Richard Cole (former Led Zeppelin tour manager)
A musical director, who contributed to the careers of the greatest British artists, dies at 75.
Born in London in 1946, Cole entered the music business in 1965, working as a road manager for the 4+2 unit. British invasion such as The Who and The Yardbirds. Shortly after the latter disbanded, their then-guitarist Jimmy Page introduced Cole to his new band Led Zeppelin. In his interview at Vice magazine, the manager admitted that it didn’t take long to realize the band was exceptional: “About four shows into that first tour of 1968-69, I realized that Led Zeppelin were an exceptional band – musicians simply brilliant.”
Cole’s prolific collaboration with Led Zeppelin spanned 12 years. His book Stairway To Heaven: Led Zeppelin Uncensored recounts his personal experiences working with the band and describes the atmosphere of 60s London.
One of the first managers to organize American tours for British bands, Richard Cole changed the technical aspects of touring practice. He introduced the practice of bringing in equipment and crew from England.
The list of other artists he has worked with includes venerable names like Eric Clapton, Black Sabbath, Lita Ford, Ozzy Osbourne, Edan Everly, Black Uhuru and Three Dog Night.