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Marquee - March 23, 1971

  • includes: Immigrant Song, Heartbreaker, Since I've Been Loving You, Black Dog, Dazed and Confused, Stairway to Heaven, Moby Dick, Going to California, What Is and What Should Never Be, Whole Lotta Love (medley), Communication Breakdown.
srapallo's picture
on September 21, 2007 - 12:47pm
Rate this show: 
Average: 4.9 (22 votes)
March 23, 1971
London
United Kingdom
uk
Setlist: 

includes: Immigrant Song, Heartbreaker, Since I've Been Loving You, Black Dog, Dazed and Confused, Stairway to Heaven, Moby Dick, Going to California, What Is and What Should Never Be, Whole Lotta Love (medley), Communication Breakdown.

Note: 

Back to the clubs tour.

Press Review: It was very nostalgic for Led Zeppelin to play London’s Marquee Club last Tuesday. But was it such a good idea, really?
Naturally the place was packed to overflowing. Naturally the group was pretty good, though the sound suffered from the small surroundings. But how much better it might have been if Zep had chosen the Lyceum or Roundhouse for the only London venue on their current tour.

As it was, hundreds instead of thousands were able to see the group who last played the Marquee almost two years ago to the day and who first played the Marquee billed as the “former Yardbirds” and attracted little interest.
Zeppelin are a group to be looked up to, on a pinnacle for all to see. A group that can pack New York’s Madison Square Garden just isn’t right in the intimate atmosphere of the Marquee.

But musically the group were almost perfect. I say almost because the sound seemed to suffer from too much treble and consequent whining feedback during numbers. For excitement value, few can touch them.

Highlight for me was Since I’ve Been Loving You, with Jimmy Page’s solo coming over better than on the third album. We had a preview of three numbers from their next album: Stairway to Heaven, Going to California and Black Dog, all of which promise to be standard Zep numbers.

Bonham’s drum solo in Moby Dick was as good as ever, and the whole club began to gyrate as they played their anthem Whole Lotta Love. The fans wanted more  - back they came – Communication Breakdown, a number they probably played at the Marquee in those early days. They did Dazed and Confused too and a chick fainted during Jimmy’s violin bow guitar bit.

The Marquee in its long and colourful history, has probably never had a night like it, but I still doubt the wisdom of choosing the club in favour of a larger venue. [-C.Charlesworth / Melody Maker / April 1971]

Notes: 

Back to the clubs tour.

Press Review excerpt (1) - At 9 o'clock… there is a slight stirring, followed by a bigger circulating rumor - they arrived! The little door on the left of the stage opens and a bearded Robert Plant appears followed by Jimmy Page, his old Les Paul in a hand and a double-neck guitar - one has six, the other has twelve strings. Very quickly, they brutally attacked with "Immigrant Song”. I jump up arms raised. I just found the Led Zeppelin, the truth…. Hard rock, their letters of nobility, they won them on board of this lead airship. All is perfect…  nothing is left to chance, but perfection of the four musicians who respect and know each other’s background.

The Marquee Club, where everything started, is about ten years old. The Who, the Stones started there. Perhaps Jimmy Page remembers those past dances, while was still officiating within the Yardbirds. In this club, where the spectator distance is just five meters away of the scene, there is no place for a sham. The Zeppelin are happy to be here and this happiness cannot more audible. The musicians enjoy themselves as much as the crowd.

Robert Plant jokes with those who call out questions. The fourth disc, when is it coming out? And we start again on a new hound. During many solos, Jimmy Page reminds us of the excellent musician he is. The voice of Robert Plant has grown stronger - he does what he wants with his vocal cords.

All along the evening, John Paul Jones passes from bass, to organ, acoustic (mandolin). Of these three instruments, he demonstrates a great mastery, admirably supported by John Bonham whose strike is dry and precise, not one of the least advantages of the group. Page has not forgotten his now legendary violin bow, which he strokes the strings of his guitar…

Three new tracks appearing on the next album, are performed tonight. First, Black Dog, a composition very rhythmic, very jerky, in the tradition of "Whole lotta love". "Going to California", for which Jimmy use a dry guitar a little bit of same way as in "Gallows pole", and the shocking track "Stairway to Heaven". For this piece, Jimmy plays this double-neck guitar. The beginning is very sweet, very classic, Page plays in arpeggio on the twelve-stringed neck while Plant murmurs his words, begging, imploring, then the tone goes up. Bonham hits harder and harder, Page uses the other guitar neck, uses distortion, Plant screams; then, gradually, the voltage goes down, everything becomes calm again, peaceful, the last notes are barely audible. It's completed and the audience applauds it all. This is the piece that receives the most response. The group is pleased to see the warm reception of their new compositions and thank the audience.  A '' Whole lotta love… The small size of the club allows us to notice the incredible work on John Paul Jones’ bass.

