Led Zeppelin North American Tour 1972

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North America 1972
Concert by Led Zeppelin
Poster for Led Zeppelin's concerts at San Diego, used to help promote its 1972 North American tour
Associated album Led Zeppelin IV
Start date 27 May 1972
End date 28 June 1972
Legs 1
Number of shows 19 (including two European warm-up shows)
Led Zeppelin concert chronology

Led Zeppelin's 1972 North American Tour was the eighth concert tour of North America by the English rock band. The tour was divided into two legs, with performances commencing on 27 May and concluding on 28 June 1972. It included two warm-up shows in Europe.


Guitarist Jimmy Page considers Led Zeppelin at this point to have been at their artistic peak.[1] However, despite selling out their concerts, the tour had the lowest profile of all of the band's eleven North American concert tours, being vastly overshadowed by the Rolling Stones' tour of the same period, much to the annoyance of Led Zeppelin.[2][3][4] In order to prevent this from happening again, the band's manager, Peter Grant, decided to hire PR consultants to help promote subsequent tours.

During this concert stint the band stopped at New York City to mix tracks that had been recorded at Olympic Studios in London the previous month, for their forthcoming fifth album.[2]

According to Led Zeppelin archivists Dave Lewis and Simon Pallett, it was at around this period in time that Grant began to implement the unprecedented policy of asking concert promoters for 90% of all gate receipts:

The group's stature was such that he was able to pull off this major swing with little resistance from the agents and promoters. Any deal with Led Zeppelin was better than no deal at all, they decided. As a consequence Led Zeppelin's fortune began to pile up at an even faster rate [than before].[2]

For this tour, and all of Led Zeppelin's subsequent American tours, the band hired Dallas-based company Showco to provide its lighting and sound.[5]


Like many other Led Zeppelin concert tours, several of the concerts performed by the band on this tour were recorded by fans as unofficial bootlegs. Some of these were subsequently released on bootleg titles such as Burn Like a Candle. Soundboard recordings from two of the concerts from this tour, at the L.A. Forum on 25 June and the Long Beach Arena on 27 June respectively, were remastered by Page and officially released on the album How the West Was Won.

No official live footage of the band was filmed during this tour. In an interview Page gave to The Times newspaper in 2010, when asked which performances from Led Zeppelin's career stand out to him now, he made reference to the tour but acknowledged the lack of visual recordings:

I think what we did on ... How the West was Won — that 1972 gig — is pretty much a testament of how good it was. It would have been nice to have had a little more visual recordings, but there you go. That's the conundrum of Led Zeppelin![6]

Tour set list[edit]

This was the first tour in which Led Zeppelin used songs from their upcoming album Houses of the Holy ("Over the Hills and Far Away", "Dancing Days", and "The Ocean"). This was also the last concert tour on which Led Zeppelin included an acoustic section until it was revived in 1975 for their Earls Court performances. John Bonham sang co-lead vocals with Robert Plant during the song Bron-Y-Aur Stomp. The decision to drop the acoustic set was perhaps made because their live concerts were regularly extending into three hour long marathons (and sometimes up to four and a half hours), which were becoming taxing on all four band members.[2][3]

The fairly typical set list for the tour was:

  1. "LA Drone" (Page, Jones) (15 June to 28 June)
  2. "Immigrant Song" (Page, Plant)
  3. "Heartbreaker" (Bonham, Page, Plant)
  4. "Celebration Day" (Page, Plant, Jones) (on 27 May and 9 June only)
  5. "Out on the Tiles" (intro) (Page, Plant, Bonham) / "Black Dog" (Page, Plant, Jones)
  6. "Over the Hills and Far Away" (Page, Plant) (only on 19 June, 25 June, 27 June, and 28 June)
  7. "Since I've Been Loving You" (Page, Plant, Jones)
  8. "Stairway to Heaven" (Page, Plant)
  9. "Going to California" (Page, Plant)
  10. "Black Country Woman" (Page, Plant) (only on 19 June)
  11. "That's the Way" (Page, Plant)
  12. "Tangerine" (Page)
  13. "Bron-Y-Aur Stomp" (Page, Plant, Jones)
  14. "Dazed and Confused" (Page)
  15. "What Is and What Should Never Be" (Page, Plant)
  16. "Dancing Days" (Page, Plant) (only on 19 June, 25 June, 27 June, and 28 June)
  17. "Moby Dick" (Bonham)
  18. "Whole Lotta Love" (Bonham, Dixon, Jones, Page, Plant)

Encores (variations of the following list):

Tour dates[edit]

Date City Country Venue
European warm-up shows
27 May 1972 Amsterdam Netherlands Oude Rai
28 May 1972 Brussels Belgium Forest National
North America
6 June 1972 Detroit United States Cobo Hall
7 June 1972 Montreal Canada Montreal Forum
8 June 1972 Boston United States Boston Garden
9 June 1972 Charlotte Charlotte Coliseum
10 June 1972 Buffalo Buffalo Memorial Auditorium
11 June 1972 Baltimore Baltimore Civic Center
13 June 1972 Philadelphia The Spectrum
14 June 1972 Long Island, New York City Nassau Coliseum
15 June 1972
17 June 1972 Portland Memorial Coliseum
18 June 1972 Seattle Seattle Center Coliseum
19 June 1972
21 June 1972 Denver Denver Coliseum
22 June 1972 San Bernardino Swing Auditorium
23 June 1972 San Diego San Diego Sports Arena
25 June 1972 Inglewood The Forum
27 June 1972 Long Beach Long Beach Arena
28 June 1972 Tucson Tucson Community Center

Note: The 18 June show was moved to Seattle from the planned location in Vancouver at the last minute due to fans rioting.

External links[edit]


  • Lewis, Dave and Pallett, Simon (1997) Led Zeppelin: The Concert File, London: Omnibus Press. ISBN 0-7119-5307-4.
  1. ^ How the West Was Won liner notes
  2. ^ a b c d Lewis, Dave and Pallett, Simon (1997) Led Zeppelin: The Concert File, London: Omnibus Press. ISBN 0-7119-5307-4, pp. 76-77.
  3. ^ a b Luis Rey (1997) Led Zeppelin Live: An Illustrated Exploration of Underground Tapes, Ontario: The Hot Wacks Press, p. 186.
  4. ^ Interview with Jimmy Page and Robert Plant, January 1975
  5. ^ Lewis, Dave (2003). Led Zeppelin: The Tight But Loose' Files: Celebration II (1st ed.). London: Omnibus Press. p. 32. ISBN 1-84449-056-4. 
  6. ^ James Jackson, "Jimmy Page on Led Zeppelin IV, the band's peak and their reunion, The Times, January 8, 2010 .