Jump to content
Slate Blackcurrant Watermelon Strawberry Orange Banana Apple Emerald Chocolate Marble
Slate Blackcurrant Watermelon Strawberry Orange Banana Apple Emerald Chocolate Marble
gibsonfan159

A Heavy Mind and Heart

Recommended Posts

Posted (edited)

When browsing through the thousands of Led Zeppelin photos through different sorts of media, I've noticed something peculiar about Bonzo- The very worried look in his eyes in many pictures. Sure, there are many more pictures of him with a beaming smile on his face, but none of the other members of the group seemed to have that very worried, old-soul look on their face at times. Maybe it ties into the fact that John also looked like he was 40 when he was 20. Sometimes I wonder if he didn't have bouts of bi-polar depression, as most pics either have him happier than anyone or looking very worried. Factor in the constant weight fluctuations over the years and heavy drinking and it almost adds up. Here are a few of those pics I've noticed.

 

Bonham 1.jpg

Bonham 2.jpg

Bonham 3.jpeg

Bonham 4.jpg

Bonham 6.jpg

Bonham 7.jpg

Bonham 8.jpg

Bonham 9.jpg

Bonham 10.jpg

Bonham 11.jpg

Bonham 12.jpg

Edited by gibsonfan159
Spelling

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I always thought of Bonham as the quintessential money cannot buy happiness poster child. The more success and money, the more miserable he seemed. I believe it was his brother Mick who said all he wanted was his family, farm, and to play in a local band on the weekends. Also, some people are extremely loyal and I believe Bonham was one of those types of folk. He knew Robert wanted the fame and fortune and likely did not want to let his best mate down. Then from 75' on I believe it was Jimmy he did not want to disappoint. All the talk of him not wanting to tour and especially his fear of touring post 77' paints a picture of a guy who was doing this as an obligation of sorts and not passion. I don't know, makes as much sense as anything else I guess.

Thoughts?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
13 minutes ago, IpMan said:

I always thought of Bonham as the quintessential money cannot buy happiness poster child. The more success and money, the more miserable he seemed. I believe it was his brother Mick who said all he wanted was his family, farm, and to play in a local band on the weekends. Also, some people are extremely loyal and I believe Bonham was one of those types of folk. He knew Robert wanted the fame and fortune and likely did not want to let his best mate down. Then from 75' on I believe it was Jimmy he did not want to disappoint. All the talk of him not wanting to tour and especially his fear of touring post 77' paints a picture of a guy who was doing this as an obligation of sorts and not passion. I don't know, makes as much sense as anything else I guess.

Thoughts?

I think the word "Obligation" is much more central to Zep's career than people realize, especially after 73. I know we all like to believe that the band were just meant to be and untouchable throughout their career, but I imagine these individuals struggled hard to keep the Zep train rolling. For someone like myself, born in 82 and discovering Zep in the early 90s, I always thought they were giants until Bonham's death. Then I realized as I studied the band's history more that they were "Dinosaurs" by 75. So looking back, all the members were working really hard to make the best of the machine that was Led Zeppelin, up until 1980.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted (edited)

I wouldn't read too much into the photographs.

It's widely reported that John Bonham had issues with touring & being away from his family, when you add in his drink & drug problems then you're going to have a pretty f*cked up person at times & from having read a lot about him, I believe that was the case unfortunately. I'm sure he had his fair share of happiness during his short life too, that stuff doesn't make as good reading as the hotel room smashing alcoholic though.

Edited by Mook

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
19 hours ago, Mook said:

I wouldn't read too much into the photographs.

I agree - Touring the way they did esp in the early days (two shows a night, one night off, etc) can take a major toll on the body. Plus all of the surviving members of the band had commented on Bonzo's sense of humor and heart, along with his love and loyalty to family. It was only a few weeks out of the year where/when he became "The Beast" and I'm sure that was almost always on the road. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Wasn't there a story about Bonzo in the pre Zep days with Robert after watching a Walker Brothers gig in the mid 1960's. Something about watching the girls try to get to Scott (in a pop star hysterical way) outside the venue so he and Robert both used ladies lipsticks to add kiss marks to Bonzo's car so the local girls outside the venue would look at them instead (apparently it did not work) . I wish I could recall where I read that.

