The Starship

Discussion in 'Music' started by Njaco, Jun 9, 2011.

  1. Njaco

    Njaco The Pop-Tart Whisperer
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    Since this a an aviation related forum and this is the music section.....lets combine them!!!

    In the mid-1970s, the supergroup Led Zeppelin used a jet airliner called the Starship. From the following website:

    LED ZEPPELIN :: ACHILLES LAST STAND



    (Taken from Stairway To Heaven-Led Zeppelin Uncensored by Richard Cole and
    Led Zeppelin-The Concert File by Dave Lewis and Simon Pallet)


    Travelling was always considered a major chore by Zeppelin. Neither Jimmy Page nor Peter Grant were particularly fond of flying, and Bonham was often known to require a drink or two to calm his nerves before taking off. In a country the size of America, air travel was a necessity, and so some sort of accomodations had to be made.

    Beginning with the 1972 U.S. tour, the band traveled in a small private Falcon Jet hired by Grant. Unfortunately, these aircraft are comparatively light and susceptible to air turbulence. After performing a show at San Francisco's Kezar Stadium on June 2, 1973, Zeppelin encountered bad turbulence on a flight back to Los Angeles. This unnerving incident persuaded Grant that if they were going to have to fly, they would do it in as much style, comfort and safety as possible-regardless of cost.

    The Starship, N7201U (CN: 17907), was the first Boeing 720-022 built. It was delivered to United Airlines on Oct. 05, 1960 and then purchased on Jan. 15, 1973 by Contemporary Entertainment.

    Inside, the main cabin contained seats and tables, revolving arm chairs, a 30-foot long couch running along the right hand side of the plane opposite the bar, a television set and video cassette player; an electronic organ was built into the bar. At the rear of the plane were two back rooms, one a den with a low couch and pillows on the floor, the other a bedroom, complete with a white fur bedspread and shower room.

    The Starship was even staffed by two stewardesses, Susie, and attractive eighteen-year old blonde, and Bianca, a twenty-two year old with a dark complexion and a sense of humor.

    The Starship was again used throughout the entire 1975 U.S. tour, by which time Bonzo liked to occupy the co-pilot's seat. "He flew us all the way from New York to L.A. once," Peter Grant told a startled fellow traveler on one tour, "He ain't got a license, mind..."

    The Starship was used on Alice Cooper, Allman Brothers Band, Deep Purple, Elton John, Olivia Newton-John and Peter Frampton tours.

    The Starship was leased by McCulloch Int. in Nov. 1975, repossessed by Bank of America on Nov. 10, 1977, purchased by AeroAmerica on June 21, 1978, subleased as a private plane on Sept. 1978 through Mar. 1979 and then it went into storage at Luton Airport in London. It was then parted out in July 1982 because it was too corroded for flight.

    Caesar's Chariot, N7224U (CN: 18077), the Boeing 720-022 that was subleased on the 1977 tour, rolled out from the assembly line on Dec. 12, 1961 and its first flight on Jan. 16, 1962. It was delivered to United Airlines on Apr. 10, 1962 and was leased to Braniff on May 6, 1972 and was returned to United Airlines on Dec. 31, 1972. It was purchased by Todd Equipment in Mar. 31, 1975 and leased by Desert Palace Inc. and was named Caesars Chariot.

    Caesar's Chariot was subleased by McCulloch Int. in Aug. 1975 and returned in Sept. 1976. Led Zeppelin subleased Caesar's Chariot in Apr. 1977.

    After Led Zeppelin returned the plane in July 1977, the Bee Gees used Caesar's Chariot on their 1979 tour, then it returned into service until Boeing Military Airplane Company bought the plane in July 1986 and placed it in Davis-Monthan AFB on Oct. 11, 1986 for KC-135 re-engine and spares support program. It was totally parted out by Feb. 1987, but parts may have been rescued by an aircraft maintenance school.
     

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  2. DerAdlerIstGelandet

    DerAdlerIstGelandet Der Crew Chief
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    Iron Maiden does this today. The lead singer Bruce Dickinson is a pilot who also flies for an airline when not recording and touring. They modifed a Boeing 757 to carry all the tour equipment, instruments, band and crew as well as some fans from show to show. The call the aircraft "Ed Force One".

    ED FORCE ONE HAS LANDED IN AUSTRALIA! | Soundwave Festival

    [​IMG]
     
  3. A4K

    A4K Well-Known Member

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    Interesting stuff guys!
     
  4. Njaco

    Njaco The Pop-Tart Whisperer
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    Awesome, Adler!!!
     
  5. vikingBerserker

    vikingBerserker Well-Known Member

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    That really is!
     
  6. Maximowitz

    Maximowitz Active Member

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    As this is a family forum we shall however draw a discreet veil over some of the "activities" that took place on The Starship. :D

    @ Der Adler. Back in 1978 I was in a band that regularly supported Iron Maiden (and quite a few other NWOBHM bands) at their old hunting ground, The Ruskin Arms, East Ham, London. Back then "Proto-Eddie" was a cardboard cutout fixed precariously behind the drummer and would often fall down accompanied by much laughter from the audience.

    If you'd told me back then that they would one day have their own private jet..... :D
     
  7. Aaron Brooks Wolters

    Aaron Brooks Wolters Well-Known Member

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    Very cool info guys!:cool: Thanks!:thumbright:
     

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