Led Zeppelin 'Physical Graffiti' Session Tapes Up For Auction With Previously Unreleased Tracks

Brad Bershad

by Brad Bershad

Published February 27, 2014


Editor's note: A week after this story was published, these tapes were taken out of the auction before bidding began. In a related story, Led Zeppelin announced a new series of deluxe reissue box sets.

Every once in awhile, rare and revealing items of rock music memorabilia go up for auction. That's especially rare for a band like Led Zeppelin, who were extremely private during their most prolific periods and stopped making music as a group over 30 years ago.

Next month, RR Auctions has a few particularly notable items from The Ron Nevison Collection that will be part of the Marvels of Modern Music Auction: Led Zeppelin session tapes for their 1975 double LP, Physical Graffiti, recorded at the hallowed Headley Grange. Specifically, we're talking about Ampex 406 ten inch tapes with high quality, nearly finished songs.

The bidding is set to begin on March 13 and run until March 20th, 2014, with a starting bid of $300. We expect it will fetch thousands of dollars, considering the enormous demand for Led Zeppelin's music.

RR Auctions has put short sound clips of a few of the tunes on YouTube. They sound pristine, but still raw because they haven't been completely edited, overdubbed, and mixed.

Update: The sound clips have been taken down due to a copyright claim by Warner Music Group.

"In The Light" is perhaps the most interesting clip that RR Auctions has posted because it sounds completely different than the version of the song that made it to the album, with lyrics that didn't make the cut. The keyboard progression sounds virtually identical to "Two Against One" by Danger Mouse and Daniele Luppi featuring Jack White.

Led Zeppelin "In The Light" Full Bootleg Alternate Version with Alternate Lyrics

At Led Zeppelin's official internet forum, Cookie0024 pointed out that one of the tape reels has been circulated as a poor quality digital bootleg called Oh My God beginning around 1997.

Lots 788 and 789 are the particular auction items. Lot 788 includes recordings of "Trampled Underfoot," "Driving to Kashmir," "Custard Pie," "In the Light (Everyone Makes It Then)", "Swan Song—Part 1," and "Swan Song—Part 2." Lot 789 includes recordings of "In My Time of Dying," "Sick Again," "Désiré (The Wanton Song)," and "Ten Years Gone." Not only is the audio unfinished, but fans will notice that many of the songs were labeled with working titles which were changed slightly by the time the album was finished and released.

In addition to the recordings, there are also some cool items like this Led Zeppelin 1969 concert program from the Fillmore East:



There's more than just Led Zeppelin in the auction's 872 total lots. The amazing collection ranges from The Beatles and Rolling Stones to Bob Dylan and Elvis and really so much more. Click here for the list of lots in the auction, ordered from highest opening bid.

For more Led Zeppelin music and news, check out their Zumic artist page.

Via: Rolling Stone

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