500 Greatest Songs of All Time
Led Zeppelin, 'Kashmir'
Writers: John Bonham, Jimmy Page, Robert Plant
Released: March '75, Swan Song
While vacationing in southern Morocco, Plant conjured the lyrics for Led Zeppelin's most ambitious experiment, the centerpiece of 1975's Physical Graffiti. As he traveled the desert in northwest Africa, Plant envisioned himself driving straight through to Kashmir, on the India-China border. Meanwhile, back in the band's studio in rural England, Page and Bonham began riffing on an Arabic-sounding set of chords that would perfectly match Plant's desert vision. "The song was bigger than me," said Plant. "I was petrified. I was virtually in tears." John Paul Jones' string arrangement provided the crowning touch, ratcheting up the song's grandeur to stadium-rock proportion.
Appears on: Physical Graffiti (Atlantic)