Finding America

Me and Tarah

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Dear America.

I am writing this letter in the hope that you will take into consideration something very close to my heart.

Simply put, Led Zeppelin - an influential rock band that three generations of Americans seem very fond of - were not American.

While I truly realise that not all of your people have made this faux pas, it is one nonetheless I have encountered too often for it to be considered a coincidence.

Let us take a look at the facts: Robert Plant, Jimmy Page, John Paul Jones and the late John Bonham - the four original members of Led Zeppelin - were born in West Bromwich, Heston, Sidcup and Redditch respectively. These are all places in England. That's England, as in not-the-United-States.

I know this might not seem like such a pressing issue - what with your very own Miley Cyrus dominating the news at present - but imagine for a minute that a limey such as myself tried to claim, for example, that Elvis had grown up on the Yorkshire Moors or that, I don't know, Bob Dylan is fond of wearing highland kilts (actually, he might be. Must check.).

The point is, while their music may indeed have inspired a generation of American recording artists, such as Guns N' Roses and Megadeth, Led Zeppelin are (and forever will be) as British as fish 'n' chips. Or at least the kind of fish 'n' chips you find in American pubs. Basically, they're British without the mushy peas.

Okay, so I'm not sure where I'm going with the food metaphor. But what I am sure of is this: not only are Led Zeppelin not American, but the same goes for the following British recording artists: Eric Clapton, Elton John, Queen, Duran Duran, Pink Floyd and Phil Collins (though you are welcome to Phil).

As I said, this is an issue close to my heart and I would appreciate it greatly, America, if you could work toward a resolution promptly. Please feel free to contact me if you have any questions on the matter.

A British expat.

What bizarre misconceptions have you encountered in the U.S. or UK? Let us know in the comments box below.

Laurence is a British expat living in Indianapolis, Indiana. He is a contributor for BBC America and writes a weekly column for Anglotopia. Having graduated from Lancaster University with a degree in English Language and Creative Writing, Laurence runs this blog, Lost In The Pond, charting the endless cultural and linguistic differences between Britain and The United States. 

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