Bert Jansch

In heavy Rotation

Bert Jancsh standing playing guitar by the water with a cigarette hanging from his lips.


In his early career, Jansch was sometimes characterized as a British Bob Dylan.[18] During this period, Jansch described his musical influences as “the only three people that I’ve ever copied were Big Bill BroonzyDavy Graham and Archie Fisher“.[19] Jansch followed his first album with two more, produced in quick succession: It Don’t Bother Me and Jack Orion[20]—which contained his first recording of “Blackwaterside”, later to be taken up by Jimmy Page and recorded by Led Zeppelin as “Black Mountain Side“.[21] Jansch said: “The accompaniment was nicked by a well-known member of one of the most famous rock bands, who used it, unchanged, on one of their records.”[22] Transatlantic took legal advice about the alleged copyright infringement and were advised that there was “a distinct possibility that Bert might win an action against Page”.[23] Ultimately, Transatlantic were dubious about the costs involved in taking on Led Zeppelin in the courts, and half the costs would have had to be paid by Jansch personally, which he simply could not afford, so the case was never pursued.[24] The arrangement and recording of Jack Orion was greatly influenced by Jansch’s friend, singer Anne Briggs.[25]

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