Jump to content
Slate Blackcurrant Watermelon Strawberry Orange Banana Apple Emerald Chocolate Marble
Slate Blackcurrant Watermelon Strawberry Orange Banana Apple Emerald Chocolate Marble
Sign in to follow this  
badgeholder

Barney Hoskyns book

Recommended Posts

A great deal of assumptions by people who never met the man. The book covers about 3% of Bonham's life from 68-80, yet some are willing to make sweeping generalizations. About as lurid as what some find the book's detailed accounts to be.

I will make no such generalizations towards only one individual. I will only say that years of alcohol and drug abuse, coupled with immense pressure and stress, in view of the many many people that have experienced similar circumstances both in years past and today, does tend to result in obtuse and outspoken behavior. We have no reason to suspect that Bonham was any more invulnerable to these external pressures than the next man. Some of his actions, while striking, are not shocking given that many people exhibit adverse symptoms of alcohol and drug abuse everyday, be it a neighbor, friend or relative.

Perhaps the surprising thing for some is that Bonham was different because he was famous. But that doesn't have the impact people think it does. Not recently, as in the case of Amy Winehouse, and not in 1980 in the company of Messars Page and Grant.

We know mostly of Bonzo on tour, and little of him off the road. His life and times is best left to those that knew him, who may or may not choose to remember the bad with the good. But thinking one can surmise an entire life from reading the book seems silly at best and desecrating at worst.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

...I expected Page to get a good roasting and he comes across as spoilt paranoid brat so no surprises there,

I knew Page wasn't going to come off well in Hoskyn's book after reading a review of it last winter. However, I was surprised to learn that he may have had an eating disorder during the 70's. Unity MacLean's revelation that Page checked into a health farm "so they could fatten him up" and Janine Safer Whitney's comment that she never saw him eat an actual meal were eye-opening.

but what is intriguing is Plant gets off almost completely blemish-free! Jones is anonymous as usual but when he says something it really counts. Peter Grant's bark was apparently worse than his bite which was a surprise and Richard Cole does'nt really add much to what he has already divulged.

I have a theory about why Plant gets off so lightly in this book. I think Bonham and Page were such difficult people that Plant, in contrast, seemed even more agreeable and mellow. It also helped that he was a handsome and charismatic extrovert. However, no one questioned why a man who most consider a good guy chose to stay in a band with people who behaved so badly long after he had enough name recognition to launch a solo career? Or how he could be friends with a man who behaved so brutishly?

Edited by Disco Duck

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Bonham should never have been in a band, that is a touring band period. He hated the road and pathologically missed his family to the point of reverse narcissism. I truly believe (though have no true insight) that Bonham's full and complete identity was within his family and away from them he felt broken and self-loathing. I wonder what his upbringing was like? Anyone have info regarding his parents or the Bonham household in general while John was growing up? Such a tragedy, I love Zeppelin but if Robert would have said enough in July of 77' and Bonham lived as a result I would call that a more than fair trade!!!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I have a theory about why Plant gets off so lightly in this book. I think Bonham and Page were such difficult people that Plant, in contrast, seemed even more agreeable and mellow. It also helped that he was a handsome and charismatic extrovert. However, no one questioned why a man who most consider a good guy chose to stay in a band with people who behaved so badly long after he had enough name recognition to launch a solo career? Or how he could be friends with a man who behaved so brutishly?

Good Lord, the man can do NOTHING right.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Bonham should never have been in a band, that is a touring band period. He hated the road and pathologically missed his family to the point of reverse narcissism. I truly believe (though have no true insight) that Bonham's full and complete identity was within his family and away from them he felt broken and self-loathing. I wonder what his upbringing was like? Anyone have info regarding his parents or the Bonham household in general while John was growing up? Such a tragedy, I love Zeppelin but if Robert would have said enough in July of 77' and Bonham lived as a result I would call that a more than fair trade!!!

No one is questioning Bonham's integrity as a family man but joining a successful touring band with all the pressures and temptations of the 70s was a recipe for disaster!

I've always maintained that zep should have called it quits in '77. Reading this book just confirmed it. Nothing had changed when they got back together in '78 so it was only going to end badly and in tragedy.

There is a good history of Bonham's early life in Howard Mylet's book.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Good Lord, the man can do NOTHING right.

ITA with your sentiment Knebby. Maybe, just maybe, because Robert was not a self-righteous prick. He knew Bonzo and Jimmy were in trouble. Hoskyn's book has a quote from Robert and he addresses this very touchy topic. I don't know the exact quote, but it's in there.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I love Zeppelin but if Robert would have said enough in July of 77' and Bonham lived as a result I would call that a more than fair trade!!!

It was Bonham who coaxed Plant out of his 18 month hiatus.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It was Bonham who coaxed Plant out of his 18 month hiatus.

