John Bonham
Drummer, Percussionist
John Bonham
John Henry Bonham was an English musician and songwriter, best known as the drummer of Led Zeppelin. Bonham was esteemed for his speed, power, fast right foot, distinctive sound, and "feel" for the groove. He is widely considered to be one of the greatest drummers in the history of rock music by many drummers, other musicians, and commentators in the industry.
Biography
John Bonham's personal information overview.
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Photo Albums
Popular photos of John Bonham
News
News abour John Bonham from around the web
Fred's Led tribute coming to town - Kenilworth Today
Google News - over 5 years
Now in their 18th year as a band, 'The Fredz' have had the honour of Led Zeppelin front-man Robert Plant attending three of their gigs and have jammed on stage with drummer John Bonham's son Jason. They were also invited by guitarist Jimmy Page to
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Hats off to Led Zeppelin - AboutMyArea
Google News - over 5 years
You'll feel like you've travelled back in time when you experience these four top class musicians on stage, recreating Led Zeppelin's magical concerts. and the inimitable Simon Wicker as the late John Bonham, they play all the right instruments and hit
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Google News article
TableDrum app turns household items into drums - CNET
Google News - over 5 years
Channel your inner John Bonham by mapping everyday items to the app's virtual drum set. For example, you can tap a pencil against your table and map it to the sound of a snare drum. Thump a mixing bowl and map it to the bass drum
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Google News article
10 Semi-Obscure Facts About Led Zeppelin - Houston Press (blog)
Google News - over 5 years
12 2011 at 8:00 AM ​On this date in 1968, former Yardbirds guitarist Jimmy Page, singer Robert Plant, and session musicians John Paul Jones and John Bonham played together for the first time, rehearsing in a West End studio space in London, England
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Jason Bonham's Led Zeppelin Experience Unleash 'Kashmir' Video - Ultimate Classic Rock
Google News - over 5 years
Jason Bonham, son of late Led Zeppelin drummer John Bonham, keeps the Zeppelin fires burning with his Jason Bonham's Led Zeppelin Experience, which merges music, video footage and a light show on stage for a true rock 'n' roll spectacle
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John Bonham's 1915 Model-T Ford Up For Sale - RTT News
Google News - over 5 years
(RTTNews) - A 1915 Model-T Ford owned by Led Zeppelin's drummer John Bonham is up for sale. The car was purchased by Bonham from Andy Brizio in 1974, with the car (still featuring a painted "Andy's" on the front) shipped from San Francisco to England
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Led Zeppelin Drummer John Bonham's 1915 Model T Up for Sale - Ultimate Classic Rock
Google News - over 5 years
Led Zeppelin drummer John Bonham's vintage 1915 Model T automobile, reportedly the one featured in the band's concert film 'The Song Remains the Same,' is looking for a new home, but before you start checking your bank balances, there are some
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See Robert Plant live in Berlin - LateRooms.com (press release)
Google News - over 5 years
Known for possessing one of the most powerful voices in music, Plant has carved out a successful solo career since the death of drummer John Bonham brought the Led Zeppelin era to a close in 1980. His recordings have embraced a diverse selection of
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Jimmy Page launches official Web site - CollegeNews
Google News - over 5 years
Page was the guitarist for the legendary rock band Led Zeppelin which consisted of singer Robert Plant, keyboardist/bassist John Paul Jones and the late drummer John Bonham. Still unfamiliar with Mr. Page? For a sample of his work check out the video
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Five Great British Drummers - Anglophenia (blog)
Google News - over 5 years
It would be a mistake to whack up a video of John Bonham playing his trademark drum solo “Moby Dick” and say “there, that's proof he was good at the drums.” And this is because, more than any of the other sticksmen on this list, John Bonham was best as
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Battles Put Pain of Tyondai Braxton's Departure Behind Them for 'Gloss Drop' - Spinner
Google News - over 5 years
The death of John Bonham put paid to any further activity from Led Zeppelin while The Who failed to match their previous heights in the wake of Keith Moon's passing. And yet there is also the kind of outfit that manages to dust itself down and rise
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PLAYLIST; Ambience, Doom and Other Strong Medicine
NYTimes - over 5 years
Ohayo If you are without air-conditioning this summer, get yourself a copy of Ohayo's ''The State We Are In.'' Ohayo is a new band made up of the three Swedish musicians who normally work with El Perro del Mar, the one-woman project of the singer Sarah Assbring. With her they make saturnine but identifiable pop; this record, slow and shimmery and
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NYTimes article
Led Zeppelin Tribute Band Plays at Largo Cultural Center - Patch.com
Google News - over 5 years
Each member of Zoso was picked to portray the members (Robert Plant, Jimmy Page, John Bonham, and John Paul Jones) of Led Zeppelin in both the appearance and playing styles. Zoso was awarded "Best Tribute Act in California" by Rock City News
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Flashback 1966: Jimmy Page Lays the Groundwork for Led Zeppelin - Gibson
Google News - over 5 years
Led Zeppelin remain one of the most important and formidable groups in the history of electric music 31 years after disbanding in the wake of drummer John Bonham's untimely death. But the group's history actually goes back further than most causal fans
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Timeline
Learn about memorable moments in the evolution of John Bonham
    CHILDHOOD
  • 1980
    The remaining members disbanded Led Zeppelin rather than replace him. They said in a press release on 4 December 1980: "We wish it to be known that the loss of our dear friend and the deep respect we have for his family, together with the sense of undivided harmony felt by ourselves and our manager, have led us to decide that we could not continue as we were."
