Jimmy Page’s 10 Best Songs With and Without Led Zeppelin

As a musician, Jimmy Page has a mouth-watering pedigree. Whether it’s the many 1960s hits he played on as a session musician, his work in Led Zeppelin, or his work after the band died in 1980, Jimmy Page has long proven that he is one of the best guitarists of all time. .

Skillful and emotional, it is no coincidence that he is hailed as the master of “power-riffing”. In Led Zeppelin, his gargantuan licks helped bring the rock down a much heavier, darker road, notably aiding in the establishment of metal in the process.

This is indicative of the kind of impact Jimmy Page has had on culture. Without his work, the contemporary music scene would look and sound completely different, an amazing and multi-faceted point when you stop to think about it for a moment. Everyone from Rage Against the Machine to Måneskin owes a lot to Page, and the fact that his “Kashmir” riff has already been sampled by Puff Daddy on “Come With Me” shows just how impactful his work is. has been considerable.

Page is perhaps the only person in the world who can boast of having played with the Rolling Stones, Led Zeppelin, Jeff Beck and Van Morrison. His CV is about as sacred as it gets. He had a career rich in classics, and even at the age of 77, Page remains one of the most influential guitarists, a testament to his talent. His dexterity and technical mastery are two elements that make him a true master.

Page isn’t just a master guitarist, either. The musician has also proven in many ways to be a genius producer, directing some of Led Zeppelin’s best efforts such as IV – and that’s without citing his talent as a songwriter. In truth, it seems that creatively there is nothing that the silver haired wizard cannot do. So here, we’ve taken the plunge to list his top ten tracks with and without Led Zeppelin.

A brimming list of masterpieces, prepare to be blown away by Jimmy Page’s iconic CV. Just a word of warning, we left out ‘Stairway to Heaven’.

Jimmy Page’s ten best songs:

Happenings ten years ago ‘- The Yardbirds

A psychedelic rock masterpiece, “Happenings Ten Years Time Ago” is credited with helping to influence the creation of the metal genre. It’s also one of the only Yardbirds moments featuring both Page and Jeff Beck, two of London’s hottest guitarists at the time. Slightly menacing, Beck and Page’s dovetail guitars are clever, and today the track remains as stellar as it was when it was released in 1966.

This was the first time the Yardbirds began to take rock on a darker path, and in many ways, “Happenings Ten Years Ago” set Page on the path to forming Led Zeppelin, where he would perfect his long-held goal of modifying rock in a much heavier way.

“Beck’s bolero” – Jeff Beck

A rock staple, “Beck’s Bolero” brought together some of the biggest names in ’60s London. Besides Beck and Page, other icons on the track were Keith Moon, Nicky Hopkins and John Paul Jones. Instrumental, the guitar riff is one of the most famous ever written, and the thunderous pause towards the end gives the track the necessary boost to go from boredom to anthem.

From the ’60s to its core, the collaboration was unlike anything anyone had ever heard of in 1967, and it had a huge impact on everyone who listened, including Messrs Hendrix and Allman.

“Sunshine Superman” – Donovan

Page was a busy man in 1966, and “Sunshine Superman” is one of his best-known works. Jimmy Page actually performed on Donovan’s entire album of the same name, the highlight being the title track. Providing the electric guitar on ‘Sunshine Superman’, this plinky line is one of the most suggestive pages ever recorded, and you can imagine her pouting as she puts it down.

The solo is simple but exactly what the song needed, and as a result, “Sunshine Superman” was one of the first indicators that Page fully understood the song concept, which his extensive experience as a session musician has provided. undoubtedly affected. He provided the staple of Flower Power with exactly what he needed, while other guitarists would certainly have inflated the pudding too much.

“I can’t explain” – The Who

An anthem of mods, “I Can’t Explain” is one of The Who’s first hits that has a considerable legacy. Inspired by the Kinks’ proto-punk masterpiece All Day and All of the Night, the track helped assert rock dominance in the 1960s and made The Who one of the most popular outfits. essentials of the time.

