BBC Sessions (Led Zeppelin album)

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BBC Sessions
Line drawings of Led Zeppelin
Live album by Led Zeppelin
Released 11 November 1997 (1997-11-11)
16 September 2016 (2016-09-16)
Recorded March & June 1969, 1 April 1971,
London, England, UK
Genre Hard rock, heavy metal, blues rock, folk rock
Length 138:58
Label Atlantic
Producer Jimmy Page
Compiler Jimmy Page
Led Zeppelin chronology
The Complete Studio Recordings
(1993)
BBC Sessions
(1997)
The Best of Led Zeppelin
(1999/2000)
Singles from BBC Sessions
  1. "The Girl I Love She Got Long Black Wavy Hair"
    Released: 11 November 1997

BBC Sessions is a compilation album featuring studio sessions and a live concert recorded by English rock group Led Zeppelin for the BBC. It was released on 11 November 1997, by Atlantic Records. Disc one consists of material from four different 1969 BBC sessions. Disc two contains most of the 1 April 1971 concert from the Paris Theatre in London.[1] Disc three was only included in a limited run of album releases and features rare interviews from 1969, 1976/1977, and 1990.

Countless bootlegs of these recordings circulated for years before the official release. This release was widely welcomed by Led Zeppelin fans as it was the first live release since The Song Remains the Same in 1976. Others have criticized the decision to edit some of the songs and drop others that were recorded for the BBC. Most notable are one session from 1969 which included the unreleased song "Sunshine Woman", and about seven minutes of the "Whole Lotta Love" medley from 1971.[2] The album was re-released in September 2016 as The Complete BBC Sessions with further BBC recordings, including the "Sunshine Woman" session.

Professional ratings
Review scores
SourceRating
Allmusic4.5/5 stars[3]
Blender4/5 stars[4]
Robert Christgau(neither)[5]
Pitchfork Media8.9/10[6]

Track listing[edit]

Standard edition[edit]

Disc one
No.TitleWriter(s)Length
1."You Shook Me"Willie Dixon, J. B. Lenoir5:14
2."I Can't Quit You Baby"Dixon4:22
3."Communication Breakdown"John Bonham, John Paul Jones, Jimmy Page3:12
4."Dazed and Confused"Page, inspired by Jake Holmes6:39
5."The Girl I Love She Got Long Black Wavy Hair"Bonham, Dixon, Sleepy John Estes, Robert Johnson, Jones, Page, Robert Plant3:00
6."What Is and What Should Never Be"Page, Plant4:20
7."Communication Breakdown"Bonham, Jones, Page2:40
8."Travelling Riverside Blues"Johnson, Page, Plant5:12
9."Whole Lotta Love"Bonham, Dixon, Jones, Page, Plant6:09
10."Somethin' Else"Bobby Cochran, Sharon Sheeley2:06
11."Communication Breakdown"Bonham, Jones, Page3:05
12."I Can't Quit You Baby"Dixon6:21
13."You Shook Me"Dixon, Lenoir10:19
14."How Many More Times"Bonham, Jones, Page11:51
Disc two
No.TitleWriter(s)Length
1."Immigrant Song"Page, Plant3:20
2."Heartbreaker"Bonham, Jones, Page, Plant5:16
3."Since I've Been Loving You"Jones, Page, Plant6:56
4."Black Dog"Jones, Page, Plant5:17
5."Dazed and Confused"Page, inspired by Holmes18:36
6."Stairway to Heaven"Page, Plant8:49
7."Going to California"Page, Plant3:54
8."That's the Way"Page, Plant5:43
9."Whole Lotta Love"/"Boogie Chillun'"/"Fixin' to Die"/"That's Alright Mama"/"A Mess of Blues"Bonham, Jones, Page, Plant/John Lee Hooker/Bukka White/Arthur Crudup/Doc Pomus, Mort Shuman13:45
10."Thank You"Page, Plant6:37

The Complete Sessions edition – bonus disc[edit]

