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bcarter690

Had John Bonham still been with us today...

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Had John Bonham still been with us today, it goes without saying that he would be, by now, an elder statesman of rock in the same way that Jimmy, Robert and John Paul Jones are recognized to be by legions of fans today.
I imagine he would be retired from the music business and would be a sober and loving proud father and grandfather. He wouldn't have been flashy and capitalizing on his fame but would appreciate the genuine recognition for all that he'd accomplished.
I like to think he would be on his farm with Pat and family and perhaps, occasionally, sit in with bands to smash the skins for the fun of it.
Bonzo would also be taking an active interest in Jason's drumming, shepherding him along in drumming technique and in life.
Perhaps, in a perfect scenario, he would have done an experimental solo percussion-only album or two with Jimmy producing.
I also picture him sitting in with bands like Tool and other local bands that he respected.
Its nice to think that Bonzo would also would have sat in with aspiring drummers and given clinics at drum industry conventions.
If he were still with us today, he would cruise around town on his motorcycles and cars from his collection-occasionally showing off his latest acquisitions; a black Citroen GT and a Bugatti Veyron.
For one reason or another, Led Zeppelin would have disbanded in the mid-80's after the music business and fans no longer supported the world in which Zep existed.
Jimmy and company wouldn't want to have cheapened all they had built in the previous years and they would have quietly put the band to rest once it became obvious to all of them that they had outgrown their time.
The MTV generation would have put the band on a shelf while they danced to Michael Jackson. John Bonham in particular wouldn't have wanted to continue to seem to be a caricature of his old self and would have voted to disband Led Zeppelin.
Perhaps there would have been the occasional get-together when the time and situation felt right.
Live Aid and the Atlantic 40th show certainly would have been much better with John there behind the kit, of course.
So, it all came full circle in December 2007 when his son sat in for him. John would have been proud.
He was a man of his time.
And as such, I often wonder how he would have adapted and grown to fit into the twenty first century with plastic drums, drum machines, YouTube and auto tune. My gut tells me he would have adapted just fine while staying true to his organic drumming technique,lifestyle and principles.
He is missed by legions of fans, friends and family each day.

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Nah would have been selling JB branded ludwig drumkits and sticks while simultaneously

telling Robert "WTF is this shit you are currently performing" in a broad black country accent

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Tell you one thing, if he'd still been alive I would buy anything he'd played on, just a magnificent drummer.

As a mate of mine once said to me, there are drummers and there is John Bonham.

Sadly missed.

Edited by Mook

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I agree with andrew r.. I don't think John Bonham would have started messing around with Simmons Drums or drum machines or anything like that. Nothing wrong with it by the way.

Phil Collins, Bill Bruford, Neil Peart and many others did some amazing stuff with electronics. But, I think John would have still been playing his 5 pc. Ludwig Drums with the 2 tympani set up for his professional career..

Many hard hitting drummers from the 70's stayed true to their style.. Cozy Powell, Ian Paice, Joey Kramer, Bill Ward etc.. All were and are huge Bonham fans.

I imagine he would have led the pack like he always did.

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Had John Bonham still been with us today, it goes without saying that he would be, by now, an elder statesman of rock in the same way that Jimmy, Robert and John Paul Jones are recognized to be by legions of fans today.
I imagine he would be retired from the music business and would be a sober and loving proud father and grandfather. He wouldn't have been flashy and capitalizing on his fame but would appreciate the genuine recognition for all that he'd accomplished.
I like to think he would be on his farm with Pat and family and perhaps, occasionally, sit in with bands to smash the skins for the fun of it.
Bonzo would also be taking an active interest in Jason's drumming, shepherding him along in drumming technique and in life.
Perhaps, in a perfect scenario, he would have done an experimental solo percussion-only album or two with Jimmy producing.
I also picture him sitting in with bands like Tool and other local bands that he respected.
Its nice to think that Bonzo would also would have sat in with aspiring drummers and given clinics at drum industry conventions.
If he were still with us today, he would cruise around town on his motorcycles and cars from his collection-occasionally showing off his latest acquisitions; a black Citroen GT and a Bugatti Veyron.
For one reason or another, Led Zeppelin would have disbanded in the mid-80's after the music business and fans no longer supported the world in which Zep existed.
Jimmy and company wouldn't want to have cheapened all they had built in the previous years and they would have quietly put the band to rest once it became obvious to all of them that they had outgrown their time.
The MTV generation would have put the band on a shelf while they danced to Michael Jackson. John Bonham in particular wouldn't have wanted to continue to seem to be a caricature of his old self and would have voted to disband Led Zeppelin.
Perhaps there would have been the occasional get-together when the time and situation felt right.
Live Aid and the Atlantic 40th show certainly would have been much better with John there behind the kit, of course.
So, it all came full circle in December 2007 when his son sat in for him. John would have been proud.
He was a man of his time.
And as such, I often wonder how he would have adapted and grown to fit into the twenty first century with plastic drums, drum machines, YouTube and auto tune. My gut tells me he would have adapted just fine while staying true to his organic drumming technique,lifestyle and principles.
He is missed by legions of fans, friends and family each day.