    More Details Hide Details It was signed "Led Zeppelin". Bonham had a younger brother, Mick Bonham (1950–2000), a disc jockey, author and photographer, and a younger sister, Deborah Bonham (born 1962), a singer-songwriter. Bonham was married to Pat Phillips, and the couple had two children; Zoë Bonham (born 10 June 1975), a singer-songwriter who appears at Led Zeppelin conventions, and Jason Bonham (born 15 July 1966), a drummer who has played with UFO, Foreigner, and Bonham. He previously played in Black Country Communion with Glenn Hughes, Derek Sherinian, and Joe Bonamassa. They recorded an album called Black Country in 2010. On 10 December 2007, he played with Led Zeppelin on the Ahmet Ertegun Tribute Concert, as well as their reunion at the Atlantic Records 40th Anniversary show on 15 May 1988. A 1970 film clip of four-year-old Jason playing drums appears in the Led Zeppelin film The Song Remains the Same. Zoë and Jason appeared at the induction ceremony for the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1995 with the surviving members of Led Zeppelin.
    Bonham's remains were cremated and his ashes interred on 12 October 1980, at Rushock parish church, Worcestershire.
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    The inquest on 27 October 1980 showed that in 24 hours Bonham had drunk around 40 shots (1–1.4 litres) of 40% ABV vodka, after which he vomited and choked.
    More Details Hide Details The finding was accidental death. An autopsy found no other drugs in Bonham's body.
    On 24 September 1980, Bonham was picked up by Led Zeppelin assistant Rex King to attend rehearsals at Bray Studios for a tour of North America, to begin 17 October in Montreal, Canada – the band's first since 1977.
    More Details Hide Details During the journey, Bonham asked to stop for breakfast, where he drank four quadruple vodkas (16 shots, between 400–560 ml). He then continued to drink heavily after arriving at rehearsals. The band stopped rehearsing late in the evening and then retired to Page's house, the Old Mill House in Clewer, Windsor. After midnight on Thursday, 25 September, Bonham fell asleep; someone took him to bed and placed him on his side. Benji LeFevre, Led Zeppelin's tour manager, and John Paul Jones found him dead the next afternoon. Bonham was 32.
  • 1974
    In 1974, Bonham appeared in the film Son of Dracula, playing drums in Count Downe's (Harry Nilsson) band.
    More Details Hide Details Bonham appeared in a drum line-up including Keith Moon and Ringo Starr on the soundtrack album.
  • 1972
    In 1972, he played on a Maurice Gibb-produced album by Jimmy Stevens called Don't Freak Me Out in the UK and Paid My Dues in the US, credited as "Gemini" (his star sign).
    More Details Hide Details He drummed for his Birmingham friend, Roy Wood, on his 1979 album, On the Road Again, and on Wings' album Back to the Egg on the tracks "Rockestra Theme" and "So Glad to See You Here". He was also featured on Paul McCartney & Wings Beware my love demo version first recorded in 1976, it remained unreleased until 2014 with the release of the album Wings at the speed of sound boxset. Bonham was the best man of Black Sabbath's Tony Iommi at his wedding ceremony.
