Jimmy Page is without doubt one of the most influential guitarist of our time. Jimmy Page went from a bright eyed, young Skiffle lad to a founding member of Led Zeppelin, Page is a prolific songwriter and musician.
Born in England, Page haphazardly discovered the guitar as an adolescent and according to sources is largely, self taught. Like many young musicians of this time, he was inspired by the blues and rock-n-roll music being imported from America. Page’s first televised appearance was in 1957 playing in a Skiffle group.
Page would often jam with other icons but then only other local musicians like Jeff Beck and Eric Clapton. He eventually would go on to be a session musician and work on songs for other artists more notably, The Who, The Kinks, The Rolling Stones, Marianne Faithfull and Van Morrison. Some of these recordings were documented, some not and some controversial.
In 1964 and 1965, Page was offered Eric Clapton’s spot in The Yardbirds. He declined both times and didn’t actually join the band until 1966. The band eventually had some line-up drop outs. Page decided to recruit Robert Plant, John Bonham and John Paul Jones and out of the ashes of the failing Yardbirds rose Led Zeppelin.
Led Zeppelin created classic rock radio standards such as Dazed and Confused, Whole Lotta Love, Immigrant Song, Black Dog, and Stairway to Heaven.
The music produced, composed and played by Page during his Led Zeppelin days continues to be the archetype for future rock, punk and metal bands. His techniques in downstroke guitar riffs, innovative dual guitar harmony, mesmerising solos and on-stage theatrics are some of the most quoted inspirations. According to a 2005 interview, Page estimated that he owned over 1500 guitars but he is most well-known for playing a double headed Gibson and Les Pauls. Gibson would go on to release signature Jimmy Page models.
After the death of Bonham, Led Zeppelin broke up. Page continued to be active within the music industry including forming a supergroup with Yes bassist, Chris Squire called XYZ, featuring on a Honeydripper’s recording, film soundtracks and session work. In 1988, he released a solo album called Outrider. In the 90s, he successfully collaborated with Whitesnake front man, David Coverdale. In 1994, he reunited with Plant again for a widely acclaimed MTV Unplugged session.
Four years later, a US rapper, Puff Daddy sampled Kashmir for his hit, Come with Me which featured on the Godzilla soundtrack. Page played a cameo role in the video to support the single.
Page has carried on in this vain by playing live with modern acts and re-mastering Led Zeppelin material.
Die-hard (and not so die-hard) fans were in awe and admiration when Page joined the surviving Led Zeppelin members for a reunion concert in 2007. The reunion caused an international stir and media frenzy.
This information is provided as a brief overview and not as a definitive guide, there are other sources on the net for that. If however you have a story or information that is not generally known we would love to hear from you. Content@rokpool.com