The good people over at NME put together a list of the 40 strangest/weirdest/most insane rock star rider requests and we picked out a handful of our faves.
Rock gods, decent househusbands. Led Zeppelin always wanted an iron and ironing board to keep those chest-bearing shirts crisp.
We knew Axl Rose was a tricky customer but last month we got an insight into what makes him tick. Square melon.
One of the all-time classic rider requests was 80s hair-metal giants Van Halen and their insistence on M&Ms with the brown ones removed. A great tale of unfettered rock egos, until you hear this was just a test to check that venue bosses read right to the bottom of the list.
In their heyday they didn’t really need it, but these days the Red Hot Chili Peppers request fresh underwear.
Well, the list wouldn’t be complete without the spandex kings of profane. Motley Crue basically requested everything they could think of, but notable items included a submachine gun, a detailed schedule of local AA meetings and – naturally – a 12-foot boa constrictor.
To check out the rest of the list head over to NME
Monarchy of Roses (from I’m With You, 2011) Around The World (from Californication, 1999) Scar Tissue (from Californication, 1999) Snow (Hey Oh) (from Stadium Arcadium, 2006) Factory of Faith (from I’m With You, 2011) Can’t Stop (from By The Way, 2002) What In The World (David Bowie cover) Throw Away Your Television (from By The Way, 2002) The Adventures of Rain Dance Maggie (from I’m With You, 2011) Under The Bridge (from Blood Sugar Sex Magik, 1991) Look Around (from I’m With You, 2011) Californication (from Californication, 1999) By The Way (from By The Way, 2002) Chad, Josh and Mauro Ocean Jam (Led Zeppelin cover) Higher Ground (from Mother’s Milk, 1989) Soul To Squeeze (from Coneheads soundtrack, 1993) Give It Away (from Blood Sugar Sex Magik, 1991) Final Jam
Following the worldwide success of the incredible Beastie Boys Paul’s Boutique remix project Caught In The Middle of A 3 Way Mix (produced with fellow Solid Steel DJs; Moneyshot and DJ Food) UK DJ extraordinaire DJ Cheeba returns with another documentary style mix, this time around he has gotten busy charting the huge influence and mass appeal of arguably the greatest rock band of all time: Led Zeppelin.
This mix has been made to coincide with the release of Celebration Day and digs chronologically (1969-1975) through the band’s first six albums, picking out key tracks, their influences, subsequent covers and some of the notable examples of where they were sampled in hip hop, dance music and pop.
From Good Times, Bad Times to Kashmir this is a DJ mix made for everyone from the die hard fans who were there in 69’ to the kids who only know the name from the iconic tee shirts.
Check it out below and be sure to turn it up loud… there’s no other way to hear it!
Hit the jump below to see the insane tracklist in full.
God damn I love the internet, especially when you stumble across websites where it’s obvious the people that curate them obviously have a lot of spare time on their hands to well and truly ‘get their nerd on’ and deliver something super cool.
Pop Spots NYC is definitely one of these kind of sites and is my current online obsession. This site is put together by Bob Egan, who by day is a commercial real estate agent but on nights and weekends he dedicates most of his spare time to searching out the locations where iconic record covers were shot and documents the whole process as if he’s some kind of pop culture detective.
The focus is mainly on Bob’s hometown of New York City but in a recent post he solved some UK album location mysteries too.
Check out some of his handy work in the pics below and be sure to head over to the website for the full story behind each album cover he locates. Amazing stuff.
And if you can get past the annoying presenter, the below vid sums it up pretty well.
Following a Global Catalogue Conference in the UK in late September I made my way into London to assist with a series of Triple M interviews with the legendary Led Zeppelin to promote their new release ‘Celebration Day’. Originally Triple M had been only offered access to the band by attending the press conference but things quickly changed. During the catalogue conference I befriended a feisty but interesting ex Warner promotion lady named Jaquelyne who, due to her many years of working closely with Led Zeppelin was overseeing the media schedule for the band. Within no time we had arranged one on one meetings between Triple M and both Jimmy Page & John Paul Jones which certainly excited the radio crew but the best was yet come.
As the conference finished and I was awaiting a taxi to London Jaquelyne grabbed me and in her excited French accent advised that a US journalist had pulled out of an interview with Robert Plant and Triple M could fill the spot which was the icing on the cake in their minds.
The following morning I headed to the Princess Of Wales pub in Camden to check all was in order for the Robert Plant interview. As I entered this small corner pub I was greeted with the site of Robert Plant leaning on the bar with a handful of locals scoffing down their egg & chips completely oblivious to who was leaning on the bar. Robert & I quickly exchanged pleasantries then he moved to a separate room for the radio interview. Once that interview was over the radio boys & I grabbed a cab to The Connaught Hotel to interview Jimmy Page and John Paul Jones. I was introduced to Jimmy in the lobby and all I was expecting was a quick hello but to my surprise Jimmy said ‘let’s go up to the room and have a chat’. So here I am in the penthouse of the hotel discussing the O2 concert with one of rock & rolls legends, something I was not expecting. From there I moved to John Paul Jones’ suite when we had a long discussion about the concert, Bluesfest and his love of Australia.
