Stuff About John Bonham I Didn't Know
“I think he will forever be the greatest drummer of all-time.” – Dave Grohl
Today, on the anniversary of his passing, we pay tribute to Bonzo. Here is stuff about John Bonham I didn't know.
>He began self-teaching himself drums at age five, making a primitive drum kit out of empty coffee containers, pots and pans, and other assorted kitchenware. He got his first real snare drum at age 10, and his first full kit at age 15.
>By 16, he was playing in his first semi-professional band. While they were recording a demo, the sound engineer told Bonham that he played too loud and was unrecordable. Bonham later sent him a gold record with a snarky note saying, “Thanks for your advice.”
>A middle school principal once wrote on Bonham’s report card, “He’ll either be a dustman or a millionaire.”
>Before joining Zeppelin, Bonham was considering offers from Joe Cocker and Chris Farlowe. Robert Plant and Zeppelin manager Peter Grant besieged the reluctant Bonham with dozens of telegrams sent to his favorite pub, until he finally agreed to join.
>Led Zeppelin signed with Atlantic Records and scored an unprecedented $200,000 advance. With his first cheque Bonham bought a Jaguar.
>Vanilla Fudge’s drummer, Carmine Appice, befriended Bonham and introduced him to double bass drum kits incorporating larger, 26” inch Ludwig bass drums (then only used in marching bands), which enabled Bonham to increase his volume onstage.
>John Bonham suffered from stage fright, and would often have panic attacks before the band took the stage.
>In 1976, he appeared in the film Son of Dracula, along with Ringo Star, Keith Moon and Harry Nilsson. The rock-n-roll vampire movie was poorly received, and remains unavailable on either VHS or DVD.
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“To me, hands down John Bonham was the best rock drummer ever.” – Chad Smith of Red Hot Chili Peppers“
The greatest rock-and-roll drummer of all-time was John Bonham.” – Roger Taylor of Queen
“He was the best.” – Charlie Watts of The Rolling Stones