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Maple Leaf Gardens - September 4, 1971

  • Immigrant Song, Heartbreaker, Since I've Been Loving You, Black Dog, Dazed and Confused, Stairway to Heaven, Celebration Day, That's the Way,  Going to California, What Is and What Should Never Be, Moby Dick, Whole Lotta Love (medley incl. Let That Boy Boogie, My Baby Left Me, Mess of Blues, You Shook Me), Communication Breakdown, Organ solo / Thank You.
srapallo's picture
on September 21, 2007 - 2:42pm
Rate this show: 
Average: 4.8 (63 votes)
September 4, 1971
Toronto
ON
Canada
ca
Setlist: 

Immigrant Song, Heartbreaker, Since I've Been Loving You, Black Dog, Dazed and Confused, Stairway to Heaven, Celebration Day, That's the Way,  Going to California, What Is and What Should Never Be, Moby Dick, Whole Lotta Love (medley incl. Let That Boy Boogie, My Baby Left Me, Mess of Blues, You Shook Me), Communication Breakdown, Organ solo / Thank You.

Note: 

Before the concert, the band receive gold album awards for Canadian sales of Led Zeppelin III. Noted writer, Ritchie Yorke, is once again MC (as he was for all of LZ's Toronto appearances), introducing the group: "Ladies and Gentlemen, the greatest rock and roll band in the world, LED ZEPPELIN."

-------------------------------

Review: Zeppelin More Solid Than Ever

The small sleek jet zooming Led Zeppelin into Toronto for a one-nighter was almost two hours late. When the jet finally touched down on Canadian soil, after a 55-minute flight from New York, there was less an hour to hustle through customs, climb into two chauffeured limousines and whisk through 15 miles of congested traffic before arriving at the backstage doors at the huge Maple Leaf Gardens.

The private jet waited on the tarmac in Toronto while the group swept superbly through more than two hours of concert and then rushed back to the airport to fly on to Chicago. Less than five hours on Canadian soil for a fee of more than $50,000.

The latest Led Zeppelin tour – their fifth – includes only 20 gigs, but it will gross in excess of a million dollars. It will also substantially help to sell at least two million copies of the band’s new album which will be released within four weeks and is NOT called “Led Zeppelin 4”.

Before over 17,000 fans at Toronto’s Maple Leaf Gardens, the group performed three of the cuts from their new LP and they were all well received. But it was the familiar material – the rock classics such as You Shook Me, Communication Breakdown, Dazed and Confused, and the masterpiece Whole Lotta Love – which drew the heftiest applause.

Despite the oft-heralded downfall of hard rock, Led Zeppelin is living, loving proof that although James Taylor is doing fine, he has quite a way to go before reaching the superstar success level of Zep or their U.S. counterparts, Grand Funk.

Led Zeppelin drew their reportedly largest rock crowd (over 20,000) in Vancouver’s history a week before; they sold out Madison Square Garden in New York and they smashed box office records across the continent, proving yet again that the current scene has no act to come within a country mile of their popularity.

We eventually arrived at the Gardens half an hour late, and Page was clearly concerned about the group’s lack of punctuality. People were pouring into the dressing room and talking louder and louder as Page tried to tune his axe to John Paul Jones’ bass. The noise had reached a distinct drone when Page suddenly turned around and told everyone to please leave.

The road managers hustled around and cleared the room of all but a couple of people, which didn’t include a photographer who came down to snap the group receiving numerous Canadian gold disc awards.

When Page and Jones completed their tuning, Bonham changed clothes and swigged from a bottle of beer, Plant downed a couple of lemon teas and squeezed into an embroidered vest which barely covered the upper half of his mid riff.

Then surrounded by Police and security men, they hastened out of the dressing room and climbed up on to the nine foot stage which was presumably designed to keep the faithful at bay.

After two encores and 140 minutes of music, the group climbed off stage, and jumped into the limousines and sped back to their jet. (Ritchie Yorke, Sept. 1971)

Notes: 

Before the concert, the band receive gold album awards for Canadian sales of Led Zeppelin III. Noted writer, Ritchie Yorke, is once again MC (as he was for all of LZ's Toronto appearances), introducing the group: "Ladies and Gentlemen, the greatest rock and roll band in the world, LED ZEPPELIN."

