The Song Remains the Same (song)

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The Song Remains the Same
Appears on Houses of the Holy
Published by Superhype Music
Registration ASCAP 490310624
Release date 18 March 1973
Recorded May 1972 at
Stargroves with the Rolling Stones Mobile Studio.
Mixed at Olympic Studios, London.
Genre Hard rock, rock
Language English
Length 5 minutes 24 seconds
Composer Jimmy Page, Robert Plant
Label Atlantic Records
Producer Jimmy Page
Engineer Eddie Kramer

'The Song Remains the Same' is a song by the English rock group Led Zeppelin. It is the opening track from their 1973 album, Houses of the Holy.

Overview

The song features furious multi-tracked guitar from Jimmy Page, played on a Gibson EDS-1275 double neck 12-string during live shows,[1] and vocals from lead singer Robert Plant. This was Plant's tribute to world music, reflecting his belief that music is universal.

The song was originally an instrumental which was given the working title 'The Overture',[2] before Plant added lyrics to it, after which it temporarily came to be known as 'The Campaign' before the band settled on the title 'The Song Remains the Same'.[3] In an interview he gave to Guitar World magazine in 1993, Page discussed the song's construction:

It was originally going to be an instrumental -- an overture that led into 'The Rain Song'. But I guess Robert had different ideas. You know, 'This is pretty good, Better get some lyrics--quick!' [laughs]... I had all the beginning material together, and Robert suggested that we break down into half-time in the middle. After we figured out that we were going to break it down, the song came together in a day... I always had a cassette recorder around. That's how both 'The Song Remains the Same' and 'Stairway' came together -- from bits of taped ideas.[4]

Plant's vocal track was slightly speeded up for the album release.[5] Page played overdubs with a Telecaster on this recording, and also a Rickenbacker 12-string guitar.

'The Song Remains the Same' was featured on Led Zeppelin's 1976 concert film (and accompanying soundtrack), as part of lead singer Robert Plant's fantasy sequence. The title of the song was used as the title of both the film and the album.

Live performances

The band first performed this song live on their 1972 Japanese Tour.[6] At Led Zeppelin concerts from late 1972 through 1975, 'The Song Remains the Same' was followed (just as on the original album) by direct segue into 'The Rain Song'. For this live arrangement, Page employed his trademark Gibson EDS-1275 double-necked guitar. 'The Song Remains the Same' would be the opening song for the 1977 US tour and 1979 concerts, before being dropped from the set list for the 1980 European tour.[7] The song was also performed at Led Zeppelin's reunion show at the O2 Arena, London on 10 December 2007.

Credits

Personnel
  • Musicians:
    • Jimmy Page – electric guitar, pedal steel guitar, producer, remastering, digital remastering
    • Robert Plant – vocals
    • John Paul Jones – bass guitar
    • John Bonham - drums, percussion
  • Production:
    • Peter Grant – executive producer
    • Eddie Kramer – engineer
    • Keith Harwood - mixing
    • Joe Sidore - original CD mastering engineer (mid-1980s)
    • George Marino - remastered CD engineer (1990)

References

  1. Tolinski, Brad; Greg DiBenedetto (May 1993). "Inside the studio with Jimmy Page". Guitar World 14 (5). ISSN 1063-4231.
  2. Schulps, Dave (October 1977). "Jimmy Page: The Trouser Press Interview". Trouser Press 4 (22). ISSN 0164-1883.
  3. Lewis, Dave (2012). Led Zeppelin: From a Whisper to a Scream. London: Omnibus Press, 61. ISBN 978-1-78038-547-1. 
  4. Tolinski, Brad; Greg DiBenedetto (May 1993). "Inside the studio with Jimmy Page". Guitar World 14 (5). ISSN 1063-4231.
  5. Lewis, Dave (2012). Led Zeppelin: From a Whisper to a Scream. London: Omnibus Press, 61. ISBN 978-1-78038-547-1. 
  6. Lewis, Dave; Simon Pallett (2005). “Japan 1972”, Led Zeppelin: The Concert File, Revised. London: Omnibus Press, 183. ISBN 978-1-84449-659-4. OCLC 64083054. 
  7. Lewis, Dave (2012). Led Zeppelin: From a Whisper to a Scream. London: Omnibus Press, 61. ISBN 978-1-78038-547-1.