It didn't get loud. The sound barely broke 80 dB. Luckily most of the audience was reverentially silent. Someone breathing too loud might have ruined the film. We had to eat popcorn quietly, which is always a bummer. But, we can't always get what we want ((c) Mick Jagger) and so we'll take what we get.
I still love the film, but I have to point out the following:
This man is not "Blind Gary Davis". He has a title. He's the Reverend Gary Davis.
This, presented as Jimmy's first guitar-love in the movie, is not a "strat" for goodness' sake. It's a Grazioso.
The video of this (nice video!) and these stills were not taken at Headley Grange during the sessions for Led Zeppelin IV in 1970. They were taken at Stargroves, Mick Jagger's home, in 1972.
(Copyright Kramer Archives Inc. - original appears at his website here)
Setting up Jimmy Page as bored with being a studio musician, fed up with playing "muzak" on sessions and zing! flash-cutting straight to Jimmy playing this astounding monster riff with the Yardbirds would have worked much better if this was Jimmy Page playing an astounding monster riff. It's actually Jimmy Page miming Jeff Beck's astounding monster riff for TV. Jeff had recently left the Yardies and Jimmy was left to promote the track.
Always loved this song. How could you dislike a song that begins "Sick at heart and lonely, deep in dark despair"?
It Might Get Loud has the color version of this clip, which is not available on YouTube. I have it somewhere on a VHS but not alas on my computer.
Once again I loved the difference between the brash American Jack White, the soft-spoken Irish gentleman Edge and erudite English gentleman Page. I liked the way the two blues players had so much in common and felt for poor Edge, rather left out of it, particularly slide playing, because it's just not his thing. I noticed for the first time that Jimmy can do everything Jack can do - feel the music deep down, play the blues and use every analog recording trick known to mankind, and can also do pretty much everything the Edge can do, in terms of production, bigged-up stadium sounds, and effects. I also get the feeling that Jimmy Page can play scales whereas the other two would boggle at the concept. I wonder if he gives lessons?
This time round it was clear how much Davis Guggenheim had cut the film to contrast the players. Each one would explain what he was rebelling against and then the film cuts to one of the others doing exactly that thing. It's strongest when the Edge eulogizes the beauty of technology and how he strives to find his 'voice' using it, which is friskily cross-cut with Jack White grumpily dumping on the entire concept of technological innovation. In the famous "build your own electric diddley-bow" scene (below), my partner said, "You don't need a guitar. All you need is a plank of wood, some baling wire, a coke bottle -- and a coil-wound magnet, electrical lead, amplifier, speaker and electricity." Yep.
As White writes a song on camera, plays and records it, we added, "And a microphone and a reel to reel tape recorder".
The best bit is still this- Jimmy just bursting with love for rock and roll music, laughing and playing air guitar, here.