EXPLOREMY LIBRARY
Movies, TV & Music
Icons of Rock 'n' Roll

Icons of Rock 'n' Roll

Icons of Rock 'n' Roll

Here’s a question: who’s the greatest rock icon of them all? Is it Jimmy Page, the man in the dragon suit who sold hard rock and guitar heroism to millions of kids across America? Is it Keith Richards, cigarette in mouth, living the lifestyle everybody dreams about but no one but him could survive? Is it ZZ Top’s king of cool Billy Gibbons, monolithic Metallica frontman James Hetfield, or even Eric Clapton, who has spent more than 50 years keeping it classy? In truth, there’s no right answer, but in this special magazine, you’ll find a series of extraordinary up-close-and-personal interviews with some of the icons who built the music we all love, taken from the archives of Classic Rock magazine, which hopefully go some way to shining a light on what makes these legends the people they are. You’ll find everyone from Jimmy Page talking about the world-beating success of Led Zeppelin in the 70s to Guns N’ Roses guitarist Slash reflecting on the rock’n’roll life as recently as 2018, via the likes of AC/DC’s Angus Young, Freddie Mercury, Iggy Pop, Pink Floyd’s David Gilmour and Lou Reed, not to mention such cult heroes as Johnny Winter and JJ Cale.

Country:
United Kingdom
Language:
English
Publisher:
Future Publishing Ltd
Frequency:
One-off
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in this issue

2 min.
editor

Here’s a question: who’s the greatest rock icon of them all? Sure, it’s not a competition, but you can still have some fun with it. Is it Jimmy Page, the man in the dragon suit who sold hard rock and guitar heroism to millions of kids across America? Is it Keith Richards, cigarette in mouth, living the lifestyle everybody dreams about but no one but him could survive? Is it ZZ Top’s king of cool Billy Gibbons, monolithic Metallica frontman James Hetfield, or even Eric Clapton, who has spent more than 50 years keeping it classy? (For me it’s Lemmy, purely because no one gave fewer fucks for as long as he did). In truth, there’s no right answer, just as there’s no way of boiling down exactly what it is…

25 min.
“the fourth album? it's good, isn't it?”

It is 10 o’clock on a rainy late summer morning when Jimmy Page arrives at The Gore Hotel to meet with Classic Rock. Situated in the London borough of Kensington, Page knows the hotel and the area well. He has a home nearby, and within a few minutes’ walk is the Royal Albert Hall, where Led Zeppelin were filmed in concert on January 9, 1970 – which was also Page’s 26th birthday. In the hotel’s Green Room, decorated with antique portraits of English nobility and lit by a vast chandelier, Page offers a warm handshake and settles on one of two facing sofas. Now 70, his shoulder-length hair its natural silver, the guitarist has aged better than most of his contemporaries. He is elegantly dressed in black shirt, trousers and boots,…

2 min.
“no ego at all”

“It must have been 1964. The personnel of my band, Carter-Lewis And The Southerners (pictured), was flexible, and we had a tour coming up but we didn’t have a proper band. Me and Ken Lewis knew Jimmy from sessions. We’d played together on [Dave Berry’s] The Crying Game, and we’d booked him for a few Carter-Lewis sessions, which he was brilliant on. So we asked him to join: ‘Yeah, why not?’ “I remember the first session I ever saw Jimmy on. He was eighteen or nineteen, a young lad. He wore normal sixties clothes. I don’t even remember his hair being long. We’d all meet round the corner from Decca Studios after sessions and go for a drink. We’d talk about music, the old blues guys, rock‘n’roll. He may have been…

2 min.
“we’d drink j d together”

“I’d never met Jimmy before we started working together in ’87 on Outrider. His manager called to ask if I’d be interested in doing some writing. So I went down to his studio and we wrote Wasting My Time, Wanna Make Love and a few other things. We’d both jam and come up with riffs. It took a while to get to know him, but we hit it off. And I discovered he had a wicked sense of humour. Then he decided he was going to take the album on the road and he said to me one day: ‘Can you do it?’ “Most of the shows were in America. And I felt a lot of pressure having to sing Robert Plant’s songs – I think Jimmy felt pressured too. I…

20 min.
caught in a landslide

It could have been any other damp, cold Friday afternoon in the November of any other year. But this one was a bit special… 1975 was heading for Christmas and I was in the middle of a music mag office in sole, exclusive possession of the album, the song, from the band that would rule the world of rock for the next 30 years. Full of anticipation, I put the test pressing on the office turntable and something called Bohemian Rhapsody soared out. Well, it soared for me: it dive-bombed for others in the office. One colleague, Allan Jones, was horrified: “What is this?!” He guessed at 10cc. When I told him that it was Queen, his jaw dropped and hit the floor. He hated it! I loved it, and…

3 min.
the man who would be queen

Who made who? Did Roy Thomas Baker, co-producer of A Night at The Opera with the band, make Queen; or did Queen make Roy Thomas Baker? A bit of both probably, because they were invaluable to each other. However, it is fair to say that, 30 years on and with the new Darkness album under his belt, RTB is still remembered as the man who produced Queen. When 1975 was turning into ’76, Roy’s reputation was going through the roof. I caught up with him in the same studio where much of A Night at The Opera was recorded – SARM in West London. He was working with Pilot (you remember, ‘Januar-eee, sick and tired, you’ve been hangin’ on me…’ etc etc). As it happens, Pilot weren’t a bad band and…