Amplified Observations looks into what it would be like if one of the biggest party rappers led one of the greatest bands of all time.
Although it may initially seem like seminal rock group Led Zeppelin and rapper Wiz Khalifa have absolutely nothing in common, there is one undisputed bond these artists share. Both of their discographies are perfect for pregaming.
Before going out to a party or to the bars if you’re 21 or “from Hawaii,” what better way to get amped up than listening to the crashing, reverberating drums of John Bonham or the fluid marijuana-infused versing of Wiz?
Despite these two artists being divided by genres and decades, they are still equally as hype today — especially right before you hit Court Street with a 40 oz. stuffed in your pants — which led me to consider: if Wiz Khalifa was the lead singer of Led Zeppelin, would it be the greatest pre-party music ever created?
Since Zeppelin called it quits after Bonham’s untimely death in 1980, I am only able to speculate what this sonic marriage would have sounded like. I’d venture to say that Bonham’s drumming would have meshed well with Khalifa’s hip-hop style (the drum track for “When the Levee Breaks” has been widely sampled in hip-hop by everyone from The Beastie Boys to Ice-T).
Furthermore, like a great featured vocalist, Robert Plant’s celestial crooning coupled with Jimmy Page’s signature guitar tone would provide the perfect background texture for their Pittsburgh-born frontman to drop bars about weed, girls and champagne (and an occasional motivational message). John Paul Jones would still hold down the low-end frequencies while simultaneously chanting “Taylor Gang” into his mic.
Wiz could possibly incorporate some of Zeppelin’s imagery — to me, their music evokes the image of woodland fairies holding a sacred ritual — into his own style, providing for even more early evening energy.
Like Plant, Khalifa possesses a powerful stage presence that could be recycled over and over again on VH1 Classic for years if he joined Led Zeppelin. Together, the two artists could have coined popular hits like “Rock and Roll Up,” “Stairway to My Level” and “Trampled Under the Influence of Music.” Maybe the Wiz Khalifa song “Like Jimmy” would have been written about Jimmy Page rather than Hendrix if this collaboration had occurred.
No one is 100 percent sure what would have gone down if Wiz Khalifa had been the lead singer of Led Zeppelin, but we do know one thing: college kids would be listening to it.
So please, whoever has the technical ability, make a Led Khalifa (Wiz Zeppelin?) mash-up album and let me vibe to it.
Luke Furman is a freshman studying journalism. Email him at email@example.com or find him on Twitter @LukeFurmanOU.