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Carolina Theatre Moment

In 1977 I saw Led Zeppelin in concert at the Greensboro Coliseum. It was one of the greatest experiences of my life. Flash forward to fall 2009. The place: The Carolina Theatre. The band: Zoso, a Led Zeppelin cover band complete with appropriate hair and outfits to recreate the glory days of these rock gods. This was my first experience with this historic venue and it seemed appropriate that it was hosting historic music. When we arrived at the theater I was immediately impressed with the look of the building. Its architecture was that of an ancient Greek temple and that also seemed appropriate for a night of homage to these immortals of rock. Once inside it was apparent that this was a place of art and refinement, a place where even the music of rock and roll could be elevated. Large columns and arches ring the theater and mythic statues frame the stage. The crowd was small but jovial and was composed of what seemed to be rock concert veterans. We had barely sat down when suddenly the big, red curtain that hid the stage parted and the onslaught of “Whole Lotta Love” blasted forth. It was clear from the first seconds of this hallowed song that this was no ordinary bar band. From the crooning, yelping and screeching of Robert Plant’s double to the guitar pyrotechnics of the guy who was channeling Jimmy Page, these musicians were the reincarnation of Led Zeppelin. When they played “Moby Dick” with its gargantuan drum solo I truly felt the presence of John Bonham. They even played “No Quarter,” complete with eerie green lights and fog machine. They even looked like their counterparts complete with the iconic embroidered wizard suit of Jimmy Page. I left the theater with the strains of “Stairway to Heaven” reverberating in my ears, mind and heart, vowing to return.

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