Whole Lotta Led and Wizard of Oz pay homage to their hard rock heroes

Who: Whole Lotta Led

Where: Boot Pub

When: Monday, Aug. 11

Who says rock ’n’ roll is dead? Definitely not any of the millions of people worldwide who in the last two months have gobbled up Led Zeppelin’s double live DVD set or even the special release triple CD set.

And definitely not the millions of people who have been going to see ex Back Sabbath frontman, Ozzie Osbourne in concert.

What’s interesting to note here is that Led Zeppelin and Black Sabbath, with Ozzie Osbourne at the helm, were two bands that were at their peak in the ’70s. Fast forward 30 years and they are still blowing away chart sales.

But who’s buying Ozzie’s high price gig tickets and the Led Zeppelin archived rare recordings boxed sets? It’s not just nostalgic adults and old school hard rock music lovers, that’s for sure.

It is in fact the same kids buying Eminem and Metallica and Limp Bizkit. Why?

"Because they were the pioneers," explained lead singer for the Led Zeppelin Tribute Show, Whole Lotta Led, Greg Reamsbottom (a.k.a Grateful Greg from the Hairfarmers).

"Robert Plant, Jimmy Page, John Paul Jones and the late John Bonham, along with Black Sabbath, The Who and Deep Purple – these were the guys who set the bar for every rock band that has followed since."

Bassist J.P. Trottier added: "I’d say Led Zeppelin influences at least 80 per cent of rock bands around even today."

Drummer Tom Rimmer said he understands why today’s teens are still blown away by ’70s hard rock.

"The reaction is still the same as when I was a kid. When my brother brought out what I think was Led Zeppelin’s third album for me to listen to, I was immediately hooked. I was tapping to it right away. They were the masters of less is more. They made their music sound so simple and yet it’s very difficult to perform if you think about the song structure."

Lead guitarist Phil Richard, who has the recently released double DVD set, said their musicianship on stage was mind blowing.

"There’s never been a time they weren’t popular and that’s going back at least as far as 1969."

Now consider for a moment Led Zeppelin’s legacy: If you think in rock ’n’ roll terms, they were only around for a short period of time – 12 years to be exact. When drummer John Bonham died unexpectedly from heavy drinking in 1980, that was the abrupt end of the band.


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