Robert Plant has said that one of his iconic onstage gestures was inspired by his dread of not hitting the appropriate note while singing.
The comment was made by the Led Zeppelin icon on the most recent episode of his Digging Deep podcast, which is about his 2005 song “All the King’s Horses.”
When host Matt Everitt brought up the subject of vocalists arched their backs to “open the chest up,” Plant said, “I often did it like that because I didn’t really know whether I could hit the right peckin’ note!” He added that his thinking was “I’ll go as far away from the microphone just in case it’s not very good! Because you don’t know sometimes.”
He used the timeless “Immigrant Song” by Led Zeppelin as an example, suggesting it would be beneficial to be a bigger man, such as late opera singer Luciano Pavarotti, to be “in it” and “about it.”
“If I had to sing ‘Immigrant Song’ every day, I would probably be … like the Laughing Policeman,” he explained. “I’d be so big and probably fail so many times to get those notes up there in that call to arms. I’d be like Fatty Arbuckle, probably. It just depends on how you go about what you do.”
Listen to the podcast episode below:
Plant anticipated that his next tour with Alison Krauss will be a success.
“It’s going to be good with Alison because I can be quite restrained until there’ll be two or three or four points in the show where it’ll really kick off. When that happens, her ribcage opens up – when you push the button she lets it go. It’s great.”
In a broader conversation of how he used his voice in a variety of works, the 73-year-old stated, “If I haven’t got it right [by] now, you know, what am I doing?”