He could barely contain his glee and thanks to this column he doesn’t have to. Read Self Made Man exclusively every week on RUSHONROCK!
“Well, that’s Dad’s Christmas present sorted,” said one of my lads on hearing news that Led Zeppelin will be releasing the DVD and CD of their O2 Arena concert five years after the event.
Wrong, son. Very, very wrong. Do you honestly think I’m going to wait until December 25 for one of the most anticipated music releases for years?
“Celebration Day” will be screened in cinemas across the world next month and, work-permitting, I’m planning one of my rare visits to a cinema.
And four weeks later, the DVD and CD will be available. Naturally, I will buy them within minutes of them going on sale and I won’t be alone.
During the course of their 12 year career, cut short by the tragic death of drummer John Bonham, Zeppelin sold 400 million records, despite never releasing a single and spurning the publicity-conscious routes favoured by peers such as the Rolling Stones and The Who.
And when it was announced, the surviving trio of Jimmy Page, Robert Plant and John Paul Jones would be reforming for one night only, with Bonham’s son, Jason behind the drums, to commemorate the life of Atlantic founder and president Ahmet Ertegün, it proved to be the hottest ticket in music history.
I was one of the 20 million applicants who would have given their right arm to be at the O2 that December night back in 2007.
For a few hours, I actually believed I was one of the 0.01 per cent whose names had been selected and I was on the verge of making travel arrangements, when I was warned there was a scam email doing the rounds.
Fortunately, my naivety didn’t lead to any financial damage, just broken dreams but now, belatedly, I will get the chance to watch a concert hailed by every critic who was there.
It’s been a long time, as the song goes. In 2008 and again 12 months later, when I was compiling my end–of-year poll for this very website, one of the questions asked was: Hopes for next year? My reply was for Zeppelin to release the concert footage.
By 2010, despite internet rumours to the contrary, I began to lose hope. I presumed that Page, being the arch-perfectionist that he is, had studied the film and decided, it wasn’t worthy of a wider audience.
But this is a man who spent over a decade producing the definiitive Led Zeppelin DVD released 23 years after the band’s final concert.
We should count our blessings that the new release has only been five years in the making.
Having seen the official trailer for Celebration Day, I can vouch for it’s quality as it relives an event most Zeppelin fans never thought would ever happen.
I’m excited. Are you?