Flatpack Festival in collaboration with Home Of Metal held a screening of The Song Remains the Same and also a talk by Chris Phipps at South Birmingham College on Saturday 14th 2009.
The Song Remains The Same
Dir. Peter Clifton & Joe Massot
UK/USA 1976, 137 mins
Feat. Robert Plant; Jimmy Page; John Bonham; John Paul Jones
Back in the day when psychedelic concept movies were compulsory for any self-respecting rock band, Led Zeppelin took the plunge with this patchy but often entertaining document of their 1973 Houses of the Holy tour. The meat of the film is a performance at Madison Square Gardens shot over three nights in which the group steam through ‘Stairway’, ‘Black Dog’, ‘Heartbreaker’ and the rest to thunderous effect. Also scattered through the movie are fantasy sequences which Spinal Tap might have cringed at, including Plant rescuing a fair maiden and Page meeting a hermit up a mountain. The simplest and most touching is John Bonham’s, shot on his farm near Droitwich.
The making-of story is an epic in its own right, the screening included a talk by Birmingham-born documentary maker and music historian Chris Phipps. Combining personal anecdotes with music fact and urban fiction, Phipps will provide a unique decoding of a band and film which often defy description. As he says, “you may leave with more questions than answers, but that’s Zeppelin.”
For further info about Flatpack Festival:
A talk with Chris Phipps
Chris Phipps is a Birmingham born documentary maker, archivist and music historian. His credits include ‘Motor City Music Years’, profiling the rock history of the West Midlands, the definitive ‘Bob Marley – Time Will Tell’ biopic, an award winning history of North England rock ‘North Stars’ and countless Top 100 TV formats. As journalist, radio and TV producer he has tracked the evolution of blues-rock, metal and the NWOBHM for over 3 decades.
As an archivist he has worked closely with director Dick Carruthers on ‘Metal–Louder Than Life’ DVD and sell out ‘Zeppelin at 40’ shows all over the UK. He was also the assistant producer of Channel 4’s controversial music show The Tube. Enabling TV debuts to bands ranging from Fine Young Cannibals to Twisted Sister.