Continuing with our countdown of our Top 5 rockers who left us too soon, we are now on the final leg of our journey. The first two names on the list – Jim Morrison and Jimi Hendrix, were the obvious choices. The next three names that made it to our list was a closely contested one. Names like Kurt Cobain, Darrell Dimebag and the band Lynyrd Skynyrd were considered and reconsidered over and over again!
So here are the last three names that made to our Metal Bigot’s list.
John Bonham: ( 31 May 1948 – 25 Sept 1980): the speed king.
Power, speed and feel for the groove – no one can do it better than John Bonham. Describing the style of John Bonham’s drumming instantly conjures up visions of the thunderous power he created. One can only imagine Jimmy Page’s reaction on first hearing the sound of their potential new drummer for their band, the New Yardbirds (later renamed Led Zeppelin.) At first, Bonham was reluctant to join the well-known guitarist because of a steady gig with Tim Rose. But… the rest is history…
Live performances with Led Zeppelin truly showcased his abilities during the numerous improvised jams throughout every concert with drum solos extending to half-hour at times! Imitators are usually left frustrated, since Bonham made it look so easy – not only in his playing but also in the incredible drum sound he achieved. His legendary right foot (on his bass pedal) and lightning-fast triplets were his instant trademark. Later on, he refined his style from the hard skin-bashing approach to a more delicate wrist controlled one – which produced an even more powerful and louder sound with less effort.
Randy Rhoads: (Dec 6 1959 – Mar 19 1982): the Flying V
The man who popularized Flying V guitars, brought influences of classical guitar to heavy metal – Randy Rhoads is the man behind ‘take no prisoner’ solos of Blizzard of Ozz and Diary of a Madman. A devoted classical guitarist, Randy had an unique neo-classical metal style of playing. Ozzy Osbourne – the father of Brit heavy metal himself described Rhoads’ playing as “God entering my life.”
From being criticized for being dull during his stint with Quite Riot to classic hits like Crazy Train and Mr. Crowley, Randy Rhoads evolved as one of the greatest metal guitarist of all times during his association with the ex Black Sabbath frontman. So much so, Jackson Guitars had created two signature models – Jackson Randy Rhoads or Randy Rhoads pro to pay tribute to this axe wielder. But before the guitars got into production, Randy was killed in an attempt to fly past their touring bus on an aircraft to buzz his sleeping band-mates. Crazy metalheads!!!
Janis Joplin: (Jan 19 1943 – Oct 4 1970): Sweet face of Rock ‘n Roll
Oh lord, wont you buy me a mercedes benz ?
My friends all drive Porsches, I must make amends.
Worked hard all my lifetime, no help from my friends,
So Lord, won’t you buy me a Mercedes Benz?
Her powerful and distinctive voice, outlandish dress and lifestyles, her out spokenness and sense of humour – Janis Joplin was the face of the flower generation. This American blues singer gave a new range of expression for white women in the previously male-dominated world of post-Beatles rock. Infact, the small heart tattoo on her left breast is considered as one of the seminal moment in tattoo revolution.
However, she earned a dubious reputation as speed freak, heroin user and a heavy drinker. Her penchant for a beverage named Southern Comfort was well known. Ultimately, she died of heroin overdoes in her hotel room. A tragic end to such a illustrious career.
So, thats the end of our countdown. We realize that it is impossible to include many names in this list…our sincere aplogies. If there is any suggestion…you know what to do!!!