Robert Plant Said Led Zeppelin Reunion ‘Too Heavy’

On December 10, 2007, Led Zeppelin made their grand exit from the stage, bringing down the roof of London’s O2 Arena and leaving 20,000 admiring fans in awe of their incredible talent. It is rightfully regarded as the ideal way to wrap up the history of Led Zeppelin, and it left fans demanding more. Apart from the barnstorming concert, Robert Plant couldn’t bring himself to enjoy the entire reunion, even if he thought it was a successful one overall.

When Led Zeppelin decided to play a special set as the main attraction at The Ahmet Ertegün Tribute Concert, it led to their final reunion. Ahmet Ertegün was a pivotal figure in Zeppelin’s career, a music executive, co-founder, and president of Atlantic Records, and a major contributor to the development of modern music. Ertegün was a person Zeppelin owed gratitude to for their extraordinary achievement; they reciprocated his trust in them. The return was met with enthusiasm, and the show’s popularity had never been higher.

A whopping 20 million individuals fought for the 20,000 golden tickets, setting a record for the “Highest Demand for Tickets for One Music Concert,” according to the 2009 Guinness World Records. Led Zeppelin had the chance to retire on a high note thanks to the performance. However, everyone involved aside from Robert Plant wanted to see this as the beginning of a formal reunion. His reluctance made it possible for the band to end things on a high note, and the brilliance that pervaded their London gig would have surely diminished if they had been touring the world and performing on stage every night.

For a single performance, Plant was able to reenter the intimidating Zeppelin setting, but he refused to do it for any longer. In an interview with Mojo in 2012, Plant candidly revealed why he didn’t think the show was entirely pleasurable and explained why the overwhelmingly good reception to it didn’t result in any further performances.

After the performance, Plant recalled that the intense backstage atmosphere was getting to him and that he needed to get away from it all. The vocalist for Led Zeppelin recalled well, “Twenty minutes after we finished, the Gallagher brothers were leaning on the door of my dressing room.” 

“One of them said: ‘You’re the real fucking thing, you are.’ I said: ‘I’ve known that all down the line but I think you need to go a little further round the corridor, next door on the left.’ And with that, I left quickly.”

He added, “I ended up in the Marathon pub in Camden, drank four bottles of Keo lager and half a bottle of vodka, then went to bed, Because I had to get away from it. I’d done it. I had to go. It was too heavy. Beautiful, but talk about examining your own mortality! Crazy.”

Later, he told Rolling Stone about another reunion. “I’ve gone so far somewhere else that I almost can’t relate to it, It’s a bit of a pain in the pisser to be honest. Who cares? I know people care, but think about it from my angle – soon, I’m going to need help crossing the street.”

In 2017, he reiterated, “You can’t ever really go back. It’s tough enough repeating yourself with something that’s a year old, never mind 49 years old. I’ve got to keep moving.”

Plant describes the evening as “beautiful,” but he’s not a nostalgic artist who fervently believes that some things are better left in the past. When the singer can, she would much prefer to keep going forward. Plant has developed a successful solo career that reflects the man he has become. Although he still has a particular place in his heart for Led Zeppelin, he is no longer the same guy.


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