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The Band Of Joy

The Band Of Joy by Harry Barber

The Band Of Joy is not only a band name or an album title, it is now a book, written and self-published by Harry Barber, roadie for at least three incarnations of the band. The book offers excellent first-person experiences from a source as close as one could get to the band.

The Band Of Joy formed out of the ashes of many other bands as these guys were already career musicians at young ages, Robert Plant from Listen, Vernon Pereira and Chris Brown from The Stringbeats. Plant had become bored that Listen had stalled in it's success and he wanted more. Members of the first Band Of Joy convened at Holy Joe's Rehearsal Rooms and began playing gigs in April 1967.

Whether it was new found fame or something else, Robert Plant's personality was the main reason that the first Band Of Joy ended. The rest of the band had basically kicked Plant out and replaced him. Being that Plant himself came up with the band's name, he formed his own Band Of Joy with members of the band Paper and performed in the same areas as the former Band Of Joy. Eventually, a fourth Band Of Joy was formed in November 1967, once again with Robert Plant, who brought his former bandmate and drummer from the Crawling King Snakes, John Henry Bonham.

By the end of May 1968, The Band Of Joy was stalling. John Bonham accepted an offer to play drums with Tim Rose and Robert Plant left to go to London to shop his demo around for a proper contract and to jam with Alexis Korner. A sixth Band Of Joy formed to fulfil some previously scheduled performances. Various members of The Band Of Joy regrouped through the years with limited success and moved on to other bands or got out of the music industry altogether.

The Band Of Joy had limited press coverage, as they were a regional band and forty years later, very little is known about them. Only a little nugget of info is given by Robert Plant in current interviews or by another former member of the band that is still alive. This book absolutely fills a huge void in the world of knowledge about The Band Of Joy. Along with first-hand accounts of the band's history, the book gives band member biographies, venue information, gig dates and information on equipment that band members had used. For the die-hard fan or even the occasional fan, this book is a must have.

To order, go to Mr. Barber's website, http://bandofjoy.com.

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This Month in
Led Zeppelin History

April 24, 1969 - 2nd US Tour begins (1st as headliners) at the Fillmore West
April xx, 1970 - Robert comments about the violence in the audience near the end of the fifth tour
April 04, 1970 - Jimmy Page performs White Summer/Black Mountain Side on the Julie Felix BBC show
April 16, 1970 - Whole Lotta Love was certified Gold in the US after selling over a million copies. The single had peaked at No. 4 on the US singles chart. In the UK, Atlantic Records had expected to issue the edited version themselves, and pressed initial copies for release on December 5, 1969. However, band manager Peter Grant was adamant that the band maintain a "no-singles" approach to marketing their recorded music in the UK and he halted the release.
April xx, 1971 - Untitled is rumored to be released this month
April xx, 1972 - Recording sessions for Houses Of The Holy at Stargroves and Olympic studios
April xx, 1973 - Led Zeppelin rehearse their new stage show in preparation for their huge 1973 US Tour
April xx, 1974 - Swan Song concentrates its efforts on signing new acts
April xx, 1975 - Jimmy does some mixing at Electric Lady studios for TSRTS soundtrack
April 19, 1975 - 51,000 tickets sell in two hours for three nights at Earls Court, two added dates see another 34,000 tickets sold
April xx, 1976 - The band decide they will release their film to theaters
April 30, 1977 - Led Zeppelin breaks the record for the largest attendance for a single-act show in the Pontiac Silverdome with 76,229 in attendance
April xx, 1978 - The band hold a meeting, this time with Robert, to discuss Zeppelin’s future
April 03, 1979 - Page, Bonham and Plant jam with Bad Company again in Birmingham
April 27, 1980 - The band rehearses at Rainbow Theater for an upcoming European tour
April 26, 1988 - James Patrick Page III’s birthday. He is named after his father is the only son of Jimmy and Patricia Ecker. Jimmy spoke of his son saying: "He is wonderful. He has made a big difference to my life."
April 21, 1998 - Page and Plant released Walking Into Clarksdale.
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