Led Zeppelin/the crunge

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Question
"wheres the confounded bridge"? ;)  

Answer
Hi Jessika!

I'm not sure if this is a serious question or not...but what the heck.  :oD

In popular music, a 'bridge' is a contrasting section which also prepares for the return of the original material section. Lyrically, the bridge is typically used to pause and reflect on the earlier portions of the song, or prepare the listener for the climax.


During Zeppelin's "The Crunge" Robert mockingly/sarcasticaly asks "Have you seen the bridge? & "Where's the confounded bridge?" as there is obviously no 'bridge' during this spontaneous performance.  All in good fun, The Crunge shows the humorous and improvisational side of Zep during their peak in 1972-73.  The song was recorded for the album Houses Of The Holy and Zep were in great spirits, hence loose "jams" like this.

(Here's more great info about the making of the song from author Chris Welch);

This song happened by accident - a happy accident, as far as Zeppelin were concerned, but they weren't prepared for the reaction when it hit sections of the public and critics.  It started with Bonham laying down a funky beat one day in the Stargroves studio - you can hear the engineer George Chkiantz asking Bonham if he's "ready to rock."  Then John Paul Jones joins in on bass and Page begins improvising an appropriate James Brown-style guitar rhythm.  Robert Plant adds vocals which encapsulate his feelings about favorite artists, from Otis Redding to Wilson Picket.  It was the sort of stuff they'd be playing if they were in a 'covers' band and not Led Zeppelin - playing just for beer money & kicks.

Being Led Zeppelin, they had to add their own slant to proceedings and came up with a dance groove that you couldn't dance to!  Plant adopts a hipster voice and swirling, interlocking riffs become ever-more confusing.  "Where's the bridge, where's the confounded bridge?" demands the singer, in best posh Long John Baldry tones.  If this stayed as a simple drums-and-bass work-out, Bonham and Jones might have invented a whole new genre 20 years ahead of their time. As it turned out, the whole thing was a bit of a spoof, which some took too seriously.

The band were so enamored by the idea of creating a new dance craze - The Crunge - that they considered putting some diagrammatic dance steps on the cover to explain how to cope with a beat crossed over from 'on' to 'off' every few bars.  But that would have been more difficult to produce than the seedy catalogue design on Led Zeppelin III.

Page played a Fender Stratocaster guitar on this track to get a suitable James Brown feel. You can hear him depressing a whammy bar at the end of each phrase.  As Page later said: "Bonzo started the groove on 'The Crunge'. Then JPJ started playing that descending bass line, and I just came in on the rhythm.  You can hear the fun we were having". Plant's recollection was similar: "'The Crunge' was amazing because Bonzo and I were just going into the studio and talking Black Country [a Midlands dialect] through the whole thing." The song was never included in the band's live set as a full-blown piece, although Page occasionally threw in a few bars of 'The Crunge' riff and Plant linked it with a real James Brown number during shows at the LA Forum in 1975.

Hope this helped!

Chris.





Hope this helped!

Chris.

Led Zeppelin

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Chris M. Zangara

Expertise

I`m not only a Zeppelin fanatic, but I have been collecting Zeppelin - including Jimmy Page and Robert Plant solo music & information - for over 27 years. I am truly a lover of Page/Plant music in & out of Zeppelin simply because of the honesty & integrity of it all. - I have been studying them for as long as I have been listening to Rock/Blues Music. Their interpretation of the blues is unlike any other. I look forward to any question and will answer the very best I can - as above all - I am just a fan like you! (Please understand my interest is in the music and people of REAL life; NOT in rumor or fantasy).

Experience

Lover of blues roots and rock music from early 1900's to today. Musician for 30 years, mostly study of guitar and recording engineering.

Publications
http://ledzeppelinconcertticket.net/zeppelin_concert_club_west.html (click the PINK ticket). Other miscellaneous articles from allexperts given to help anyone who asks. I love to share.

Education/Credentials
Sound mixing and engineering certification and self training.

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