Jason Bonham Led Zeppelin experience


I went to the show last night here in Winnipeg and I have to say what a great performance by all. I was completely blown away. Jason was exceptional playing Moby Dick along side John on the video screen. Jason even brought out the vistalights in the second half of the show. I really recommend going to see this show if they are coming to your town. They also had some really great home video from the Bonham family which was very intimate and personal. When Jason was talking about his relationship with his father it was very touching. He really wanted people to know the real John Bonham, caring and playful father and not the crazy Bonzo that everybody seems to think about when they think of John. Anyway check it out if you can.


Senior Member
It sounds good and everything, good members, and Bonham II is a good drummer, but I think its a disgrace to the original band. In my opinion, Jason Bonham is using his father's success as a crouch, instead doing his own thing.

I say he should just create a completely new band, and poking at the legendary Led Zeppelin.

Sorry if this is coming off as ignorant, its just my opinion.


Gold Member
It sounds good and everything, good members, and Bonham II is a good drummer, but I think its a disgrace to the original band. In my opinion, Jason Bonham is using his father's success as a crouch, instead doing his own thing.

I say he should just create a completely new band, and poking at the legendary Led Zeppelin.

Sorry if this is coming off as ignorant, its just my opinion.
I am sure there are many that feel exactly as you do and I respect that. However, I have a different perspective: I see the Bonham/Bonham show not so much as a musical offering (e.g. a Led Zeppelin tribute show), rather as a historical perspective. There is a long history of children writing books about their famous parents; some well done, while others not so well done. Jason's show follows this historical tradition.

Just my 2 cents.


p.s. I am biased, my first degree was focused on history.


I think you are assuming Jason is in it for the money.In Jason's defence, he was approached by the producers of the Rain (a tribute to the beatles) to do this tour. He reluctantly agreed. He didn't want to do it at first, not to mention all the expectations he would have to live up to. I don't think he is riding the coat tails of Led Zeppelin in the hopes to make a living or for his own fame.


In my opinion, Jason Bonham is using his father's success as a crouch, instead doing his own thing.

I say he should just create a completely new band, and poking at the legendary Led Zeppelin.

I think you are assuming this information and it is your opinion, but Jason was asked by the producers of the Rain (beatles tribute) to do this tour. He reluctantly agreed to participate, knowing full well the expectations laid upon him to deliver a Zeppelin performance. I don't think he needs the money and I don't think he is riding the coat tails of Led Zeppelin.


Platinum Member
It sounds good and everything, good members, and Bonham II is a good drummer, but I think its a disgrace to the original band. In my opinion, Jason Bonham is using his father's success as a crouch, instead doing his own thing.

I say he should just create a completely new band, and poking at the legendary Led Zeppelin.

Sorry if this is coming off as ignorant, its just my opinion.
I agree and disagree.

I agree, in that this is no where near the 1st time Jason has done such a thing. I think this is the biggest scale of a tour, but he's done numerous Zep tribute things in the past.

Disagree though, to say he's not doing his own thing. He had his own original band in the past. He has toured with numerous names acts, and he's part of the new "super group" Black Country Communion with Glenn Hughes. It not as if he only spends all his time doing Zep tributes.

Although to be fair, the proceeds from the Zep tribute album he did a few years back all went to charity, so it's not as if he's just using his father's name to pad his own wallet.

And well, look how many other Zep tribute bands are out there, and how many bands do Zep covers. What makes him covering Zep any different than the millions of other Zep tribute bands? At least he's actually played with the actual band.


It sounds like a cool retrospective show. Jason is a first class drummer and it's uncanny that he can play like his dad. People try all the time but few get it right.

Found My Wings

Junior Member
I too was at the Winnipeg show and I was very impressed. I enjoyed every minute of it as did my husband and my 20 and 16 year old kids. It is a very warm heartfelt tribute to John from his Son and it comes off as exactly that. They played with passion for the music and it showed!

I highly suggest going to the show if you can. Go into it with no other expectations than to see a great drummer who was taught by (IMHO) the greatest drummer ever and the father son bond that they shared and you will have a faantastic fun night!

Here is the review from the Winnipeg Sun. This particular paper has not given a concert a good review in years but this review was much different:

Jason Bonham's Led Zeppelin Experience

Sunday, Oct. 17

MTS Centre

Sun Rating: 4 out of 5

At first, I thought the guy two rows down was having a seizure.

One minute, he was sitting there listening to Jason Bonham and his band play Stairway to Heaven. The next minute — when the drums kicked in — the dude just started lurching and flailing. Was he choking on something? Nope. He was rocking out, air-drumming with Baby Bonzo. And when the big power chords of the song's final movement came along, his arena seat was no longer able to contain his rockgasm. He leapt to his feet — only he was apparently unable to decide whether he should keep hammering the beat, switch to air guitar or just pump his fist in the air and scream "AND AS WE WIND ON DOWN THE ROOOOAD!!!" at the top of his lungs. So he did the only thing he could do: He did it all at once.

