Led Zeppelin's sixth studio album "Physical Graffiti" was released 46 years ago today. That turned my memory to the time I took a Rock & Roll road trip and visited the building they used for the album cover. Turns out The Rolling Stones had been there too!

The address is 96 and 98 St. Mark's Place in Manhattan and not only did Zeppelin use the building for an album cover but The Rolling Stones filmed the video for "Waiting On a Friend" there.

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One summer weekend I took the drive to see the building for myself. It's crazy when you consider all of the buildings in Greenwich Village, why was this one chosen for the cover of "Physical Graffiti" and what made it perfect for a Rolling Stones video? Standing in front of it I have to admit it did look different than the other buildings and the more I looked I realized something was missing. As a matter of fact a whole floor was missing!

According to Wikipedia, the original Led Zeppelin photograph underwent a number of tweaks to arrive at the final image. The fourth floor of the building had to be cropped out to fit the square album cover. You might not think much of that today with the access and ease of Photoshop but that was 1975!

This is the album cover as we know it.


This is how the building looks in person. The second floor down from the top is the one completely removed to fit the album cover: (side note; there is a tea store at street level called Physical Graffitea)


As for The Rolling Stones, in July 1981, they chose this same location as the site to film a video for the song "Waiting On a Friend". In the clip you can see Mick Jagger standing on the stoop, the same stoop you see in this picture of me and Lainie. Over our right shoulders, in-front of the red door, is where Mick was "waiting for his friend" Keith.


Happy birthday to the album "Physical Graffiti" turning 46 today! As you know, it isn't just the songs that make albums great. It's the overall art and the stories behind them that enhance the music.

I love to take these Rock road trips and I think it's badass seeing these landmarks. I have taken similar rides to discover the site of Woodstock '94, the apartment where Aerosmith wrote their first album and I even found Keith Richards house. Those stories another time.

The Rolling Stones - "Waiting On a Friend"



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