Jeff Lybarger's Song OF The Day

Subj: Song of the day XLIII
Date: 97-03-26 14:15:07 EST
From: OUTRIDERJL@aol.com (Jeff Lybarger)
Sender: zeppelin-l@LISTSERV.ACSU.BUFFALO.EDU (DIGITAL GRAFFITI)
Reply-to: OUTRIDERJL@aol.com
To: ZEPPELIN-L@LISTSERV.ACSU.BUFFALO.EDU

Decisions, decisions, decisions. I gotta tell ya, sometimes I just don't know, I don't know, which way to go. Today's song had me asking the question, this version, or that version, this version, or that version, back and forth until I just couldn't take it no more. So I had to make an executive decision here at the Outrider offices, go with my heart, and pick the version that never fails to kick me right in the butt. So from the "Coda" album, track three, clocking in at 4:16, "I Can't Quit You Baby".

       "I can't, quit you babe,
        (Big crash as Bonzo, Jonsey and Page enter)
        Woman I think I'm gonna put you down, for a little while...
        I can't quit you babe,
        I, I, I, think I'm gonna put you down for a while...

        I said you messed up my happy heart,
        (awesome Page lick here)
        made me mistreat my, my one and only, only, only child..."

And so we glimpse the power of Led Zeppelin live. Some confusion has surfaced over this track, is it a sound check or from the actual show? Sounds like a sound check to me, but who really cares, the power, the Hammer of the Gods, is indeed present and accounted for on this one.

I'll take this one over the version from the first album anyday. Bonzo is, to put it mildly, downright amazing, Jonsey's bass is very clear, and Jimmy sounds like a man on fire, licks blazing off his fingers and flying across the room with only one goal in mind: To blow us away. Robert's voice is quite good here, shifting from the intense highs, to the very cool low parts, always sounding so confident and full of sexual bravado.

      "You build my hope's so high,
        baby then you let me down so low...
        You- ahhhhh ahhhhh, you build my hope's so high,
        the you let me down, you let me down, you let me down so low...
        Don't you realize sweet baby, woman I don't know,
        I don't know which way to go..."

Jimmy takes off on one of his patented solo's, letting himself become engulfed in the moment. Starting off slow and B.B Kingish, then building up into a frenzy, racing across the fretboard, challenging the band to keep pace. Bonzo is right there with him, with Jonsey holding things down on the low end, and man, who could ask for anything more than this? Zeppelin burning through a blues song, and each one in the band playing his heart out.

This has to be one of the greatest teases of all time. Imagine a full album from the very early days, released in excellent sound quality, and burning with this intensity. Come on Robert, let Jimmy do it.

It's songs like this, when I listen to them on the first few tours that almost makes me forget about anything after the second album. Forget all the "huge" songs and albums that followed, give me the Led Zeppelin from 1968-1970, the young, hungry band that wailed on the blooze.

The ending is another Bonzo showcase, as he takes a short solo on the outro. God almighty, the way this man could play. Zeppelin performed this from the beginning in live settings. All the way up to 1970 on the fifth tour in America. In 1972-1973 they used it as a medley with "Whole Lotta Love" in Japan, the UK and Europe. A month before the Atlantic 40th anniversary party, on April 17, 1988, Jimmy joined Robert's solo band for a quick run through of this, then the remaining members, along with Jason Bonham, rehearsed it for the Atlantic reunion, but alas, they didn't play it that night. Reports from the rehearsal the night prior to the 40th party indicated they SMOKED on this. On April 17, 1994, at the Alexis Korner benefit in Buxton, Jimmy, Robert, Charlie Jones and Michael Lee ran through this as well, drawing a huge ovation from those in attendance.

"I Can't Quit You" was written by Willie Dixon, but Zeppelin performed this with such intensity and fire, that they really made it their song. Whatever version you prefer, first album, "Coda", or one of the many boots available, one thing is certain, it will rock your world. Till we meet again...

Rock on,

Jeff

back to the SotD Home Page