With the exception of The Beatles, there is no rock band more legendary than Led Zeppelin. When the band reunited in 2007 for a landmark show in London—featuring Jason Bonham on drums for his late father John—it was received so well that Bonham, Jimmy Page and John Paul Jones were interested in doing additional shows. Since Robert Plant wouldn’t commit to doing such, they auditioned various vocalists for a possible new project.
Obviously that project never materialized, but Slash singer Myles Kennedy has fond memories of his experience auditioning. Kennedy, who said he met Bonham during the filming of 2001 Mark Wahlberg comedy Rock Star, recalled how it went down in a new interview with 95.5 KLOS’s “New & Approved” radio show (via Blabbermouth):
“I get this text from Jason, and he’s, like, ‘Can you call me?’ And I was touring at the time, and I was in Germany; we just played a festival over in Germany. And I thought, ‘Oh, maybe he has a friend over here who wants to come to a show, get tickets or something.’ So I buzzed him. It was at night. And [Jason] was just basically, ‘Look, I’m here in London. Would you be interested in coming over this weekend? I’m jamming with some friends.’ And I’m, like, ‘I’m on tour. Just out of curiosity, who are your friends?’ So when he lays out who his friends are, I’m just, like, ‘Okay. Yeah, I think we can make that work.’”
Kennedy said he flew to London and jammed with the trio for a day, which led to more jam sessions.
“It went well. And then they reached out and asked if I’d be interested in coming back a few months later, and we jammed some more — I think four more days or something. It was the stuff dreams are made of. If someone would have told me when I was a kid listening to ‘In Through The Out Door’ or [laughs] any of those records, like, ‘You’re gonna be in a room jamming these songs with those guys someday’ … It was just such a trip.”
Kennedy spends his time these days singing with Guns N’ Roses guitarist Slash so you might think that he doesn’t get starstruck. In the case of Led Zeppelin, not so much:
“But there was one moment where I had a bit of a Chris Farley moment. You know when [comedian] Chris Farley, when he’s interviewing Paul McCartney [on ‘Saturday Night Live’ in 1993] and there’s that moment when he kind of smacks himself on the head, like, ‘How could I have been so stupid and said that?’ I had one of those moments. I’d been in the room for a few hours and we were taking a little break. And I just had to say it, ’cause I’m such a fan. I just looked at them both and thanked them and I was, like, ‘You guys basically wrote the blueprint for everything that guys like us…’ I just had to get it out. And they just kind of looked at me. They were very sweet about it. But it was one of those things where I was, like, ‘I probably shouldn’t have said that.’ But it was great.”
In 2017, Kennedy said that no video of the sessions exists and that he hopes any audio is never shared because he was sick during the sessions. Still, what an interesting collaboration that could’ve been…