The following day we all attended the press conference filled with the world’s media in a smoke filled room with searchlights piecing the room and featuring huge back drops of the ‘Celebration Day’ image.
I have met some amazing artists in my time including McCartney, Jagger & Bowie but this was a special couple of days.
40 years ago today, the greatest rock band of all-time released the greatest rock album of all-time, Led Zeppelin IV. A powerhouse from the legendary opening vocal intro of “Black Dog” to the final notes of the hypnotic Mississippi blues-infused “When The Levee Breaks,” IV contains eight radio classics including “Rock And Roll,” “The Battle Of Evermore,” “Misty Mountain Hop,” “Four Sticks,” “Going To California,” and, of course, the ultimate rock anthem, “Stairway To Heaven.” “Hats Off” to Jimmy, Robert, John Paul, and John for creating a true work of art that only gets better with age.
IV Led Zeppelin IV Factoids
I Though it’s Led Zeppelin IV’s most famous song, “Stairway To Heaven” was never released as a commercial single.
II “Hey, hey, mama, said the way you move, gonna make you sweat, gonna make you groove.” A Labrador Retriever that used to hang around during the Led Zeppelin IV recording sessions helped inspire “Black Dog”.
III “It’s been a long time since I rock and rolled. It’s been a long time since I did The Stroll”. From 1973 to 1975, Led Zeppelin opened most of their concerts with the song “Rock And Roll”.
IV Led Zeppelin IV ranks just below Michael Jackson’s Thriller and The Eagles’ Greatest Hits on the list of all-time U.S. best sellers.
Head on over to iTunes and pick yourself up a copy of the greatest rock album of all-time for a special 40th anniversary price!
When the Levee Breaks is a blues song written and first recorded by husband and wife Kansas Joe McCoy and Memphis Minnie in 1929. The song is in reaction to the upheaval caused by the Great Mississippi Flood of 1927.
It was re-worked by English rock group Led Zeppelin as the last song on their fourth album, released in 1971. The lyrics in Led Zeppelin’s version, credited to Memphis Minnie and the individual members of Led Zeppelin, were partially based on the original recording. The song was recorded at a different tempo, then slowed down, explaining the “sludgy” sound, particularly on the harmonica and guitar solos. Because this song was heavily produced in the studio, it was difficult to recreate live. The band only played it a few times in the early stages of their 1975 U.S. Tour.
Led Zeppelin “When The Levee Breaks”
The song has been sampled a bunch of times but it doesn’t get much better than when The Beastie Boys and Rick Rubin put it to use it on Rhymin’ & Stealin’ which featured on The Beasties 1986 classic long player debut Licensed To Ill.
I’m going to be forty very soon… Dammit, I’m ‘totes’ uncool. I spend more time watching ‘In The Night Garden’ with my twins than I do discovering new music. A big night out is a bottle or two of wine on the balcony. Hey, I still feel young! And when I start ‘looking back’ (…is this a thing you do only when you do start getting older? I don’t hear many cool 22 years olds talking about ‘remember the time when…’) every visual memory I have seems to be associated with music. Does the music make the memory? Here’s some of my life or musical memories.
This is my Dad when I was a baby.
He brewed his own beer and even attempted to drink yards of ales. Mum would work late some nights and on summer eveningswe would sit on the doorstep, with Led Zeppelin banging through the house, waiting for her to come home. We would play their untitled album, which is now referred to as Led Zeppelin IV (1971).
When I was seven we moved from London to Wales. We were (and still are!) a tightly knit family. We used to have great sunday lunches where we managed to dirty every single dish and plate available. Of course, there were no dishwashers then! Clearing up was a ‘family job’ and every boring job needs a singalong. The Beatle’s Sgt Peppers Lonely Heart Club Band was played and played, the lyrics were learnt and never forgotten. I even remember the sequence of notes that would play at the end when the album had finished but the vinyl kept spinning…around and around.
When I was about five my uncle bought me my first 7”. It was Abba’s Dancing Queen (1976). I remember the label on the vinyl; a vibrant orange. And I remember the track too, of course – but it’s probably the label that I remember most!
My next memory is from when I was 8 or 9….I can only work out the age I was from Googling the tracks that make the memory! I remember a kid’s ‘disco’ where we danced a circle.The songs that got us stamping were Bad Manner’s ‘Lip Up Fatty’ and Madness’ ‘One step Beyond’. The energy was excellent…At that age I don’t think we knew we were into ska, we just knew we were into fun!
