2012 saw lots of Led Zeppelin activity, including the band’s inclusion in the Kennedy Center Honors ceremony in December. The night of that event, Robert Plant told Radio.com that in 2013 he might “just chill for a while.”

But one of his many collaborators, guitarist Buddy Miller, recently told Radio.com that Plant has at least one new album almost ready to go. And after two consecutive releases of (mostly) covers (2007’s Raising Sand with Alison Krauss and 2010’s Band Of Joy), this one will feature brand new songs. “We got together, we wrote a whole new batch of songs,” Miller says. “He wanted to write together, so I said, ‘Come over to the house, and let’s have Marco [Giovino], our drummer — he’s drumming with Jim [Lauderdale] and me — come over. So the three of us set up in my room, and I thought, ‘Y’know, if we’re gonna write, let me stick up some mics, and record it.’ I’m glad I did: it actually sounded really good. It’s exciting: I’d say it rocks harder than what we did before. We recorded most of it without a bass; I played baritone guitar, or six-string bass. It’s stripped down and tribal and rocking.”

So, just how close is it to being ready for release? That, of course, is up to Mr. Plant. “It’s just about done,” Miller says. “It’s missing a few background vocals, and him re-doing a few things. I think he wants to finish it. He’s real proud of the songs. But he’s Robert Plant, man. He can do whatever he wants to do!”

Miller and Jim Lauderdale, who is seated next to him in the above interview clip, have just released their first album as a duo, simply titled Buddy and Jim. Miller is an important part of the Americana scene, and has also worked with John Fogerty, Emmylou Harris, among others. Lauderdale, like Miller, is also a big part of the scene, and has written hits for country legends including George Strait, Vince Gill and Patty Loveless. On his solo records, Lauderdale often collaborates with Grateful Dead lyricist Robert Hunter.

Brian Ives, Radio.com 


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