Jimmy Page is a famous guitarist, mostly known for his albums with legendary rock band Led Zeppelin from 1968 to 1980. He is considered one of the greatest guitarists of all time, standing at the 9th position in Rolling Stone's magazine ranking. He belongs to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame twice, one due to his days with The Yardbirds, and the other for his Led Zeppelin albums. He is also a reknown session musician who has worked with many famous artists such as The Rolling Stones, The Who, Eric Clapton and many others.
James Patrick Page, best known as Jimmy Page, was born the 9th of January 1944 in Heston, England. He got his first guitar at 12, and appeared on TV when he was just 14 playing "Mama Don't Wanna Play No Skiffle No More" at the Huw Wheldon Show. Always accompanied by his guitar he also was interested in Science, but gave up his studies in pursuit of a career in music. That's how he ended up joining "The Crusaders", with whom he played for two years while he also attended Art classes.
Page also used to play at the Marquee Club in London, along with guitarists such as Eric Clapton and Jeff Beck. That's how he got to meet Mike Leander who gave him a job as a session musician, which in turn made him popular in the music scene, recording for bands such as The Who, Van Morrison, The Kinks and even The Rolling Stones. In 1965 he worked as producer, and he played along Eric Clapton, John Mayal, Joe Cocker and many other reknown artists.
Still working as a successful session musician Page received a call from "The Yardbirds", asking him to replace his friend Eric Clapton, who decided to leave the band. But Page refused, being busy with his recordings, and Jeff Beck took his place. Later down the road in 1966 he decided to join The Yardbirds as bassist, though he ended up playing lead guitar along with Beck, who eventually opted to leave the band leaving Jimmy Page as the only remaining guitarist.
Being now a quartet The Yardbirds released "Little Gems" , which was a moderate success. The band went on tour but two of the members split: Keith Relf and Jim McCarty, leaving the band without a singer, so Page recruited Robert Plant to sing, along with Plant's childhood friend John Bonham on drums and fellow session musician John Paul Jones as bassist, creating "The New Yardbirds", but was soon to be renamed as the all time famous Led Zeppelin.
Led Zeppelin became one of the most famous rock bands in history, with amazing classic tracks such as "Stairway to Heaven", "Communication Breakdown" or "Whole Lotta Love". Jimmy Page unmistakable style, heavy riffs and outstanding solos were a big part of the bands charm. During these years page used Gibson Les Pauls along with Marshall amps, but he also used a huge array of different guitars from Telecasters to Double necked SGs, acoustics, slide and steel guitars.
Page was not only a key musician but also a master recorder. He had learnt so much during his session musician years, and he took a really innovative and experimental approach to Led Zeppelin recordings, which were revolutionary by the time. He liked to record the instruments from different distances and mixing it all together, and place the mics in different positions, very close or far from the drums, and see which was better, to later make a combination including different effects.
Led Zeppelin stayed together between 1968 and 1980, and has sold over 300 million copies of their albums, which songs can be heard on almost any radio station around the planet, being regarded as rock classics. The band went on several massive tours through North America and Europe, but they split after drummer John Bonham was found death due to a massive consumption of alcohol. The remaining members of Led Zeppelin didn't feel like continuing with the project without Bonham. Later down the road, in 1994, the remaining 3 members of Led Zeppelin would rejoin along with Bonham's son, Jason, on the drums, to perform on the 40th anniversary of Atlantic Records.
In 1983 Page took part in a series of concerts and could be seen in one of them playing along Jeff Beck and Eric Clapton, being this the only time that all three guitarists that took part in The Yardbirds could be seen together, playing a version of Clapton's "Layla". One year later he joined Roy Harper and released the folky "Whatever Happenned to Jugula?".
He also met again with ex-Led Zeppelin's vocalist Robert Plant, and recorded an album as "The Honeydrippers", and later formed a new band called "The Firm" along with Paul Rodgers, releasing two albums "The Firm" and "Mean Business".
