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This was written after George Harrison, who is a huge fan, told Zep drummer John Bonham that the trouble with Led Zeppelin is that they don't do any ballads. Bonham brought in the idea, and the rest of the band worked with him to put it together. It is was one of the few Zeppelin songs where all four members shared the composer credit.
Robert Plant's lyrics deal with the changing emotions of love.
John Paul Jones played the Mellotron, providing an orchestral effect.
In an interview with Rolling Stone
, Plant said this was his best Led Zeppelin vocal performance.
Drummer John Bonham took brushes to his drums on this song, demonstrating his versatility. Surprisingly, he continued to use them even when the song gets heavy. (thanks, Jenna Madsen - Eureka, CA)
Annie Haslam of Renaissance
The 5-octave voice of the classical rock band Renaissance, Annie is big on creative expression. In this talk, she covers Roy Wood, the history of the band, and where all the money went in the '70s.
Charlie Benante of Anthrax
The drummer for Anthrax is also a key songwriter. He explains how the group puts their songs together and tells the stories behind some of their classics.