Wednesday, March 05, 2008

XM Radio Blows it with Zep Channel

So, I have had months to listen off and on the XM Radio's Led Zeppelin channel (it's channel 59, if you really want to know). I blogged about the concept when I first found out about it, here.

What a great idea, on paper. Months of Zeppelin, non-stop. All the album tracks, augmented by live stuff, interviews and even solo outings.

But I have to say that XM did not deliver. We mostly got the studio albums, a scant smattering of already released live stuff and mostly Robert Plant solo. But I'd say 95 percent of what I heard were songs from the studio albums. I could do the same damn thing if I created my own iTunes Zep playlist and set my iPod on shuffle.

I was in the Bay Area this week and stumbled onto a classic rock station's "Get the Led Out" 30 minute segment and they got it right. I heard a version of the Jimmy Page solo piece White Summer, and Bonham (Jason Bonham's band from the late 80s) doing "In The Evening" live. I had never heard THAT before, and it was rockin.

There you go. That is what XM should have done. Bootleg live tracks. Deep solo cuts, like stuff from Jimmy Page Outrider or the DeathWish 2 soundtrack. How about The Firm? What about the Honeydrippers (OK, maybe it was fine to leave that out)? John Paul Jones has done soundtrack work.

They just shot for the lowest common denominator and now I am REALLY sick of D'yer Maker and Traveling Riverside Blues, which seemed to run twice and hour, each.

Satellite radio usually fulfils its mission of going where terrestrial radio can't or won't go. But in this case it was a pale imitation. Opportunity lost, for sure.

1 comment:

Dr. John said...

What did you expect from the corporate rock world?