The first album that me and my friends ‘shared together,’ and I mean shared in a very different way to what sharing music means now, I mean making memories and sharing time together with the music, was when I was about eleven. The album was Michael Jackson’s Thriller (1982.) We would spend Saturday afternoons in our lounge making up dance routines (yes!) to the title track of the album which now has sold over 100 Million copies.
Turning 13! Teenager here I come!The anthem of this time for me and so many teenagers with florescent socks, ‘jesus sandals’, rats tails and spiky hair which was blazoned across t-shirts across the UK wasFrankie goes to Hollywood’s Relax (1984).It remains as big a tune today as it was then.
My first romance was with a guy I met at a show locally, and then I went to visit him in Liverpool where he studied. At the age of sixteen I would catch the train from the middle of Wales and travel to the home of infamous Cavern Club. There were no iPods then, but I had my loyal Walkman, and on the three hour journey would love listening The Waterboys - The Whole of the Moon (1985). Music and anticipation of teenage love.
Around this time the album I was most proud of owning was New Order’s Substance (1987). I don’t know if I loved it so much because of the cool stark cover or because of the fantastic Blue Monday, which I used to blast out of my open bedroom window, looking out to the street below as people passed by. Either way the memories hold!
Another album from this era (when I was sixteen) which really takes me back is Terence Trent D’Arby’s: Introducing The Hard Line According To (1987). I played that album over and over. The memory I associate with this a new room! We were redecorating my bedroom and I temporarily located to a room in the attic whilst we changed my room from at twelve year olds white with red into a sixteen olds black! Yep mum and dad went for black - it had small blue flowers, but overall achieved my aim of black! For those that know the album you too can sing out ‘Get up outta of your rockin’ chair, grandma!’
Being brought up in a little town in the middle of Wales didn’t lead to a lot of gig opportunities. There was a record store, sometimes it was open, sometimes it was not. The guy who ran it was an ex- addict. Sometimes he would close the shop, head off to Thailand for some fun, and blow all his earnings. That’s when I found mail–order (man, how I would have loved the internet!!). I used to buy Q-Magazine with my hard earned wages and then chose one CD each month. I think the store was called Bee-Bees. I used to read all the Q reviews, select a CD that I hadn’t heard, buy it, and then wait the four precious days for it to arrive in the post. I discovered Bobby Bland and his album Dreamer this way – his soulful voice just grabbed me, and I loved the artwork! This must have been the first time it was released on CD as it was recorded in 1974!
1988 was The Nelson Mandela Tribute Concert. My mum and dad hired a van and drove me and my friends to Wembley. All day we stayed as close to the front as we could. I’m sure I couldn’t see the stage - I was too short then but I could see the screens and I could hear. The one artist I took away from the tribute gig was Tracy Chapman. She wasn’t meant to play, I’ve since learnt she was a stand in. Tracy simply performed acoustically on her guitar and grabbed my heart immediately. One of my first investments following that was her self titled debut album (1988) on Elektra.
Here she is to grab your heart too
Freedom commences…In 1989as soon as I was 17 I learnt to drive. I literally managed to pass my test 6 weeks after my birthday. With Mum and Dad’s car, a great big Volvo, a driving licence we weren’t confined to ‘Llandrindod Wells’ anymore. We could go places.
My parents must have been terrified, but at that age I was taking on the world ‘I’d be fine’, ‘Stop telling me what to do’, ‘I’m a grown up’, ‘I’ve passed my test’,‘I can drive’…yadder yadder yadder! So off we head to our first gig. Now, don’t look for something amazingly credible to be written, but it doesn’t matter…. we were going to a gig. We went to see The Alarm. If you’re Australian you are probably saying “Who?” They are a welsh band and we went to this small Welsh town. Six 16 and 17 year old girls headed to a small village hall with an audience of older, beer drinking blokes -class. My stand out track from The Alarm was Spirit of 76 from their album Strength (1987).
The summer of 1990 took me to the south of France on a working holiday while I waited for my A level results. We lived in tents next to the sea looking after 12-14 year olds on school trips of. I washed pots! Three months of sangria, pizzas and windsurfing! The soundtrack of that summer was Beloved’s Happiness and The Stone Roses’ self-titled album. To me these albums always remind me of sunshine.
My uni years were spent in Manchester in years when the term ‘Madchester’ was coined. The album that always gets me thinking of those days is The La’s and their self-titled albumwith another standout album cover. The track being ‘There She Goes’ all resting on a memory of a great gig at Manchester Academy.
And this takes me to the start of my working career…and I think it’s time to stop as my pleasurable journey is bringing more musical memories to me and my mixtape is growing too long!
And if you want to hear more of my musical memory tales, let me know by commenting below and I’ll return with the stories behind: Janis Joplin, Beyonce - Crazy in love, Nick Drake, Metallica, Stereophonic - Dakota, At the Drive In, Bjork’s debut album and I’ve had the time of my life to the Dirty Dancing Soundtrack!