BAND DETAIL: Swan Song
Swan Song, Dallas' very own Led Zeppelin Tribute
Swan Song is a 100% Led Zeppelin tribute band that brings back all of
the original band's tricks and tools with surprising accuracy. Just
close your eyes and you'll be beamed back in time with their incredible
replication of Led Zeppelin's music. From the loud guitars in Whole
Lotta Love, to the bow-playing wizardry of Dazed And Confused, to the
soft-and-sweet acoustics of That's The Way. Swan Song brings it all,
just for you!
Swan Song takes a great deal of pride in looking and sounding as close
to Led Zeppelin as possible, while adding a selected handful of Led
Zeppelin's live-version performances to their repertoire.
Swan Song was formed in late 1999 by Craig Zerba and the band's original
drummer, Paul Vaughn. Paul answered an ad Craig had put up on
musicians.net seeking to form a Led Zeppelin tribute band. Things
seemed to click from the start and the two felt they had a project in
the works. Paul asked long-time friend and guitar player, Nathan
Contreras, to join in on bass and things began to roll. Friends then
referred the band to Eddy Tate as a possible Robert Plant. When an
audition was held, they were immediately sold on his incredible
imitation of Robert Plant.
The band began booking shows a few short months after entering the year
2000. They have been playing in the Dallas Fort Worth area on a regular
basis at venues like the Curtain Club with Chaz Chandler, Bringing In
The Weekend Party with 92.5 KZPS, and the Canyon Club.
In April, 2001 Paul Vaughn decided to leave the band to pursue an
original project. Following his lead, Nathan left the band to resume
playing guitar. While Craig and Eddy believed very strongly in their
tribute project, they decided to find new members and continue
As the band began to audition new members, Dan Mutchler was discovered
at Classic City Rock Cafe in Deep Ellum. He was performing as a fill-in
drummer for the Pink Floyd tribute band called Bricks In The Wall.
Craig and Eddy so impressed with his drumming ability and great sense of
timing, that they decided to approach him to be their next John Bonham.
With Dan's passion and appreciation for Led Zeppelin, he graciously
accepted the offer.
James Martin soon joined in on bass. James had played bass with another
local Led Zeppelin tribute band called the Hindenburg during mid-2000
and into 2001. The band broke up soon after and James was looking for
another band. He answered an ad Swan Song had placed on musicians.net
and they set up an audition. Everyone was immediately impressed with
James' bass playing and knowledge of Led Zeppelin music. But James had
already been working with Dear John at the time and was unable to commit
adequate time to Swan Song's project.
Then, in May, 2002, Dan introduced Swan Song to a friend named Gregg
Dietz, a long-time bass player in the Dallas Fort Worth area that was looking for
work. Due to his incredible desire and enthusiasm toward playing in a
Led Zeppelin tribute band, he eagerly accepted the position, and within
months, the band was back on track!
After a couple of years, though, Gregg decided to leave the band to
pursue different music avenues; and once again Swan Song was in need of
Swan Song looked at luring Kirk Young on bass. Kirk had been in a band
called The Bridge with Swan Song's original drummer, Paul Vaughn and
knew the band well. Kirk was well schooled on rock music after playing
with Tornado Alley, a local classic rock band; and in October, 2004, he
graciously accepted the offer.
After six years of playing in Swan Song, Eddy Tate decided to step down
as lead singer. His decision was unexpected, but the band was hopeful
in finding a replacement.
This left Swan Song in a tight spot!
Aaron Rose, a friend of Craig's, suggested that the band get in touch
with a singer that auditioned for the movie Rock Star. After some
extensive research, Swan Song found the singer ... his name is Rich
Pilgrim. Rich's admiration for Robert Plant and Led Zeppelin was just
what the band was looking for. His motivation and determination was an
injection of optimism for the band. In July, 2006, Rich joined the
At the notice of Eddy's departure, Dan Mutchler decided to move on to
Before Swan Song, Kirk also played in a band called Hanover Fist with a
drummer named Larry Lynn. Larry's incredible attack and love for Led
Zeppelin soon landed him the drummer position for Swan Song. Auditions
were held and in July, 2006, Larry was hired as the new drummer for Swan
The Current Musicians of Swan Song
Craig Zerba is Swan Song's very own Jimmy Page! They even share the same
birthday, January 9th!
Craig is originally from "Detroit Rock City," but has been here in Texas
for more than 10 years. In 1990, after growing up in Pontiac, MI he
joined the Army and was stationed at Fort Hood, TX. Craig was discharged
after four years and he and a couple army buddies decided to move to
Dallas to attend college at Devry. After he completed his degree he
moved to Plano and began working at Electronic Data Systems.
Craig's love for Led Zeppelin began at an early age. He and his
brothers would play their Led Zeppelin 8-track tapes until they
completely wore out. Craig was amazed at their level of musical talent
and writing ability. His favorite album to this day is The Song Remains
When Craig was sixteen, one of his friends, Charlie, said "Hey man, why
don't you start playing guitar?" Charlie had been playing guitar for
about a year under the tutelage of his Uncle Paul. Charlie wanted
someone to jam with and Craig loved the idea. He had always wanted to
learn how to play the guitar and the first song he ever learned was
Bring It On Home. They practiced day and night and before long the two
had started a band.
