From The Ventures to Stadium Rock: Western Rock Bands Touring Japan 1962 – 1972 – An Introduction to Bootlegging in Japan in the 1970’s – featuring Pink Floyd’s “Osaka Triple” and a comprehensive overview of Led Zeppelin ‘Live In Japan ’71/’72’ original vinyl Bootlegs

When a promoter booked half of surf/instrumental group The Ventures (the budget was too small to also send their bass and drum players, which would have to be supplied by local hired guns) in 1962 for an Asian tour supporting pop crooners Bobby Vee and Jo Ann Campbell , it seemed like an insignificant decision. However, for modern pop culture in Japan, it was the first spark leading to a significant bonfire. Japanese youth embraced these new culture gap-free sounds produced by electric guitars and the “group sounds” movement was born.

The following link provides an in depth look at the Ventures’ Japan success story:

I believe one music phenomenon we have to thank the Ventures for is the “Live in Japan” album, Their first one was released in 1965:

 Ventures in Japan


This was soon followed by similar live albums by artists such as the Spotniks, the Shadows, Miles Davis and a number of MOR artists. I believe it would not be too far fetched to say that the first bootlegs made in Japan were efforts to provide an unofficial ‘Live In Japan’ souvenir album when the record companies had no plans to do so.

Looking at further influences by bands from the UK & USA, the first vocal group to have visited Japan were the Liverpool Five (none of the members were actually from Liverpool, which probably underlines how much of a influencing force the Beatles had become by then), who had won a contest to represent the UK during a series of concerts in Tokyo during the 1964 Olympic Games. None of the Japanese bands who performed as part of this “World Surfing Festival” had a vocalist. “Playing to sell-out crowds of over 8,000 at the Korakuen Ice Palace and other venues, the lead singers’ vocals caused a stir among musicians in the audience and was almost certainly responsible for the decision of several of the new eleki bands that sprung up in the next few months to begin recruiting vocalists and move towards a sound and approach that would increasingly diverge from that of the Ventures.”

The Animals were the next and first internationally well known band to tour Japan, on the strength of their first world wide success “House of the Rising Sun” and coinciding with the release of their second album ANIMAL TRACKS in May of 1965.

Animals Japan 65Animals 1965 Japan Tour Book

Next up, were of course the Beatles in the summer of 1966, with enough ticket applications received to fill the Budokan 21 times. As far as I can tell, the next group to play at the Budokan were the Monkees in the fall of 1968. Then, it appears we had a bit of a gap until the new breed of UK & US blues rock bands perfected their acts.

Monkees Budokan


A Woodstock like large festival to be named “Fuji Odyssey” never got off the ground series of mini-festivals called “Rock Carnival” started in December of 1970, presenting local and Western artists (John Mayall participated in the first one). Part of the tour schedule for Western artists for 1971 follows.

February 1971: Blood, Sweat and Tears

March ’71: B.B. King [Rock Carnival # 3]

 BB King Japan 71


April/May ’71: Free [Rock Carnival # 4]

 Free Japan 71

From an eye witness account: “This event started at midnight in the now defunct Sankei Hall, Ohtemachi. It was a festival style, all night event where many Japanese bands were to play. I scarcely remember most of the bands’ names but I remember that the unit of Narumo Shigeru and Tsunoda Hiro was the final act. After many bands had sequentially played, it was about the time when the first train was leaving, Free appeared. That was nothing but the coolest.

Each of their sounds and each of their motions were rock itself. When its thirty-minute show was over (or that might be more than sixty minutes, but it felt like thirty minutes for me), the rotating stage turned (you seldom see this these days but there used to be at that time) and the day’s main act, Narumo Shigeru and Tsunoda Hiro came out. However, enthusiastic applause for Free never stopped. The stage turned again and Free appeared, the whole audience was driven into a state of feverish excitement. Although I had gone to see some concerts before this, let me say, this was my first experience of the real rock concert.

Nine songs were issued years later on the Japanese ‘fake Idle Mind bootleg’ Reminiscence (ca. 1977), making it the earliest audience tape recorded in Japan and pressed on a Japanese rock bootleg.

 Free Reminiscence tanFree Reminiscence tan b

June ’71: Chicago’s first Japan Tour

July ’71: Grand Funk Railroad [Rock Carnival # 6]

GFR Tokyo 71GFR Tokyo 71Composite of two photos taken by Koh Hasebe at the Tokyo concert


The superstars of 1971 – I believe they were the second band to play at Shea Stadium after the Beatles – had already outgrown the Budokan and were the first to play at a baseball stadium in a line up with three other bands in front of a crowd of 35,000. Unfortunately, summer is the rainy season in Japan and it poured on concert night. The same conditions repeated, when Emerson, Lake & Palmer played Korakuen stadium the following year together with Free. An audience recording from the Osaka Stadium performance exists but was not pressed on bootleg.

I am talking about the band that was on everyone’s lips in its heyday, the marvelous Grand Funk Railroad (G.F.R.), and their legendary Tokyo concert of 1971. I was excited to hear of G.F.R.’s impending arrival in the summer of 1971 in Tokyo. I was a young man of twenty-two years of age at that time. Back then, there weren’t any large halls expect the Budokan, and I was concerned where and how they would play with their huge amount of equipment, and finally, they chose the sacred home of Japanese baseball, Korakuen stadium. Since even Budokan was very large for us those days, it was even more exciting having the concert in the much larger baseball stadium.

