Led Zep Fool in the Rain

I recently posted a thread on “50 Ways to Leave Your Lover” mainly due to its iconic drum lick so thought I’d follow up with this one — another iconic drum part I really enjoyed learning. To be honest, when this song first came out I was disappointed and scratching my head cause it was so radically different from all their prior work. As I matured I realized it’s an awesome song, which is why I endeavored to eventually learn the drum part.  And it’s a shuffle for those not familiar with drum lingo but with an interesting twist with an open hi hat hit on the and of 1 that really gives it its iconic sound. I later learned that, for some reason, Led Zep never played this song live, and since I can’t find it live anywhere I’m starting to believe it and why I’m just copying the production version here. Still well worth listening to IMHO, but wondering if anyone has any insights as to why they never played this song live? Anyway…



Fool in the Rain is a great song.  I’ve always loved the drumming in it.  Didn’t know till not too long ago about the shuffle beat that’s in it.  Learned about it in Rosanna and Everybody Wants to Rule the World at the same time from a guy who plays the drums.  I’ve played some but I haven’t in a while.  I’ll have to check out Home at Last though since  I’ve never noticed it in that song.  It’s certainly a great rhythm.

Back to the OP original question about why they never played Fool in the Rain live.

If my research is correct, they released ITTOD in August 1979 (at a time when Page & Bonham were both struggling with addictions). Led Zeppelin only played 14 times after that release, starting June 17, 1980 in Dortmund, Germany until their last ever show on July 7 in Berlin.

John Bonham choked to death on his own vomit, a la Hendrix, September 25, 1980 and that was the end of the story.

Listening to Jimmy Page' hi-def remasters series makes it perfectly clear how essential Bonzo was to that band, and it was a heartbreaking end to an amazing group during a time when music trends had not been kind to the original classic-rock juggernauts.

It makes sense to me why Fool in the Rain was never played live.


Just following up on @hifiguy42 mention of Rosanna — made me go back to listen to it and found this live version I thought might be worth sharing…


BTW, can anyone think of a more stunning reinvention than Toto did with Toto IV? Fleetwood Mac did, but those were basically two different bands when Buckingham/Nicks came to town. Don’t even get me started on Jefferson Starship. Yuck.  You could argue Steely Dan made a big transformation going from Aja to Gaucho where they went from a melody-based sound to more of a groove-driven thing — totally different sound post Aja. Anyway…

On another thread I brought up “Home at Last” off Steely Dan’s Aja album as another example of a shuffle, which in this case is the Purdie shuffle. Here’s a nice little exposeé with Donald and Walter as to how it got incorporated into the song in case you haven’t seen it — pretty interesting I think…