Robert Plant was born in West Bromwich in 1948 and was invited by Jimmy Page to join Led Zeppelin in 1968. They promptly became the biggest rock band in the world, before splitting in 1980 following the death of drummer John Bonham. Plant has pursued a solo career ever since.
Good day. What have you been up to today?
I've been trying to perfect my elusive second service.
What does the psychedelic vibe have to say to us in the 21st century?
Youth culture in a disenchanted USA circa 1967 joined together poetry, art, music and to a degree fashion in an almost united kingdom, exposing the corruption, paranoia and manipulation of government and big business (see Kent State University Ohio). It was possibly the last time that we felt such a power and unity. Perhaps there are, in this particularly materialist period, a few points of interest, apart from casual nostalgia.
Your grandchildren stare at you one day and say, "Grandpa, what is a Led Zeppelin?" How do you reply? And which song do you use to illustrate your many points?
"From what I can remember," I reply in a shaky voice, "it is a potent cocktail of energy, invention and artistry – and not a little tongue-in-cheek. Avoid cheap imitations. They can cause hangovers and make you quite sick." The song I'd use to illustrate this is "Sick Again" from Physical Graffiti.
Why is "Morning Dew" such a great song?
It's simple, beautiful and carries a timeless message.
What has been lost?
What has been found?
Floods, pestilence and earthquakes.
Do you still fantasise about yourself in a historical fashion?
With Derfyl we pushed the seed of Hengist and Horsa from the tribe of Aella far back east along the valley of the Thames, to somewhere around St Albans and the M25. We heard no more of them for years until...
What, this week, is your desert island disc?
Trace by Son Volt.
You must feel a particular angst at present regarding the Arab world. Were he sitting in your kitchen, what would you say to Tony Blair?
"Mr Blair, I'm not a polititian nor particularly a historian, so would you relay to me the history of UK policy in the Middle East since the discovery of black gold."
I'm going to a record shop later. What new album should I buy? And what old one?
1) The Hives 2) Tanyet by Caleb's People.
Do you miss screaming?
Robert Plant's 'Dreamland' is out on Mercury. He begins a nationwide tour on Tuesday
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