Basically, we spent a lot of time on Robert Plant and Jimmy Page and we’re always a little forgetful of the drummer and Bassist.   Zeppelin is a solidly-welded group, from where you do not have to extract any musician particular for placing it on a pedestal. It's their cohesion and the equal level of their possibilities to each who has their strength and quality.

There were three reminders; during the second half - Page and Plant improvise a boogie-woogie that brought us joy, this boogie-woogie turned into a potpourri of old classics rock 'and roll.
It's now ended. They played a little more than two and a half hours. God, it seemed short to us. The club is emptying slowly. Outside, the freshness of time brings us back to forgotten realities with the Zeppelin. I am happy, for me the direction of Zeppelin flies again high up in the sky and may the winds be favorable to them. [Translated from French //  Sacha Reins March 1971]


Press Review (2): It was very nostalgic for Led Zeppelin to play London’s Marquee Club last Tuesday. But was it such a good idea, really?
Naturally the place was packed to overflowing. Naturally the group was pretty good, though the sound suffered from the small surroundings. But how much better it might have been if Zep had chosen the Lyceum or Roundhouse for the only London venue on their current tour.

As it was, hundreds instead of thousands were able to see the group who last played the Marquee almost two years ago to the day and who first played the Marquee billed as the “former Yardbirds” and attracted little interest.
Zeppelin are a group to be looked up to, on a pinnacle for all to see. A group that can pack New York’s Madison Square Garden just isn’t right in the intimate atmosphere of the Marquee.

But musically the group were almost perfect. I say almost because the sound seemed to suffer from too much treble and consequent whining feedback during numbers. For excitement value, few can touch them.

Highlight for me was Since I’ve Been Loving You, with Jimmy Page’s solo coming over better than on the third album. We had a preview of three numbers from their next album: Stairway to Heaven, Going to California and Black Dog, all of which promise to be standard Zep numbers.

Bonham’s drum solo in Moby Dick was as good as ever, and the whole club began to gyrate as they played their anthem Whole Lotta Love. The fans wanted more  - back they came – Communication Breakdown, a number they probably played at the Marquee in those early days. They did Dazed and Confused too and a chick fainted during Jimmy’s violin bow guitar bit.

The Marquee in its long and colourful history, has probably never had a night like it, but I still doubt the wisdom of choosing the club in favour of a larger venue. [-C.Charlesworth / Melody Maker / April 1971]

Setlists: 

includes: Immigrant Song, Heartbreaker, Since I've Been Loving You, Black Dog, Dazed and Confused, Stairway to Heaven, Moby Dick, Going to California, What Is and What Should Never Be, Whole Lotta Love (medley), Communication Breakdown.

Comments

robin atkinson's picture

I went to this show but I can remember the buying of the tickets as well. The queue started in the evening and by midnight there were a lot of youngsters out in the cold in Soho. My memory is that the police forced the club to let us inside for our own safety and they sold us the tickets but we couldn't leave the club until it was felt safe and the tubes were running. Then we went to the Roundhouse and joined the queue for the Rolling Stones concert!

The gig was great and it was unreal being so close to them. I remember robert Plant holding something over thehead of the owner as he introduced them. Unfortunately I was too close to a speaker so for me it was ll rather loud.

Sebastian's picture

Reportedly, this was the first concert the four members of Queen (i.e. Mercury, Taylor, May and Deacon) attended together, long before they were famous themselves. Queen were heavily influenced by Zeppelin (as you can tell by listening to early albums) and Freddie Mercury often cited Robert Plant (and not Paul Rodgers) as his favourite singer.

Walter Lechner's picture

I could not remember what date Led Zeppelin played at the Marquee in 1971. I was a Marquee Club member at the time. I  got to tickets for the night and was staying right in front of the stage. A night i will never forget in all my live. Greetings Walter

Jim Bradshaw's picture

I went straight to the Marquee from work 15 mins walk away and was one of the saps who slept on the pavement waiting to get tickets but, boy, was it worth it! My friend and I zoomed into the gig when the doors opened and I found two chairs that we used to stand on to see the stage, chairs against the facing wall - we were so close! This was one of the best gigs ever, so intimate, so tight, so controlled. I well remember the chick who fainted as RP saw her and, with a quick signal to the guys, they stopped dead in the middle of the song. Security carried her across the tiny stage to recover and, with a quick count, the boys carried on precisely where they'd left off. I swear the ceiling nearly caved in with the applause. As you can tell, this was one the best (among many) Zep gigs I saw and is firmly engraved upon my memory. The only bummer was it seemed to go by so damned quickly!

 

Best live band EVER - and I've seen plenty in the last 50 years or so!!

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