The best ever Led Zeppelin songs (Legends Slot)

For the fourth playlist in my Legends Slot series (inspired by Glastonbury’s Legends Slot), I decided it was about time that I featured a band. So far we’ve had Elton John, Kylie Minogue and Aretha Franklin. All completely different genres of music but all solo artists. We’ve had pop rock, pop and soul so far…and now I’m bringing you some more heavy rock in the form of Led Zeppelin. This is the fourth post in my ongoing music blog series the Legends Slot. For each post in the series, I listen to ALL of the studio albums of a specific legendary musician/band. Then I put together a playlist of what I think are their best songs, along with some information about the artist. I also give an insight into my favourite tracks, as well as new discoveries that I found through my listening.

Led Zeppelin: A Brief History

Formed in 1968, Led Zeppelin was an English rock band made up of Robert Plant (vocals), Jimmy Page (guitar), John Paul Jones (bass/piano) and John Bonham (drums). Considered one of the most successful and influential rock bands of all time, their sound was heavy and guitar-driven, but their influences came from all different genres of music. Page wrote most of Led Zeppelin’s music while Plant generally supplied the lyrics. Throughout their twelve-year career as a band, Led Zeppelin saw each of their albums in the top 10 of the Billboard album chart, eight consecutively reaching no.1. In 1995 they were even inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. The museum itself described the band as being equally as influential during the 1970s as The Beatles were in the 1960s. A pretty huge statement!

Led Zeppelin III

‘Led Zeppelin III’ (1970) – Led Zeppelin

Led Zeppelin II

‘Led Zeppelin II’ (1969) – Led Zeppelin

Led Zeppelin: John Bonham’s Death

Compared to the other legends I’ve featured, you might’ve noticed that theirs was a fairly short career. This was due to John Bonham’s death in 1980, which was found as accidental from asphyxiation from vomit. After Bonham’s death, the remaining members of the band made the decision to cancel their upcoming tour and disband as a group. They released their ninth album, Coda, after John Bonham’s death. The album was made up of unused tracks from their career and released as a compilation. Since then, they’ve reunited on a handful of occasions throughout the ’80s, ’90s and ’00s, with John Bonham’s son, Jason, performing in his place at some shows.

30 best Led Zeppelin songs (Legends Slot)

In my late teens, I actually went through a bit of a Led Zeppelin phase – however, I have to admit that I haven’t really listened to them all that much since then. Since they only have eight studio albums (as well as Coda, which is considered a compilation), I had the time to listen to each song a couple of times, rather than just once through. By listening to the tracks a few times I found that I was able to get more of an idea of my favourites from each album. Rather than making a decision based on one listen, I could really take the time to decide if they were going in the playlist. Eight studio albums and a compilation later, I picked out 30 tracks.

A few of my favourites

Black Dog has been a favourite song of mine by Led Zep since I first listened to them years ago. I remember watching Glastonbury and seeing Miley Cyrus’ set on the Sunday afternoon. Her performance of Black Dog absolutely blew my mind. What a track. Annoyingly, I can’t find the full clip of her performing it at Glasto but you can have a quick glimpse at the performance in this video (skip to 1:30) or listen to the performance here. Honestly, it’s compulsory listening.

Led Zeppelin IV

‘Led Zeppelin IV’ (1971) – Led Zeppelin

Led Zeppelin I

‘Led Zeppelin I’ (1969) – Led Zeppelin

We’ve also of course got the classics like Whole Lotta Love, Immigrant Song and Stairway to Heaven which I’m sure you’ve come across before. A personal favourite of mine is Babe I’m Gonna Leave You from their first album. But what I didn’t know was that the track was actually originally written as a folk song by Anne Bredon, in the late 1950s. Page and Plant adapted the original and made it completely Led Zeppelin’s own, adding their classic hard rock edge to it.

New discoveries

Since I’ve listened to all of Led Zeppelin’s songs before, I guess technically there aren’t any new discoveries. However, it’s been years since I listened to all of their tracks so, most of them do feel completely new to me. For the sake of this feature, I’m going to call them rediscovered tracks, rather than completely new ones. Kicking off the rediscoveries is Living Loving Maid (She’s Just A Woman) from Led Zeppelin II. I looked into this track a bit and, after a little research, found out that it was actually never performed live by Led Zep because it was guitarist Jimmy Page’s least favourite Led Zeppelin song! It seems as if overall it’s got some seriously mixed reviews from fans and critics but, personally, it’s a favourite. Another rediscovery was Rock and Roll from Led Zeppelin IV. I remember this being a favourite of mine back in 2016, but after years of not listening to them, it just seemed to completely slip my mind.

How do my thoughts stack up against the critics’?

Out of the legends that I’ve featured so far in this series, Led Zeppelin was the one that I wanted to read the most about. In terms of what the critics had to say over the years that is. When it comes to picking the songs for each of these playlists I never research any other publications’ opinions on the songs until after I’ve made the playlists. As I don’t want other opinions to alter my own. So, after I put together my Led Zep playlist, I did a little digging into what the critics had to say. It seemed that Led Zeppelin IV is the overall winner for the critics. Given that it brought us Black Dog AND Stairway to Heaven it’s hardly surprising. But I have to say my favourite is actually Physical Graffiti.