  • 1971
    He played on Lulu's 1971 single "Everybody Clap (Lulu song)," written by Maurice Gibb and Billy Lawrie.
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  • 1970
    Bonham also played for Screaming Lord Sutch on Lord Sutch and Heavy Friends in 1970.
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  • 1969
    In 1969 Bonham appeared on The Family Dogg's A Way of Life, with Page and Jones.
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    In Led Zeppelin tours after 1969, Bonham included congas, orchestral timpani and a symphonic gong.
    More Details Hide Details He is credited by the Dallas Times Herald with the first concert use of electronic timpani drum synthesisers during "Kashmir" in Dallas, Texas, in 1977.
  • OTHER
  • 1968
    During Led Zeppelin's first tour of the United States in December 1968, Bonham became friends with Vanilla Fudge's drummer, Carmine Appice.
    More Details Hide Details Appice introduced him to Ludwig drums, which he then used for the rest of his career. Bonham used the longest and heaviest sticks, which he called "trees." His hard hitting was evident on many Led Zeppelin songs, including "Immigrant Song" (Led Zeppelin III), "When the Levee Breaks" (Led Zeppelin IV /), "Kashmir" (Physical Graffiti), "The Ocean" (Houses of the Holy), and "Achilles Last Stand" (Presence). Page let Bonham use a double bass drum in an early demo of "Communication Breakdown" but scratched the track because of Bonham's "over-use" of it. The studio recording of "Misty Mountain Hop" captures his dynamics, similarly exhibited on "No Quarter". On cuts from later albums, Bonham handled funk and Latin-influenced drumming. Songs like "Royal Orleans" and "Fool in the Rain" are examples, respectively displaying a New Orleans shuffle and a samba.
    However, on seeing Bonham drum for Tim Rose at a club in Hampstead, north London, in July 1968, Page and manager Peter Grant were convinced he was perfect for the project, first known as the New Yardbirds and later as Led Zeppelin.
    More Details Hide Details Bonham was reluctant. Plant sent eight telegrams to Bonham's pub, the "Three Men in a Boat", in Bloxwich, which were followed by 40 telegrams from Grant. Bonham was also receiving offers from Joe Cocker and Chris Farlowe but he accepted Grant's offer. He recalled, "I decided I liked their music better than Cocker's or Farlowe's."
    In 1968, American singer Tim Rose toured Britain and asked Band of Joy to open his concerts.
    More Details Hide Details When Rose returned months later, Bonham was invited by the singer to drum for Rose's band, which gave him a regular income. After the break-up of The Yardbirds, guitarist Jimmy Page formed another band and recruited Plant, who in turn suggested Bonham. Page's choices for drummer included Procol Harum's B.J. Wilson, and session drummers Clem Cattini and Aynsley Dunbar. Ginger Baker was also rumoured to be on Page's list.
  • 1967
    In 1967, A Way of Life asked Bonham to return to the group, and he agreed, while keeping in touch with Plant.
    More Details Hide Details Plant formed Band of Joy and chose Bonham as the drummer. The band recorded demos but no album.
  • 1964
    He played in other Birmingham bands such as The Nicky James Movement and The Senators, who made a single, "She's a Mod," in 1964.
    More Details Hide Details Bonham then took up drumming full-time. Two years later, he joined A Way of Life, but the band folded. Needing a regular income, he joined a blues group called Crawling King Snakes, whose lead singer was Robert Plant.
    In 1964, Bonham joined his first semi-professional band, Terry Webb and the Spiders, and met his future wife Pat Phillips around the same time.
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    Bonham attended Lodge Farm Secondary Modern School, where his headmaster wrote in his report that "He will either end up a dustman or a millionaire." After leaving school in 1964, he worked for his father as an apprentice carpenter between drumming for local bands.
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  • 1962
    Between 1962 and 1963, still at school, Bonham joined the Blue Star Trio, and Gerry Levene & the Avengers.
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  • 1948
    Bonham was born on 31 May 1948, in Redditch, Worcestershire, England, to Joan and Jack Bonham.
    More Details Hide Details He began learning to play at five, making a kit of containers and coffee tins, imitating his idols Max Roach, Gene Krupa and Buddy Rich. His mother gave him a snare drum when he was 10. He received his first drum kit from his father at 15, a Premier Percussion set. Bonham never took formal drum lessons, though as a teen he had advice from other Redditch drummers.
Original Authors of this text are noted here.
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