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BlackDog71

Bonham's Finest Performance

Bonham's Finest Performance  

59 members have voted

  1. 1. What is John Bonham's finest drumming performance?

    • How Many More Times
    • Moby Dick
    • Since I've Been Loving You
    • Four Sticks
    • When The Levee Breaks
    • The Song Remains the Same
    • D'yer Mak'er
    • In My Time of Dying
    • Kashmir
    • Achilles Last Stand
    • Fool in the Rain
    • Other


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I took my Top 11 drumming performances from John Bonham (from studio albums only) I feel were him at his best (even though he was in every song) and put them in. Some just happen to be personal favorites too. I added the "other" category so that people who have a different choice in mind can choose "other" and then explain which song they chose instead and why in the comments if they wish.

I just want to know what you think is his best performance and why. It can be your favorite or not. Either way, I'd love to know which songs other people love to listen to because of a certain fill, groove, or just the thunder Bonzo brought to the song. His drumming is something to behold even after all these years. I don't think that will ever change.

My personal favorite is "In My Time of Dying" so I voted for that one. I also feel he shines brightest in this one. His timing, grooves, and feel are just perfect.

Looking forward to the feedback.

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First of all, those are all excellent choices, I couldn't have come up with a better list. I voted for "Achilles Last Stand", because of the 'finest drumming performance' criteria. He nails that ridiculous chop that, for me, is his absolute finest moment. However - the real genius of Bonzo is his uncanny ability to make the simplest thing sound more bad-ass than anyone could. Kashmir and, especially, Levee are examples of this. I almost voted for Levee because this is the track that will inspire drummers for decades to come.

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First of all, those are all excellent choices, I couldn't have come up with a better list. I voted for "Achilles Last Stand", because of the 'finest drumming performance' criteria. He nails that ridiculous chop that, for me, is his absolute finest moment. However - the real genius of Bonzo is his uncanny ability to make the simplest thing sound more bad-ass than anyone could. Kashmir and, especially, Levee are examples of this. I almost voted for Levee because this is the track that will inspire drummers for decades to come.

Thank you for the compliment on the choices. I appreciate it.

You are very right with "Achilles Last Stand." That was my second choice. He just put something extra into the song and it really gives it a huge boost.

You are right about him taking a simple rhythm and turning it into something amazing and epic. Who is ever going to forget the opening to "When The Levee Breaks?" Nobody. It's iconic and it always will be. Only Bonham could take that beat and make it something memorable and powerful.

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Again, what a great list! And put that way, it's so difficult to choose! Because as you say, he was at his best in every song (I truly think that).

I'm listening to How Many More Times right now and woahh... I'll always remember the first time I heard that song, I had to sit down and LISTEN. His drumming when Robert sings "Steal away..." blew my mind. Still does, actually.

I voted for When The Levee Breaks though, because the sound, the feel, the power... everything is out of this world. This song is absolute perfection in my opinion, in every way.

I also can't get enough of Trampled Under Foot, Nobody's Fault But Mine, Custard Pie and For Your Life. But then, if I keep thinking, I'll end up writing down all the songs, so I'd better stop here!

John Bonham is the reason I started playing drums. There's nothing I enjoy more in the world than playing a Led Zeppelin song. Not only is it fun, but each time I do, I learn something.

Edited by CustardPie87

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Again, what a great list! And put that way, it's so difficult to choose! Because as you say, he was at his best in every song (I truly think that).

I'm listening to How Many More Times right now and woahh... I'll always remember the first time I heard that song, I had to sit down and LISTEN. His drumming when Robert sings "Steal away..." blew my mind. Still does, actually.

I voted for When The Levee Breaks though, because the sound, the feel, the power... everything is out of this world. This song is absolute perfection in my opinion, in every way.

I also can't get enough of Trampled Under Foot, Nobody's Fault But Mine, Custard Pie and For Your Life. But then, if I keep thinking, I'll end up writing down all the songs, so I'd better stop here!

John Bonham is the reason I started playing drums. There's nothing I enjoy more in the world than playing a Led Zeppelin song. Not only is it fun, but each time I do, I learn something.

I know exactly how you feel. It's tough to really say a favorite and stick with it for more than a few seconds.

"How Many More Times" is amazing. His patterns in that song make me air drum along every time I listen. My steering wheel is my drum set as of late. :D

And we all know "When The Levee Breaks" is something to behold. It's a masterpiece from beginning to end. Easiest way to put it.

Yea, it's almost easier to say that every Zeppelin song is a drumming clinic. I liked the other ones you brought up in the above comment, though.

How long have you been playing drums? How's your progression?

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I voted for WTLB, the are all great .B)

"Poor Tom" off of coda is one of my all time faves also.:)

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I know exactly how you feel. It's tough to really say a favorite and stick with it for more than a few seconds.

"How Many More Times" is amazing. His patterns in that song make me air drum along every time I listen. My steering wheel is my drum set as of late. :D

And we all know "When The Levee Breaks" is something to behold. It's a masterpiece from beginning to end. Easiest way to put it.

Yea, it's almost easier to say that every Zeppelin song is a drumming clinic. I liked the other ones you brought up in the above comment, though.

How long have you been playing drums? How's your progression?

YES! I've noticed that many people air drum when they listen to Led Zeppelin, and they're not always drummers. It really shows how good Bonham is!