Yes he did! I have always wondered if Plant had a list of conditions that had to be met before he returned?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

A great deal of assumptions by people who never met the man. The book covers about 3% of Bonham's life from 68-80, yet some are willing to make sweeping generalizations. About as lurid as what some find the book's detailed accounts to be..

...You realize how hypocritical that post was, right? Because what followed was essentially a recapitulation of the "assumptions" which came before, and was based on the same knowledge (second- or even third-hand) as the others.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I have not started the book yet,I will one of these days , very soon

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

...You realize how hypocritical that post was, right? Because what followed was essentially a recapitulation of the "assumptions" which came before, and was based on the same knowledge (second- or even third-hand) as the others.

Disagree. It is not an assumption to say he consumed alcohol and did drugs. It is an assumption to say he behaved poorly and rudely his entire life. I based my opinion that people with substance abuse issues can rationalize adverse behavior on what I have seen from people I know personally.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Disagree. It is not an assumption to say he consumed alcohol and did drugs. It is an assumption to say he behaved poorly and rudely his entire life. I based my opinion that people with substance abuse issues can rationalize adverse behavior on what I have seen from people I know personally.

Your comments perplex me. You deride "assumption" that "he behaved poorly and rudely his entire life," and then describe your belief (or possibly "assumption") that "people with substance abuse issues can rationalize adverse behavior" -- implying that Bonham was a person with "substance abuse issues," and that he engaged in such "adverse behavior." Is your issue with the scope of his proposed "adverse behavior"?

Also, while "assumptions" may have been made about his character, they have not been inferred without supporting evidence -- the book in question (and others) give written testimony to the fact that, while under the influence of alcohol and drugs, Bonham engaged in (using your terms) behaviour both "poor" and "rude."

I believe I actually understand your base desire -- we shouldn't pass judgment on a man who is long dead, and about whom we've only heard from others. That being said, I have never written an intentionally malicious or negative thing about John Bonham. I feel great sympathy for him -- and miss him, as much as I can a man who died before my birth, and who nevertheless has played a large rôle in my life.

Edited by Melcórë

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Your comments perplex me. You deride "assumption" that "he behaved poorly and rudely his entire life," and then describe your belief (or possibly "assumption") that "people with substance abuse issues can rationalize adverse behavior" -- implying that Bonham was a person with "substance abuse issues," and that he engaged in such "adverse behavior." Is your issue with the scope of his proposed "adverse behavior"?

Also, while "assumptions" may have been made about his character, they have not been inferred without supporting evidence -- the book in question (and others) give written testimony to the fact that, while under the influence of alcohol and drugs, Bonham engaged in (using your terms) behaviour both "poor" and "rude."

I believe I actually understand your base desire -- we shouldn't pass judgment on a man who is long dead, and about whom we've only heard from others. That being said, I have never written an intentionally malicious or negative thing about John Bonham. I feel great sympathy for him -- and miss him, as much as I can a man who died before my birth, and who nevertheless has played a large rôle in my life.

You are correct Melcore. I take issue with the "scope" of the accused behavior, and with passing encompassing judgement on someone we only know bits and pieces about. I do not quarrel about statements that he could get out of hand at times.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

What i find particularly distasteful is that the manipulative Page who could'nt fight his way out of a wet paper bag, knowing Bonham was'nt exactly the brightest tool in the box would goad and encourage him in his anti-social behaviour and merely observe the mayhem from a distance.

Of course he was'nt adverse to a bit of vile behaviour himself ie allegedly spitting in the face of a showco employee - i mean how low can you get?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I can't believe what I'm reading in this thread TBH. One book seems to have suddenly turned the guys in this band into the worst bastards in the world. Take a few steps back people this is NOT the whole picture. I never have and never will argue that these guys were perfect angels, but the way this thread has been heading lately just depresses me every time I come here.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I'm utterly and seriously saddened to read some of the previous comments. That is NOT criticism anymore, that is simply judging things we know NOTHING about. I would go as far as saying : Shame on you for saying such despicable stuff!! All you lot judging any of the former members know shit about them, so how come you think you have the right to condemn any of their behaviour?? Were any of you actually THERE?? no, you base your stupid comments on a stupid book without even having the slightest idea what you're talking about.

I will never say one bad word about Plant, Page, Bonham or Jones cause I know of at least 3 of them that they are brilliant people.

And to be gossiping about a dead person..Any of you thinking you're entitled to do so are the REAL saddos of all this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Some here spent days psycho-analysing their inter-personal relationships based upon the seating arrangement at a press conference. Spare yourself from yet another waste of time and emotion.

I'm utterly and seriously saddened to read some of the previous comments.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I can't believe what I'm reading in this thread TBH. One book seems to have suddenly turned the guys in this band into the worst bastards in the world. Take a few steps back people this is NOT the whole picture. I never have and never will argue that these guys were perfect angels, but the way this thread has been heading lately just depresses me every time I come here.

