Do you think Robert Plant ever Googles himself? I bet he doesn’t because he’s Robert Plant. He’s quietly aware that he’s magnificent and has no need to click through to the 25,675th page of search results to find some random loon banging on, ROBERT PLANT IS MAGNIFICENT. But I’m going to do it anyway.
Last night I was re-watching his set from Glastonbury 2014 and kept thinking that he’s ace in so many ways. So I made a list.
- He was in Led Zeppelin, one of the greatest bands of all time, but he doesn’t go on about it. I also saw the documentary Robert Plant: By Myself earlier this year, where talks about their massive success and how great that time was, but he’s kinda modest and matter of fact, and it’s clear that he’s had this whole other life since then.
- He never rests on his laurels. He’s always evolving, dabbling with new sounds and genres, and collaborating with new people.
- He doesn’t strut around like it’s still 1970 with the bare chest and unfathomably snug jeans. He is where he is, and looks totally cool with that. As you would be if you were Robert Plant.
- That Glastonbury show is full of classic Zeppelin tunes because he knows that’s what the people want. He’s not one of those folks that get uptight about playing the old hits…
- … but he makes them new. He and his incredible band cooked up cool versions that mix “African Trance, Psychedelia, and 21st century warped dance beats”. It wasn’t at all cringe-worthy and at no point do you think WHERE’S JIMMY?
- (It was a different experience seeing Tom Jones at the Belladrum festival last Friday night. He did It’s Not Unusual with a quasi-reggae beat! And the famous brass intro was nowhere to be heard! That’s the best bloody bit, TOM!)
- His band is full of brilliant musicians and they feel like a band. He steps aside and listens appreciatively during their solos, letting them have their moment.
- He looks like he’s having fun the whole time and still sings like he means it. Not phoning it in for the dosh.
- In one song he lets the guitarist’s son wander up to the front of the stage to dance around. How many stars would put their ego aside for that? He’s Robert Plant, he can share, nae bother!
He’s the perfect blueprint for rock stars on how to grow older gracefully. Stay curious, never stop learning and evolving, be generous to others, and keep your mane in good nick… all while retaining your original magic and charisma. He’s at the top of my fantasy Famous Folks To Have Over For Dinner list.
No, wait… what the hell would you cook for Robert Plant? That’s too much pressure!