When Led Zeppelin Brought Keith Moon Aboard for a Wild Performance of ‘Rock and Roll’

by Jeremy Spirogis
When Led Zeppelin Brought Keith Moon Aboard for a Wild Performance of ‘Rock and Roll’

If you invite Keith Moon on stage, it’s important to count on bizarre issues to occur. Moon’s bandmates in The Who, who witnessed the drummer set off bombs after performances (as soon as, he even handed out at his drumkit), knew that every one too nicely.

But that didn’t cease rock’s largest bands from interacting with the infamous sensible joker/world-class drummer. Take The Beatles. After he supplied to exchange Ringo in 1966, nobody nervous about having Moon sit with the band for its “All You Need Is Love” worldwide broadcast in ’67. (Moon behaved.)

The following decade, Led Zeppelin had taken over because the rulers of rock. And Moon determined he needed to take part on the enjoyable with Zep and his friend John Bonham — one other grasp drummer with a penchant for harmful sensible jokes. In 1977, Moon and Zep had their second on stage.

Moon joined Zep on stage in LA for a wild encore

Keith Moon, drummer for The Who, takes the wheel of an airport baggage transporter within the 1970s. Moon was becoming a member of the group for a European tour. | PA Images by way of Getty Images

By the summer season of ’77, Zeppelin and Moon each had their share of battle scars from the rock ‘n’ roll life. But they might nonetheless make magic on stage and within the studio, and at one other marathon Zep efficiency on the L.A. discussion board, they did simply that.

Fans can watch a few of it occur in a video of the occasion launched by the band. After an impassioned rendition of “Stairway to Heaven,” you discover Robert Plant thanking the gang because the band walks off the stage (at 5:20). But the encore hadn’t come but.

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As Plant sits behind the drumkit, you see Moon seize the mic and start talking incoherently on the entrance of the stage. Plant, wanting like he’s having a joke performed on him, returns quickly to take it again. “Keith Moon!” he declares, because the drummer joins Bonham behind the stage.

From there, the band tears into “Whole Lotta Love,” with Moon flailing away subsequent to Bonzo. While we don’t get a lot of that tune on the video, we do see Moon and Zep in full-throttle motion on “Rock and Roll.” It’s really one thing to behold.

Bonzo and Moon have their second on the shut of ‘Rock and Roll’

John Paul Jones, Jimmy Page and Robert Plant of Led Zeppelin on the Inglewood Forum in Los Angeles | Jeffrey Mayer/WireImage

Fans of Zep know that “Rock and Roll” is (amongst different issues) a showcase for Bonham’s skills. It begins together with his crashing intro and closes with a brief solo earlier than the tune ends. So it was the proper tune for Moon to hitch Bonzo and Zep to play.

After Plant’s last “lonely, lonely, lonely, lonely … time,” rock’s best drummers do their factor (at 8:40). For the ultimate 40-odd seconds, the pair do their finest to carry down the home.

Moon wouldn’t final for much longer. In 1978, he succumbed to an overdose of sedatives prescribed to assist restrict his yearning for alcohol. Bonham adopted in 1980 after choking to demise on his personal vomit. But nobody might guess the darkish future forward on that night time in L.A. (a minimum of not publicly).

Plant spoke for everybody together with his last feedback. “L.A., it’s been very funny. Good night,” he mentioned. Whenever Moon was at its finest, that a lot was assured.

Also seeHow a John Bonham Drinking Song Became a Classic ‘Led Zeppelin III’ Track

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