Led Zeppelin III – You Can’t Make This Stuff Up …

October 5, 1970 …

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Peter Grant, John Bonham and Bill Graham

The whole ’77 Led Zeppelin tour was one that almost destroyed the band. It all came to a head at the Days of the Green Festival in Oakland on July 23 …

Led Zeppelin’s two-night residency at the large outdoor venue was being promoted by concert impresario Bill Graham, who they already had had some rough dealings with them in the past. The trouble began when Peter Grant’s 11-year-old son Warren tried to take down a dressing room sign bearing the band’s name and was assaulted by a member of Graham’s staff, Jim Matzorkis. This was a huge no-no. Peter Grant was a mountain of a man; a former professional wrestler who carried with him an extremely short temper.

Bonham saw the whole thing and went after the worker. Eventually, Grant himself, along with John Bindon, a member of Zeppelin’s crew and a well-known London gangster, cornered Matzorkis in a trailer and savagely beat him down, while Cole guarded the door, refusing to let anyone in. Obviously, Graham was furious about the whole thing, but with another show the next night still on the books, he signed a letter of indemnification, absolving the band from any wrongdoing in order to get them back on the stage. Nevertheless, charges were eventually filed against Grant, Bindon and Bonham who all later pled no contest and paid a small fine to make the whole thing disappear.

Corbin Reiff, Uproxx

Peter Grant, John Bonham and Bill Graham …

The whole ’77 Led Zeppelin tour was one that almost destroyed the band. It all came to a head at the Days of the Green Festival in Oakland on July 23 —

Led Zeppelin’s two-night residency at the large outdoor venue was being promoted by concert impresario Bill Graham, who they already had had some rough dealings with them in the past. The trouble began when Peter Grant’s 11-year-old son Warren tried to take down a dressing room sign bearing the band’s name and was assaulted by a member of Graham’s staff, Jim Matzorkis. This was a huge no-no. Peter Grant was a mountain of a man; a former professional wrestler who carried with him an extremely short temper.

Bonham saw the whole thing and went after the worker. Eventually, Grant himself, along with John Bindon, a member of Zeppelin’s crew and a well-known London gangster, cornered Matzorkis in a trailer and savagely beat him down, while Cole guarded the door, refusing to let anyone in. Obviously, Graham was furious about the whole thing, but with another show the next night still on the books, he signed a letter of indemnification, absolving the band from any wrongdoing in order to get them back on the stage. Nevertheless, charges were eventually filed against Grant, Bindon and Bonham who all later pled no contest and paid a small fine to make the whole thing disappear. ~ Corbin Reiff, Uproxx