The concert was scheduled to start on Saturday, July 17th, 1971, at 5pm. I turned up around 2 o’clock, and hung around seeing many dirty yet cool young people, and I felt an electrifying atmosphere in the stadium.
When the time came and I entered the stadium, I was amazed to see what looked like every speaker in Japan stacked in large walls around the massive stage, which was set up near second base on the baseball field. And before the stage was a big board plastered with “GRAND FUNK RAILROAD” in huge letters.
The concert began, and after long forgotten Japanese bands warmed the crowd up, the time for G.F.R. to hit the stage finally arrived. All of a sudden the sky became dark and a strong wind blew the G.F.R. board off the stage. However, with the sound of an explosion of a reckless running railroad train on the big screen on the stage, the band appeared to the cheers of their adoring fans. And they played up a storm, like the hard rain and strong winds that accompanied them.


August ’71: Hakone Aphrodite Festival (Pink Floyd’s first visit to Japan on a bill with Buffy St, Marie the 1910 Fruit Gum Co. and Strawberry Path, The Mops,  Happenings Four, Yosuke Yamashita and the Masahiko Sato Trio. They also made time for a performance at Osaka’s Festival Hall.

All of these were all taped and an ambitious compilation bootleg was produced in 1972 or later– Pink Floyd (KP339-KP344), also known as Osaka/Tokyo Triple and PINK FLOYD JAPAN 70-71′, ‘LIVE IN TOKYO/OSAKA 1972, one of the most valuable early Japanese bootlegs ever and the first ever Japanese 3 LP bootleg (and pretty much for the rest of the decade as I cannot recall another until the 80’s when they were pretty common). This used to be one of the most valuable Japanese bootlegs with auction prices reaching $2,000 and 2000 Euros.

Pink Floyd Osaka TripleTwo tracks from from the first day at Hakone were presented on this set.

In depth information can be found here:

Hakone Aphro 71

Hakone is to the southwest of Tokyo and it takes 2 hours from Tokyo by car. Many people visit there and enjoy playing golf and tennis, and sightseeing . The open-air concert entitled ”71 Hakone Aphrodite’ was held at the open space called ‘Seikei Gakuen Jofudai ‘ by Lake Ashi on Aug.6 & 7, 1971. It is said that 30,000 people gathered there. Pink Floyd appeared in the evening (6:00 pm) on Aug.6, 1971 and played ‘Atom Heart Mother’, ‘Green is the colour’, ‘Careful With That Axe, Eugene’, ‘Echoes’, ‘Cymbaline’ and ‘A saucerful Of Secrets’.”

There were two stages, the main and the sub, and the audience was moving between the two for their favorite bands. The place was filled with an easy feeling. Of course, our target was Pink Floyd. And we thought Pink Floyd might be last, after sunset. So we hung around and enjoyed nature’s euphoria, drinking beer and looking on while bands played. Finally, 1910 Fruit Gum Company’s show was over, and it got dark enough; the time for Pink Floyd had come. Then, suddenly, dense fog began to form. I’m not sure that it was usual in that area or not. And surprisingly, it became nature’s miraculous stage effects. In that psychedelic atmosphere (you may say it was too good to be true. But it was true), their first, and maybe their best performance in Japan had started. Listening to their song “Echoes” in the fog was the coolest of the cool!

R Wright Japan 72

Pink Floyd Japan 72

Pink Floyd Osaka 71Ticket for the concert at Osaka Festival Hall. A further two songs from this performance were selected for the OSAKA TRIPLE package.


September ’71: Led Zeppelin’s first triumphant Japan tour inspired a number of Japanese vinyl bootlegs and possibly may be credited with kickstarting the local bootleg industry:

 Led Zeppelin Super-Stars! 3


The rare SUPER-STARS! double, a copy of which recently sold for $1,500, as reported on this blog. Released between the very end of 1971 and very early 1973, if I had to make a guess and a candidate for one of the earliest Japanese rock bootlegs [I would love for someone with greater knowledge on the topic to correct me or contribute].

No label
Side 1: Immigrant Song/Heartbreaker medley incl. Bouree, Feelin’ Groovy/Since I’ve Been Loving You/Out On The Tiles Intro-Black Dog/What Is And What Should Never Be
Side 2: Dazed And Confused medley incl. I Got A Feeling
Side 3: Celebration Day/That’s The Way/Going To California/Tangerine
Side 4: Whole Lotta Love medley incl. Boogie Chillun, Cocaine, Rave On, Your Time Is Gonna Come, I’m A Man, The Hunter, Hello Mary Lou, Pretty Woman, How Many More Times
Recording: Good mono audience. Runs a bit fast. Source: Nippon Budokan, Tokyo, Japan Sept. 24 ’71.



Recording Includes: [ supposed to be not recorded: Band Announcements ] Immigrant Song [ 1:57 – cut ] >> Heartbreaker (<< Bouree, Feelin’ Groovy..) [ 6:53 – cut ], Since I’ve Been Loving You [ 7:27 ], Out On The Tiles Intro [ 0:12 ] >> Black Dog [ 5:27 ], [ cut ], Dazed And Confused (<< I Got A Feeling..) [ 24:03 ], [ cut ], Celebration Day [ 4:56 ], That’s The Way [ 6:30 ], Going To California [ 7:08 ], Tangerine [ 3:45 ], [ cut ], What Is And What Should Never Be [ 4:29 ], [ cut ], Instrumental Intro [ 0:59 ] >> Whole Lotta Love (<< Boogie Chillun, Cocaine, Rave On, Your Time Is Gonna Come, I’m A Man, The Hunter, Hello Mary Lou, [ cut ], Pretty Woman [ cut ], How Many More Times..) [ 25:43 ].
Source: Incomplete good 2nd audience recording. Nearly 107 minutes.
Details: Again, the sound is muffled, somewhat mushy in places and distant. This one seems to be also bit boomy here and there. However, this source is much more bright. The real problem here is lots of crackle from vinyl and original tape – it overloads the intimate atmosphere of recording. Furthermore, on the original LP What Is And What Should Never Be is placed right after Black Dog.  Bootleg LP Reference source: Super Stars (Led Zeppelin In Tokyo) (no label)



Led Zeppelin In Concert 660 track list

The similarly extremely rare IN CONCERT on the OG label, which I would place with a 1973 production date. A copy recently failed to attract a single bid (starting bid had been GBP 500).