Nine recordings from a conglomerate of 1969 sessions, including "Dazed and Confused", "I Can't Quit You Baby", "You Shook Me" and "Sunshine Woman" along with two versions of both "Communication Breakdown" and "What Is and What Should Never Be" (recorded two years apart) were released on 16 September 2016, comprising a third disc of the previously two-disc BBC Sessions compilation. Eight of the nine songs were previously unreleased, "White Summer" was previously released in 1990 on the Led Zeppelin Boxed Set and the expanded 1993 reissue of Coda from The Complete Studio Recordings and Led Zeppelin Definitive Collection (2008) box sets. The lost March 1969 three-song session – by all accounts erased from its master tapes – appears on the disc sourced from a reputed AM radio recording. This session contains the oft-bootlegged, boogieing blues rocker "Sunshine Woman," a track that Zeppelin never formally released, and renditions of Willie Dixon's "I Can't Quit You Baby" and "You Shook Me."

Disc three
No.TitleWriter(s)Length
1."Communication Breakdown"Bonham, Jones, Page3:00
2."What Is and What Should Never Be"Page, Plant4:14
3."Dazed and Confused"Page, inspired by Holmes11:08
4."White Summer"Page8:22
5."What Is and What Should Never Be"Page, Plant4:44
6."Communication Breakdown"Bonham, Jones, Page4:54
7."I Can't Quit You Baby"Dixon5:26
8."You Shook Me"Dixon, Lenoir4:10
9."Sunshine Woman"Bonham, Dixon, Johnson, Jones, Plant, Page3:06

Recording information[edit]

Session one
John Peel's Top Gear
  • Venue: Playhouse Theatre, Northumberland Avenue, London
  • Recording date: Monday 3 March 1969
  • Original broadcast: Sunday 23 March 1969 (in a show with sessions from Free, the Moody Blues and Deep Purple)
  • Tracks: "Communication Breakdown" (disc 3, track 1), "Dazed and Confused" (disc 1, track 4), "You Shook Me" (disc 1, track 1), "I Can't Quit You Baby" (disc 1, track 2).
  • Producer: Bernie Andrews
  • Engineer: Pete Ritzema
  • Tape operator: Bob Conduct
Session two
Alexis Korner's Rhythm and Blues, (BBC World Service)
  • Venue: Maida Vale Studio 4, Delaware Road, London
  • Recording date: Wednesday 19 March 1969
  • Original broadcast: Monday 14 April 1969
  • Tracks: "Sunshine Woman" (disc 3, track 9), "I Can't Quit You Baby" (disc 3, track 7), "You Shook Me" (disc 3, track 8). The session was wiped or lost by the BBC, although recordings survive on bootlegs. The show was re-run later in 1969, adding the recording of "What Is And What Should Never Be" from the June 16 session.
  • Producer: Jeff Griffin
Session three
Chris Grant's Tasty Pop Sundae (originally commissioned for Dave Symond's Symonds On Sunday show)
  • Venue: Aeolian Hall studio 2, Bond Street, London
  • Recording Date: Monday 16 June 1969
  • Original Broadcast: Sunday 22 June 1969
  • Tracks: "The Girl I Love She Got Long Black Wavy Hair" (disc 1, track 5), "Communication Breakdown" (disc 1, track 3), "Somethin' Else" (disc 1, track 10), "What Is and What Should Never Be" (disc 3, track 2).
  • Producer: Paul Williams
Session four
John Peel's Top Gear (Double recording session)
  • Venue: Maida Vale studio 4, Delaware Road, London
  • Recording date: Tuesday 24 June 1969
  • Original broadcast: Sunday 29 June 1969
  • Tracks: "Whole Lotta Love" (disc 1, track 9), "Communication Breakdown" (disc 1, track 7), "What Is and What Should Never Be" (disc 1, track 6), "Travelling Riverside Blues" (disc 1, track 8). "Travelling Riverside Blues" had previously been released on the Led Zeppelin box set and expanded versions of Coda.
  • Producer: John Walters
  • Engineer: Tony Wilson
Session five
One Night Stand
  • Venue: Playhouse Theatre
  • Recording date: Friday 27 June 1969
  • Original broadcast: Sunday 10 August 1969
  • Tracks: "Communication Breakdown" (disc 1, track 11), "I Can't Quit You Baby" (disc 1, track 12), "Dazed and Confused" (disc 3, track 3), "White Summer" (disc 3, track 4), "You Shook Me" (disc 1, track 13), "How Many More Times" (disc 1, track 14). "White Summer" had previously been released as "White Summer/Black Mountain Side" on the Led Zeppelin box set and expanded versions of Coda, but with 15 seconds cut out.
Session six
In Concert (Emcee John Peel)
  • Venue: Paris Theatre, Lower Regent Street, London
  • Recording date: Thursday 1 April 1971
  • Original broadcast: Sunday 4 April 1971
  • Tracks: "Immigrant Song", "Heartbreaker", "Since I've Been Loving You", "Black Dog", "Dazed and Confused", "Stairway to Heaven", "Going to California", "That's the Way" (disc 2, tracks 1–8), "What Is and What Should Never Be" (disc 3, track 5), "Whole Lotta Love" (medley, disc 2, track 9), "Thank You" (disc 2, track 10), "Communication Breakdown" (disc 3, track 6). The "Whole Lotta Love" medley has had "For What It's Worth", "Trucking Little Mama" and "Honey Bee" edited out, shortening the medley by seven minutes.
  • Producer: Jeff Griffin
  • Engineer: Tony Wilson

