Rock giant Robert Plant, who receives the CBE, shot to fame as lead vocalist of Led Zeppelin, as well as carving out a successful solo career.

Plant recently released the Nationwide Mercury Prize-shortlisted Raising Sand, with American bluegrass superstar Alison Krauss.

Leaving school in his mid-teens, Plant developed a passion for blues music.

Led Zeppelin were formed 40 years ago after guitarist Jimmy Page went on the hunt for a singer. After getting together, the band's self-titled album broke into the charts and is seen by many as igniting the heavy metal genre.

They went on to sell more than 200 million albums worldwide, and the band's work remains hugely popular.

One of their best-known songs is the epic ballad Stairway to Heaven, which draws on a cocktail of influences including folk, blues and rock, which has topped various "greatest song" lists.

Led Zeppelin broke up in 1980 following the death of drummer John Bonham, who died following a drinking binge.

Its members have performed together since on occasions, including an Atlantic records anniversary concert in 1988 and for Live Aid in 1985.

In December 2007, they played a 90-minute set at London's O2 arena in front of 10,000 people. The internet rush to buy £125 tickets to see Page, Plant, John Paul Jones, who by then had a combined age of over 180, and Bonham's son Jason saw up to 20 million people crashing the website.

In 2005, Led Zeppelin received the Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award. The following year, the surviving members of the band received the prestigious Swedish Polar Music Prize.