Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Stairway to Heaven Revisited

I have been reading Led Zeppelin The Story of a Band and Their Music 1968-1980 by Keith Shadwick.It's a really good book, much better than Hammer of the Gods. It focuses much more on the music of the band and the creative process they went through to make the music, instead of the excesses that were the touring reality for so many 70's rock bands. I've been going back through all the Zep albums and listening to everything as I go through the book, and it occurred to me how little I have actually listened to Stairway to Heaven in probably the last 20 years. So I put it on today, and it came back to me what a truly great song it is. It has everything; a story with myth and magic that relates to the listener; a quiet, mystical, beginning that gradually builds to a crescendo of power and sound, but that ends with a gentle bringing of the listener back to earth when Robert croons the last line "And she's buying a stairway to heaven", one of Jimmy Pages greatest guitar solo's, it just has everything that makes music great. It is just a perfectly orchestrated piece of music.

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