-------------------------------

Review: Zeppelin More Solid Than Ever

The small sleek jet zooming Led Zeppelin into Toronto for a one-nighter was almost two hours late. When the jet finally touched down on Canadian soil, after a 55-minute flight from New York, there was less an hour to hustle through customs, climb into two chauffeured limousines and whisk through 15 miles of congested traffic before arriving at the backstage doors at the huge Maple Leaf Gardens.

The private jet waited on the tarmac in Toronto while the group swept superbly through more than two hours of concert and then rushed back to the airport to fly on to Chicago. Less than five hours on Canadian soil for a fee of more than $50,000.

The latest Led Zeppelin tour – their fifth – includes only 20 gigs, but it will gross in excess of a million dollars. It will also substantially help to sell at least two million copies of the band’s new album which will be released within four weeks and is NOT called “Led Zeppelin 4”.

Before over 17,000 fans at Toronto’s Maple Leaf Gardens, the group performed three of the cuts from their new LP and they were all well received. But it was the familiar material – the rock classics such as You Shook Me, Communication Breakdown, Dazed and Confused, and the masterpiece Whole Lotta Love – which drew the heftiest applause.

Despite the oft-heralded downfall of hard rock, Led Zeppelin is living, loving proof that although James Taylor is doing fine, he has quite a way to go before reaching the superstar success level of Zep or their U.S. counterparts, Grand Funk.

Led Zeppelin drew their reportedly largest rock crowd (over 20,000) in Vancouver’s history a week before; they sold out Madison Square Garden in New York and they smashed box office records across the continent, proving yet again that the current scene has no act to come within a country mile of their popularity.

We eventually arrived at the Gardens half an hour late, and Page was clearly concerned about the group’s lack of punctuality. People were pouring into the dressing room and talking louder and louder as Page tried to tune his axe to John Paul Jones’ bass. The noise had reached a distinct drone when Page suddenly turned around and told everyone to please leave.

The road managers hustled around and cleared the room of all but a couple of people, which didn’t include a photographer who came down to snap the group receiving numerous Canadian gold disc awards.

When Page and Jones completed their tuning, Bonham changed clothes and swigged from a bottle of beer, Plant downed a couple of lemon teas and squeezed into an embroidered vest which barely covered the upper half of his mid riff.

Then surrounded by Police and security men, they hastened out of the dressing room and climbed up on to the nine foot stage which was presumably designed to keep the faithful at bay.

After two encores and 140 minutes of music, the group climbed off stage, and jumped into the limousines and sped back to their jet. (Ritchie Yorke, Sept. 1971)

Setlists: 

Immigrant Song, Heartbreaker, Since I've Been Loving You, Black Dog, Dazed and Confused, Stairway to Heaven, Celebration Day, That's the Way,  Going to California, What Is and What Should Never Be, Moby Dick, Whole Lotta Love (medley incl. Let That Boy Boogie, My Baby Left Me, Mess of Blues, You Shook Me), Communication Breakdown, Organ solo / Thank You.

Comments

Argenteum Astrum's picture

A pretty good show, but the band seems to be tired after the last night. There are some great moments, like the opening two songs, a great version of Celebration Day with Jones' bass going nuts, and a great medley followed by an excellent Communication Breakdown. Thank You is played without an organ solo and is rushed. A good show with some great moments but not the best. Plant asking the audience to being quiet during acoustic set: "Listen. It realy amazes me, because anybody who's been to England knows that when you go to a concert, there's such a thing as listening to what's going on! Unfortunately, we're faced with the problem in our free society where a lot of people come to listen, and there's a lot of people who are making a racket so nobody hears what's going on. We've got some things to say but every time I go to open my mouth, there's another spokesman ... If the guy next to you is trying to listen, you've got to respect that and be quiet. So the whole thing's a bit circular respect thing. So many of those big festivals felt apart because the respect wasn't a uniform one, and the thing with these concerts is that they normally are!"

DC's picture

I was at this concert, they were awesome

Raymond Lott's picture

I was 16yrs old when i seen this concert. The first song I heard of Led Zeppelin was "Whole Lotta Love" in a friends basement and have been hooked ever since.

