“When The Levee Breaks,” written in 1929 by Mephis Minnie and her husband Kansas Joe McCoy, was made popular by Led Zeppelin in 1971, when they recorded it for their 4th album. This is the original song that has been recorded by these artists as well: Judge (1990), W.A.S.P. (1991), John Campbell (1993), Kristin Hersh (1994), Killdozer (1995), Magic Slim (1999), Great White (1999), A Perfect Circle (2004), Bob Dylan (2006), Stream of Passion (2006), Buckwheat Zydeco (2009), Will Tucker (2009) and others.
You should check out this wonderful site of early recordings of early recorded music forefathers. The folks at PublicDomain4U.com have created a valuable collection of meaningful songs from the past. The music has influenced The Rolling Stones, Led Zeppelin, and many more contemporary artists. The music is available for listening and free download.