The vocal crowd could not contain itself.
Mothers, fathers, sons and daughters jumped from their seats, neatly in rows, and after each song was played, gravitated closer to the stage.
No one moved to stop them until, finally, a young girl, no more than 10-years-old, wearing a shirt that read “Got Zep?,”laid her hands on the main stage. She continued to dance with her family while the fog machine produced a transcendental effect as the band finished its set.
Three generations of Led Zeppelin fans gathered in the South Orange Performing Arts Center (SOPAC) theater on Nov. 17 to see Get The Led Out: The American Led Zeppelin experience, a group of professional musicians who have been performing the rock band’s catalog for the last 10 years.
“I never expected to be in a cover band,” Paul Sinclair, 51, said. The lead vocalist was passionate about writing his own songs but was asked in 2003 to be a part of a Led Zeppelin group based in the local Philadelphia area.
Sinclair compared ‘Get the Led Out’ (GTLO) to the Fab Faux, a tribute band of professional musicians who only play The Beatles. The catch is they only play the studio versions of the songs, just as someone might hear them on the radio.
“I love that philosophy. We’ll do whatever it takes to make the songs happen the way you know and love them,” Sinclair said. “That’s what separates us and that’s the vision that I put forth since the very beginning.”
The band’s credentials suggest that vision has produced the desired results. GTLO just finished a West Coast tour consisting of 26 shows in 36 days.
The drive to please their audience comes from being fans of the music themselves, Sinclair added.
He said they even change their set list every show and allow fans to request songs through social media a week or so before the show.
“I liked that GTLO doesn’t seek to impersonate Led Zeppelin, but rather to honor their memory,” Gabi Hunt, a junior at Seton Hall, said after seeing her first Get the Led Out show at SOPAC.
The diplomacy and international relations and environmental studies double major thought that the energy in the room was amazing.
“Seeing a bunch of moms crowding the stage at the end was hilarious; it was a nice reminder that life doesn’t stop at 30,” Hunt said.
Katie Fatzler, a SHU student and an employee at SOPAC, was working the box office the night of the show and witnessed a large, excited crowd waiting to hear the sounds of Zeppelin live once again.
“There was one man who said he’d seen GTLO perform over 200 times,” the senior journalism major said.
Evelyn Peregrin can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.