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what i watched last week

music friday: led zeppelin, “black dog”

This week's song is inspired by a video I saw earlier in the week. I don't remember who had it first; I have a feeling it's viral and everyone has already seen it except me. It's so good, though, I don't mind being a johnny-come-lately.

“Black Dog” was the lead track from Led Zeppelin IV (or whatever you want to call it), arguably the greatest album from the greatest metal band ever. Of course, being Led Zeppelin, there’s a lot more than metal going on, with their folk roots showing and their blues spooky and magnificent. I’m guilty of ascribing all of the monster Zep riffs to Jimmy Page, who could seemingly pull them out of his ass at will, but apparently it was John Paul Jones who came up with this one. In true Zeppelinese, Jones said the intricate rhythms were intended to make the song impossible to dance to.

Led Zeppelin have been gone for decades, now, yet they retain the ability to inspire an audience. This video shows what I mean … the vast majority of people here were likely not born when Led Zeppelin broke up:

Here is the band itself, in a live version:

And here is the original … somewhat unusually for a Led Zeppelin song, theirs is indeed the original (although fans of Fleetwood Mac’s “Oh Well” will find this a bit familiar):

Finally, this is audio only … Robert Plant and Alison Krauss cover “Black Dog” while touring behind their popular album: