Kashmir (song)

Kashmir (song)

Infobox Song
Name = Kashmir

Artist = Led Zeppelin
Album = Physical Graffiti
Released = February 24, 1975
track_no = 6
Recorded = 1974
Genre = Hard rock, heavy metal |
Length = 8:28
Label = Swan Song
Writer = Page, Plant, Bonham
Producer = Jimmy Page
prev = "Trampled Under Foot"
prev_no = 5
next = "In the Light"
next_no = 7
"Kashmir" is a song by the English rock band Led Zeppelin from their 1975 album "Physical Graffiti". It was written by Jimmy Page and Robert Plant (with contributions from John Bonham) over a period of three years, with the lyrics dating back to 1973.


"Kashmir" is considered to be one of Led Zeppelin's most successful songs; all four band members have agreed that it is to date one of their best musical achievements. [Led Zeppelin: The Definitive Biography by Ritchie Yorke] John Paul Jones suggested that it showcases all of the elements that made up the Led Zeppelin sound,Liner notes by Cameron Crowe for "The Complete Studio Recordings".] while Robert Plant cites it as his favorite Led Zeppelin song overall. In an interview he gave to "Rolling Stone" magazine in 1988, Plant stated that "Kashmir" was "the definitive Led Zeppelin song". He also said in an audio documentary that he loved this song not only because of its intensity but also because it was so intense without being considered "heavy metal", a label no one in the band liked.Fact|date=May 2008 During a television interview in January 2008, Plant named "Kashmir" as his first choice of all Led Zeppelin songs that he would perform, commenting "I'm most proud of that one". [ [http://www.tightbutloose.co.uk/main.html Untitled Document ] ] Page has indicated he thinks that the song is one of the band's better compositions.Dave Schulps, [http://www.iem.ac.ru/zeppelin/docs/interviews/page_77.trp Interview with Jimmy Page] , "Trouser Press", October 1977.]

The song centres around a signature chord progression guitar riff, which first appeared on Page's home-studio work tapes. It was initially a tuning, an extension of a guitar-cycle that Page had been working on for years. This was the same cycle that produced "Black Mountain Side," "White Summer" and the unreleased track, "Swan-song." As bass player and keyboardist John Paul Jones had been late for the recording sessions, Page used the time to work on the riff with drummer John Bonham. The two demoed it late in 1973.Dave Lewis (1994), "The Complete Guide to the Music of Led Zeppelin", Omnibus Press, ISBN 0-7119-3528-9.] Plant later added the middle section and in early 1974 Jones added all the string parts.

The guitar was played in an alternative guitar tuning: the strings are tuned to 'Open Dsus4' or DADGAD. Bonham's drums feature a phasing effect courtesy of an early Eventide phaser supplied by engineer Ron Nevison. [Guitar World, May 2005] Plant has stated that Bonham's drumming is the key to the song: "It was what he didn't do that made it work".

The song also includes many distinctive musical patterns of classical Moroccan, Indian and Middle Eastern music. Orchestral brass and strings with electric guitar and mellotron strings are used in the song. This is one of the few Zeppelin songs to use outside musicians. Session players were brought in for the string and horn sections. According to Jones, "the secret of successful keyboard string parts is to play only the parts that a real string section would play. That is, one line for the First Violins, one line for Second Violins, one for Violas, one for Cellos, one for Basses. Some divided parts [two or more notes to a line] are allowed, but keep them to a minimum. Think melodically". [ [http://www.geocities.com/jpjkeys/mellotron.html John Paul Jones' Mellotron ] ]

Originally called "Driving to Kashmir", the lyrics to the song were written by Plant in 1973 while driving from Goulimine to Tantan in the Sahara Desert, Morocco, immediately after Led Zeppelin's 1973 US Tour. This was despite the fact that the song is named for Kashmir, a region in the northernmost part of the Indian subcontinent.cite journal |last=Gilmore |first=Mikal |title=The Long Shadow of Led Zeppelin |journal=Rolling Stone |issue=1006 |date=August 10, 2006 |url=http://www.rollingstone.com/news/story/11027261/the_long_shadow_of_led_zeppelin/print |accessdate=2007-12-09 ] As Plant explained to rock journalist Cameron Crowe:

In an interview he gave to William S. Burroughs in 1975, Page mentioned that at the time the song was composed, none of the band members had even been to Kashmir.William S. Burroughs, [http://www.geocities.com/thoea2004/LedZeppelinRockMagic.html Rock Magic: Jimmy Page, Led Zeppelin, and a Search for the Elusive Stairway to Heaven] , "Crawdaddy!", June 1975.]

The song runs for 8:28, a length that radio stations usually consider too long to play. However, upon its release radio stations had no problem playing "Kashmir," especially after seeing "Stairway to Heaven", which was almost as long, do so well. (Original LP releases of "Physical Graffiti" incorrectly list the song's length as 9:41.)

