WCSX Classic Cuts
Led Zeppelin: “Moby Dick”
The Hook: The late John Bonham’s drum solo was edited into the track — and the engineer says that’s okay.
Album: Led Zeppelin II
Writers: John Bonham, John Paul Jones and Jimmy Page
Stats: Not released as a single here or in the U.K., though it was in Italy and Singapore.
The Background: Eddie Kramer was producer Jimmy Page’s recording engineer on a number of Led Zeppelin’s albums. Kramer — who also worked with The Beatles, The Rolling Stones and, most famously, Jimi Hendrix — says he did a lot of tape splicing on Zeppelin tracks. He recalls John Bonham’s drum showcase, “Moby Dick,” as a prime example.
Recording engineer Eddie Kramer on his use of tape editing on the John Bonham showcase “Moby Dick.” OC :…really matters. :15
“The drum break on ‘Moby Dick’ was chopped together. I recorded the drum solo in another studio and then we spliced that in — the same thing with the guitar solo. The sound changes, but, yes. Was it rough? Of course. Does it work? Yeah. Who cares. In the history of things I don’t think it really matters.”