When Robert Plant Had To Transpose Led Zeppelin Songs To Sing Them Properly

Formed in London in 1968, Led Zeppelin is among the most influential rock acts that considerably impacted hard rock and heavy metal. Named the New Yardbirds before, the band consisted of Robert Plant, Jimmy Page, John Paul Jones, and John Bonham. Together, they released eight studio albums over ten years which all brought them remarkable commercial success.

Regarded as the biggest band of the Seventies, Led Zeppelin sadly disbanded after their drummer Bonham’s death in 1980. However, the remaining band members collaborated occasionally on various projects. One of their most successful collaborations was the Ahmet Ertegun Tribute Concert at the O2 Arena in London, which took place on December 10, 2007. During that reunion performance, Bonham’s son Jason Bonham played the drums.

The band’s performance was well-received by both critics and the fans, and it created widespread speculation about a possible full reunion. Although the concert was a blast, it appears that the band had to rearrange their tracks before the show since Plant struggled with his voice.

Robert Plant and Jimmy Page Transposed Led Zeppelin’s Songs In A Lower Key

On December 10, 2007, Led Zeppelin reunited at the O2 Arena for the Ahmet Ertegun Tribute Concert. The band’s show at the O2 Arena was their first full-length concert for 19 years since their disbandment. Moreover, it also set a world record for the ‘Highest Demand For Tickets For One Music Concert’ with 20 million ticket requests.

As it seems, the reunion performance excited the fans who were waiting to watch Zeppelin perform for almost two decades. Moreover, it was not a surprise that the fans had great expectations from the band. As a result, Led Zeppelin decided to work more on their songs to ensure they pleased the fans.

Back in those days, Robert Plant was struggling to hit high notes. The musician had been singing for Led Zeppelin for over 40 years, and it indeed affected his singing. Therefore, to make the songs suitable for Plant, Led Zeppelin rearranged their tracks.

According to Irish Examiner, a source told The Sun that Plant and Jimmy Page discussed the reunion show before it took place. As Plant struggled with high notes, they decided to transpose the songs in a lower key to avoid any inconvenience during the long-awaited show.

As reported by Irish Examiner, a source revealed to The Sun that:

“Plant and guitarist Jimmy Page have had a few heated discussions about the upcoming gig. Jimmy is a bit rusty and Robert has been struggling with high notes. To avoid any embarrassing vocal wobbles with the world watching, they decided it would be best to transpose the songs in a lower key.”

There is no doubt that all those years had an effect on Robert Plant both personally and artistically. Nevertheless, Zeppelin’s performance at the O2 Arena turned out to be a huge success, and this decision might be the reason for it.

You can watch Led Zeppelin perform ‘Stairway to Heaven’ at the O2 Arena below.