Led Zeppelin In Concert 660 lbl

Side 1: Since I’ve Been Loving You*/Out On The Tiles Intro-Black Dog*/Stairway To Heaven*
Side 2: Going To California*/Whole Lotta Love (*)/(an excerpt from Whole Lotta Love medley) The Hunter, Hello Mary Lou, Pretty Woman, How Many More Times**/Communication Breakdown medley incl. Hey Hey What Can I Do?**
Recording: Fair-Good mono audience. Runs fast. Source: (*)Nippon Budokan, Tokyo, Japan Sept. 23 ’71 except (**)Nippon Budokan, Tokyo, Japan Sept. 24 ’71. Comments: Japanese bootleg. Very rare.



Recording Includes: Since I’ve Been Loving You [ 7:05 ], [ cut ], Out On The Tiles Intro [ 0:12 ] >> Black Dog [ 5:21 ], [ cut ], Stairway To Heaven [ 8:55 ], [ cut ], Going To California [ 6:05 ], [ cut ], Whole Lotta Love [ 1:08 – cut ].
Source: Incomplete fair to good 1st audience recording. Near 31 minutes.
Details: A significantly distant and somewhat flat sounding source, with some hiss throughout. Bootleg LP Reference source: IN CONCERT

Led Zepelin Tokyo 71 lg


Recording Includes: (an excerpt from Whole Lotta Love medley): The Hunter [ cut ] >> Hello Mary Lou >> Pretty Woman >> How Many More Times >> Whole Lotta Love [ 11:50 – cut ], [ cut ], Communication Breakdown (<< Hey Hey What Can I Do?..) [ 5:33 – cut ].
Source: Incomplete fair to good 1st audience recording. 17 minutes.
Details: Muffled and distant, not clear at all. Bootleg LP Reference source: IN CONCERT




Led Zeppelin Live In Japan 1971 OG-799Led Zeppelin Live Japan 1971 a d1

In 1974, the OG label debuted the “on stage mic’d” source, with emphasis on John Bonham, often mistaken for a soundboard.

Side 1: Immigrant Song/Heartbreaker medley incl. Feelin’ Groovy, Bouree/Since I’ve Been Loving You
Side 2: Tangerine/Moby Dick
Side 3: Stairway To Heaven/Celebration Day
Side 4: You Shook Me/Whole Lotta Love/Communication Breakdown medley incl. Just A Little Bit/Organ Solo/Thank You
Comments: There were at least four different pressings/versions of this double album (original red labels, as shown here. Orange labels with a different design and lettering. Black labels and the UFO version).

This source is discussed here:


October ’71: Elton John

EJ Tokyo 71

A soundboard from his October 1st show later surfaced.



February 1972: CCR


March 1972: Pink Floyd return for their first proper tour and play 6 concerts. The following descriptions are taken from

Taiikukan, Tokyo, Japan, March 6   “Two recordings exist, a partial FM source featuring a large portion of the Dark Side suite and a complete audience recording…”

Taiikukan, Tokyo, Japan, March 7   “There are three sources for this concert in varying degrees of sound quality…”

Festival Hall, Osaka, Japan, March 8   “The first gig in Osaka has been widely bootlegged, and at least four  sources exits for this concert.” The bulk of the OSAKA TRIPLE vinyl set was taken from one of these sources.

Festival Hall, Osaka, Japan, March 9   “There is one main source for the second night in Osaka…”


Pinkk Floyd Osaka triple 2Pink Floyd Osaka tapePinkk Floyd Osaka triple 3b3Pink Floyd Osaka triple deta

Side 1: Cymbaline *, A Saucerful Of Secrets **                                                                                                   Side 2: Fat Old Sun *, Atom Heart Mother
Side 3: One Of These Days, Careful With That Axe Eugene                                                                                 Side 4: Echoes
Side 5: Speak To Me, Breathe, On The Run, Time, Breathe (Reprise), The Great Gig In The Sky                        Side 6: Money, Us And Them, Any Colour You Like, Brain Damage, Eclipse

Festival Hall, Osaka, Japan – March 8th, 1972 plus * Festival Hall, Osaka, Japan – August 9th, 1971,                 ** Festival Hall, Osaka, Japan – March 9th, 1972

” …the first tape of this show to surface on LP in the early seventies.  This is a straight transfer of the classic three LP Japanese set Pink Floyd (KP339-KP344).  It was originally released with three individual plain white covers and two posters placed inside a brown paper bag with sticker. 