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 3/13/2018 at 11:33 AM, IpMan said:

I always thought of Bonham as the quintessential money cannot buy happiness poster child. The more success and money, the more miserable he seemed. I believe it was his brother Mick who said all he wanted was his family, farm, and to play in a local band on the weekends. Also, some people are extremely loyal and I believe Bonham was one of those types of folk. He knew Robert wanted the fame and fortune and likely did not want to let his best mate down. Then from 75' on I believe it was Jimmy he did not want to disappoint. All the talk of him not wanting to tour and especially his fear of touring post 77' paints a picture of a guy who was doing this as an obligation of sorts and not passion. I don't know, makes as much sense as anything else I guess.

Thoughts?

A down to earth guy for sure, but any suggestion he was ever doing it out of obligation seems a bit overblown. Making money in Led Zeppelin enabled him to buy a home, then a farm and a fleet of cars and he knew it. I also think any suggestion he was afraid to tour after the brawl in Oakland is overblown. The case was settled in February 1978. Alcohol dependency is arguably what robbed him of much of his initially self-evident passion.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The footage of him at home on TSRTS always kinda blows my mind. He looked like a completely different person. It's no secret he absolutely hated being away from home while touring.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

A Catch-22 for sure... the constant touring meant the money for him to have his farm and family time, but the touring meant being away from family.

Also agree you cannot judge from photos. Here are Robert & Maureen arriving in Hawai'i, looking not too happy. It's a photo taken in a split second. Who knows, a second later, they could have burst into huge smiles, or maybe they just had a bit of a tiff over something dumb. 

image.png.9d6be8a6e2dd48ee66b6d5059ea17e33.png

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted (edited)

I don't like to read too much into photos (especially without knowing context) and I definitely wouldn't armchair-psychoanalyze someone I have never met.

On 3/12/2018 at 7:58 PM, gibsonfan159 said:

I always thought they were giants until Bonham's death. Then I realized as I studied the band's history more that they were "Dinosaurs" by 75.

I question the histories you read if that's the lesson you took from your studies. They were not "dinosaurs" in 1975. That whole concept of "dinosaur rock" promulgated by the punks and their willing lackeys in the media didn't even really start until 1977, late-1976 at the earliest.

Edited by Strider

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Good god, I fear what might be analyzed in a stack of photos of any of us.

Photos catch a moment in time, and often times it is a fake moment. Think of the "say cheese" smile, and how fake that actually is. When we compare smiling photos with non-smiling photos, does it mean we are unhappy in the non-smiling photos? Or that we were just lying in the smiling ones.

Moments... we have so few that are truly exceptional, and often they are not captured honestly in photos. Live them, remember them, and make more moments, for too soon, there will be no more.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, BShea said:

Good god, I fear what might be analyzed in a stack of photos of any of us.

Photos catch a moment in time, and often times it is a fake moment. Think of the "say cheese" smile, and how fake that actually is. When we compare smiling photos with non-smiling photos, does it mean we are unhappy in the non-smiling photos? Or that we were just lying in the smiling ones.

Moments... we have so few that are truly exceptional, and often they are not captured honestly in photos. Live them, remember them, and make more moments, for too soon, there will be no more.

:goodpost: One of the least accurate sayings is "the camera never lies". It frequently does

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I made a subjective observation about a celebrity and people act like I called their momma fat. I posted a few photos as examples to show how Bonham seemed to be an old soul type of person who often seemed to be in deep thought and worrisome in a lot of photos. They weren't meant to stand up in court as some type of evidence for something I'm accusing the drummer from Led Zeppelin of. I even said that there were many more photos of him smiling. Unwad thy panties, folks. 

Don't worry, I'll consult my attorneys before I make another observation about a rock band. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
3 hours ago, Strider said:

.

I question the histories you read if that's the lesson you took from your studies. They were not "dinosaurs" in 1975. That whole concept of "dinosaur rock" promulgated by the punks and their willing lackeys in the media didn't even really start until 1977, late-1976 at the earliest.

You're right, I'm thinking more around 79/80.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
10 minutes ago, gibsonfan159 said:

You're right, I'm thinking more around 79/80.

During the Over Europe 1980 tour Robert quipped onstage "Do you want to do the dinosaur rock?". There's also bootlegs from '79-'80 with dinosaur in the title.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

×