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The Voice...

A few thoughts on Robert Plant as I listen to his pre-Zeppelin work 
as chronicled on Hugh Jones' 'Before The Flight' collection:

A.) His voice _was_ in top form in the mid-sixties (CBS Records 
days). Although his emulation of the "Tom Jones" style would have 
resulted in a short career in my opinion. Nice try, but the voice 
didn't quite fit the genre. Close, but no cigar.

B.) I can see why Jimmy and company turned their attention 
towards Plant when Page was forming the Zeppelin. His 'Band Of 
Joy' voice was exceptional, although the band's formula was a dime 
a dozen at the time. Nothing remarkable about the group. Even the 
Mighty Bonzo was buried in their subdued mix. His range was the 
perfect foil for Page's guitar work. As has been said before, Page 
was looking for someone that could ape his guitar licks on vocals. 
Check out the "call and response" segments on most any '69 
show, you'll see what I mean.

C.) The Alexis Korner sessions: This is where Robert reveals his 
blues roots. For Rob to have been so young, his voice bears 
maturity that was lacking in other artists' similar work. Definitely an 
attention-getter where Page's ambitions for what was to become 
Led Zeppelin was concerned. Raw and powerful, this is the voice 
that would change the direction of blues-based rock. The Korner 
sessions was as close to the Zeppelin sound (vocal-wise) as it ever 
got for him as a session singer or solo artist.

Enough for now...