It’s a lesser known fact that Jimmy Page provided the track with his rhythm guitar. Confirmed by Who guitarist Pete Townshend, this is one of the only tracks where Page takes the lead, letting another guitarist take center stage.

“Communication breakdown” – Led Zeppelin

A proto-punk masterpiece, Page’s work on ‘Communication Breakdown’ is legendary. Credited with helping establish Downstroke as one of the punks
key signifiers, everyone from Johnny Ramone to The Dictators cite him as inspiration. Released in March 1969, Led Zeppelin really arrived with this juggernaut.

It was the first time Jimmy Page had let go, and his riff and solo was the first teaser of what was to come through the rest of the decade and the ’70s. Soon after the release of’ Communication Breakdown ‘ , Page was finally starting to be recognized for his masterful guitar work.

“The Song of the Rain” – Led Zeppelin

A more balanced take from Jimmy Page, ‘The Rain Song’ is one of his most lauded efforts. There are traces of his work on Led Zeppelin IV, and his acoustic playing is one of the most passionate. Acoustic and electric guitars intertwine romantically, and you could argue that this is perhaps his best work with Led Zeppelin. It has it all, and when the failing mellotron arrives, it’s sensory overload.

This is the best modern guitar playing, and Page’s mix of chords and licks is mind blowing. This sultry slide from A to G that carries the track is simply amazing.

“Song of the Immigrants” – Led Zeppelin

“Immigrant Song” is the culmination of the polarizing effort of the 1970s Led Zeppelin III. The riff that carries the song is simple but effective, giving the sound a hammering side. Plus, who can forget Page’s minimalistic use of tremolo, which helps give the song real bite.

It rumbles and builds up gradually to a dissonant crescendo, showing that Zeppelin possessed a fundamental understanding of how to bring a track to its climax in subtle ways, it’s bombastic but restrained. Mystical and heavy, ‘Immigrant Song’ set a precedent for the band’s next effort, Led Zeppelin IV.

‘Whole Lotta Love’ – Led Zeppelin

Hard rock at its best, “Whole Lotta Love” is one of Led Zeppelin’s best known tracks, and it’s no surprise why. Featuring Page’s unique powerful riffs, the slide guitar that tilts in and out was a genius studio trick for its time. They say the riff came out of a “Dazed and Confused” stage jam, which makes a lot of sense.

The jazz break in the middle was unlike anything a rock band had ever attempted before, which confirmed Led Zeppelin as the most refreshing rocker out there, ready to take the throne left by the Beatles’ demise. the following year, 1970 Fanfaron, loaded and unashamed, it is Led Zeppelin at its most primitive.

“Black dog” – Led Zeppelin

‘Black Dog’ has to be Jimmy Page’s best riff. Another legendary Led Zeppelin moment, the opening of Led Zeppelin IV, set the tone for the rest of the album and was a big finger to the band’s detractors from their previous album. Blazing hot, all the band members shine on the track.

Page’s guitar work here is one of the most well-known intermediate guitar lines, and the call and response used on the track was another simple yet effective songwriting device that audiences used. One of the best times of the bunch, people will be discussing ‘Black Dog’ for many years to come.

“Ramble On” – Led Zeppelin

Starting from that Simon & Garfunkel-esque line of acoustic guitar, ‘Ramble On’ is a folk-hard rock fusion track at its core. Dynamically refreshing, Page’s work on the track spans every inch of the neck, and his career as a session musician really stands out, with many different techniques used.

In a way, for Page, it was the culmination of everything that existed before in terms of styling, giving the song a multi-faceted feel, which sets it apart in the broad back category of Led Zeppelin. There are many brilliant moments contained within his four and a half minutes, but the most iconic is the sustained violin-like sound that Page gets during the break.


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Grace D. Erickson