Plant’s plans inspired by Jones
Robert Plant took inspiration from Led Zeppelin bandmate John Paul Jones in his efforts to keep his career moving forward.
The singer says he’s been doing a great deal of writing in the past year with a view to making the most of how his voice sounds today.
He’s currently touring with his Sensational Space Shifters following outings with his Band Of Joy, Alison Krauss and The Strange Sensation; and says his next project will be based on “something resembling a British condition.”
Plant tells LA Weekly: “I like the way my voice sounds – it’s not the same as it was years ago. I’m not a castrato any more, but I’ve learned to get down into that pocket and have it sound good.”
He says his main motivation is “the sound of a new project; the sound of music developing” and adds: “Over the years I’ve seen all these artists that I respect that are able to create all these amalgamations with other artists. I’ve watched the way John Paul Jones has worked through his life. I have great respect for him.
“He’s right in the middle of writing an opera right now, and people are taking him seriously as a writer in the classical mode. But he can also play in Them Crooked Vultures and play mandolin with Seasick Steve.”
The lesson Plant has taken from Jones is: “It’s good to keep moving and keep smiling.”
Led Zeppelin last gathered at the end of 2012 to receive their Kennedy Center Honors in the US, during which Heart performed a version of Stairway To Heaven featuring Jason Bonham.
Plant recalls: “I just couldn’t believe that song had anything to do with this 64-year-old man that was sitting next to John Paul Jones. I thought to myself, ‘This is me – how did this happen?’”
Meanwhile, Jones reports he’s happily working away with his opera project – and that’s what he’ll be focusing on next year despite Plant’s vague reference to the possibility of a Led Zep reunion.
“I’m half way through the first act,” says the multi-instrumentalist. “I’m about to find out what the challenges are. 2014 is full of opera for me, at the moment.”
It was recently revealed that former US president Bill Clinton was roped in by a charity foundation to ask Led Zep to regroup for them – and they refused.