When Jimmy Page Met the Robert Plant Doppelganger David Coverdale

One of the more bizarre collaborations in recent history had a short shelf life

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Despite owning a career almost any living guitarist would kill for, Jimmy Page has voluntarily put himself into situations that hindsight would surely erase. And we’re not talking about him “borrowing” generously from others (Homer Simpson once called him “one of the greatest thieves of American black music to ever walk the Earth”); we’re not talking about him scoring the soundtrack to Deathwish II; we’re not talking about his brief plans to reunite Led Zeppelin with someone other than Robert Plant; and we’re not even talking about him teaming with Diddy to massacre “Kashmir.” Ok, maybe we are talking a bit about that last one.

What we’re really referencing is Page’s decision to team with David Coverdale for an eponymous Coverdale/Page album and subsequent tour. This was 1993 and Coverdale was 17 years removed from Deep Purple and, quite frankly, past his expiration date as the leader of the hair-metal outfit Whitesnake. Any clout that Coverdale once maybe had was long gone, so Page’s decision to glom on to the one guy forever accused of jacking Plant’s flow was dubious at best. Hell, even Coverdale got top billing!

The album—which, incidentally, debuted at #5 on the Billboard charts—featured song titles (“Shake My Tree,” “Feeling Hot” and “Easy Does It”) that likely had Bonzo rolling over his grave, but the tour of Japan in support of the album was worse—so much worse. In addition to performing songs off Coverdale/Page, the tandem performed songs from both Zeppelin’s and Whitesnake’s catalog. For Coverdale, it was a credibility builder but, for Page, a colossal embarrassment.

The tour never made it past Japan and, fortunately, this was pre-YouTube when footage wasn’t readily available (you can see some below). We can’t help but wonder had Plant seen Coverdale desecrate “Whole Lotta Love” or, perhaps worse, Page play lead on “Here I Go Again” that there may not have been a Jimmy Page and Robert Plant collaboration just a few years later.

8 Comments

  1. Terri

    April 13, 2016 at 8:33 pm

    Oh, stop hating on Coverdale. This was an awesome album. Is that why Robert Plant, the hypocrite, played “Shake My Tree” with Page during one of their tours?

    • Shannon Colby

      April 13, 2016 at 9:20 pm

      I loved the Coverdale/Page album. At Jimmy was out there doing what he loved.

    • Tiara MacWatt

      April 14, 2016 at 4:28 am

      Exactly.
      It’s quite an embarrassment to whoever De idea once again to spit on Coverdale. When reading this shite if you’re a bit informed you know that everything said is imo deliberately false information. This was a very successful album and DC was in brilliant voice.He still sells lots of records and sells out big venues on world tours.But must be because he’s totally not up to it.

    • Ade

      April 14, 2016 at 5:40 am

      Who is that idiot Terri ?? Critically aclaimed album that really is fantastic. Some of these so called music critics are just ignorant assholes that know nothing about music

  2. Ade

    April 14, 2016 at 5:36 am

    Stop talking complete rot and go learn about music.This album was critcally aclaimed you total idiot.

  3. James S Cameron

    April 14, 2016 at 5:53 pm

    Gosh, everyone that’s commented on this so far, seems to agree that the only real “embarrassment” here is, (should be), that of the clueless-critic who wrote this “shmear” review, not the Coverdale/Page collaboration. ‘Best forgotten’? – I think not.

    How about this quote of a ‘totally opposite reviewer’s-viewpoint’, from the far more reputable “Gibson.com”, (ahem!): “Page’s guitar work was invigorating, from the sprightly 12-string acoustic motifs of “Shake My Tree” to the Zep-esque riffing of “Waiting on You,” “Hot Tonight, ”and “Pride and Joy.” There were quite a few slower, blues-rock tracks that were equally as strong and the whole was formidable. The production is smooth and definitely of its time, but this was undoubtedly Page’s most significant work, {meaning, up to 1993}, since Led Zeppelin disbanded.”
    (<–All rights reserved. Only using this quote to get my point across.)

    I think they got it right in 'their' review. In my opinion, it's very easy to tell a good critic from a bad one, in that, a good critic does not allow their "opinion" to play 'too great' a part in doing any critique. Sure, it helps if you "like the music" that you're writing about, but your job is to give a fair and unbiased review of the material overall. Not just to bash mercilessly if you don't like it.

    The album itself went immediately gold.. then platinum(!); so to say it was a bad mistake, especially now, decades after-the-fact, is simply lame. (In MY opinion; and from the looks of things, my opinion is a much more publicly-shared one, than this "blastecho's" is.)

  4. Carol

    April 15, 2016 at 11:36 pm

    Oh God, I couldn’t listen to this plagerist.
    I can’t stand seeing someone riding on the coat tsils of an established star.
    Who is this guy?

    Thankfully not heard much of him.

  5. bare1000

    April 24, 2016 at 7:19 pm

    Okay I will admit I’ve never listened to the Coverdale/Page album, but I did just listen to the their live version of “Kashmir” just now and my ears are bleeding. Page sounded as goos as ever but can any of you honestly listen to that and then say, “nailed it”? That was HORRIBLE!

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