SS 7-99952 Pledge Pin
Produced by Robert PLant
Released on November 1982
US CHART POSITION #74 (charted Nov. 13, 1982 for 5 weeks)
Find it at GEMM
SS 7-99952 w. company sleeve
[high resolution scan]

O kay so here’s the thing about Robert Plant. When he twists a word with that sort of Middle Eastern chanty thing he does, there’s an implication in his banshee wail that the word must be the source of some deeper anguish. He does it a couple of times on Pledge Pin, so let’s compare. “Tonight’s the loss / Tomorrow’s gain / And in the end it’s soooo.” Plant trails off into the banshee bit on “soooo” and the effect is that what is NOT being said after “so” is the source of deep sadness or some heavy, intractable universal truth. And I start thinking to myself: “Right on, man, it is soooo like that sometimes.” (I don’t actually think the words “right on,” but you get the point.) Then he does it again at the end of the second stanza. “The merry dance / She executes her role.” He just about bursts an appendix wailing over “role,” as if to say that her acting in a role is the most tragic set of circumstances. At least that’s what I first thought. But then it occurred to me: Maybe he just likes making that sound. Instead of underlining key passages with his voice, maybe he’s just doodling in the margins. I’m not saying he doesn’t have his deep thoughts, but “Pledge Pin” and “Fat Lip” aren’t holding any great mysteries. Pledge Pin, so far as I can pin it down, uses a high school (or college, I don’t care) football game or some other sporting event (I still don’t care) and compares a woman playing hard to get with a player moving downfield to score. Only in the end, by not being tackled she’s only avoiding love. Or something like that. Maybe if he had lingered longer on the word “game” I would have more for you. “Fat Lip” is about people waiting to be somewhere and the importance of “being” where you are. Anyway, I’ve opened up a whole chapter on The Unspoken, Inarticulate and Implied, which might someday house animals as diverse as Daltrey’s stutter to Ferry’s cracking voice.


  1. PLEDGE PIN    (Robert Plant/Robbie Blunt)    4:01
  2. FAT LIP    (Robert Plant/Robbie Blunt/Jezz Woodroffe)    5:05

    FRA 7-inch promo single


return to ROBERT PLANT discography

US/CAN November 1982 Swan Song 7" SS 7-99952  
US 1982 Swan Song 7PRO SS 7-99952 w. A mono on flip
FRA 1982 Swan Song 7PRO PRO-233 picture sleeve


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