"Drumming clinic" haha perfect way of putting it.

I've been playing for three years now. Let's just say that I'm more statisfied with how I sound. I used to play too fast, now I'm more relaxed and hit the drums harder as a result, if that makes sense.

Do you play?

Edited by CustardPie87

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YES! I've noticed that many people air drum when they listen to Led Zeppelin, and they're not always drummers. It really shows how good Bonham is!

"Drumming clinic" haha perfect way of putting it.

I've been playing for three years now. Let's just say that I'm more statisfied with how I sound. I used to play too fast, now I'm more relaxed and hit the drums harder as a result, if that makes sense.

Do you play?

I love air drumming to him. It makes listening to Zeppelin in the car that much more fun.

I can see how playing too fast can be a bad thing if that's not the sound you wish to have. Sometimes it can affect how well you play or how you keep the beat to a certain song. I like that you have a sound you wish to get and want your ability to rise to a level where you can achieve that sound.

Sadly, I do not play. I have been thinking about learning and trying. I have "tried" before and I don't appear to have the rhythm really. I guess it never hurts to try again, right?

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I love air drumming to him. It makes listening to Zeppelin in the car that much more fun.

I can see how playing too fast can be a bad thing if that's not the sound you wish to have. Sometimes it can affect how well you play or how you keep the beat to a certain song. I like that you have a sound you wish to get and want your ability to rise to a level where you can achieve that sound.

Sadly, I do not play. I have been thinking about learning and trying. I have "tried" before and I don't appear to have the rhythm really. I guess it never hurts to try again, right?

No, it doesn't. As long as you're having fun!

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No, it doesn't. As long as you're having fun!

I will keep that in mind. If I can learn some of the amazing grooves that Bonham has wowed us all with, my life will be a little better. Plus, it's another talent and hobby to pick up. I can cross that off my list of things I have always wanted to learn.

By the way, another good drumming song that I actually forgot to put on the list is "In The Light." Lots of good fills in that song.

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I like how you talk about it. Music really makes life better.

Agreed! In The Light is a masterpiece, and so atmospheric.

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When The Levee Breaks. That song is all Bonham. The way his drums were miked, the intensity of his drumming.....that song is why Bonham was as important to that band as he was. It's also the best song on that album, and arguably the best song they ever did.

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Well, isn't Moby Dick sorta his thing, I mean he would play the drum solos up to 15 mins or longer.

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I voted for WTLB, the are all great .B)

"Poor Tom" off of coda is one of my all time faves also.:)

Good call on "Poor Tom."

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I chose Achilles, but the Wanton Song is a great Bonzo tune aswell.

I love The Wanton Song! Man....it was really hard to pick just 11 songs!

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When The Levee Breaks. That song is all Bonham. The way his drums were miked, the intensity of his drumming.....that song is why Bonham was as important to that band as he was. It's also the best song on that album, and arguably the best song they ever did.

That song is probably my favorite overall Bonham groove. I agree with you on it being the best song on IV (just my personal opinion). I love it on a musical and personal level. I don't think it's the best song they ever did, but I can see why you WOULD think that. It's certainly up there. Listening to it never gets old. I think Bonham put his stamp on that song. I always think of his amazing drumming every time I listen to it.

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Well, isn't Moby Dick sorta his thing, I mean he would play the drum solos up to 15 mins or longer.

"Moby Dick" was known as his showcase live and maybe his most well known, but I wanted to know more about what people thought was his best overall performance was. If you think it's Moby Dick, then I don't blame you. It doesn't HAVE to be that one just because it's his "drum solo" song.

Good point though. Only two votes for it so far. Kind of shocking.

Edited by BlackDog71

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Great choices and I have to agree with The Rover. Each song has an memorable fill, riff or rythm.

I would choose Kashmir. Even though it's a simple beat, it makes you trip just as much as the guitars, keyboards and voice.

There is on exceptional piece of genius a little after 7:15 just before the "Ooooo yea yea" refrain that blows me away.

It's just something no one would even think of doing, and goes to prove that all he ever needs in a song is a short little open space and he'll give you his signature.

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Great choices and I have to agree with The Rover. Each song has an memorable fill, riff or rythm.

I would choose Kashmir. Even though it's a simple beat, it makes you trip just as much as the guitars, keyboards and voice.

There is on exceptional piece of genius a little after 7:15 just before the "Ooooo yea yea" refrain that blows me away.

It's just something no one would even think of doing, and goes to prove that all he ever needs in a song is a short little open space and he'll give you his signature.

I agree! I have always loved the simple, but strong drums in Kashmir. He had that ability that few have ever had.

Edited by BlackDog71

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D'yer Mak'er

People used to "sing" the drum patterns on this tune while dancing. How many drummers ever had their playing "sung" along to?

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Moby Dick because it is Bonzo at his best both recorded and live.

Listen to what he is playing on any live recordings because more often than not the feel and the groove of the other options on this poll are all there.

Seeing and hearing him play it live only improves my opinion and appreciation of the man's talent.

Two others that deserve a mention are Bonzo's Montreux and Poor Tom from the much (unfairly) maligned, Coda album.

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I voted other because today's vote goes to "Trampled Underfoot".The studio version is great but at the moment I'm thinking of almost any live version.

It's a cool, fun & funky groove that I can see Bonzo having the best time drumming to.And if you aren't dancing to it,at the very least you're tapping your foot!

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