Music Matters

He's the Chuck Norris of blues-based guitar rock: Don't miss tonight's Robert Plant concert

He's the Chuck Norris of blues-based guitar rock: Don't miss tonight's Robert Plant concert

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Robert Plant at the Cynthia Woods Mitchell Pavilion on Saturday

A life-long friend of mine who is usually quite knowledgeable about all things rock n' roll (although he does have an unnatural affection for Cher which, for a heterosexual man, is a bit disturbing) told me that he wasn't going to see Robert Plant in Texas because the Led Zeppelin classics featured in the show are now too "countri-fied."

I am normally a calm man who invites an intellectual back-'n-forth on the arts... but this unfettered attack on one of the greatest rock n' roll gods to ever walk the earth made me want to knee my good friend in groin.


Instead, I composed myself and wrote him this email. Later I realized my response was not only the reason my hopelessly demented ex-friend (just kiddin', dude) should go see the 61-year-old king of falsetto blues-rock emoting... it's the reason all rock fans in Houston should be there.

Dear Doofus, 

(OK, I added that salutation just now. The rest is pretty much word-for-word though. I swear.)

You shouldn't hate on Plant for changing the arrangements of the Zep songs. He doesn't play with Zep any more so it makes sense that he wouldn't play them the same way.

I think an artist who takes the times to make changes to past songs is far more interesting than an artist who keeps playing the same tired tunes the exact same way as if he's on auto-pilot.

Plant has always been an artist who performs his music in a manner consistent with the sounds that interest him at that moment.

Back with Zep, that was a very big, blues-based rock juggernaut. Then,, when he and (for Led Zeppelin guitarist Jimmy) Page reunited in the mid-90s,  the songs were heavily influenced by Indian and Middle Eastern music.

Lately, Plant has been recording with Alison Krauss (and winning armfuls of Grammys for their 2008 album "Raising Sand") so it only makes sense that there would be some country and bluegrass influence.

I love it. I think it keeps Plant interesting and (more importantly) keeps him interested in playing the music.

I have never been disappointed by a Robert Plant concert yet. It should be great.

Take care,


P.S. Calling Plant "countri-fied" makes you sound about as smart as a garden gnome, ya Cher lover!!!

To put it simply, Robert Plant is the Chuck Norris of blues-based guitar rock. If you want to see living rock n' roll history, you will not miss this show.

And don't give me any yak-yak about the ticket prices. Lawn seats are $9.37.

This is the first time Plant fans have been able to see him perform for less than $10 since the early days of Led Zeppelin over 40 years ago.


Robert Plant, opening act Betty Levette

8 p.m. at Cynthia Woods Mitchell Pavillion