Jimmy Page, Jeff Beck and Eric Clapton Play “Layla” in 1983 | Video

September 28th, 2015

By Damian Fanelli

A lot of anniversaries have been celebrated this month, but I wanted to make sure we didn’t forget to mention the ARMS Charity Concerts, a series of talent-heavy events that raised large wads of cash for multiple sclerosis research.

The first show took place September 20, 1983, at the Royal Albert Hall in London, followed by a few subsequent concerts, including three sold-out performances at San Francisco’s Cow Palace December 3.

But it was the original show at the Albert Hall that was the most impressive in terms of talent/fame per square inch.

Take the clip below, for instance. It features Jimmy Page, Eric Clapton and Jeff Beck on stage at the same time, performing Clapton’s “Layla.” The all-star band is rounded out by Bill Wyman, Charlie Watts, Ronnie Wood, Kenney Jones, Paul Rodgers, Chris Stainton, Ray Cooper, Andy Fairweather Low and other luminaries (and semi-luminaries). And is that drummer Simon Phillips back there somewhere? I think it is …

If you keep watching, you’ll see Joe Cocker step up to the mic to sing “With a Little Help from My Friends,” followed by Ronnie Lane’s rendition of “Goodnight Irene” with Page (with his B-bender-equipped Telecaster), Beck, Clapton and Wood trading guitar solos.

The idea for the concert was envisaged by Lane, former bassist for the Small Faces and the Faces, himself a casualty of multiple sclerosis.

  • I was at the shows in October 1983 at Madison Square Garden. Awesome stuff. Jimmy page did an instrumental version of stairway to heaven alone on the stage and with the violin bow. Was rock ‘n roll Nirvana.