Sonny Bono


Salvatore Phillip "Sonny" Bono was an American recording artist, record producer, actor, and politician whose career spanned over three decades.

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Learn about the memorable moments in the evolution of Sonny Bono.


1935 Birth Born on February 16, 1935.


1954 19 Years Old Bono married his first wife, Donna Rankin, on November 3, 1954. Their daughter Christine ("Christy") was born on June 24, 1958. They divorced in 1962.


1964 29 Years Old In 1964, Bono married singer and actress Cher. They had one child, Chastity (later Chaz Bono), born March 4, 1969. In 1975 the duo divorced.


1965 30 Years Old 1 More Event
Bono co-wrote the song "She Said Yeah", which was covered by The Rolling Stones on their 1965 LP December's Children Bono also recorded as a solo artist under the name of Sonny.
1967 32 Years Old Bono also recorded an unsuccessful Sonny album titled Inner Views in 1967. Sonny continued to work with Cher through the early and mid-1970s starring in a popular television variety show, The Sonny and Cher Show, which ran on CBS from 1971 to 1974. From 1976 to 1977, the couple returned to performing together on The Sonny and Cher Show despite being divorced. … Read More


1984 49 Years Old Bono then married Susie Coelho, but divorced her in 1984.


1986 51 Years Old 1 More Event
Bono continued his acting career, doing bit roles in such shows as Fantasy Island and The Love Boat. He played the part of mad bomber Joe Selucci in Airplane II: The Sequel (1982) and in the 1986 horror movie Troll.
1988 53 Years Old Bono also played the part of Franklin Von Tussle in the 1988 John Waters film Hairspray. … Read More
1990 55 Years Old Sonny poked a little fun at himself when he guest-starred on The Golden Girls, in the episode "Mrs. George Devereaux", aired November 17, 1990, as himself vying with Lyle Waggoner for Dorothy's (Bea Arthur) affection in a dream, where Blanche (Rue McClanahan) dreams her husband is still alive. … Read More
1991 56 Years Old He also appeared in several episodes of P.S. I Luv U starring Connie Sellecca and Greg Evigan during the 1991–92 TV season as the Mayor of Palm Springs he really was at the time. … Read More
1992 57 Years Old Bono ran for the Republican nomination for United States Senate in 1992, but the nomination went to the more conservative Bruce Herschensohn, and the election to the Democrat Barbara Boxer. … Read More
1994 59 Years Old Bono was elected to the United States House of Representatives in 1994 to represent California's 44th congressional district. … Read More


1995 60 Years Old In their book Tell Newt to Shut Up, David Maraniss and Michael Weisskopf credit Bono with being the first person to recognize Gingrich's public relations problems in 1995. … Read More
1998 63 Years Old Bono died on January 5, 1998, of injuries sustained when he hit a tree while skiing on the Nevada side of Heavenly Ski Resort near South Lake Tahoe, California. … Read More
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