Nice cut and paste! unless you are Frank Smith.

Edited by juxtiphi

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I think I Bonzo was still here someone else wouldn't. Of course that would most likely mean Jimmy would be gone. I just can't see the band continuing on at the rate they were going with the heroin use from '77 on.. I believe someone would have died perhaps Bonzo later on perhaps Jimmy. Of course if the stones are still alive who knows, it sure would be wonderful to still have the four of them with us today that is for sure.

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After reading so much on the band throughout the years and learning insight from both written source and individual band interviews there is one question which bugs the shit outta me...

Why didn't they go on hiatus after the 80' European tour? Why did they decided to go ahead with the American tour for 80' and possibly 81'? The reason I ask this is it seems very obvious (maybe in hindsight) that Bonham was done, completely shot, did not want to tour. This is my theory, fwiw: During the 75' tour of North America they had to lease an RV for Bonham due to digestive issues on the road. In 77' I don't think he suffered from the same problems due to his heroin use (opioids cause constipation) on this tour. During the 80' European tour he was back using an RV and his problems were even worse than in 75'. Bonham also started his serious mood swings during the 75' tour. It almost sounds like after the 73' tour and the 18 months back with his family, he had a chance to really connect with his family which he probably had a very hard time doing from 68'-73' due to the almost non-stop touring / recording schedule of that period. So, the 75' tour comes around and the demand is insane, unprecedented expectations for live shows and Bonham knew this was only the beginning of a long touring schedule to come. If it were not for Robert's accident in 75' they were going to tour the rest of 75' and into 76' with the mega-stadiums already lined up such as Philly.

My theory is this, I think possibly being torn between his love & need to be a devoted family man and his perceived duty to his band caused him to downright fear the road in a pathological sense which resulted in his digestive problems and his severe mood swings. Now remember, this was the 70's and no one really knew that much about depression, anxiety, or bi-polar disorders to the extent that we do now, not to mention the stigma which was attached to anyone going to a counselor or psychologist in that era. Bottom line, I believe he was self medicating through drugs and alcohol and was at his breaking point by 1980. The 80' tour was the only time in the bands career where Bonham was having serious problems behind the kit. He himself was experiencing extreme self doubt about his abilities during this period.

Again, hindsight is 20/20 but I just don't know why a bunch of guys so close, especially Plant & Bonham, could not tell their friend was quite obviously at the end of his rope. After the 80' European tour ended it would have been the perfect time to announce a band hiatus for a year or two, reassess the situation, and determine if they should continue. I don't know, maybe there were commitments they could not get out of, maybe they had to do the 80' NA tour due to contract obligation. Either way if the band would have taken a nice, long break after the 80' European tour I believe Bonham would be with us today.

I believe they would have done one last album in 82' or 83', a farewell tour, and game over. Bonham would have probably retired for at least 10 years to watch his children grow up and enjoy the fruits of his labour. After that I think he would have become another Bernard Purdie, session drummer for the greats, occasionally doing the odd one-off show in England, and maybe recording with his own band, possibly resuming touring sometime in the mid to late 90's on a schedule of his choosing with Pat at his side.

So, thoughts?

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Busted.

Got a pm from bcarter690 saying, "it wasn't...Trust me. so, unbusted!".

According to the Achilles Last Stand Website, Frank Smith posted that article on October 14th 2014. bcarter690 started this thread 4 days later so either he cut and paste or he is Frank Smith. See it here,

http://www.led-zeppelin.org/current-news/1653-frank-smith-on-john-bonham

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Just imagine how many more incredible studio albums may have been produced!!! Its just hard to imagine what could have been. Their ability to be so versatile from album to album is just beyond belief. You take a band like Aerosmith who were a very good band, but they were one dimensional. Something nobody could ever ever accuse Led Zeppelin of being. The incredible thing about Page is his ability to have mixed hard rock if you will, with all other types of music. Country, Blues, Classical and even Disco. Had Bonzo not met his untimely tragic end on this planet, we would have had many more tours and so much more studio productions. 40 years later Jimmy still wants to produce. I will always feel like we were cheated out of more of their unearthly brilliance. It was not the same with Lennon. They had already been finished. Led Zeppelin were still going strong. The sky was the limit. I still remember hearing the announcement of the cancellation of the Buffalo concert when I had tickets after seeing them in Landover. It was just days to go and the announcement of Robert's son and that tragedy. The local radio station then played "When the Levee Breaks". It was so damn appropriate. I always remember "Cryin won't help ya, cryin won't do you no good". That and then getting the word about Bonzo were two of the saddest day's of my life.

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