He wasn't alone. He was just one of 4,200 Zeppelin freaks — from headbanded kids getting their first live taste to grizzled hippies-turned-IT-guys reliving their Man-Pop halcyon days — who took in Jason Bonham's Led Zeppelin Experience at MTS Centre on Sunday. And spent much of the 140-minute show screaming, cheering and generally behaving as if they were at an actual Led Zeppelin concert. My, my, my, they were so happy, they sang and danced in celebration. They were in the promised land. Or as close as they're likely to get in this lifetime, anyway.

You could say the same for Bonham. The 44-year-old son of drummer John (Bonzo) Bonham has had two Led Zeppelin experiences of his own, filling his father's drum throne at reunion shows in 1988 and 2007. But after singer Robert Plant put the kibosh on a full-scale return — and guitarist Jimmy Page and bassist John Paul Jones were unable to find a way to move forward without him — Bonham found himself at loose ends. So he put together this 30-date tour to mark the 30th anniversary of his father's untimely death after a drinking binge. It's part rock show, part tribute concert, part multi-media extravaganza — there are some sweet home movies of both Bonhams as youngsters. But mostly, it's a way for a son to carry on his dad's legacy.

"Welcome to a night of respect for my father and for Led Zeppelin," said the bald, goateed Bonham in his David Brent accent. "Everyone knows who Bonzo was, but John was my dad. He was a great dad. Not the beast or the animal everyone talks about."

Of course, his dad also happened to be the greatest drummer in rock. "We're all fans and that's the main thing," Bonham acknowledged. "It's been 30 years since my dad passed away, but the music, still today, sounds so fantastic." And while home movies are nice and all, music was what the fans came for. And primarily what they got. Kicking off with (what else?) the iconic snare-and-hi-hat bash of Rock and Roll, Bonham and co. cranked out a 20-song set that included signature hits, album tracks, blues workouts, bombastic epics and even a couple of deeper cuts for the hardcores.

The first thing you noticed: Singer James Dylan sounded exactly like Plant. As he oughta; he fronts the tribute band Virtual Zeppelin. The second thing you noticed: With his chrome dome, goatee and shades, he looked like he should be fronting a Judas Priest cover band. Hey, are Steel Dragon still around?

Likewise, guitarist Tony Catania sounded exactly like Page. As he oughta too; he played on Bonham's Zepset tribute album more than a decade ago. He knew every lick and solo by heart — and could even rock the Theremin on Whole Lotta Love, though he apparently drew the line at taking a bow to his sunburst Les Paul. He even had his hair pulled back in a teeny tail like Jimmy (though he really looked more like Furio from The Sopranos). Jonesy's duties, to his credit, had to be divided up between erstwhile Whitesnake bassist Michael Devin and keyboard / pedal steel / rhythm guitarist Stephen LeBlanc. Both of them filled JPJ's large shoes without stepping on anyone's toes.

As for Bonham, well, what can you say? He's a chip off the old rock. He learned to play at his father's feet. He's spent decades collecting, studying and mastering his dad's beats, fills, grooves and techniques. Sure, he cheats a little by using a second bass pedal. But hey, even if he isn't quite the force of nature that his old man was — and who is? — there's nobody more qualified for his job. He proved that conclusively and handily, thundering away behind his green Ludwig traps as the band moved through the slinky Celebration Day before slowing down with I Can't Quit You Baby, the churchy Your Time is Gonna Come and the bluesy Babe I'm Gonna Leave You. A mighty Dazed and Confused — which evolved from slogging blues to blazing rocker, though the band had to rein in the time a bit — was a smart segue into the funky Lemon Song.

But the real highlight (and literal centrepiece) of the evening was a rendition of the drum solo Moby Dick, with Jason recreating the original solo and then duetting with his father's 1970 Royal Albert Hall performance on video. "This is something that hasn't been tried — since yesterday," he cracked. "And it almost didn't work then." Though the video was glitchy, it held together on this night, with both Bonhams thrashing away in unison like a herd of stampeding water buffalo. Jason even snapped a drumstick during the proceedings, but carried on without a hitch. Even better: It only lasted about six minutes, instead of the half-hour solos Bonzo dished up in the ’70s. In any case, I suspect the massive cheers that followed weren't for Bonham's brevity but his bravery in attempting the feat — and pulling it off.

After a well-deserved 20-minute intermission, the second act opened with more home movies. First, young Jason drummed to Dr. John's Right Place, Wrong Time while his dad slapped a conga. Then John played along with Ike and Tina's Nutbush City Limits while Jason clowned. Then came the piece de resistance — a hilarious clip of Jason shaking his groove thang to Gary Glitter's Leader of the Gang. "What was I thinking?" he laughed before counting the band into Good Times Bad Times. It took me a minute to notice that now he was playing an orange Vistalite kit identical to the one in the video. Nice touch.