Later variations were released under the name Pink Floyd Japan 70-71, Live In Tokyo / Osaka 1972 and Tokyo Triple.  The bulk of the material comes from the March 8th, 1972 Osaka show, but “A Saucerful Of Secrets” is from the Osaka show on March 9th, 1972 and “Cymbaline” and “Fat Old Sun” date from their first tour of Japan on August 9th, 1971, also in Osaka. The sound quality is, compared to the others, very muffled and dull and barely enjoyable.” [review by]


Furitsu Taiikukan Hall, Kyoto, Japan, March 10   “There is one source for the Kyoto show…”

Nakanoshima Sports Center, Sapporo, Hokkaido, Japan, March 13   “The final gig in Japan for 16 years has four know recordings that circulate in varying degrees of completeness…”


D Gilmoure Japan 72


 June ’72: Chicago return for their second tour of Japan in support of Chicago V. All of their Osaka performances are taped by CBS/Sony for a Japan only live album. Recorded by hooking up two eight track machines, the final result surpasses the official Live At Carnegie Hall


 July ’72: ELP supported by Free play Korakuen Stadium in Tokyo and at Osaka’s Koshien Stadium

ELP Osaka ticketELP Japan 72

Three songs from Free’s opening set are included on the aforementioned Reminiscences album:

Free Reminiscence

 While one track by the headliner’s was issued on the surprisingly easy to find OG release 21st CENTURY SCHIZOID ROCK OG-630

ELP 21st S R

“Total duration: 34:28  A very fragmented album of an average audience recording.
Track 1 – 4 is from an unknown show, most likely between April and June 1971.
One can hear Keith Emerson talking about ‘a new album’ (Tarkus) which will be released – he says – in August; ‘maybe earlier’. The last track – Lucky Man – is from the Korakuen Stadium / Japan – show in July 1972.
Some copies of this album included two bonus tracks with Free, who supported ELP on the 1972 Japan-tour.
Alt. track list: 1.TAKE A PEBBLE (ELP) 2.KNIFE EDGE (ELP) 3.ALL RIGHT NOW (FREE) 4.FIRE AND WATER (FREE) 5.BARBARIAN (ELP) 6.GONG (ELP) Matrix number 707 (print) ”

ELP 21st S R b


August ’72: Deep Purple play three shows (rescheduled from May). The band reluctantly agrees to have the shows recorded for a ‘live in Japan only’ album. Famous last words…


October’72: Led Zeppelin return for their second and last ever Japan tour to play six concerts. None of them reach the critical acclaim of their first visit.

This is also reflected in the Japanese bootlegs that this tour yielded or rather the immediate lack of. The OG label presented this unnumbered but visually appealing one disc release of the Osaka October 9th show around 1975 as one of their last releases:


Led Zeppelin LIVE Osaka IILed Zeppelin LIVE Osaka bLZ live lbl 1LZ live lbl 2

Recording Includes: [ supposed to be not recorded: Band Announcements ] Rock And Roll [ 3:38 ], Out On The Tiles Intro [ 0:13 ] >> Black Dog [ 5:01 ], Over The Hills And Far Away [ 5:49 ], Misty Mountain Hop [ 4:35 ] >> Since I’ve Been Loving You [ 7:23 ], Dancing Days [ 3:26 ], The Song Remains The Same [ 5:15 ] >> The Rain Song [ 7:24 ], [ cut ], Dazed And Confused (<< Down By The River, The Crunge..) [ 26:57 ], Stairway To Heaven [ 9:23 ], Moby Dick [ 15:43 ], [ cut ], Whole Lotta Love (<< Everybody Needs Somebody To Love, Something’s Got A Hold On Me, (I Can’t Get No) Satisfaction, Leave My Woman Alone, Lawdy Miss Clawdy, Heartbreak Hotel, Wear My Ring Around Your Neck, Going Down Slow, The Shape I’m In..) [ 28:57 – cut ], [ cut ], Stand By Me [ 6:14 ], Immigrant Song [ 3:36 ].
Source: Incomplete very good 1st audience recording. 143 minutes.
Details: This is clear recording. Page’s guitar is fairly prominent in this source but it doesn’t overwhelm the other instruments. There is some hiss though. [all detailed comments taken from]

“Bron-Y-Aur Stomp” was taken from a different concert recording: OCTOBER 4 – OSAKA FESTIVAL HALL, OSAKA, JAPAN (WEDNESDAY, 6pm), thus the following might apply: “1st source, taped by Yoshiaki Sumitomo (speed issues in few places – he also recorded Osaka October 4th, 1972 1st source)”

This release was copied by Vicky Vinyl ca. ’76/’77 and is much better known as:

Led Zep MBH lg



Ca. 1979 a further tape was acquired in Japan, this time from the start of the tour at the Budokan. The following are vinyl releases containing the first source:


Led Zep L@Budokan Remember

Red labels – first or second issue? Apologies for the bad quality, this is the only one I have found.

Led Zep Budokan RemLed Zep Budokan Rem bLed Zep Budokan Rem lbl


“Recording Includes: Band Announcements, Rock And Roll [ 3:37 ], Over The Hills And Far Away [ 5:22 ], Out On The Tiles Intro [ 0:12 ] >> Black Dog [ 4:41 ], [ cut ], Misty Mountain Hop [ 4:32 ] >> Since I’ve Been Loving You [ 7:07 ], Dancing Days [ 3:20 ], Bron-Yr-Aur Stomp [ 4:23 ], The Song Remains The Same [ 5:14 ] >> The Rain Song [ 7:11 ], [ cut ], Dazed And Confused (<< The Crunge..) [ 20:55 ], [ cut ], Stairway To Heaven [ 8:59 ], [ cut ], Whole Lotta Love (<< Just A Little Bit, Everybody Needs Somebody To Love, Boogie Chillun, My Baby Left Me, Killing Floor, I Can’t Quit You Baby..) [ 21:17 ], [ cut ], Heartbreaker (<< Bouree..) [ 6:00 ], [ cut ], Immigrant Song [ 3:46 ] >> Communication Breakdown [ 4:17 ], [ cut ], Band Announcements [ cut ].
Source: Almost complete very good to excellent 1st audience recording. 126 minutes.
Details: The tape contains rather little hiss and is recorded very close to the stage with all the instruments well balanced and with genuine clarity. The only drawback of this source is the bass line, which sounds a bit mushed.”

