D'yer Mak'er

'D'yer Mak'er' is a 1973 song by English rock band Led Zeppelin. The song was composed by Jimmy Page, Robert Plant, John Paul Jones, and John Bonham, and recorded at Stargroves, Berkshire, England in April 1972, and mixed at Electric Lady Studios, New York in June 1972. It appeared as the sixth track on Led Zeppelin's fifth album Houses of the Holy, released on 28 March 1973. 'D'yer Mak'er' was also issued as a promotional single in the United States, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Germany, Austria, France, the Netherlands, Spain, Portugal, Greece, Yugoslavia, Mexico, Peru, Japan, and Argentina. Like 'Whole Lotta Love', it was released against the band's wishes. It reached number 20 on the US Billboard Hot 100 Singles chart, and number 24 in Canada. 'D'yer Mak'er' (pronounced 'Jamaica') is a song that's a mix between reggae, doo-wop, and 1950s rock 'n' roll, performed in a spirit of fun.

Overview

'D'yer Mak'er' originated during rehearsals at Stargroves, when drummer John Bonham began experimenting with a reggae beat, using a distance miking technique. Bassist John Paul Jones joined in, and guitarist Jimmy Page and singer Robert Plant soon joining in. Played with much boisterous frivolity, both Bonham and Jones did not take the song too seriously but Plant was very happy with the recording and even suggested it be released as a single in the United Kingdom, with white label promo copies distributed but the rest of the band and Peter Grant's management decided against the idea. The lyrics reflect Plant's love of 1950s style music and sense of humour. The title of the song is actually from an old music hall joke: 'My wife's gone to the West Indies' 'Jamaica?' 'No, she went on her own accord!'

It featured as an A-side to promotional singles, with 'The Crunge' on the flip-side. The song has been covered by many artists including Sheryl Crow, Dread Zeppelin, Great White, Gov't Mule, and sampled by Sean Kingston.

Live performances

'D'yer Mak'er' was never performed in its complete form. Parts of the song was included on the 1973 tours in the 'Whole Lotta Love' medley, and 'Communication Breakdown' at Earls Court in 1975.

Accolades

  • Radio Caroline - Top 500 Tracks (1999) 453
  • DigitalDreamDoor - The 100 Greatest Recordings From 1973 (2007) 79

Chart positions

  • US Billboard Hot 100 Singles Chart (1973) 20
  • US Cash Box Top 100 Singles Chart (1973) 16
  • US Record World 100 Top Pops (1973) 15
  • Canadian RPM Top 100 Chart (1974) 24
  • Canadian CHUM Chart (1974) 7
  • New Zealand Top 50 Singles Chart (1974) 20

Formats and track listings

1973 7" single (US/Australia/New Zealand: Atlantic 45-2986, Austria/Germany: Atlantic ATL 10377, Canada: Atlantic AT 2986, France: Atlantic 10377, Greece: Atlantic 2091236, Japan: Warner Pioneer P-1265A, Mexico: Atlantic G-1275, Peru: Atlantic ALT 2986, Spain: Atlantic HS 987, Venezuela: Atlantic 5-001, Yugoslavia: Atlantic 26077)

  • A. 'D'yer Mak'er' (Bonham, Jones, Page, Plant) 4.23
  • B. 'The Crunge' (Bonham, Jones, Page, Plant) 3.17

1973 7" single (The Netherlands: Atlantic ATL 10374)

  • A. 'D'yer Mak'er' (Bonham, Jones, Page, Plant) 4.23
  • B. 'Gallows Pole' (trad. arr. Page, Plant) 4.56

1973 7" promo (UK: Atlantic K 10296, South Africa: Trutone 45)

  • A. 'D'yer Mak'er' (Bonham, Jones, Page, Plant) 4.23
  • B. 'The Crunge' (Bonham, Jones, Page, Plant) 3.17

1973 7" promo (United States: Atlantic 45-2986 PL)

  • A. 'D'yer Mak'er' [short version, mono] (Bonham, Jones, Page, Plant) 3.25
  • B. 'D'yer Mak'er' [long version, mono] (Bonham, Jones, Page, Plant) 4.23

1973 7" EP (Mexico: Atlantic GX 07-818)

1973 7" EP (Argentina: Music Hall 40.019)

  • A1. 'D'Yer Mak'er' (Bonham, Jones, Page, Plant) 4.23
  • A2. 'The Crunge' (Bonham, Jones, Page, Plant) 3.17
  • B1. 'The Ocean' (Bonham, Jones, Page, Plant) 4.31
  • B2. 'No Quarter' (Jones, Page, Plant) 7.00

Credits

Musicians:

  • Jimmy Page – electric guitar, producer, remastering, digital remastering
  • Robert Plant – vocals
  • John Paul Jones – piano, bass guitar
  • John Bonham - drums, percussion

Production:

  • Peter Grant – executive producer
  • Eddie Kramer – engineer, mixing
  • Joe Sidore - original CD mastering engineer (mid-1980s)
  • George Marino - remastered CD engineer (1990)

Bibliography

  • Lewis, Dave (2012) Led Zeppelin: From a Whisper to a Scream. London: Omnibus Press. ISBN 978-1-78038-547-1 (OCLC 782996334).
  • Welch, Chris (2009) Led Zeppelin: The Stories Behind Every Led Zeppelin Song. London: Carlton Books. ISBN 978-1-84732-286-9 (OCLC 317254118).

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