"Kashmir" was played live at almost every Led Zeppelin concert from its debut in 1975. One live version, from Led Zeppelin's performance at Knebworth in 1979, is featured on disc 2 of the "Led Zeppelin DVD". This performance came from the band's first show at the venue, on 4 August. "Kashmir" was also performed at Led Zeppelin's reunion show at the O2 Arena, London on December 10, 2007.

Led Zeppelin expert Dave Lewis describes "Kashmir" as:

Other versions

*Following Bonham's death, the surviving members of Led Zeppelin performed "Kashmir" at the Atlantic Records 40th anniversary party in 1988, at Madison Square Garden in New York, with John's son Jason Bonham on drums.

*Page and Plant recorded another version in 1994, released on their album "". For this arrangement, they added an orchestra and Moroccan musicians.

*The song's undercurrent of Arabic rhythm led to a cover version by Ofra Haza, a song previously unreleased on her 1995 album "Queen in Exile", but later released in 2003 on the album "Greatest Hits - Volume 2". Another version was also recorded on the 1995 single "Mata Hari."

*Progressive rock band the Dixie Dregs have a live instrumental version of "Kashmir," with guitarist Steve Morse playing Robert Plant's vocal melody on guitar.

*Also Finnish Progressive Rock band Five Fifteen have recorded "Kashmir." It was released on Spinefarm HardCovers compilation in 2004.

* Jethro Tull performed the song live in concert in 2005-2006 tour, always with American violinist Lucia Micarelli as a guest star

*The tune was heavily sampled by Sean "Puffy" Combs (now known as Diddy) in his song "Come With Me" from the soundtrack to the movie "Godzilla" (1998), which featured live guitar parts from Tom Morello (who also used parts reminiscent of "Kashmir" in Rage Against The Machine's "Wake Up"). Jimmy Page, who endorsed Combs' adaptation, appears in the video and also played it with him on "Saturday Night Live". Snippets of the song were used in the X Factor series 3 and in the German TV show TV Total.

*An orchestral version of the song arranged by Jaz Coleman was recorded by the London Philharmonic Orchestra.

*Led Zeppelin parody cover band Dread Zeppelin recorded a version of this song on their album "Hot & Spicy Beanburger".

*Kevin Gilbert recorded a version for his album, "Thud".

*Canadian hip-hop/rap artist Saukrates played the electric violin in an instrumental version, both as the opening and closing songs on his tour as an opening act for Nelly Furtado's 2007 "Loose" tour.

*The classical crossover string quartet Bond covered it on their album entitled "Shine".

* The Group Cypress Hill sampled the song in their 2000 single "Rock Superstar" from their "Skull & Bones" album.

* Rapper Schoolly D used the guitar riff for his song "Signifying Rapper." He was later sued for the use, and the song no longer appears on any record.

*On his live album "Live A L'Olympia", Jeff Buckley played a snatch of Kashmir at high speed with a comic falsetto voice, saying "I used to play Led Zeppelin, you know it's a 33rpm thing, you play it at 45? It was cool."

*An acoustic version of "Kashmir" was recorded by the German-born Nouveau Flamenco guitarist Ottmar Liebert, featured in the "Best of Ottmar Liebert" compilation.

*Serbian hard rock band Cactus Jack released a cover on their 2004 album "Natur all".

*Since mid-2006, the wrestling company Total Nonstop Action Wrestling has used an instrumental remix of "Kashmir" for one of the top superstars of that company, Kevin Nash.

*Alice In Chains covered "Kashmir" with the Northwest Symphony Orchestra backing them in Seattle on November 2, 2007 at the Symphony Legacy [http://thesymphonyguild.org/legacy/|] benefit concert. Video of the performance can be found on [http://www.youtube.com/results?search_query=alice+in+chains+kashmir&search_type=&aq=f Youtube.com] . [ [http://www.youtube.com/results?search_query=alice+in+chains+kashmir&search_type=&aq=f Youtube.com] ]

*Composer Jennifer Hammond arranged the piece as a two-movement work for orchestra, choir, and voice, under the title "Ten Years Kashmir" for Corner Stone Cues' album, "Eton Path". [http://www.jenniferhammond.com]

*American hard rock band Alter Bridge has covered "Kashmir" in concert from time to time.


*"Led Zeppelin: Dazed and Confused: The Stories Behind Every Song", by Chris Welch, ISBN 1-56025-818-7
*"The Complete Guide to the Music of Led Zeppelin", by Dave Lewis, ISBN 0-7119-3528-9


External links

*Review: [http://www.allmusic.com/cg/amg.dll?p=amg&sql=33:abfyxxe5ld6e All Music Guide]
* [http://thishereboogie.com/kashmir-led-zeppelin/ 'Kashmir' song of the day on thishereboogie.com 8 October 2008]

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