Led Zeppelin were an English rock band formed in London in 1968. The group consisted of guitarist Jimmy Page, singer Robert Plant, bassist and keyboardist John Paul Jones, and drummer John Bonham.
After changing their name from the New Yardbirds, Led Zeppelin signed a deal with Atlantic Records that afforded them considerable artistic freedom. They achieved significant commercial success with albums such as Led Zeppelin, Led Zeppelin II, Led Zeppelin III, Led Zeppelin IV, Houses of the Holy and Physical Graffiti. Page wrote most of Led Zeppelin's music, particularly early in their career, while Plant generally supplied the lyrics. Although they remained commercially and critically successful, their output and touring schedule were limited during the late 1970s, and the group disbanded following Bonham's death in 1980. In the decades that followed, the surviving members sporadically collaborated and participated in one-off Led Zeppelin reunions. Led Zeppelin are widely considered one of the most successful, innovative, and influential rock groups in history. They are one of the best-selling music artists in the history of audio recording; various sources estimate the group's record sales at 200 to 300 million units worldwide. With RIAA-certified sales of 111.5 million units, they are the second-best-selling band in the United States. Each of their nine studio albums placed in the top 10 of the Billboard album chart and six reached the number-one spot. They were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1995; the museum's biography of the band states that they were "as influential”
The band began their first tour of the UK on 4 October 1968 at the University of Surrey in Battersea on 25 October. Their debut album, Led Zeppelin, was released in the US on 12 January 1969, and peaked at number 10 on the Billboard chart.During the 1970s, Led Zeppelin reached new heights of commercial and critical success that made them one of the most influential groups of the era. The band's image also changed as the members began to wear elaborate, flamboyant clothing. Led Zeppelin released their fourth album on 8 November 1971. In response to the treatment they had received from critics, particularly after Led Zeppelin III, the band decided to release the fourth album with no title, though it is variously referred to as Led Zeppelin IV, Untitled, IV, or as Four Symbols, Zoso or Runes. With 37 million copies sold, Led Zeppelin IV is one of the best-selling albums in history, and its massive popularity cemented Led Zeppelin's status as superstars in the 1970s. The track "Stairway to Heaven", never released as a single, is sometimes quoted as being the most requested and most played album-oriented rock FM radio song. In 1975, Led Zeppelin's double album Physical Graffiti was their first release on the Swan Song label. It consisted of fifteen songs, of which eight had been recorded at Headley Grange in 1974 and seven had been recorded earlier.Plant and Page performing in Chicago Stadium in Chicago on 10 April 1977, during Led Zeppelin's last North American tour. Following their triumphant Earls Court appearances, Led Zeppelin took a holiday and planned an autumn tour in America, scheduled to open with two outdoor dates in San Francisco. In August 1975, however, Plant and his wife Maureen were involved in a serious car crash while on holiday in Rhodes, Greece. Because of Plant's injuries, Led Zeppelin did not tour in 1976. Led Zeppelin have influenced hard rock and heavy metal bands such as Deep Purple,]Black Sabbath], Rush, Queen, and Megadeth as well as progressive metal bands like Tool[ and Dream Theater. They influenced some early punk and post-punk bands, among them the Ramones and the Cult. They were also an important influence on the development of alternative rock, as bands adapted elements from the "Zeppelin sound" of the mid-1970s, including the Smashing Pumpkins, Nirvana, Pearl Jam, and Soundgarden. Bands and artists from diverse genres have acknowledged the influence of Led Zeppelin, such as Madonna, Shakira, Lady Gaga, and Katie Melua.