Guitar heroes – Jimmy page

guitar heroes - Jimmy PageI think if I had to choose just one band as my favourite – I would run away! – But if I absolutely had to choose just one it would be Led Zeppelin. They have such an iconic sound and so many great songs that I never tire of hearing so they would get my vote. As a guitarist my choice is obviously largely because of Jimmy page’s contribution to the Zep sound. s with all truly great bands there was a magic chemistry between all the members  of LZ – they just worked.

Before Zeppelin Mr Page was a much sought after session guitarist, producer and arranger. His first big band was the Yardbirds and in fact Led Zep were almost called the New Yardbirds at one point but that name didn’t stick and the rest is history.


With flash guitar playing becoming ever more popular in the mid to late sixties, guitarists like Eric Clapton, Peter Green and Jeff beck were still staying fairly close to their blues origins. Jimmy Page on the other hand was looking for a heavier sound. Although still drenched in the blues tradition with Zeppelin we got something much heavier indeed.

Everyone in Led Zeppelin was a virtuoso and everyone got their turn. Jimmy Page certainly didn’t waste his moments on the spotlight. Playing his trademark Les Paul with a violin bow was perhaps his best known and often satirised trick but he also played some strange acoustic instruments, altered tunings and the weird sounding therimin to create interesting sounds.

For me Jimmy’s biggest legacy is the huge collection of BIG riffs he created. Yes he was an accomplished lead player – the solos on “Since I been loving you”, and “Stairway to Heaven”, being a couple of my all time favourites, but those massive riffs underpinned by Bonzo Bonham’s powerhouse drumming do it for me.

Amongst the big sounding cock rock numbers Jimmy also gave us some seriously beautiful, instrumental and less in your face music: “Black Mountainside”, “Hang man”, Goin to California”, “Babe I’m Gonna Leave You” and many others show a different side to the band often credited with inventing heavy metal.

Guitar heroes - Jimmy page

Jimmy Page also had a great onstage persona. His dragon embroidered outfits and frantic stagecraft made him hard to take your eyes off and the occult mystique that Jimmy created around the band only added to the fascination. Truly a one off band and a one off guitarist.


I'm Dave Menzies a digital entrepreneur, photographer and guitarist. I live on the Argyll coast of Scotland. My partner and I write, record and produce our own music and videos in our home studio. I love to help individuals discover the lifestyle freedom offered by the digital world and guitarists to develop their own style.