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Best or favorite live zep songs

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I don't know how many Zeppelin fans there are on here, let alone ones that listen to them live but I thought I'd give this a shot.

The best Zeppelin live songs

1. Dazed and Confused. I think this song sums up the live zep. It's long, it's heavy, a bit of gloom, it goes in many different directions and moods, from menancing to somber and meditative, to outright awful noise shite, to powerhouse rock, funk, goofiness with an elongated tribal drumbeat syncopated outro! 

2. No Quarter. Could nearly reach the thirty minute mark, filled with wonderful piano solos, a bit of fast rocking Nutcracker, jazz, random improvs, bluesy honky-tonk rock, with a powerful riff and somber yet determined lyrics. An epic.

3. Trampled Underfoot. A mix of fast moving funk and rock, the middle pretty wide open with one heck of a drumbeat and catchy keys!

4. Whole Lotta Love. You've got the theremin bongo bit, or the bass driven funk, the abbreviated versions cutting off after the first chorus, the crazy medleys some stretching to a half hour, and the wild jams of the '80 tour. Some would maybe put this at number one.

5. Immigrant Song. Sometimes that outro solo just soars, no matter if Plant could hit the high notes or not.

6. Celebration Day. Good fast or a bit slower but I'm partial to those super fast versions from earlier in their tours. Some good outro soloing too.

7. Communication Breakdown. Another chance for funk, fast paced heavy metal shredding, wild improvs, a bass solo...!

8. Over The Hills...You've got catchy crunchy guitar, sentimenal feeling lyrics, an interesting contrast in the bridge between nearly dissonant jamming and the rhythm section that goes on and on.

9. Since I've Been Loving You. A powerful blues number filled with interesting guitar explorations and some angst filled vocals.

10. Four Sticks. Only one known live version of this so it has to do; from the stuttering beginning throughout, it's powerful and a bit different from the studio version but a lot of fun despite the relatively poor recording quality.


I'm sure there's more.

What do you think?

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6 hours ago, MaryJanes2ndLastDance said:

I'm sure there's more.

What do you think?

I'm sure you're right.

As for early days, there is this fantastic recording of Babe I'm Gonna Leave You from Danish Radio (television?) '69. Later masterpiece.. hm.. Kashmir, Knebworth '79. Somewhere in between those I really have a soft spot for Going to California, circa 1975... Earls Court version? These can all be found on the u-toob for your viewing and listening pleasure, I believe.

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On May 20, 2020 at 2:10 AM, Shelter said:

Babe I'm Gonna Leave You from Danish Radio (television?) '69

I don't think they played it that much past a certain point though here is a good recording of it from SanFran, the Fillmore:


Supposedly they rehearsed a slide-guitar version of the song for the '77 tour but it was never played; would've been neat. 

On May 20, 2020 at 2:10 AM, Shelter said:

Kashmir, Knebworth '79.

That's a very popular one with people though I think the song hit a peak with Page/Plant touring and teaming up with the Egyptian Ensemble, the song took off and had different dynamics and a grander scope on stage than with the original band .Though the versions with them were good too, that relentless groove didn't seem to leave much room for improv till the end of the song in '77 when Bonham would throw in a lot of fills, probably some '77 show from LA would have the most epic version of that, though I know there are other factors involved for people other than length of a song live. 

The biggest overall shock for me hearing live Zeppelin, besides shifts in tempo was Plant's voice, I think it's a real deal-breaker for some people. Hearing the wail of Immigrant Song in the studio and then something different on stage can be quite the surprise. Sure, who wouldn't want to hear Plant from '68 having that voice throughout his career or at least all of Zep, reproducing what he did in the studio on stage. But it wasn't to be.

Rare is the time TPATH mess up musically, actually, I can't even think of a time when the band flubs up, maybe the one and only Fault Lines performance before it vanished from youtube, but even then, it felt more like nerves or something. But their sound is pretty faithful to the recordings even when they jammed a bit on IGTBK or whatever. No doubt from their high caliber musicianship as well as from the repetition in song selection. Zepp can be all over the place, I think it's a plus but I have a liking for wild and long guitar and rhythm section jamming. 

Both bands stuck to the same set usually but zepp had more of a ramshackle nature; something you'd never describe TPATH's playing as. Out of that musical chaos could be some amazing improvs, riffs and exciting moments; that's not even getting into Plant's joining in as best he could vocally or driving the band forward into different cover medleys. The man was pretty witty too.

Here's a good version of Kashmir from Madison Square Garden in 1977:


Does it capture the grandeur of the studio track? No. And Jones keys at the end remind me of a flourish from something like Monty Python's Grail movie. But it's enjoyable. 

I forgot to mention Heartbreaker, I think the riff he's playing at the beginning here could have been the basis of its own song, too bad it didn't go on longer. I should note that sometimes the Heartbreaker solos go on too long for me, again, the pure craziness of the studio take doesn't need embellishing. But in concert it certainly got it. Still, the song is a good one live, with some hyper energized playing by the band going into the solo and back out again.

Sometimes the band sounds like they're going to fall apart musically but then they pull it together and played some inspiring rock.




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