Wow Moments

I was talking with my brother, about the rock concert’s we saw when we were younger. We saw some really great bands together. When we were growing up, he could be cool by letting me come with him or join in a party from time to time. You know how older brothers can get when they want their own experience’s… So we were sharing an odd conversation, I only say “odd” because we don’t talk  much and when we do sometimes it doesn’t go so well. So we were talking and I really had the feeling of connection with him, I had missed that, for some time.

In my life as a musician I have had some really cool moments, that I will never forget. As the conversation went on for well into hours, I said to my brother hey man let me tell you a story. Now I can be long-winded and I’m sure he was thinking something like that. Though I think he was enjoying it as well.  So the story goes, like this.

Back in the early 80’s I was 19 year’s old and I worked with this man named Hank he was about 10 years older than me. He knew I was an aspiring singer/song writer and he himself was quite a talented musician as well. Soon after taking that job I had learned that Hank and his family own a really well-known live music venue. Hank would come in with some great stories about who had been in to play the club that weekend, let me tell you I was impressed. I wasn’t 21 yet so I couldn’t get in to see a lot of performers I would have like to. A few time I snuck in a side door to a club or took my oldest brothers license I don’t think he knew that, sorry bro.

At the start of one week, Hank walked up to me very quietly & says to me, “what are you doing Friday night?” I looked at him and said I don’t know, what do you have in mind? I thought maybe he wanted me to work at the bar or some thing. Hank says “meet me at the bar at 6:30pm I want you to meet someone” I was like “who” Just show up you won’t be disappointed. So all week as you can imagine I pressed a bit, but Hank wasn’t giving up any hint as to who I was going to meet.

Sure enough, Friday comes and at 6:30 sharp I was at the club. Now this place doesn’t open till 8:30pm so there was just a bartender setting up for the night and someone sitting at the far end of the bar (remember the mullet? I do).   So I said to the bartender  “Hi, I work with Hank and he asked me to meet him here is he around?” Yeah I’ll call upstairs and let him know you’re here. I wait 15 min., 25 min., I say to the girl is Hank coming down? yes, he’s doing… he should be… so now 45 min. has gone by when Hank comes strolling in, with this sly grin on his face.

 So Hank, in that same quiet voice says to me, “so what do you think” I say “about what?” he says “don’t you know who that is at the end of the bar? ” No, should I?” Hank says “come with me” so we walk to the end of the bar and he says ” Hey Robert I want you to meet a friend of mine, I’ll leave you two to talk” It was Robert fricken Plant, man. I was dumb founded. So  Robert says “hi, just breathe mate” (he called me mate lol) , So we sat there and talked about Led Zeppelin, his new album Coda…

 He ask me what my favorite Zeppelin song was, I said that it was a tough choice, but if I had to choose it would be “Since “I’ve Been Loving You”, but that “When The levy Breaks”  Is also one…, of course you like the blues being from Chicago. We talked about My song writing and what my influences were, of course ” Zeppelin, John Lennon, Hendrix…”, All the greats you know. I tell him that It was one of the saddest moments of my life when the morning after I had entered the lottery for Zep. ticket’s the news came over the radio that John Bonham had died. We all were just shaken to the core. Most of my friends & I never had gotten to see Led Zeppelin and then it would seem we never would. So here I am now talking to you and I have to ask you Robert, “Will Led Zeppelin ever get back together?” He says “I don’t know about ever, but you Know we suffered quite a shock (mate)… and we have no plans right now” 

Well we talked for an hour or so that friday evening, and I will tell you I felt as though I had been  baptized into an exclusive fandom. I was most definitely AWE struck, and impressed with how regular the meeting was.  Like two people, just talking about life and what was important to them and moments when life had showed us, it was too real to be imagined. The club was just about to open and Robert had things to do. He said “It was really nice to meet you (mate) I will see you again, okay?” We shook hands and I said thank you Robert, It was an honor to sit with you & talk. I walked out of there as if I was drunk. I didn’t have one drink the whole time we talked. I remember thinking how I was going to convince my friends of what just took place, the whole way home I had this shit eating grin on my face. By the time I got home I had convinced myself that no one would believe me so I said nothing. I told a few people over the years but they looked at me like, yeah right.

So about 10 or 12 years later I hung with a group, we called our selves the breakfast club. There was a radio DJ, A real life Prince,  A Patent atty., Club industry workers… We would meet up at this Pub in a legendary neighborhood in the river north area of Chicago. So one day as I’m walking in  to meet the boy’s, I see Robert Plant sitting with none other than Jimmy Page, I walk up and say Excuse me,  Hi, Robert Do you remember me? He pauses for a second. He says yes and calls me by name.

 How are you (mate)?  You know my boy Mr. Page,  Oh yeah  Hi how are you …J.P. Have a seat, we are having a bit to eat before we… So I sit with them and the three of us talk. Just a regular conversation, as a matter of fact. I’m awe-struck again, JIMMY FRICKEN PAGE.  Robert says, Still writing song’s are you, have we heard any?, Yes & NO My fame card has not been dealt as Yet, (we all LOL)R.P. well keep at it.  Jimmy asks how did you two come to meet? R.P. Oh you know Hank at the…, J.P. oh yeah we must get up to see him…  Well it was good to see you Robert says, would like tickets for our show? No I have to work, I’m managing the bar tonight & I can’t get out of it, J.P. “too bad…”, tell me about it, I would love to see you. By the way Jimmy, (I say), I  loved that album you did with Paul Rogers (The, Firm, Radioactive). Yeah that was great fun. Well it was nice chatting with you two we’ll have to do it again, yes we will Robert says, with that we all shook hands and I joined the boy’s across the bar & Jimmy Page & Robert Plant walked out the door.

This time I had witnesses, but they (the breakfast club boy’s) were dismayed with me. You see they all thought I had just imposed on the two living legends. I was a bit put off, and I said, you don’t know what you are talking about. For one thing I met Robert 10 years ago and we talked for over an hour. Second we were introduced by… I will have you know, that Robert actually remembered my name. Oh ye of little faith I said. Next time you think  so poorly of me think again & keep it to yourself. I went off to sit at the bar by myself. The bartender a good friend of mine (Tad) said, he had heard the whole conversation and he thought it was so cool. I said thank you man I really am blown away, with those ass holes too. They didn’t mean anything by it man, oh yeah, sure they didn’t I said.  Later one of them said he was sorry and bought me a beer, and we talked a while, we were friends after all.

Published in: on April 7, 2010 at 2:26 pm  Comments (2)  

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2 CommentsLeave a comment

  1. So surreal! I love it!

  2. Nice story, thanks for sharing it.

    Thanks for commenting on my blog. It should be apparent that I am in favor of street performances, and will be posting more on that subject.

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