Totally agreed. I for one haven't read the book and can't wait to do so, but I don't know some of these posters can make statements such as the ones made in this thread, they speak like they have spent years with Page, Plant, Bonham and Jones and are intimate friends with them. We simply do not know the personal relationships between people regarding events that happened over 30 years ago.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I can't believe what I'm reading in this thread TBH. One book seems to have suddenly turned the guys in this band into the worst bastards in the world. Take a few steps back people this is NOT the whole picture. I never have and never will argue that these guys were perfect angels, but the way this thread has been heading lately just depresses me every time I come here.

Same here

For my experience, I believe that even knowing someone personally, you cannot completely understand in whole their behaviour. Relationships and minds are really complex and we're all very different. Every statement or judgement that could result from a book made 30 years later is possible mistaken. Not to mention each individual's speculations. We can only have a slight idea but never know the thing as it happened. That's why also stopped for a while reading this thread

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Bonham should never have been in a band, that is a touring band period. He hated the road and pathologically missed his family to the point of reverse narcissism. I truly believe (though have no true insight) that Bonham's full and complete identity was within his family and away from them he felt broken and self-loathing. I wonder what his upbringing was like? Anyone have info regarding his parents or the Bonham household in general while John was growing up? Such a tragedy, I love Zeppelin but if Robert would have said enough in July of 77' and Bonham lived as a result I would call that a more than fair trade!!!

John Bonham was playing in bands since he was 15. How you can make a statement like that is beyond ridiculous.

Perhaps his drinking on the road had less to do with reverse narcissism and more to do with the fact that he had a wife he absolutely adored; finally had the means to raise his young family in a proper setting after starting out dirt poor and the relentless party scene around the band was increasingly boring to him. He certainly maintained a personality away from his family. The guy wasn't always drunk and certainly wasn't always a bastard. Why write a book about all the times John Bonham wasn't misbehaving and sat down in a chair and had a quiet conversation with someone over a cup of tea?

He had a good upbringing. Jacko and Joan for loving parents, considering John was always a rambunctious child.

No one is questioning Bonham's integrity as a family man but joining a successful touring band with all the pressures and temptations of the 70s was a recipe for disaster!

I've always maintained that zep should have called it quits in '77. Reading this book just confirmed it. Nothing had changed when they got back together in '78 so it was only going to end badly and in tragedy.

There is a good history of Bonham's early life in Howard Mylet's book.

First off, he didn't join a successful touring band. His talents contributed to Led Zeppelin becoming successful. And they helped create the scene around them. You make Bonham sound like someone who was gullible and couldn't for-see the 1970s drug culture. Were other rock stars mind readers?

What i find particularly distasteful is that the manipulative Page who could'nt fight his way out of a wet paper bag, knowing Bonham was'nt exactly the brightest tool in the box would goad and encourage him in his anti-social behaviour and merely observe the mayhem from a distance.

Of course he was'nt adverse to a bit of vile behaviour himself ie allegedly spitting in the face of a showco employee - i mean how low can you get?

I suggest you stick with discussing the music of the band. You clearly have no rational analysis of their personalities and making statements like these show a lack of rational to your own.

Edited by zeppy668

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

hI,

Are you able to share detail with us as to how you knew him and his family so well. Your post gives the impression you knew the family, and Bonzo since he was a child.

He had a good upbringing. Jacko and Joan for loving parents, considering John was always a rambunctious child.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Just going to throw out a completely unnecessary "Ditto" to all the ones saying that there is a lot more to each of these men than can ever be captured in a book, or even several books. They have lives completely outside of Led Zeppelin and the things that happened during those times. And there's also the fact that no matter how un-biased we all try to be, the truth is that everyone sees things from their own perception of what happened, and even with the best of intentions, it is rarely the full truth in any circumstances. I'm glad people have read and enjoyed the book, but to think that it can do any more than provide some insight into the way other people saw them based on their own experiences with the band is a little out there. They weren't and aren't saints, but there is a huge space between saint and devil and I don't really believe anyone has a right to declare with certainty where anyone else falls on that spectrum. It's all perception.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Are you able to share detail with us as to how you knew him and his family so well. Your post gives the impression you knew the family, and Bonzo since he was a child.

John Bonham's childhood was discussed in great detail by his brother Mick Bonham in his book, 'Bonham by Bonham' and to a lesser extent in Chris Welch's book 'John Bonham: A Thunder of Drums'.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

SAJ,

:thanku:

Thank you for the clarification.

John Bonham's childhood was discussed in great detail by his brother Mick Bonham in his book, 'Bonham by Bonham' and to a lesser extent in Chris Welch's book 'John Bonham: A Thunder of Drums'.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Sign in to follow this  

×
×
  • Create New...