Side 1: Rock & Roll/Over The Hills & Far Away/Out On The Tiles Intro-Black Dog/Misty Mountain Hop/Since I’ve Been Loving You (26:15)
Side 2: Dancing Days/Bron-Yr-Aur Stomp/The Song Remains The Same/Stairway To Heaven (26:48)
Side 3: Dazed & Confused medley incl. The Crunge (21:18)
Side 4: Whole Lotta Love medley incl. Just A Little Bit, Everybody Needs Somebody To Love, Boogie Chillun, My Baby Left Me, Killing Floor, I Can’t Quit You Baby/Heartbreaker medley incl. Bouree (27:11)
Recording: Very good stereo audience. Source: Nippon Budokan, Tokyo, Japan Oct. 2 ’72. Comments: Japanese bootleg. Deluxe black & white cover.

Led Zep TokyoLed Zep Tokyo white detailLed Zep Tokyo white detail 2Led Zep Tokyo white back

Ken’s Toasted Records copied the Remember title in the US, around 1980 – but got the date wrong. It was reissued on white PVC and also included in the massive FINAL OPTION box:

Led Zep Final Option box sideLIVE IN TOKYO 10/2/72
Recording: Very good stereo audience. Comments: US bootleg. A reissue of LIVE AT THE BUDOKAN (Remember N5518). Deluxe color cover. Some copies on colored vinyl. Also available in the mid-1980’s on US label Amazing Stork Records (if you are wondering why this has “The Rain Song”, see below for the material from the 3rd of October also included) with some copies pressed on colored vinyl. Part of THE FINAL OPTION box set.

Led Zep Tokyo Amaz StLed Zep Tokyo Amaz St b


Led Zep Live@Budokan NOG 72

Led Zep Live@Budokan NOG 72 lbl

A very rare record, the New OG Label edition, which unlike the Remember version includes “The Rain Song” (the discogs entry, however, omits this song).  The cover art quotes LIVE IN JAPAN 1971 OG-798/799, it seems.

Led Zep Live@Budokan 72 ins

NEW OG 1149-50 A-B
Recording: Very good stereo audience. Comments: Same material as LIVE AT THE BUDOKAN (Remember N5518) but in a different order plus The Rain Song. Comes with an article about the concert from a Japanese magazine.

Matrix / Runout (Side A machine stamped): OG 1149 A 〄 a 19223 (A) 1H
    Matrix / Runout (Side B machine stamped): OG 1149 B 〄 a 19224 (B) 1H
    Matrix / Runout (Side C machine stamped): OG 1150 A 〄 a 19225 (A) 1H
    Matrix / Runout (Side D machine stamped): OG 1150 B 〄 a 19226 (B) 2J



Source 2:

“Recording Includes: Stairway To Heaven [ 8:08 – cut ], [ cut ], Whole Lotta Love (<< Just A Little Bit, Everybody Needs Somebody To Love, Boogie Chillun, My baby Left Me, Killing Floor, I Can’t Quit You Baby..) [ 21:06 ], [ cut ], Heartbreaker (<< Bouree..) [ 5:57 ], [ cut ], Immigrant Song [ 3:31 ] >> Communication Breakdown [ 4:27 ].
Recording: Incomplete very good 2nd audience recording. Almost 45 minutes.
Details: A good defined and clear tape taped not far away from the stage. No signs of distortion here. However recording suffers a bit from bass frequencies which dominating throughout, [oversaturating] rather significantly whole content.

Led Zep Live in Tokyo LLXLed Zep Live in Tokyo LLX b

A release on the LLX ‘label’ (the same folks who had brought the world SUPER-STARS! ). When was this issued? The discogs entry claims 1973 but I doubt this. It also says there that every known copy has a different cover slick.  

LLX 1233-4-5-6  Matrix / Runout (all sides machine stamped): LLX 1233/4/5/6 IN
Side 1: Rock & Roll (3:16)*/Out On The Tiles Intro-Black Dog (4:14)*/Over The Hills & Far Away (5:42)*/Misty Mountain Hop (4:48)*/Since I’ve Been Loving You (8:10)*
Side 2: Dancing Days (3:31)*/Bron-Yr-Aur Stomp (4:39)*/The Song Remains The Same (5:42)*/The Rain Song (7:42)*
Side 3: Whole Lotta Love medley incl. Just A Little Bit, Everybody Needs Somebody To Love, Boogie Chillun, My Baby Left Me, Killing Floor, I Can’t Quit You Baby (20:28)**
Side 4: Stairway To Heaven (8:22)* & **/The Ocean (4:16)*/Heartbreaker medley incl. Bouree (6:05)**/Immigrant Song (3:56)**/Communication Breakdown (4:12)**
Recording: Very good mono audience. Source: (*)Nippon Budokan, Tokyo, Japan Oct. 3 ’72 except (**)Nippon Budokan, Tokyo, Japan Oct. 2 ’72. Comments: Rare Japanese bootleg. Stairway To Heaven is spliced with two different sources.


