John Bonham ('Bonzo')
John Henry Bonham was born in Redditch, Worcestershire, England on May 31st 1948. Bonham began playing drums at the age of 5 and although he never took any formal lessons he would become one of the most influential and respected drummers of all time.
John Bonham grew up in the same area as Robert Plant and around 1966 they ended up in the same band, The Crawling King Snakes. Eventually he left the Crawling King Snakes, but would end up playing drums in another band fronted by Robert Plant, Band of Joy. When Jimmy Page was looking to start a new band after the break up of The Yardbirds, he met with Robert Plant, who suggested getting John Bonham as the drummer. Eventually Bonham was convinced to join the band, and the lineup for Led Zeppelin was complete.
As a drummer he was known for his big sound, big sticks, big drums and sometimes playing with his hands. He is probably most famous for his drum solo, Moby Dick which can be heard on Led Zeppelin II.
On his way to rehearsals on September 24, 1980,
John Bonham stopped for breakfast, which included 4 Quadruple Vodkas.
During rehearsals, he continued to drink and went to sleep that night at
Jimmy Page's house. The next day, September 25th, bassist John Paul
Jones and tour manager Benji LeFevre found him dead. The autopsy
revealed he died from pulmonary edema which is the water logging of the
lungs caused by the inhalation of vomit. Led Zeppelin officially disbanded
Led Zeppelin has been one of my favorite bands for decades, but almost uniquely, it is a band that I like and listen to more now than I did decades ago.
"I believe in God, man. I've seen him. I've felt his power. He plays drums for Led Zeppelin and his name is John Bonham baby!"