It’s not that Physical Graffiti has any particularly stand-out tracks or anything that’s made me love it so much. In fact, looking back at the album now, the only song that I remember in particular is Kashmir. So why is it my favourite? I think it’s just one of those albums that has its biggest impact when you listen to it in full. So overall it just feels like the best one.

What are some of your favourite Led Zeppelin songs? Are you with me in thinking that Living Loving Maid (She’s Just A Woman) is an absolute tune? I want to know!

Female Original

38 thoughts on “The best ever Led Zeppelin songs (Legends Slot)

  1. I always look forward to seeing who you’re going to feature next in this series! Glad to see a band pop up – I definitely listen to more bands than artists. I’ll be honest, I don’t know much about Led Zeppelin or listen to them. But of course I know a few of their songs!

    1. I’ve always been more of a band person myself too. I’ll definitely be featuring a few more bands throughout the series – there are so many great ones! x

  2. So interesting because I also went through a Led Zeppelin phase when I was about 17 and probably haven’t listened to more than about a handful of songs since. I love how this series is helping you to discover and rediscover songs/ artists. I think you hit the nail on the head with what you said about Physical Graffiti, I love it when your favourite album from a band isn’t anything that’s spectacular on the surface because you just connect with it. I find they’re usually the ones that stay with me more than the ones that are full of hits x


    1. Oh how cool! I feel like a lot of us went through a late-teens Led Zep phase haha. Yeah that’s definitely the case with Physical Graffiti – such a great album! x

  3. I’ve actually not listened to very much Led Zeppelin before so this was really interesting to read! Thankyou for sharing x

    1. They’re definitely one of those bands that everyone has heard of but not necessarily listened to before. Glad you enjoyed reading 🙂 x

    1. Hopefully you’ll discover a couple of tracks that you like! There’s a really great variation of songs on the playlist 🙂 x

    1. Glad you enjoyed reading! It can definitely be difficult to find other people with similar music tastes x

  4. This is such an interesting concept for a blog post and really quite fascinating. John Bonham’s death was something I can remember my parents talking about when I was younger and never really registering why it actually was until now. loved the post x

    1. Thank you! The playlists have been really interesting for me to put together as well – it’s fascinating to read about each legendary artist/bands backstory 🙂 x

  5. I must admit, I have never really listened to much Led Zeplin, apart from the obvious ones. I also never knew much about the band, but this post has given me a lot of information on them! I still don’t know if they will be 100% to my taste, but it will be nice to have a listen to some of your favourites to check them out!

    Thanks for sharing!

    Aimsy xoxo

    1. I think that’s the case with a lot of the ‘legends’ I’ll be featuring in this series! Most people will be familiar with them but not necessarily have listened to their music before. They won’t be to everyone’s taste but I’d definitely recommend giving some of their hits a listen. Hopefully you’ll enjoy a couple of them! x

  6. Ooh, Bonham did not die a pleasant death! But I love that you featured a band this time round; after watching Thor: Ragnorak, I feel in love with Immigrant Song and now it is a permanent part of my exercise playlist. 🙂

    1. Oh cool! Led Zep would be a great addition to a workout playlist. I’ll definitely be featuring more bands in this series 🙂 x

  7. I always seem their band merch and really liked it because it has such a classic rocker look. But I never purchase because I didn’t know much about the band. I appreciate you sharing your thoughts and the playlist. I know the band more than I thought, the songs sound quite familiar. Thanks for sharing, I just discovered a new band to check out!
    Natonya |

    1. There’s some really cool Led Zeppelin designs out there on clothing. Glad I could help you learn a bit more about them! x

    1. Thank you so much! I think it’s important to appreciate where music has come from and take time to listen to the classics. That’s what I’m trying to do with this series 🙂 x

  8. I neeeed to listen to Led Zeppelin already!!! I’ve been enjoying expanding my music tastes so far this year, and LZ has always sounded appealing to me, but I need to properly give their music a listen. Thanks for sharing Faye!! xx

    1. For sure!! They’re a great band to add to your list – perfect for expanding your music knowledge 🙂 x

  9. Led Zeppelin is such a classic! I remember listing to their music back in my high school days. I think all of us went through that phase in high school haha! Thanks for sharing some of these great throwback songs!! They are an icon!

    Nancy ♥

  10. I always enjoy reading this series, it’s so interesting to learn more about different bands and artists. I have probably heard loads of Led Zeppelin songs, although the only one I recognize by name is Stairway to Heaven, what a tune! 😀 This has inspired me to go and listen to a few tracks over on Spotify and rock out on a Sunday afternoon. Thanks for sharing your music knowledge with us! <3 xx

    Bexa |

    1. It’s so lovely to know that you’re enjoying the series! I’m sure you’ll recognise a few others once you hear them 🙂 x

  11. What a great interesting post! I love how much detail you go into for the music series you have on your blog. I am not sure I have listen to this music before! Thank you for sharing x

    1. Thank you! It’s a lot of fun doing the research every month so it’s great to see that you’re enjoying it 🙂 x

  12. The members of Led Zeppelin all had such an amazing level of talent on an individual level. It was very interesting to see how they took elements from Black music and mixed it with rock-n-roll to come up with their unique sound. The only LZ album I have now is “Houses of the Holy” — but I definite will work on adding more albums into my collection!

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