Jimmy Page and Alex Lifeson: Mutual Admiration Society

bush_fAlex met his guitar idol Jimmy Page in 1998, when Page and Robert Plant were briefly reunited for a series of shows, one of which was in Toronto. Alex was home at the time and had been invited backstage to say hello, so he brought a copy of Victor, his 1996 solo album, to give to Page. “I was freaking out Victorand my hands were shaking,” Alex has said in interviews about that meeting.

But the admiration was mutual. Page has said that he has long been an admirer of Rush. That’s saying something when you consider how much disdain he held for a lot of the hard-rock bands that tried to look and sound like Led Zeppelin. First among the bands singled out for Page’s disdain over the years is Def Leppard, but Page really didn’t like any of the so-called hair bands. There was one exception: Whitesnake, which was fronted by David Coverdale. If that name sounds familiar, it’s because Page partnered with Coverdale after Led Zeppelin’s breakup for a series of albums under the name Coverdale-Page.

GodsIn his 1985 unauthorized biography of Led Zeppelin, Hammer of the Gods, Stephen Davis talks about Page’s disdain for a lot of the rock bands in the 1980s. In that passage, Davis makes it clear he’s not an unbiased writer, calling Rush the “dreaded” band from Canada. But Page said he liked Rush. Davis writes, “Asked which Metal bands he admired, Page singled out the dreaded Canadian group Rush for particular praise.”

Ross Halfin

Photo: Ross Halfin

Alex met Page again in 2013, when Alex was awarded the Spirit of Prog in that year’s Classic Rock Awards. The two were photographed together, along with Tony Iommi of Black Sabbath, by photographer Ross Halfin.

Alex has nothing but good things to say about Page, whom he called gracious and charming. Those aren’t the words you hear Led Zeppelin using when they talk about Stephen Davis and his book. The band has criticized the book as inaccurate and misleading and based on warmed-over rumors and the distorted reflections of the band’s former road manager.

That may be, but it got at least one thing right: Page, easily the most important hard-rock guitar innovator of all time, calls himself a Rush fan.

 More This and That.

~ by rvkeeper on February 17, 2015.

4 Responses to “Jimmy Page and Alex Lifeson: Mutual Admiration Society”

  1. These two are my biggest influences as a guitar player. Thank you Alex Lifeson and Jimmy Page!

  2. Reblogged this on Progarchy: Pointing toward Proghalla.

  3. Paul Coverdale ?????????

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