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It was the beginning of the 1970s. A new decade had come, and the hippie culture had been thoroughly thrashed by propaganda from Conservatives and people bitter that they had not gotten invited to those kind of parties alike. The rebels had been literally crushed, over and over, by an unending wave of police batons and tear gas, and the stone wall of the political system, that never has to do anything to win but just not say yes, OK. Hippie culture had been coopted and converted to mainstream forms of entertainment. Mod Squad (a show that offered interracialism as the bait for the hook of "reformed" undercover police stings of criminal (of course) counterculture groups, using spying and entrapment, a show reputedly sponsored by CIA dollars), and well-meaning and sincere homages like Laugh-In.

Led Zeppelin acoustic 1973 by Heinrich Klaffs

Robert Plant and Jimmie Page, Hamburg, 1973

Truly, those in suits, threatened by the cultural revolution that hippies started, with only the news to guide them, who only ever traveled in taxis and never took the bus or subway, could look back and console themselves with the thought it was all over. Former hippies who had disavowed some part of their past ten years, whether eagerly or reluctantly, could go back to life in suburbia and tell themselves they were not missing anything important.

Real hippies knew better, of course. They were not only still doing most of the things they used to, they were turning others on to it too.

And then, one day, the world was forced to admit that maybe this hippie thing had not completely died. To Led Zeppelin, and their fans, and the culture their fans belonged to, and the culture their fans built, a goodly portion of the hippie aesthetic was the here and now. What death of hippydom?

Even Led Zeppelin's infamous wholesale copying of black people's music was Hippie, albeit in a way that tread on a lot of toes. Cultural assimilation from the entire width of the world was the hippie trademark.

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