Fifth source:

Recording Includes: Band Announcements, Rock And Roll, Over The Hills And Far Away, Out On The Tiles Intro >> Black Dog, Misty Mountain Hop >> Since I’ve Been Loving You, Dancing Days, Bron-Yr-Aur Stomp, The Song Remains The Same >> The Rain Song, Dazed And Confused (<< The Crunge..), Stairway To Heaven, Whole Lotta Love (<< Just A Little Bit, Everybody Needs Somebody To Love, Boogie Chillun, My Baby Left Me, Killing Floor, I Can’t Quit You Baby..), Heartbreaker (<< Bouree..), Immigrant Song >> Communication Breakdown.
Source: Almost complete very good 5th audience recording. 128 minutes.
Details: This audience source is a bit distant and muddy, with the balance and the sound clearing a bit in time. Plant’s voice sound rough on occasions.

Led Zep Panties 2Led Zep Panty insertsLed Zep Panty

Side 1: Tangerine (3:43)*/Stairway To Heaven (9:04)*/Celebration Day (4:50)*/What Is And What Should Never Be (4:17)*/Moby Dick (1:30)*
Side 2: That’s The Way (6:29)*/Going To California (7:24)*/Over The Hills And Far Away (6:04)**
Side 3: Rock ‘N’ Roll (3:34)**/Stairway To Heaven (8:50)**/Whole Lotta Love (conclusion 2:20)**
Side 4: Immigrant Song (3:55)***/Communication Breakdown (4:17)***/The Song Remains The Same (5:12)***/The Rain Song (7:15)***
Recording: (*) (**)Good to Very good mono; (***)Very good mono. Audience. Source: (*)Hiroshima-ken Taiikukan, Hiroshima, Japan Sept. 27 ’71; (**)Osaka Festival Hall, Osaka, Japan Oct. 4 ’72; (***)Nippon Budokan, Tokyo, Japan Oct. 2 ’72. Comments: Brown record mailer with rubber stamp and obi. Contains a large black & white poster, postcard and a real female rubber stamped panty. Because of this quite often this set is called “Panty” box. What’s very interesting, at least some copies also have bonus tape with another source for Hiroshima date (actually, it is source no. 4). Rare.

Digger seems to have been a label from the 1980’s specializing in Led Zeppelin releases; a forerunner to the CD bootleg labels who carried on this obsession from the 1990’s. See below for the Osaka source from October 4th.



Recording Includes: [ supposed to be not recorded: Band Announcements ] Rock And Roll [ 3:04 ], Out On The Tiles Intro [ 0:12 ] >> Black Dog [ 4:53 ], Over The Hills And Far Away [ 5:33 ], Misty Mountain Hop [ 4:50 ] >> Since I’ve Been Loving You [ 7:30 ], [ cut ], Dancing Days [ 3:25 ], Bron-Yr-Aur Stomp [ 4:33 ], [ cut ], The Song Remains The Same [ 5:19 ] >> The Rain Song [ 7:30 ], [ cut ], The Ocean [ 4:04 ].
Source: Incomplete very good 1st audience recording. 57 minutes.
Details: A bit distant and somewhat flat sounding tape, with rather nice atmosphere.

Found on: Live In Tokyo Oct. 2-3 1972 Budokan Big Hall (LLX 1233-4-5-6) & Tokyo 10/2/72 (Amazing Stork Records):

Led Zep Live in Tokyo LLXLed Zep Tokyo Amaz St


Source 2:

Recording Includes: Band Announcements, Rock And Roll [ 3:07 ], Out On The Tiles Intro [ 0:12 ] >> Black Dog [ 4:56 ], Over The Hills And Far Away [ 5:37 ], Misty Mountain Hop [ 4:58 ] >> Since I’ve Been Loving You [ 7:36 ], Dancing Days [ 3:30 ], Bron-Yr-Aur Stomp [ 4:27 – cut ], The Song Remains The Same [ 5:25 ] >> The Rain Song [ 7:41 ], Dazed And Confused (<< The Crunge..) [ 27:17 – cut ].
Source: Incomplete good to very good 2nd audience recording. 83 minutes.
Details: A bit distant and tiny but still decent quality. The real problem with this source is that it was surfaced only on vinyl, which is very scratchy, with a lot of noise throughout and even after some declicking job the sound isn’t too clear. What worse, near the end of Dazed another song can be heard playing from underneath, and from that point sound deteriorates significantly into mush.

Privately Cut Japanese Acetate (no title, no label) [no image available]




Recording Includes: [ supposed to be not recorded: Band Announcements ] Rock And Roll [ 3:30 – cut ], Out On The Tiles Intro [ 0:12 ] >> Black Dog [ 4:52 ], Over The Hills And Far Away [ 5:23 ], Misty Mountain Hop [ 4:35 ] >> Since I’ve Been Loving You [ 7:11 ], Dancing Days [ 3:22 ], Bron-Yr-Aur Stomp [ 4:31 ], The Song Remains The Same [ 5:16 ] >> The Rain Song [ 7:11 ], Dazed And Confused (<< San Francisco instrumental, The Crunge..) [ 23:10 – cut ], Stairway To Heaven [ 9:18 ], Whole Lotta Love (<< Everybody Needs Somebody To Love, Boogie Chillun, Got A Lot O’Livin To Do, Let’s Have A Party, You Shook Me, The Lemon Song..) [ 22:21 ].
Source: Incomplete very good 1st audience recording. 108 minutes.
Details: Taped from 5th row and a really good sounding audience recording. All the instruments are up front and well balanced with the audience in the background. There is some distortion on bass line.


