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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.
In a nod to George Harrison, Jimmy Page played the first two notes of the Harrison-written Beatles song "Something
" in the intro to "The Rain Song."
John Paul Jones played the Mellotron, one of the first synthesizers; it sounds here like an orchestra for violins. (thanks, Bertrand - Paris, France)
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)
What Made Big Star Shine
The last living original member of Big Star - drummer Jody Stephens, looks back on the band and their legacy, including the theme for That '70s Show
Lita talks about how they wrote songs in The Runaways, and how she feels about her biggest hit being written by somebody else.