Led Zeppelin III is the third studio album by Led Zeppelin, released in 1970. The record is best known for the songs "Immigrant Song" and "Since I've Been Loving You".
At the time it got such bad reviews that the band members decided to give their next album from the following year, Led Zeppelin IV no indication of what their band name, album title or serial number were on the cover. That way critics and fans could judge the record on their own merits, without automatically being prejudiced in disliking it because it was made by them.
- "Immigrant Song" (2:25)
- "Friends" (3:55)
- "Celebration Day" (3:29)
- "Since I've Been Loving You" (7:25)
- "Out On The Tiles" (4:04)
- "Gallows Pole" (4:58)
- "Tangerine" (3:12)
- "That's The Way" (5:38)
- "Bron Y-Aur Stomp" (4:20)
- "Hats Off To (Roy) Harper" (3:41)
Bonus Disc (Deluxe Edition):
- "The Immigrant Song (Alternate Mix)" (2:25)
- "Friends (Backing Track)" (3:43)
- "Celebration Day (Alternate Mix)" (3:18)
- "Since I've Been Loving You (Rough Mix)" (7:16)
- "Bathroom Sound" (4:00)
- "Gallows Pole (Rough Mix)" (5:17)
- "That's The Way (Rough Mix)" (5:22)
- "Jennings Farm Blues" (5:54)
- "Key To The Highway/Trouble In Mind" (4:05)
- John Bonham - drums, percussion, vocals, tambourine
- John Paul Jones - bass, organ, synthesizer, mandolin, double bass, bass pedals
- Jimmy Page - guitar, vocals, banjo, dulcimer, bass
- Robert Plant - lead vocals, harmonica
Since I've Been Troping You:
- Canine Companion: Plant's lyrics to "Bron-Y-Aur Stomp" were inspired by his dog Strider:So of one thing I am sure,
It's a friendship so pure,
Angels singing all around My dog is so fine
- Careful with That Axe: "Since I've Been Loving You"LOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOORD!
- Cover Version: "Gallows Pole" and "Hats Off To (Roy) Harper" are both traditional songs.
- "Tangerine" also dates back to Page's days with The Yardbirds, and an early version of the song under the name "Knowing That I'm Losing You" was recorded during the band's final recording sessions. However, it has never been officially released.
- Design Student's Orgasm: The surreal collage cover is designed by Zacron.
- Downer Ending: The singer in "Gallows Pole" is on the scaffold, hoping to be rescued and/or bribe his way out of hanging. He's not able to do so.
- Epic Rocking: The 7:25 "Since I've Been Loving You".
- Face on the Cover: Small pictures of the band members are shown on the album cover, which is a
- Fading into the Next Song: "Friends" flows into "Celebration Day".
- Four More Measures and Leave The Recording Running: "Tangerine" starts off with Page strumming a few random chords, then counting off.
- Green Aesop: "That's The Way"And yesterday I saw you standing by the river,And weren't those tears that filled your eyes,And all the fish that lay in dirty water dying,Had they got you hypnotized?And yesterday I saw you kissing tiny flowers,But all that lives is born to die.And so I say to you that nothing really matters,And all you do is stand and cry.
- Horny Vikings: "Immigrant Song" and "Since I've Been Loving You" have lyrical references to the Viking invasions of England and Norse Mythology and were inspired by their performance in Iceland at the time.The hammer of the gods will drive our ships to new lands'...) Fight the horde, sing and cry, Valhalla I am coming
- Jerkass: The executioner in "Gallows Pole" accepts monetary and sexual bribes from a condemned prisoner's family and then goes on to execute him anyway. Notably, this is a change from the traditional ending of the song, in which the prisoner was released at the end. Could be considered An Aesop against capital punishment, although it's not clear if the band intended it this way.
- Metal Scream: During "Immigrant Song". May be the Ur-Example.
- Murder Ballad: "Hats Off to (Roy) Harper".
- New Sound Album: Despite still being heavy rock "Led Zeppelin III" was notable because for having a different, slower musical approach than their previous albums. "That's The Way", for instance, is an acoustic song. "Bron Y-Aur Stomp" features the use of castagnets and "Hats Off To Roy Harper" has a weird effect on Plant's voice.
- Non-Appearing Title: The album title and the titles of the songs "Immigrant Song", "Out on the Tiles", "Bron-Y-Aur Stomp", "Hats Off To (Roy) Harper"
- One-Word Title: "Friends", "Tangerine".
- Public Execution: "Gallows Pole" is based on the traditional "The Maid Freed From The Gallows", where a public executioner is bribed into not hanging certain victims. In Led Zeppelin's version, however, he still goes ahead with the execution.But now I laugh and pull so hard to see you swinging on the Gallows Pole
- Self-Titled Album and Title by Number: Commonly referred to as "Led Zeppelin III".
Do what thou wilt shall be the whole of the Law
- First pressings of "Immigrant Song" in the USA as a single had a quote from Aleister Crowley.
- "Immigrant Song" was used in The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo (2011), but in a cover by Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross featuring Karen O.
- "Hats Off to Roy Harper" is a tribute to folk singer Roy Harper and also has some lyrics lifted from blues singer Bukka White.
- The Show Must Go Wrong: "Celebration Day" originally used one of John Bonham's drum tracks in the intro, but an engineer accidentally erased the recording. To compensate the synthesizer drone from the end of "Friends" was used to fill up the gap.
- The Something Song: "Immigrant Song".
- Spell My Name with an "S": They have two songs named after the Bron-Yr-Aur cottage where they recorded. One of them gets it right ("Bron-Yr-Aur"), but the other spells it wrong ("Bron-Y-Aur Stomp").
- Studio Chatter: "Hats Off to (Roy) Harper" starts off with some audio chatter.