With the 50th anniversary of Led Zeppelin's untitled fourth album, better known as Led Zeppelin IV, inching up next month, frontman Robert Plant looked back at the album -- both his work on it and what it's come to mean over the decades. Led Zeppelin IV was released on November 8th, 1971 and peaked at Number Two on the Billboard 200 charts, selling 32 million copies worldwide -- including 23 million in the U.S. alone
Plant, who's always shied away from delving too deeply into the meanings of his Zeppelin tunes, admitted to Mojo: "My naivety about lyrics came from the fact that it takes a long time to grow up when you're on the move so quick. Not many people can look back 50 years and see themselves coming straight at them. Whereas I can see the 22-year-old Robert Plant careening towards me. But at the same time, it all seemed to fit together naturally."
He touched upon his legendary songwriting partnership with the great,Jimmy Page, admitting, "I have never experienced and probably never will, being in the presence of such a great, eloquent player."
Plant was asked why he became so emotional at Heart's rendition of "Stairway To Heaven" with Jason Bonham at the band's 2012 Kennedy Center Honors: "I wept because I was seeing the song in a different light. I'd been carrying the passing of John (Bonham), the passing of my son (Karac) and the whole '70s whirlwind and where I'd ended up on a personal level. It was a rush. . . The bottom line is that song has been a remarkable milestone in my life. It was an achievement." [You can see that emotional moment in the video below.]
Jimmy Page & Robert Plant on November 11th, 1994 performing "Stairway To Heaven" live on Japanese TV (with his manager holding up cue cards so he did not forget the words)