Demand for Led Zeppelin tickets crashes websites

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The Independent Culture

Millions of rock fans were left on tenterhooks yesterday as a surge of interest in Led Zeppelin's one-off reunion concert crashed booking websites.

This will be the first time the rock legends have played together in 19 years, and more than 20 million people have already registered to get their hands on precious tickets. The band have decided to reform for one night only, as a tribute to Ahmet Ertegun, the founder of Atlantic Records.

Tickets will be allocated at random among those who register interest.

But the frenzied demand even crashed the website for the O2 Arena, where the concert is to be held on 26 November. A gig spokesperson told fans to be patient saying: "The website will be open until 17 September."

The spokesperson said the £125 tickets would not be allocated "first come, first served", and said "all successful applicants will be entered into a ballot for tickets to be drawn at random".

The band will play with Jason Bonham on drums – he is the son of original drummer John Bonham, who died in 1980. Remaining members, Robert Plant, Jimmy Page and John Paul Jones will all perform.

Led Zeppelin headline the tribute concert to Ahmet Ertegun, the "giant of music" who first signed the band in 1968. Other performers paying their respects to Ertegun, who died last year aged 83, include The Who's Pete Townshend, as well as Bill Wyman, Paulo Nutini and the rock band Foreigner.

Robert Plant, the distinctive lead singer, said: "During the Zeppelin years, Ahmet Ertegun was a major foundation of solidarity and accord. For us he was Atlantic Records and remained a close friend and conspirator – this performance stands alone as our tribute to the work and the life of our long-standing friend."

Promoter Harvey Goldsmith said that the concert was going to be even bigger than he had anticipated. "After a week's rehearsal they came back to me and said that they weren't going to play for 30 minutes", he said. "I thought 'Oh no they're only going to do one song', but they said they were going to play a whole set instead."

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