The excess of ’70s rock ‘n roll sometimes made it to the album charts. Specifically, consider the “Billboard 200″ Album Chart of March 29th, 1975. Led Zeppelin established their dominance as the hottest rock band of the decade with all six of their studio albums–dating back to 1969–charting, with the month-old double album Physical Graffiti perched at #1. That record included the song “Houses of the Holy,” which had really been recorded for the album of that name that had been released on March 28, 1973–featuring “Stairway to Heaven,” which helped make the Led Zeppelin catalog so vital at the time. [photos via headbangersradio]
It was a much better day for the band than March 29, 1972. That was when Robert Plant and Jimmy Page traveled to (what was then) Bombay to record with the Symphony Orchestra there. That turned out to be a disaster. Things worked out in the end, though, with Plant & Page returning a few decades later for a triumphant MTV special called Unledded. And we’ll go ahead and note that Zeppelin wasn’t able to maintain their chart dominance. Physical Graffiti was followed up by the rushed Presence in 1976. That counted as a hit record, but it was mostly overshadowed by that same year’s live album The Song Remains the Same.
But if Zeppelin had really hung in there, then they might’ve been the ones celebrating on March 29, 1980. That was when Pink Floyd’s 1973 album Dark Side of the Moon set a new record for staying on the Billboard album charts, having spent 303 weeks somewhere in the top 200. They didn’t even displace Led Zeppelin. Carole King’s Tapestry had been the previous record holder. The guys in Zeppelin probably weren’t upset over that, though. They would always have 1975.
Their fans will always have 1975, too. There’s a lot of Led Zeppelin concert footage from that year. “Kashmir” is probably considered the defining song from Physical Graffiti, but here’s the band doing “In My Time of Dying.” That’s an amazing tune–and the studio version is just as long…