Jimmy Page 'blessed' to still have good hearing
- Bang Showbiz
- 30 October 2014
Jimmy Page insists his hearing is still really "good" despite spending years standing in front of the late John Bonham's drums in Led Zeppelin
Jimmy Page feels "blessed" to still have "good" hearing despite years of being blasted by loud music in Led Zeppelin.
The 70-year-old guitarist has not been afflicted with hearing issues, such as tinnitus, like many of his rock 'n' roll peers even though he was constantly blasted by the late John Bonham's drums while on stage.
He revealed: "My hearing is actually really good, considering that searing top coming at me from those cymbals. As I'm advancing in years, a lot of my friends realise how good my hearing is. I'm really blessed. Without good hearing, you're f***ed in this business - especially on the details of this stuff, the subtlety of what I'm working on. I'm lucky with that."
Page insists he had to stand directly in front of Bonham when the group first started touring because it was the only way he could hear what the drummer and bass player John Paul Jones were playing.
Speaking to Rolling Stone magazine, he explained: "That was the best point for us to listen to each other. John Bonham always had his monitors really loud behind his kit. That was a good point to hear everything that was going out to the crowd. As stage monitors improved, we moved around more. But it was better to position yourself where you could hear the bass and vocals, to feel the drums and the urgency of the music. It was all listening."
Led Zeppelin - which also had Robert Plant on vocals - split in the wake of Bonham's alcohol-related death in October 1980, and Page insists it was never seriously considered to carry on without him.
He said: "Led Zeppelin wasn't a corporate entity. Led Zeppelin was an affair of the heart. Each of the members was important to the sum total of what we were. I like to think that if it had been me that wasn't there, the others would have made the same decision. And what were we going to do? Create a role for somebody, say, 'You have to do this, this way?' That wouldn't be honest."
Led Zeppelin last performed together in 2007 at a tribute concert for Ahmet Ertegün - the music executive who signed them to Atlantic Records - which feature John's son Jason Bonham on drums.