Side 2: That’s The Way (6:29)*/Going To California (7:24)*/Over The Hills And Far Away (6:04)**
Side 3: Rock ‘N’ Roll (3:34)**/Stairway To Heaven (8:50)**/Whole Lotta Love (conclusion 2:20)**



Recording Includes: [ supposed to be not recorded: Band Announcements ] Rock And Roll, Out On The Tiles Intro >> Black Dog, Misty Mountain Hop >> Since I’ve Been Loving You, Dancing Days, Bron-Yr-Aur Stomp, The Song Remains The Same >> The Rain Song, Dazed And Confused [ cut ], Stairway To Heaven, Whole Lotta Love (<< Everybody Needs Somebody To Love, Boogie Chillun, I Feel So Good, Let’s Have A Party, You Shook Me..), Mellotron Solo (<< Sakura Sakura..) >> Thank You.
Source: Incomplete fair to good 1st audience source.
Details: A distant, muddy and somewhat hissy tape that sounds like it was recorded under the towel but almost no serious distortion here. It still holds the dynamics and some fragments are brighter a little bit.


Led Zeppelin Squeeze Me

Side 1: Out On The Tiles Intro-Black Dog (5:09)/Misty Mountain Hop (4:16)/Since I’ve Been Loving You (7:11)
Side 2: Bron-Yr-Aur Stomp (4:35)/The Song Remains The Same (5:05)/The Rain Song (7:20)
Recording: Fair-Good mono audience. Source: Nagoya-shi Kokaido, Nagoya, Japan Oct. 5 ’72. Comments: Rare Japanese acetate.

In the 1980’s there was this incredibly rare Japan acetate as the final vinyl offering from the tour before the era of CD bootlegs took over. This copy was offered on eBay in August of 2014 and sold for over $900.

  1. Andrew said:

    Really enjoyed this one, thanks and a fascinating subject in general.

  2. Erik T said:

    I agree, cool post again…
    I wonder if there were Japanese bootlegs pressed of Japanese bands? I don’t know tons about Japanese popular Music but I have heard some heavy sounds from Japan over the years, including a lot of surf and psych music going back to the sixties. Anyone here familiar with The Flower Travelling Band? Heavy stuff… I would love to hear or see or stumble upon an old bootleg of theirs if any exist.
    I am surprised there aren’t any known Santana bootlegs from Japanese shows, Lotus, the official triple l.p set recorded on that first Japanese tour is amazing, the band music have floored audiences on this tour, yet I read here that Og reissued the not- terrific record from Rotterdam, which I have, it’s cool, I love Santana, but there were surely good tapes available fromSantana’s Japanese dates in August 1973. I have one myself. Same with 1976. By the way, that Santana l.p seems to have been made by the same guy( s) who made a Pink Floyd double album from Rotterdam in 1971 but I digress yet again…
    Another notion/ question- One of my favourite Canadian bands, Mashmakhan, apparently scored big in Japan in 1970-71 with As the Years Go By, toured there, packed arenas, and might have been ripe for a tiny run of bootleg vinyl. I have a Guess Who tape fromJapan in 1972, someone there was taping Canadian bands!
    Maybe more Deep Purple wax? There are, I think, Japanese bootlegs of Deep Purple shows there in 1973 including Gillan and Glover’s last gig with the band.
    Anyhow, with Japan being such a big music market on its own, there must have been some demand for bootlegs by local heroes. I haven’t heard of any, but it makes sense, and it might fill in some gaps most western collectors wouldn’t necessarily have the easiest time learning about. Funny how some of these Og records are super rare while others aren’t particularly rare at all.
    I have some recordings of Chicago on those 71-72 Japanese tours, they seem incomplete too. I know tape used to be expensive, maybe that was the case in Japan too, especially if they were using open reels. They are kind of l.p. length if memory serves, from several shows. I have the audio of the legit Japanese release, it does sound good. Funnily, among Japan-only official live albums, there is one by Blood Sweat and Tears, taken from shows in Canada and New York City in the mid seventies, for a Japan- only release. I think there is a Japan-only live album from the Headhunters, and some Motown stuff like the Jackson 5, don’t laugh, they had a kick ass band supporting them, take a look on Youtube..! Miles Davis and John Coltrane released shows from Japan, I have beautiful Japanese copies of Miles in Tokyo and Miles In Berlin, not sure which came first but Miles released a lot of live records.
    I like The Ventures a lot too, I have several of their records, I don’t know of any bootlegs, barely know of any tapes at all. Just as they seem to have brought heavy guitar licks to large Japanese audiences, I have read the The Shadows toured Turkey in1964 or 65 maybe, and made a huge impression, and I have heard plenty of really cool Turkish guitar- led psych, surf and even funkier sounds. Dostlar, anyone? Interesting how one tour at the right time can inspire a ton a heavy music, like what they say about the Sex Pistols and the Velvet Underground, playing to small audiences who started a lot of bands themselves in the wake…

  3. Mr Hurrricane said:

    To my knowledge, none of Japanese bands are bootlegged. It’s all because of a very strict policies in Japan. They allow to release foreign artists in a strict limitation (I’d say 500 to 1000 copies per title) but as soon as they find you release a Japanese artist, you’ll be in a big trouble. Japanese copyright law is much different from Western countries. Bootlegs aren’t as much prohibited as anywhere else as they got a different social meaning also. You can go down to Tokyo and search for a small music stores selling tons of bootlegs officially. Same with videos and games. But they cannot sell local artists as well as they can’t distribute abroad unless it’s online auction or if ordered from the store in person or through email.

    • It sounds like you are claiming law makers (or maybe the Yakuza?) were telling bootleggers back in the 70’s & 80’s how many copies they can press. Really?

