Y-Aur Stomp, White Summer ~ Black Mountainside, Kashmir, (Out On the Tiles intro) Moby Dick, Jimmy Page solo, Achilles Last Stand, Stairway to Heaven, Rock and Roll.
Click here to view the US '77 Tour Programme (flipbook)
Review: Led Zeppelin’s Aura Crushes 19,000 Fans
They endured crowding at the front gate, crowding at the concession stands, crowding in front of the stage that made 75 of them extend their arms, like the drowning, and beg to be pulled out.
More than 19,000 of them last night gave premier rock group Led Zeppelin the last inch of their lungs in deafening cheers, and they gave them pounds of their perspiration.
They came at midday, some waiting eight hours in their cars and vans, or on the Freedom Hall front lawn under a wintry sky. They had come in summer clothes that are comfortable in hot coliseums but were chilly in yesterday’s wind.
One came in a stolen security guard uniform and had thus earned his admission before he was discovered. He was charged with possession of stolen property.
One teen age girl came with a 45-caliber pistol in her purse, and was charged with carrying a concealed deadly weapon.
That’s because the private security police – and some off duty city policemen – at the gates were checking purses, just looking in them without putting their hands in.
Unless they saw something. They were looking for liquor and one guard said he ignores the bags of marijuana. They found cans of Coke and Big Red and Pepsi and the concert was but an hour old before the guards were pulling the cans from large trash cans at the turnstiles and passing them among themselves.
“I feel guilty drinking somebody else’s Coke,” a guard said. “But at least I know where the can’s going to end up.”
Many of these young people had seen Led Zeppelin last week in Cincinnati when 100 or so fans were arrested and several were injured in pushing and shoving and bottle-throwing at the gates.
When the lines began forming at the front gate at 4 p.m. yesterday, they ran from their cars and vans in the parking lot, holding hands. They lined up at three or four of the doors and talked about Cincinnati, about what it’s like to have a little broken against a wall 15 feet above your head.
But that didn’t happen last night. Security guards were only allowing persons in the parking lot who looked like concertgoers and who could display tickets to the lot attendants.
“Sold out”, signs said everywhere. In 150 minutes in March, they sold 19,400 tickets.
In the parking lot, three men were whisked away by private police for selling Led Zeppelin t-shirts. The people with the concert called them “bootleg t-shirts,” because the concert has its own black and white shirts it sells for $5. The men in the parking lot – who drove from Atlanta, where they sold them at Sunday’s Led Zeppelin concert – were not arrested. They were just told to leave the premises.
Even at the line at front, fans crowded the gate and were told repeatedly to “move back” by an excited man in a yellow jacket with a portable radio on his belt.
There were a thousand or more crowding the front gate at 5:45, listening to a young sounding man on the public address system who read the state law about drinking on state property, mispronouncing words like “statute” and “specifically”.
“That dumb ----- is so drunk he can’t even talk,” someone said to the speaker.
And while the thousand were crowding for their chance to rush in the stage, a mere 30 people waited patiently at the back gate, which would be opened along with the front gate and which was hundreds of feet closer to the stage.
They were let in and they cheered so that no one heard the young man on the loud speaker talking about “Kentucky Revised Statu-ate…”. They raced each other to the chest-high wall in front of the stage.
Except for Beth, Eddie, Mike, Terry, Robin, Joe…. While everyone in Freedom Hall positioned themselves as near the stage as they could, those Hoosiers went to the top row of section 201, the farthest spot from where Led Zeppelin would perform.
They had two sets of binoculars, “We’re right in front of the music here”, Robin, 19 said. “It’s the best place to be. You can hear better.”
And between them and the stage at 6 p.m. was an empty floor that, in two hours would be carpeted with young people.
By 8 p.m., when the concert was to have begun, some had had enough. “It was so packed, I couldn’t even get my feet on the floor,” a slight teen-age girl said.
In the several feet closest to the stage, people were wringing wet with perspiration. People who waited all afternoon and evening for Led Zeppelin were complaining that the air was too stale to breathe. The pressure of bodies against bodies was too much.
“I had to get out”, said 18 year-old Lloyd of Valley Station, his curls hanging wet from his head. “I couldn’t breathe in there.”
The T-shirted stage security men stood on a wooden platform and the veins in their arms bulged as they pulled on the men and woman handed up to them by the crowd.
One girl was unable to stand on her own, as they carried her, doubled up from the stage area, she said “On, my God. “ And they stretched her out on the concrete.
Those that had been lifted out bought drinks at the concession stands and looked around for the friends they had been separated from. At 9 p.m. they were refreshed, again part of the crowd, and adding to the roaring ovation given Led Zeppelin as the show began. (J. Adams / CourierJournal / May 1977)