I still have my show tickets from the Maple Leaf Gardens, Sept. 4, 1971 concert. As naive as i was back then i always remember when the lights went out at the opening show, the whole arena lit up! This is one concert that i still brag about. The most amazing music. Thanks for keeping this alive Ray

Allen's picture

I was thirteen, and I remember it being the first day of school, grade 8. I had already been to a couple of concerts, The Guess Who, and Chuck Berry too, but nothing prepared me for what I was about to witness.
I already had Zeppelin's first three records (still got 'em), so I knew the music was going to be good, but they came out and just blew everyone's head off, right from the first notes. I can still hear bits of it over forty years later.
Shame. Never got to see them again.

David Allison's picture

I was on holiday from England and bought 3 tickets for a great concert that I still remember well. A friend could not attend so I sold the spare ticket outside the Gardens. What a set list we now know that was.

Greg's picture

I was 18 at the time and had a seat probably less than 100 ft away, right behind center stage. It was very exciting to see them play from that angle. The band was absolutely fabulous and played with unbelieveable energy and stamina. I had all their albums to that date and was a huge fan. To see them playing upclose like that was surreal to say the least. Being a young musician myself at the time, I was particularly fascinated with John Bonham. He was so cool to watch, especially when he did his drum solo as I could see his whole kit from behind where I was sitting. It's been a long time but it was so memorable, I will never forget it and consider myself very fortunate to have seen them.

Robert's picture

I was at this show , remember it clearly and they killed that night.

Name Michael Cairns's picture

Man that was a concert to remember! Just amazing and with everyone lighting lighters for Stairway to Heaven and Jimi Page doing his violin bow over his guitar. The sweet smoke floating through the building. And I look at the price for a ticket that I paid back then. What a deal! LOL Times really have change. Bring it Back! Bring it Back!

Ken's picture

I was at this show, it was the first time I ever heard Stairway to Heaven, I was in the third row on the floor, it was amazing to hear this song, the best song of the night and the first time I had ever heard it. I knew then that was a moment. My earw rang for the rest of the long weekend from how loud it was as I drove to the cottage right after the show. You could smoke at shows in those days -- it was a time to remember

Rick's picture

This was my first concert ever and it was a mindblowing show! Close to two and a half hours including new material including Black Dog and an incredible version of Whole Lotta Love. This show became the standard for me for all concerts afterwards.

Ron's picture

Caught Zeppelin in Toronto early September 1971 at age 15. A buddy and I arrived at Maple Leaf Gardens just prior to the show and purchased obstructed seats. We soon moved into the end blues behind the stage for the rest of the show. It was a great show and a concert we were fortunate to attend.

Curious's picture

I'm just curious as to why Zeppelin never played Toronto after 71. Zeppelin played Montreal and Vancouver up till 75. They even did 2 shows in Van in 75. Just strange considering the center of the universe status of Toronto and all. Was there some bad blood between Zep and T.O?

Steve Davis's picture

Hey Mike,
I don't know when you wrote this comment but I find it hard to believe that the audience had lighters going during STH. The album hadn't been released yet so it was the first time the audience, including me, had heard the song. I remember it as being interesting but quite lengthy.
Steve

Jim LeDrew's picture

I remember that day it was around $5.00 ea. for the tickets the place was crowded. I bought their latest album that day. It was a long day but never forget.. well most of the day. Always one of the greatest bands ever!

Peter's picture

Both my parents were there, but my dad took too much acid and ended up in the medical centre. He thought they were landing on the roof in a helicopter and I guess he freaked out. I still have both my parents ticket stubs though.

Rick Pritchard's picture

This was a great concert. I still have my floor seat ticket stub.

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Comments

Sept. 4 1971 Maple Leaf Gardens Toronto by Rick Pritchard (not verified)
Sept.4 71 Led Zeppelin T.O by Peter (not verified)
I was there 71 for one of my first concerts by Jim LeDrew (not verified)
I was thirteen, and I by Allen (not verified)
LedZeppelin by David Allison (not verified)
Toronto 1971 by Ron (not verified)
Zeppelin and Toronto by Curious (not verified)
lighters during STH by Steve Davis (not verified)
Maple Leaf Gardens Led Zeppelin Show 1971 by Name Michael Cairns (not verified)
I was at this concert, they by DC (not verified)
Toronto Concert by Ken (not verified)
Fabulous concert ! by Greg (not verified)
Toronto 1971 by Rick (not verified)
Led Zeppelin by Raymond Lott (not verified)
I was at this show , by Robert (not verified)