The performance lineup for October’s Desert Trip concert extravaganza in Indio California is mind-boggling, but at least one legendary band is conspicuous by its absence: Led Zeppelin. We’re now hearing mumblings that they could have been there, if not for Robert Plant‘s steadfast refusal to consider any future Led Zeppelin reunions.
Writing in Showbiz411, Roger Friedman claims Plant turned down a $US14 million offer for the band to play at the festival, which also features Paul McCartney, The Rolling Stones, The Who, Bob Dylan, Neil Young and Roger Waters. It’s a staggering fee, but apparently Plant was stoic in his refusal.
Friedman says that Jimmy Page, meanwhile, pretty much lost it when he heard about Plant turning down the offer. He quotes an unnamed source as saying, “Jimmy went crazy. He really wanted to do it.”
While this all seems to be heard-it-through-the-grapevine stuff, it’s worth considering that Friedman is the one who originally revealed the existence of Desert Trip, and the $14 million offer is in the same neighborhood as the amounts the confirmed performers will be loading into Brinks trucks after their sets. Each of them is said to be pulling down $7 million per weekend (which ostensibly means that Paul McCartney is going to do a lot better than each member of The Stones).
Elsewhere on the Desert Trip front, Steely Dan‘s Donald Fagen dropped a few hints about future plans for the festival during a recent tête-à-tête with Los Angeles Times hacks, saying The Steelies had been contacted about being part of a future lineup. “There was some talk of us doing it next year,” said Fagen. “You know, a lot of these people are still very creative and still have the will and the charisma to make something like that successful. On some level for a musician, a job is a job, no matter what they call it. The Senior-delic Festival or whatever it’s supposed to be — we don’t care so much what it says on the sign out front.”