LED ZEPPELIN’s JIMMY PAGE: JOHN BONHAM’s Death Was ‘A Massive Loss To Everybody’
Metal X recently interviewed Jimmy Page of Led Zeppelin … and Page talked drummer John Bonham’s passing in 1980 and the legacy he left behind.
Page said: “[John] and I were really good pals. We were really, really close in our musical collaboration, if you want… the camaraderie. And just the sheer fact that, you know… ‘Bonzo’s Montreux’ [the drum solo by John Bonham, which is the seventh track on the band’s final studio album, ‘Coda’] says it all, really. It was just the two of us working on it over there in the studio.”
He continued: “The passing of John Bonham… Let’s just put it… Before we say, ‘the passing of John Bonham,’ the introduction of John Bonham on the first album and ‘Good Times Bad Times’, it changes drumming overnight. So that’s in 1968. And we’re talking about 1980. It’s twelve years of John Bonham’s musical input being appreciated by the whole world of music in every way — the fact that it changes drumming, the fact that it changes people’s appreciation of drums and music.
“[John’s passing] was a massive loss to everybody. Everybody had been touched by John Bonham’s music.”
In a 2014 interview with Rolling Stone magazine, Page was asked why the band didn’t take time to heal and rebuild itself following Bonham’s passing in 1980.
“Led Zeppelin wasn’t a corporate entity,” he replied. “Led Zeppelin was an affair of the heart. Each of the members was important to the sum total of what we were. I like to think that if it had been me that wasn’t there, the others would have made the same decision. And what were we going to do? Create a role for somebody, say, ‘You have to do this, this way?’ That wouldn’t be honest.”
John Bonham died on September 25, 1980 of pulmonary edema which is fluid accumulation in the lungs. He was 32 years old.