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Ten Things You May Not Know About Robert Plant
Iconic vocalist and Led Zeppelin frontman Robert Plant turned 65 birthday last week and we’re still celebrating.
Known for his stage presence, and otherworldly howl exhibited throughout Led Zeppelin’s impeccable canon of work, Plant has become one of rock ‘n’ roll’s most enduring artists.
In honor of his birthday and to celebrate all things Led Zeppelin, here are ten things you may not know about Robert Plant. Enjoy!
1. He has an interesting pre-show ritual.
In order to calm his nerves and get in the ‘zone’ before a gig, Plant likes to bust out an ironing board and iron some clothes. Seriously – he says he always has an ironing board with him on tour.
2. Before his big break he worked a menial retail job.
Before he achieved international acclaim and stardom with Led Zeppelin, one of young Robert’s jobs included working in a Woolworth’s department store, known for its incredibly low prices (think of today’s 99 Cent Store).
3. Plant prevented the film Dazed and Confused from using any Zeppelin songs.
Despite the fact that its title was a tribute to the Led Zeppelin song, the 1993 film Dazed and Confused didn’t include any Zeppelin music. John Paul Jones and Jimmy Page agreed to let director Richard Linklater use Rock and Roll, but Plant, who still has a strong hold in creative control of the band’s music, denied the request.
4. He performed in the middle of the desert in 2003.
An avid traveler, Plant visits Africa frequently – and in 2003, he played a festival called Festival in the Desert, in the country of Mali. It took place close to an oasis in the middle of the African desert.
5. He is donating money to a teen cancer charity.
Plant’s tour with the Sensational Space Shifters will bring him to Austin, Texas for a show at ACL Live, in which he is generously donating proceeds from this show to Teen Cancer America and Health Alliance for Austin Musicians. Pretty nice gesture, wouldn’t you say? (source)
6. Plant is the lone holdout preventing a Led Zeppelin reunion from taking place.
Over the past few years, both John Paul Jones and Jimmy Page have hinted that they’d be willing to take part in another Led Zeppelin reunion. Plant, though, remains non-committal (at least officially). Maybe one day… (source)
7. He is a recipient of the prestigious Beard of the Year award.
Led Zeppelin’s 2007 one-off reunion gig at the O2 Arena in London was a big deal, and rightly so. And that same year, the Beard Liberation Front awarded Plant the Beard of the Year award. Not bad.
8. Elvis Presley teased him about Zeppelin’s airplane.
Zeppelin and Elvis were friendly, so they shared playful banter here and there, as the King once jabbed at Plant regarding Zeppelin renting a plane from a casino. When Plant told Presley that they rented the plane, Elvis replied “I own mine”. They don’t call him The King for nothing. (source)
9. He didn’t receive any songwriting credit on Zeppelin’s first album.
Because Plant was still signed to CBS Records, it’s believed that he was omitted from the songwriting credits for the band’s 1969 debut – although this has been the subject of some debate over the years.
10. He could have been an accountant rather than a musician!
It’s extremely hard to imagine Robert Plant doing anything other than blessing the world with his powerful pipes, but it could have happened. Under his father’s suggestion, Robert took accounting classes as a student and considered making it his profession. He changed his mind after two weeks, and the rest is…well, history.
There you go, ten facts about Robert Plant and make sure to let us know if you know of any others that we may have left off.