Contact Us

34 Years Ago: Led Zeppelin Break Up

Led Zeppelin
LedZeppelin.com

On Dec. 4, 1980, approximately two months after the tragic death of drummer John Bonham, Led Zeppelin made the difficult decision to break up.

The group had been preparing to to commence a tour in the fall of 1980 when Bonham passed away. After a day of heavy drinking, he had gone to bed and died via asphyxiation from his own vomit. The death was ruled accidental.

Meanwhile, the group was faced with the decision of what to do without such a key piece to their lineup. The pending tour was immediately canceled, but that didn’t stop the rumors from swirling about a number of famous drummers that could potentially come on board to take over for the late musician. However, the surviving members decided that it was not right to tamper with their legacy by bringing someone else in to play drums.

In a statement, the band simply and elegantly explained their decision:

“We wish it to be known, that the loss of our dear friend and the deep respect we have for his family, together with the deep sense of undivided harmony felt by ourselves and our manager, have led us to decide that we could not continue as we were.”

In the years since, Robert Plant, Jimmy Page and John Paul Jones have occasionally worked and recorded together, but reunions of all three have been few and far between. They took the stage together to perform at Live Aid in 1985, welcoming Phil Collins and the Power Station’s Tony Thompson on drums. They reunited again in 1988 at the Atlantic Records 40th Anniversary concert with Bonham’s son, Jason, taking his turn behind the kit.

The band’s most recent reunion came in 2007 at an Ahmet Ertegun tribute show held at London’s 02 Arena. The performance was dubbed a huge success, but once again the band resisted the temptation for a highly lucrative reunion show. However, fans that weren’t able to attend on that special night can now enjoy the ‘Celebration Day‘ live album and DVD, which was filmed at the event.

You Think You Know Led Zeppelin?

See the Yearbook Photos of Robert Plant + Other Rock Stars

Next: Top 10 Led Zeppelin Heartbreak Songs

More from US 103

Best of the Web

Leave a Comment

It appears that you already have an account created within our VIP network of sites on . To keep your points and personal information safe, we need to verify that it's really you. To activate your account, please confirm your password. When you have confirmed your password, you will be able to log in through Facebook on both sites.

Forgot your password?

*Please note that your points, prizes and activities will not be shared between programs within our VIP network.

It appears that you already have an account on this site associated with . To connect your existing account with your Facebook account, just click on the account activation button below. You will maintain your existing profile and VIP program points. After you do this, you will be able to always log in to http://us103.com using your Facebook account.

*Please note that your points, prizes and activities will not be shared between programs within our VIP network.

Please fill out the information below to help us provide you a better experience.

Register on US 103.1 Classic Rock Radio quickly by logging in with your Facebook account. It's just as secure, and no password to remember!

Not a Member? Sign Up Here

Please solve this simple math problem to prove that you are a real person.

Register on US 103.1 Classic Rock Radio quickly by logging in with your Facebook account. It's just as secure, and no password to remember!