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September 24, 2014

Series puts Led Zeppelin, Rolling Stones in the spotlight

Led Zeppelin album coverLed Zeppelin headlines this year’s performance and lecture series from the University’s Institute for Popular Music. The ’70s rock band’s debut album Led Zeppelin I, hit record stores 45 years ago, and was ranked 29th on a list by Rolling Stone magazine of the “top 500 albums of all time.”

“Many rock historians think of Led Zeppelin as one of the first heavy metal bands that helped define the genre, but it’s important to remember that their first album received some scathing reviews,” says John Covach, director of the Institute for Popular Music and chair of the Department of Music in Arts, Sciences & Engineering. “Many critics said the album wouldn’t survive and it then went on to become one of the most seminal records in the history of rock music.”

The series began Sept. 24 with a lecture by David Headlam, professor of music theory at the Eastman School, titled “What Remains After the Song: Led Zeppelin Inc.”

The series continues at 8 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 27, in Strong Auditorium with a concert featuring music department students and faculty, along with local Led Zeppelin tribute band, Out on the Tiles. The events are free and open to the general public.

In the spring, lectures and a concert will focus on the music of the Rolling Stones and the 50th anniversary of the group’s career-making hit “(I Can’t Get No) Satisfaction.”

That coincides with the launch of a free online course on The Music of the Rolling Stones taught by Covach and available Jan. 17 through Coursera.org.

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