Some of Craig's influences are: Jimi Hendrix, Grand Funk Railroad, Black
Sabbath, old Aerosmith, ZZ Top, Ronnie Montrose and Bad Company.
In his spare time, Craig likes roller-blading, ice-skating, softball,
computers, movies and watching hockey games.
Instruments used: 1976 Gibson Sunburst Les Paul Standard, EDS-1275
Double-neck electric, Danelectro DC-59, Fender Telecaster, Fender
Stratocaster, Aria Pro II, Alavarez Jumbo acoustic, violin bow, Jimmy
Page-style Theremin unit.
Amplification: Marshall JCM900 4100 100W w/4x12 Marshall cabinet.
Effects: Roland SDE-1000 Delay, Dunlop Wah-wah, MXR Phase 90, Boss Super
Distortion, Boss CE-2 Chorus.
Rich Pilgrim was born on November 2nd in Minneapolis, Minnesota and grew
up in the town of Madelia. He currently resides in Ft. Worth, Texas.
Rich's appreciation for music began for him as a young child, and his
desire to sing was further inspired by his seventh grade music teacher.
She gave him confidence in his abilities and the encouragement to always
follow his dreams.
Shortly after graduating high school, Rich began a career in the U.S.
Marine Corps. With over twenty years of active duty service, the Marine
Corps has taken him all over the world.
In 2005, Rich spent time in the United Kingdom and journeyed to the
Black Country, home of John Bonham and Robert Plant. Rich visited
Bonzo's final resting place, which is located in the beautiful village
of Rushock, and found it to be the most peaceful place that he's ever
He spent time in Kidderminster, where Bonham and Plant grew up together,
and drank a few pints at a local pub called, "The Swan". Rich also
spent time in West Bromwich, where Robert Plant was born, and toured
Molineux Stadium in Wolverhampton, home of Plant's favorite football
team, the Wolverhampton Wanderers.
Swan Song's discovery of Rich was through one of Craig Zerba's friends,
who suggested Rich as a potential candidate for Swan Song's vocalist.
When approached by Swan Song with the idea of being the band's Robert
Plant, Rich was ecstatic. His admiration for Plant's vocal and creative
talents is unparalleled.
"The Golden God" will always be Rich's hero, but a few of his other most
respected influences would include: Elvis, Paul Rodgers, Peter
Frampton, Jeff Keith and Chris Robinson.
Equipment used: Shure SM-58 microphone, Hohner Blues Harp in A and
Kirk Young was raised in the Chicago, Illinois area and spent most of his
life there before moving to Carrollton, TX in 1989.
Kirk comes from a very musical family. His father is a professional
concert pianist/organist/arranger/composer/conductor and his mother, a
teacher, is also an amateur pianist who plays for church and school
He began piano lessons at age 6, which lasted until age 10 when he
started playing the string bass in the school orchestra. That lasted
through 10th grade.
Just before entering 9th grade, Kirk got his first bass guitar and took
to it immediately and began learning songs from bands such as Grand
Funk, KISS, Cheap Trick and Styx. He soon discovered Led Zeppelin, Rush,
and Yes - solidifying his love for bass, and classic rock in general.
After a High School stint in the jazz band, he began a journey which has
lead him through many bands and genres, not to mention many musicals,
variety shows and church programs throughout the years.
After a layoff of several years (working nights and playing Mr. Mom
during the daytime), he decided he needed to get back into music again.
Kirk joined a local Classic Rock cover band called Hanover Fist (with
current Swan Song drummer, Larry), which would subsequently become The
Bridge (with former Swan Song drummer, Paul). Kirk was with the band
for a couple years and after the demise of the Bridge, he played with
another Classic Rock band, local favorites Tornado Alley, for a few
Kirk has been a Swan Song friend since its' inception and even played a
handful of gigs with them on a fill-in basis over the years. He finally
took the plunge and became a member in September of 2004.
Kirk plays bass, keyboards, sings harmonies, and has even been known to
play acoustic guitar now and again.
Equipment Used: Fender Jazz bass, Fretless bass, Yamaha and Korg
keyboards, acoustic guitar.
Babe I'm Gonna Leave You
Black Country Woman
Bring It on Home
Dazed and Confused
For Your Life
Good Times Bad Times
How Many More Times
I Can't Quit You Baby
I'm Gonna Crawl
In My Time of Dying
Living Loving Maid
Misty Mountain Hop
Nobody's Fault But Mine
Out on the Tiles
Over The Hills and Far Away
Rock and Roll
Since I've Been Loving You
Stairway to Heaven
Ten Years Gone
That's the Way
The Lemon Song
The Rain Song
The Song Remains the Same
Wearing and Tearing
We're Gonna Groove
What Is and What Should Never Be
White Summer/Black Mountainside
Whole Lotta Love