John Bomham

Led Zeppelins Robert Plant Almost Rejected Drummer John Bonham

Monday, December 1st, 2014

Drum history might have turned out differently had Led Zeppelin’s singer Robert Plant followed through on his initial inclination not to hire drummer John Bonham. The singer and drummer first paired up in 1967 in the pre-Zep group, Band of Joy, but Plant says the union almost didn’t happen, due to travel expenses.

Plant recently told Sound Opinions, “I was playing at a ballroom once and [Bonham] came up and said, ‘You’re alright, but you’d be a lot better if I was your drummer.’” “I said, ‘Where do you live?’ He said, ‘Well, I live in Redditch.’ I said, ‘That’s 20 miles from where I live–that’s too far. You’re not good enough.’ But we stole a little bit, nicked stuff from people when they weren’t looking, put the gas in the vehicles and off we went.” Bonham died on September 25, 1980. Robert Plant revived the Band of Joy name in 2010 for a concert tour of North America and Europe.

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