Today is Jimmy Page's 69th birthday. The rock and roll legend, one-time '60s London studio ace, and mastermind behind Led Zeppelin still can’t be beat as evidenced in the recent Zeppelin DVD, Celebration Day
. His fluid, biting, and irresistible
riffs are part of our everyday life. He's got it all--the looks, the sound, and even a bit of controversy. (Just ask the Kinks.)
For many, the Les Paul is not Les' iconic axe, it's Jimmy's
. Lately he's a bit bummed out that he can't get Robert Plant to come back out with Led Zeppelin once more. But rock has changed and even Jimmy would admit that hitting the road would be very different today than it was in the '70s (in more ways than one).
But you can't fault him for missing the old days. Jimmy Page was once the
man-about-town in the London '60s studio scene. You can hear him on The Who's "I Can't Explain," the Nashville Teens' "Tobacco Road," Them's "Baby, Please Don't Go," and Petula Clark's "Downtown," to name only a few. More than half of everything recorded in England in the ‘60s that made the pop charts had Jimmy Page playing guitar. And that was only the beginning.
Here's the young man on an archtop (wishing it was an Epiphone Broadway)
, getting some tv time during the skiffle craze. In just a few short years, Page would have the audience dazed and confused. There's something very charming about English television from this time. No one had any idea what was coming next. Except, perhaps, for the boy with the cool haircut who already knew he wants to do "biological research" when he gets out of school. Happy Birthday, Jimmy!