Mike Millard

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Mike Millard, nicknamed "Mike The Mic" was an avid concert taper in the 1970s and 1980s, recording mostly Led Zeppelin, Pink Floyd and The Rolling Stones concerts in California, especially at the Los Angeles Forum.[1] He taped virtually every show at the Forum from 1974 to 1980. Many of his recordings found their way into the hands of bootleggers who sold Millard's work to fans.

Starting with a basic mono recorder in 1974, Millard upgraded to a Nakamichi stereo recorder with AKG Acoustics microphones for the 1975 Led Zeppelin shows in the area. He often used a wheelchair to conceal his equipment, pretending to be disabled.[2] Unlike most 1970s audience bootlegs, Millard's recordings are noted for their great sound quality, and are to this day considered some of the finest audio bootlegs available.

Millard's recording of the Led Zeppelin concert on June 21, 1977 at the Forum (allegedly taped from row number six) was released under the title Listen To This Eddie, and remains one of the best-known Led Zeppelin bootlegs. His recording of the opening number from the concert, "The Song Remains The Same", was included in the promos menu of the Led Zeppelin DVD. Millard recorded all of the Rolling Stones 1975 shows at the LA Forum, and his recording of the Sunday, June 13, 1975 show (titled 'LA Friday') has become one of the most widely spread recordings of a Rolling Stones concert.

Millard was never behind the sale of bootlegs and was openly against the illegal sale of his recordings - like many audience tapers today. He was notorious for "marking" copies of his tapes so that if one of his recordings turned up for sale on LP or CD, he would be able to tell which person he had traded it to. He kept a very detailed logbook of his marked recordings and who they were distributed to. "Unmarked" copies of Mike's recordings are very scarce. Recently, several unmarked 1st generation copies of his Led Zeppelin recordings surfaced in trading circles, a truly historic moment for collectors around the world.

Millard allegedly suffered from severe depression, and committed suicide in 1990.[3]

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ Led Zeppelin: A Celebration 2, Dave Lewis and John Paul Jones, Omnibus Press, 2003 (ISBN 1844490564), p. 49.
  2. ^ Cook, James. "The Tragic Tale of a Legendary Concert Taper". KernelMag.com. Retrieved 2 November 2013. 
  3. ^ "Tapers".