      If you know more, please leave another comment or write to guam10 @ yahoo dot com

      • Mr Hurrricane said:

        Yakuza have absolutely nothing to do with bootlegs! It’s not so enough profitable business to be a part of criminal underground in Japan. All boot labels are operating officially, or at least in a grey zone. As explained, the copyright policies are much different out there. You can see many pictures showing famous rock musicians visiting Blind Faith store (the one specializing in Led Zeppelin recordings), keeping lots of bootlegs and with a smile on their faces. That tells more than any statement. The strict limitation is more likely due to Japanese restrictions as they tend to keep an eye off on it. That’s all.

  4. I was willing to hear what you had to say but you only make claims without backing them up. Jimmy Page went to bootleg CD stores in Shinjuku to confiscate LZ titles off the shelves, so much for smiling faces.

    If the boot labels operated officially, they’d carry a JASRAC sign. Clearly, no record companies received royalties from Japanese vinyl boots manufactured in the 1970’s.
    Bootlegs by Western artists aren’t persecuted in Japan, that much is correct. Still, as I have shown in several examples, Japanese bootleggers went to great lengths to disguise recordings made in Japan as being from Europe or the US. So, obviously, there were limits.

    All you have said is that Japanese copyright is different from the West. Well, you’re not telling us anything new but exactly how is it different?

    • Mr Hurrricane said:

      Jimmy was given of several bootlegs each time he visited Tokyo. He was warmly welcomed by the owner of the shop and all these pics are made on his visit in 2003 from what I remember. (He was/is a regular visitor and he receives any new title that has been released as he’s an avid collector of his own band due to a huge lack of professional recordings.)
      They are operated on a semi-legit basis, but they are do not carry a JASRAC assignment. It is very hard to learn of how different the Japanese copyright law is due to a very basic information given to the public. A similar situation had happened to the all post-soviet Eastern European countries between 1989 and 1994, until they have been all assigned to the RIAA protocol.
      If they were illegal, then they could be closed or suspended immediately. None of these happened however.
      There are at least couple of stores specializing in selling bootlegs in Tokyo: Blind Faith, Pb Museum, Lighthouse and couple of others. Seems like Japanese government has no objection and they turned a blind eye on this part of underground industry.
      I’ve been visiting Japan twice, and found absolutely nothing that could tell me I am doing something that’s strictly prohibited. My friend, who was also visiting Japan in 2019 told me that Yakuza is controlling gambling and also dealing with drug smuggling and prostitution. He witnessed that few times he was followed by some unnamed and well dressed up male persons each time he was visiting so called “red light” district. When I was exploring in the search of music stores, none of such situation occurred and I’ve had a feeling that bootlegging in Japan is much anticipated. The owners were always much open and friendly, and even if asked about its legality, they weren’t embarrassed or confused.

      • I’ve been to Japan seven times and sold records (not bootlegs) regularly to Japanese record stores. This article describes my first visit only. Shinjuku has changed a lot since then with many stores being gone now.

        A Trip to Tokyo

        • Mr Hurrricane said:

          I know that. Physical media’s selling noticed a huge impact as nowadays much more people are downloading than selling / buying.

    • Mr Hurrricane said:

      Here’s an article about bootleg industry in Japan:
      And her’s some very interesting quite from that article:
      “In Europe and the U.S., little distinction is made between the three types, and they are all hunted down by the police, aided by such organizations as the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) and the British Phonograph Industry (BPI). The big illicit profits are realized by the pirates and the counterfeits, but these CDs are usually produced in China or South Korea, and organizations like the Mafia and Yakuza are often involved – by no means easy targets. Since the RIAA and the BPI both get their funding from the recording industry, visible proof of their effectiveness is necessary to assure future funds, and so periodic busts of the bootleg cottage industry is a godsend for them. Of course, things are a bit different in Japan. Just as pirated (and occasionally counterfeit) CDs are readily available in the corridors of every large train station in Tokyo, stores specializing in bootlegs can be found without too much difficulty – many of them located in the back streets of Shinjuku. Unlike their European or North American counterparts, Japanese bootleggers don’t seem to suffer from so many unfriendly visits from officials, and they can sell pretty much anything they like. With one notable exception. No matter how extensively you forage through the bootleg world, you will not find one single bootleg CD of a Japanese musician.”

  5. Mr Hurricane said:

    I’d love to get original tapes from where all these early 70s Japanese LP are made. Does it possible to track’em down anyhow?

    • I don’t see how that would be possible, even if you knew the names of the people involved in releasing them.

      • Mr Hurricane said:

        I know that, I was just curious if there were any attempts to do this.

  6. Paul W Rhoades said:

    Hi guys, interesting string
    I too have been to Japan many times- Shinjuku and surrounding areas (Disc Union stores) had hit or miss bootlegs (now all CDs)- kinda like mom&pop music shops in the US during the 80’s when you could buy bootleg vinyl. I still find bootleg vinyl in the US in resell record bins of most any vinyl shop. The rare stuff will be displayed and overpriced.
    Regarding the Japanese vinyl bootlegs of the ’70s- I understand any concert recording is public domain in Japan after 10 or 15 years. Makes sense with the explosion of bootleg CDs coming out of Japan. However, I believe the micro-pressings of the vinyl in the 70s could not have been legal and are a product of the fan base, like the US. The small quantities could make sense to stay under the radar.
    Today, bootlegs dont matter- they are not being hunted down aggressively. Just go to EBAY US, Japan, UK…. except when it comes to Pink Floyd- there is a rabid fan base that reports bootlegs for sale and taken down on various sites but obviously they cannot intercept all. Too bad Discogs pulled there’s down- I’ll bet the site traffic died.
    Anyway, enough blathering and appreciate your links and thoughts
    Best Reagrds

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