Personnel[edit]

Led Zeppelin

Additional personnel

Chart positions[edit]

Chart (1997) Peak position
Japanese Albums Chart[7] 10
French Albums Chart[8] 38
New Zealand RIANZ Top 50 Albums Chart[9] 26
Finnish Albums Chart[10] 28
Swedish Albums Chart[11] 50
UK Albums Chart[12] 23
Norwegian Albums Chart[13] 36
US Billboard The 200 Albums Chart[14] 12
Canadian RPM Top 100 Chart[15] 30
Re-release
Chart (2016) Peak
position
Australian Albums (ARIA)[16] 34
Austrian Albums (Ö3 Austria)[17] 32
Belgian Albums (Ultratop Flanders)[18] 15
Belgian Albums (Ultratop Wallonia)[19] 12
Canadian Albums (Billboard)[20] 32
Dutch Albums (MegaCharts)[21] 41
German Albums (Offizielle Top 100)[22] 7
Hungarian Albums (MAHASZ)[23] 11
Irish Albums (IRMA)[24] 93
Italian Albums (FIMI)[25] 14
Japanese Albums (Oricon)[26] 3
New Zealand Albums (RMNZ)[27] 21
Portuguese Albums (AFP)[28] 18
Scottish Albums (OCC)[29] 6
Spanish Albums (PROMUSICAE)[30] 28
Swiss Albums (Schweizer Hitparade)[31] 18
UK Albums (OCC)[32] 3
US Billboard 200[33] 21

Certifications[edit]

Region Certification Certified units/Sales
United Kingdom (BPI)[34] Silver 60,000^
United States (RIAA)[35] 2× Platinum 2,000,000^

^shipments figures based on certification alone

Release history[edit]

Region Date Label Format Catalog #
United States 11 November 1997 Atlantic Records 4 LP 83061-1
2 Compact Disc 83061-2
2 Cassette 83061-4
3 Compact Disc 83074-2
United Kingdom 2 Compact disc 7567-83061-2
Japan WEA Japan 2 Compact disc 11756-7

References[edit]

