Jason Bonham has been hitting the airwaves today to discuss a band he'll be taking on the road this month. He's to be headlining performances under the guise of "An Evening with Jason Bonham" this Wednesday, Thursday and Friday in Florida, with two more shows in California at the end of the month.
In a live, in-the-studio interview on today's "Mark and Brian" morning show on KLOS 95.5, Bonham discussed his upcoming shows as well as his performance last night with Slash at the Roxy Theatre in Hollywood for a charity event benefiting the Painted Turtle. Bonham says his sister, Zoe Bonham, was "fantastic" on vocals when she joined up to sing Led Zeppelin's "Black Dog."
For Bonham's upcoming shows, the band lineup will consist of two guitarists: Ian Hatton, who played for the original Bonham band (1989-1992) as well as the reformation Motherland (1994), and Tony Catania, who played in the Jason Bonham Band (1995-1997). Two new recruits for the band are singer Kelly Keeling and bassist Francesco DiCosmo. They'll be playing songs from Led Zeppelin and all of the other bands Jason has toured and recorded with, such as UFO and Foreigner, plus his own bands.
Also on their upcoming set lists are some songs that Robert Plant included on his first solo album. Bonham explained that he played on demo versions of Plant's "Like I've Never Been Gone" and "Burning Down on One Side." "I did all the demos for that," Bonham said. "I used to be picked up from school when I was, like, 13 [or] 14, just after Dad died. ... [I'd] go into Robert's house, and all the guys in the band would be there."
That, of course, wasn't Bonham's only link-up with the members of Led Zeppelin. He was Jimmy Page's choice of a drummer when he finally went solo in 1988, and that year also saw Bonham playing for the first reunion under the Led Zeppelin name. Most recently, Bonham played with Page, Plant and John Paul Jones as Led Zeppelin in concert at the O2 arena on Dec. 10, 2007.
Reflecting on that show, Bonham said today that it was only two or three days before the big show that Plant asked Bonham to sing back-up on a few songs during their two-hour set, including opening number "Good Times Bad Times."
He compared playing with Led Zeppelin to pulling the Excalibur out of the stone and added that it was unfortunate that he also had to put the sword back. Bonham said that once he got over his nausea just before the show, he was solely focused on impressing Page, Plant and Jones and ignoring the other famous people in the audience.
In other news, KNAC.com listeners who tuned in for a scheduled phone interview with Jason Bonham instead heard only the Internet DJ claiming to have been blown off by a guest for the first time ever.
Early this morning, a news alert said Bonham was scheduled to call into the Internet radio show "Uncle Scotty's Hot Tub" at 11:30 a.m. Pacific time. Just ahead of the scheduled start time, the DJ went on a sexist and racist rant, addressing his listeners as "klansmen." As the start time of the interview passed, Uncle Scotty started badmouthing his no-show guest.
Later, the DJ admitted Bonham had been given wrong phone number to call in for the show. Also, when he checked his e-mail correspondence with Bonham's people, he realized that they had confirmed an 11:30 p.m. call-in, a time when the Internet radio station is off the air.