Page also released his first solo album "Outrider" in 1988, and continued with his job as session musician for several artists such as The Rolling Stones, Graham Nash and his old friend Robert Plant. He got in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1992, due to his job in "The Yardbirds".
Come 1994 Page and Plant met again, without Paul Jones, to record an MTv unplugged "No Quarter Unledded", and later in 1998 they recorded a new album together named "Walking into Clarksdale". Then in 1999 Page went on tour with "The Black Crowes".
In 2005 he got the Order of the British Empire, and also received a Grammy award, and one year later he went into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame again, thanks to his years along Led Zeppelin, band with whom he would give yet another concert come 2007, with Jason Bonham on the drums once more.
Style & Influences
Jimmy Page is a guitar icon who has influenced modern musicians due to his emblematic riffs and solos along his years with Led Zeppelin. Being a reknown studio recorder, his range of tones and styles is versatile, being a master of both electric and acoustic guitars, he is regarded as one of the creators of Heavy Metal. Jimmy is known to use many different guitars when recording a track. You might catch him playing a six or twelve string electric, a double neck, an acoustic, a nylon acoustic, harp guitars, or even a 10 string pedal steel guitar. He is also known for using various open tunings.
His early influences were rockabilly musicians such as Scotty Moore and James Burton, and Johnny Day (Everly Brothers), acoustic folk guitarists such as Bert Jansch and John Renbourn, as well as blues masters such as Elmore James and B.B. King.
Jimmy Page Gear
The most iconic guitar Jimmy swung in his Zeppelin years was a '58 Gibson Les Paul. His 2nd main guitar was a '59 Gibson Les Paul given to him by Joe Walsh. This was used as a model for the Jimmy Page signature series. He usually played these through a Marshall 1959-SLP. These were not the only guitars or amps Jimmy would use throughout his career, just his regulars.
JP also played a '58 Fender Telecaster given to him by Jeff Beck, various Fender Stratocasters, a '59 Dan Electro, a red '73 Gibson Les Paul, which was used during Song Remains the Same, and his Gibson SG doubleneck. Th doubleneck was used live on the songs Stairway to Heaven, Tangerine, The Rain Song, and The Song Remains The Same so he could switch easily between a 6 & 12 string guitar. This same guitar was also used in the studio to record Carouselambra. Other amps included Vox AC-30s, Orange, Supro (for recording), a Hiwatt 50 during the '70 tour, and Fender Tonemaster Heads.
He also has been seen playing several accoustic guitars, specially Martin D28, Gibson J-200 and Ovations. He has stated that he owns over 1,500 guitars, usually equipped with Ernie Ball .009-.042 Strings.
As for effects, he uses a wide amount, being some of them: a Gibson overdrive pedal customized by Roger Mayer, Vox Wah-Wah, Dunlop Cry-Baby, Jensen Crybaby Wah, MXR Phase 90, Eventide H949 Harmonizer, Boss CE-2 Chorus, Maestro Echoplex, Theremin, and many others.
With The Yardbirds
Little Games (1967)
With Led Zeppelin
Led Zeppelin I (1968)
Led Zeppelin II (1969)
Led Zeppelin III (1970)
Led Zeppelin IV (1971)
Houses of the Holy (1973)
Physical Graffiti (1975)
The Song Remains the Same: The Soundtrack From the Motion Picture (1976)
In Through the Out Door (1979)
With The Honeydrippers
The Honeydrippers, Vol. 1 (1984)
With The Firm
The Firm (1985)
Mean Business (1986)
With other artists
[editar]Whatever Happened to Jugula? (1983, with Roy Harper)
Strange Land (1986, with Box of Frogs)
Coverdale-Page (1993, with David Coverdale)
Unledded (1994, with Robert Plant)
Walking into Clarkside (1998, with Robert Plant)
Death Wish II
Death Wish III
Related GMC Lessons
Epic Jimmy Page by Adrian Figallo
"Mentiras" track, featuring some Jimmy Page style riffs by Gabriel Leopardi
Rocker Riffing, Led Zeppelin style by Gabriel Leopardi
Originally by Fran