  1. ^ Lewis, Dave (2003). "Led Zeppelin at the BBC". Led Zeppelin: The 'Tight but Loose' Files': Celebration II (1st ed.). London: Omnibus Press. p. 8. ISBN 1-84449-056-4. 
  2. ^ Lewis, Dave (2004). "BBC Sessions". Led Zeppelin: The Complete Guide to Their Music (1st ed.). London: Omnibus Press. p. 76. ISBN 1-84449-141-2. 
  3. ^ BBC Sessions at AllMusic
  4. ^ [1] Archived November 22, 2005, at the Wayback Machine.
  5. ^ Christgau, Robert. "Robert Christgau: CG: led zeppelin". robertchristgau.com. Retrieved 8 August 2011. 
  6. ^ [2] Archived February 12, 2008, at the Wayback Machine.
  7. ^ "Top 100 Albums – 15 November 1998". Oricon. Archived from the original on 18 January 2009. Retrieved 2009-01-19. 
  8. ^ "Top 200 Albums – 22 November 1997". lescharts.com. Archived from the original on 11 February 2009. Retrieved 2009-01-19. 
  9. ^ "Top 50 Albums – 23 November 1997". RIANZ. Archived from the original on 12 February 2009. Retrieved 2009-01-17. 
  10. ^ "Top 40 Albums – 23 November 1997". finnishcharts.com. Archived from the original on 4 February 2009. Retrieved 2009-01-19. 
  11. ^ "Top 100 Albums – 28 November 1997". swedishcharts.com. Archived from the original on 10 February 2009. Retrieved 2009-01-19. 
  12. ^ Warwick, Neil (2004). "Led Zeppelin – 29 November 1997". The Complete Book of the British Charts (3rd ed.). London: Omnibus Press. p. 627. ISBN 1-84449-058-0. 
  13. ^ "Top 40 Albums – 30 November 1997". norwegiancharts.com. Archived from the original on 6 February 2009. Retrieved 2009-01-19. 
  14. ^ "The 200 Chart – 6 December 1997". Billboard. Archived from the original on 3 February 2009. Retrieved 2009-01-17. 
  15. ^ "RPM Albums Chart – 1 December 1997". RPM. Archived from the original on 4 February 2009. Retrieved 2009-01-17. 
  16. ^ "Australiancharts.com – Led Zeppelin – The Complete BBC Sessions". Hung Medien. Retrieved 28 September 2016.
  17. ^ "Austriancharts.at – Led Zeppelin – The Complete BBC Sessions" (in German). Hung Medien. Retrieved 28 September 2016.
  18. ^ "Ultratop.be – Led Zeppelin – The Complete BBC Sessions" (in Dutch). Hung Medien. Retrieved 23 September 2016.
  19. ^ "Ultratop.be – Led Zeppelin – The Complete BBC Sessions" (in French). Hung Medien. Retrieved 23 September 2016.
  20. ^ "Led Zeppelin Chart History (Canadian Albums)". Billboard. Retrieved 27 September 2016.
  21. ^ "Dutchcharts.nl – Led Zeppelin – The Complete BBC Sessions" (in Dutch). Hung Medien. Retrieved 23 September 2016.
  22. ^ "Offiziellecharts.de – Led Zeppelin – The Complete BBC Sessions" (in German). GfK Entertainment Charts. Retrieved 23 September 2016.
  23. ^ "Top 40 album DVD és válogatáslemez-lista – 2016. 38. hét" (in Hungarian). MAHASZ. Retrieved 1 October 2016.
  24. ^ "GFK Chart-Track Albums: Week 38, 2016". Chart-Track. IRMA. Retrieved 23 September 2016.
  25. ^ "Italiancharts.com – Led Zeppelin – The Complete BBC Sessions". Hung Medien. Retrieved 24 September 2016.
  26. ^ "Weekly Foreign Albums Chart". oricn ME inc. 2016-09-26. Retrieved 25 September 2016. 
  27. ^ "Charts.org.nz – Led Zeppelin – The Complete BBC Sessions". Hung Medien. Retrieved 23 September 2016.
  28. ^ "Portuguesecharts.com – Led Zeppelin – The Complete BBC Sessions". Hung Medien. Retrieved 30 September 2016.
  29. ^ "Official Scottish Albums Chart Top 100". Official Charts Company. Retrieved 24 September 2016.
  30. ^ "TOP 100 ALBUMES — SEMANA 38: del 16.09.2016 al 22.09.2016" (in Spanish). Productores de Música de España. Retrieved 29 September 2016. 
  31. ^ "Swisscharts.com – Led Zeppelin – The Complete BBC Sessions". Hung Medien. Retrieved 28 September 2016.
  32. ^ "Official Albums Chart Top 100". Official Charts Company. Retrieved 24 September 2016.
  33. ^ "Led Zeppelin Chart History (Billboard 200)". Billboard. Retrieved 27 September 2016.
  34. ^ "British album certifications – Led Zeppelin – BBC Sessions". British Phonographic Industry.  Select albums in the Format field. Select Silver in the Certification field. Enter BBC Sessions in the search field and then press Enter.
  35. ^ "American album certifications – Led Zeppelin – BBC Sessions". Recording Industry Association of America.  If necessary, click Advanced, then click Format, then select Album, then click SEARCH. 

External links[edit]