guitarist Jimmy Page
spoke to Guitar World
for the magazine’s January 2013 issue about the release of ZEPPELIN
‘s “Celebration Day”
, which documents the band’s 2007 concert at London, England’s O2 Arena, and his future plans.
Guitar World: So why haven’t there been more shows [after the O2 concert]? Is it because Robert [Plant, vocals] doesn’t want to be involved?
Jimmy Page: From a concert like that, you would have thought that there might have been some sort of whisper or hint about another gig over here or over there, for maybe very, very good reasons — you know, charitable causes or whatever. Well, there wasn’t. That’s it. That’s all I can tell you. I wouldn’t expect that there would be any more concerts, really.
Guitar World: Which is sad.
Jimmy Page: Well, it is what it is, isn’t it? So under those circumstances, when it was getting in three and a half years after the concert, I thought. We’ve got to pay some attention to this show. I’ve gotto look at the footage and just go in, in an objective way, with a really positive attitude of knowing that we did a really great show, and that Jason [Bonham, drums] had played marvelously. His father would have been so proud of him. And that was the way to go in and look at the O2.
Guitar World: But weren’t there plans to form another band with a different singer and go on tour?
Jimmy Page: No. You see, what we did — doing all of the rehearsals — was not to play any new stuff, not to get sidetracked. After it was done, Jason, myself and John Paul Jones felt it was the right thing to do to go in and start playing new material and see how we were getting on. I thought that, really, we should play on our strengths and start working on quite a lot of music. We had a few things together, but Robert had his Alison Krauss project [“Raising Sand”] to promote. There was talk about bringing in some other singers, but that would have changed the character of what we were doing, and done it rather suddenly. There was a lot of… I won’t say pressure but a lot of hinting about “this singer and that singer.” And for me, it was more about, “Let’s see what we can really do.” But I don’t think we really got a chance to do that.
Guitar World: So it would have been too early at that point?
Jimmy Page: To do what? Bring in a singer on it? Yes. I think we needed to work on the material first and all the various sorts of textures and moods that we could create. But that wasn’t to be either.
Guitar World: Everybody thought you would replace Robert with another singer and go on a LED ZEPPELIN reunion tour. That is obviously a misunderstanding then.
Jimmy Page: Well, look: even If we had eventually settled on a singer, I think it would have been premature to go on our. Of course, we would have played LED ZEPPELIN material, but I would also want to be playing some really, really good new material as well, to knock people’s socks off.
Guitar World: Is that ever going to happen?
Jimmy Page: I don’t think so. I don’t think so. I know that I certainly want to be… Let’s put it this way: This time last year I intended to be actually playing by now in a live outfit. [laughs] So that will have to be postponed now into sort of next year, tail end of next year. But I definitely want to be doing that.
To order a copy of the January 2013 issue of Guitar World, go to this location.