“If I didn’t I’d be a whore, and I’m never going to be that.”
Led Zeppelin’s been dropping releases left and right in preparation for their 50th Anniversary this September. But let’s admit it, the one thing we all want is a REUNION. It’s possible, right? If they just put their minds to it, they can pull it off especially since John Bonham’s son Jason has been touring with a Led Zeppelin tribute band for years now.
So, what’s the problem? Well obviously, it’s difficult to go on tour if the lead vocalist opts out. In a recent interview with Esquire’s Jeff Slate, Robert Plant sheds light on why he isn’t the least bit interested in having the gang back together.
Here’s what he has to say:
“All those projects, well, they’re going to do somebody some good somewhere, and that’s good. But you don’t even have to talk to me if all you want to know about is Led Zeppelin. Thirty-eight years ago [Zeppelin’s drummer] John Bonham passed away, that’s all I know. That’s it. That’s the story. You know, Led Zeppelin was an amazing, prolific fun factory for a period of time, but it was three amazing musicians and a singer living in the times. Those times. That’s not going to stop me doing what I’m doing now. So that’s a headline, or not a headline. It doesn’t matter to me.
If I didn’t I’d be a whore, and I’m never going to be that. I’m only a singer, and therefore I can get bored really quickly. And if I get bored really quickly, what am I doing nearly 70 years old being bored? No chance. So I move on all the time.
“Immigrant Song” had nothing to do with “That’s the Way.” “That’s the Way” had nothing to do with “The Crunge.” And that’s got nothing to do with “Heaven Knows” or “The Way I Feel.” Some of it has been an attempt at some kind of social commentary, and other stuff was a way to close the door to the dream factory. But I’ve still got a foot in that door, which is no small thing with the industry in the state it’s in, and I want to use that to play with words and sounds and to find exciting new ways to make music.
The fact of that is, in the last ten or fifteen years, my work has been really well received. And it’s very nice to see, and it makes me feel a bit that I’m in the right place, at least for some people, even if other people just don’t know about it. I mean, it is basically about opening the blinds. Look, how many thousands of people are there in the airports that I travel through, who are amazed that they see me, yet have no idea of what I’m doing? Not a fucking clue. That’s how it goes, and I’m fine with that, especially since the emergency departments of the geriatric wards are filled with people like me, still hanging on, because there was something else before.”
When told about how much money he could make with the reunion, Plant said:
“Speak for yourself! But what about time? Time! Time is the mighty rearranger. That’s what it’s all about. If it’s easy, and it’s not of a great deal of consequence, okay. But when you’re in your seventies? You have to be really careful about maybe putting a bit more time into playing bingo, and enjoying the time you have left. For me, my time has got to be filled with joy and endeavor and humor and power and absolute self-satisfaction. That’s not with Led Zeppelin. That’s doing what I’m doing right now, with this band, on this tour.
Look, if substance was of no value, or of no significance, then I wouldn’t be trying to do anything. But I believe it is, so this is what I do and all this talk about this or that or the other—you know, selling out the Mojave Desert—it so archaic. It’s just such a ridiculous criteria by which to be judged. When you’ve been there, like me, and you know how shatteringly insular everything becomes, it makes my relationship with this carnival I’m with currently priceless. But to try and make it something to fit in with the a symbol of success just for the hell of it, or to go back to try to relive the glory days, I don’t think that’s really where I’m at at this time in my life.
But as for what I’ll be doing in five years time, I haven’t got the answer. I haven’t got a clue.”
So maybe let’s all stop asking him the same question over and over again and just let him do his thing.