Brown - Dark
Redditch, Worcestershire, England, UK
Place of Death
Jimmy Page`s home — The Old Mill House in Clewer, Windsor, England
Cause of Death
Asphyxiation Caused By Choking On His Own Vomit
Claim to Fame
drummer / songwriter for Led Zeppelin
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Profile Bio Text
John Henry "Bonzo" Bonham (May 31, 1948 – September 25, 1980) was an English drummer and member of the English rock band Led Zeppelin. He was renowned for his power, speed and "feel" for the groove. Bonham is considered one of the most influential and respected drummers of the modern rock era and continues to be cited as an influence on drummers of varying styles to this day. Bonham was born in Redditch, Worcestershire, England. He first learned how to play drums at the age of five, making a drum kit out of containers and coffee tins, and copying the moves of his idols Gene Krupa and Buddy Rich. He received his first proper drum kit at the age of fifteen, a Premier Percussion kit.
When Jimmy Page wanted to start a band in the wake of The Yardbirds break-up, his first choice for singer was Terry Reid, however Reid had already signed with Mickie Most for a solo career. Reid suggested Robert Plant, who in turn suggested Bonham, who had already drummed with Plant and knew Page from session work, as well as John Paul Jones. Page`s choices for drummer included Procol Harum`s B.J. Wilson, session drummers Clem Cattini and Aynsley Dunbar. Ginger Baker was also rumoured to be on Page`s list. However, upon seeing Bonham drum for Tim Rose in Hampstead, north London, in July 1968, Page and manager Peter Grant were instantly convinced that he was the perfect fit for the new project. During Led Zeppelin`s first tour of the United States in December 1968, Bonham became friends with Vanilla Fudge drummer Carmine Appice. Appice introduced him to Ludwig drums, which he then used for the rest of his career. Bonham used the longest and heaviest sticks available, which he referred to as "trees". His hard hitting style was displayed to great effect on many Led Zeppelin songs, including "Immigrant Song" His famous drum solo, first entitled "Pat`s Delight", then "Moby Dick", would often last for half-an-hour and regularly featured his use of bare hands to achieve different sound effects.
As well as recording with Led Zeppelin, Bonham also found time to play on sessions for other artists. In 1970, Bonham drummed for Screaming Lord Sutch on his album Lord Sutch and Heavy Friends. Bonham also drummed for his Birmingham friend, Roy Wood, on his 1979 album, On the Road Again, and for Paul McCartney`s Wings on their Back to the Egg Rockestra project. He also plays drums on Lulu`s 1971 song "Everybody`s Got To Clap", originally written by Maurice Gibb and Billy Lawrie. On September 24, 1980, John Bonham was picked up by Led Zeppelin assistant Rex King to attend rehearsals at Bray Studios for the upcoming tour of the United States, the band`s first since 1977. During the journey Bonham had asked to stop for breakfast, where he downed four quadruple vodkas, with a ham roll. After taking a bite of the ham roll he said to his assistant, "Breakfast". He then continued to drink heavily when he arrived at the studio. After midnight, Bonham had fallen asleep and was taken to bed and placed on his side. Benji LeFevre (who had replaced Richard Cole as Led Zeppelin`s tour manager) and John Paul Jones found him dead the next morning. Bonham was 32 years old. The cause of death was asphyxiation from vomit. A subsequent autopsy found no other drugs in Bonham`s body. The alcoholism that had plagued the drummer since his earliest days with the band ultimately led to his death. John Bonham was cremated on October 10, 1980, at Rushock Parish Church, Worcestershire.
Wiltan House public school (dropped out)
Full Name at Birth
John Henry Bonham
John Henry Bonham (31 May 1948 – 25 September 1980) was an English musician and songwriter. He is best known as the drummer of Led Zeppelin. Bonham was esteemed for his speed, power, fast bass-drumming, distinctive sound, and "feel" for the groove. He is considered one of the greatest rock drummers.
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Music Profile Complete
Mick Bonham (Younger Brother)
Deborah Bonham (Younger Sister)
Billy Bonham (Cousin)
Music Genre (Text)
Hard rock, Heavy Metal, Blues Rock, Folk Rock
Atlantic, Swan Song
Led Zeppelin, Band of Joy
Music Genre (Text)
Couple Profile Source
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