A slow-burning Since I've Been Loving You came next, followed by a Black Dog that felt a little rushed, but earned Bonham technical points for mastering its shifting, syncopated time signature. But even he can't do it all — he laid off during When the Levee Breaks, letting the band rock out to a loop of Bonzo's original low-slung groove. The only problem: It didn't change for the refrains, which sounded kinda amateurish. But the audience, now mostly on their feet, had no complaints about The Ocean — which flowed well from funk to shuffle — and the majestic Over the Hills and Far Away. The left-field choice I'm Gonna Crawl came next, followed by a few clips from the Zeppelin reunion show in 2007. Then it was hitsville in the home stretch: Stairway (with Catania on double-neck SG) brought out the lighters. It was chased by the massively grooving Kashmir (with kaleidoscopic Middle Eastern visuals) and an encore of Immigrant Song and (what else?) Whole Lotta Love, with the latter earning all that and more from the rapturous fans.

And why not? Sure, you could be a purist and whine that they're just a glorified tribute band, and Jason is cashing in on his father's name, and his so-called Experience really is just a few old videos that don't reveal much about his father, his life or his career. But I'll tell you this: I saw Zeppelin twice, in 1977 and 2007. And while this was no substitute, it was close enough for rock ’n’ roll. In fact, these guys probably play Zeppelin tunes with more reverence than Zeppelin did in later years. Catania's solos were cleaner than some of the ones I've heard come out of Page's fingers. And Dylan can hit the high notes in Immigrant Song, which is more than you can say for Plant these days.

So who cares if they're a Zep tribute band? They might just be the best one on the planet. After all, one of them has actually played with Zeppelin. And if you closed your eyes and listened very on Sunday, the tune would come to you at last. You could easily forget you were an old IT guy and imagine you were still a young hippie, savouring the real thing back in the day.

No wonder that dude was rocking out.

Set List — Act I:

Rock and Roll

Celebration Day

I Can't Quit You Baby

Your Time is Gonna Come

Babe I'm Gonna Leave You

Dazed and Confused

The Lemon Song

Thank You

Moby Dick

Act II:

Good Times, Bad Times

Since I've Been Loving You

Black Dog

When the Levee Breaks

The Ocean

Over the Hills and Far Away

I'm Gonna Crawl

Stairway to Heaven



Immigrant Song

Whole Lotta Love


whats the name of the band? I would like to see the schedule to see if he is coming around these here parts : ) Would love to see this..


Google Led Zeppelin experience tour you should come up with this:

Fri 10/8 Dawson Creek, BC Encana Events Center
Sat 10/9 Prince George, BC CN Centre
Tues 10/12 Edmonton, AB Northern Alberta Jubilee
Wed 10/13 Red Deer, AB Emmax Centre
Thu 10/14 Calgary, AB Southern Alberta Jubilee
Sat 10/16 Regina, SK Brandt Centre
Sun 10/17 Winnipeg, MB MTS Centre
Tue 10/19 Minneapolis, MN State Theatre
Wed 10/20 Milwaukee, WI Riverside Theatre
Thu 10/21 Merrilville, IN (Chicago) Star Plaza
Sat 10/23 Montreal, QUE Metropolis
Mon 10/25 Quebec City, QUE Grand Theatre
Wed 10/27 Hamilton, ON Hamilton Place-Great Hall
Thu 10/28 Kitchener, ON Centre in the Square
Fri 10/29 Toronto, ON Sony Centre
Sat 10/30 Rochester, NY Auditorium Theater
Tue 11/2 Boston, MA The Orpheum
Wed 11/3 Red Bank, NJ Count Basie Theater
Thu 11/4 Englewood, NJ Bergen PAC
Sat 11/6 Philadelphia, PA Merriam Theater
Mon 11/8 New York, NY Nokia Theatre
Sat 11/13 Jacksonville, FL Florida Theater
Sun 11/14 Melbourne, FL King Center
Tue 11/16 Houston, TX Verizon Theatre
Sun 11/21 Riverside, CA Fox PAC
Tue 11/23 Los Angeles, CA Pantages Theater
Fri 11/26 Portland, OR Schnitzer Concert Hall
Sat 11/27 Seattle, WA WaMu Theater
Mon 11/29 Vancouver, BC The Center PAC

Found My Wings

Junior Member
Someone out there is alive because of you... thanks!
I am so glad I could help someone out!! Would hate to see a fellow drummer get carted off to jail!

So, how awesome was that? I loved that video and I am so lucky I was able to see that done in person at the Jason Bonham Led Zeppelin Experience on Sunday. Now in my opinion it was done better at the drum off than in Winnipeg, but like Jason said that night it almost didn't even work the night before! What an unforgettable night. If you go to Ticketmaster and read the 78+ reviews on there you'll know it was a great show, one not too miss!

Are they heading your way at all? If so, please go!!


Platinum Member
Technically, the solo that both are playing is not that blindingly difficult (although Jason's double pedalling and Bonzo's doing it all on one foot... with a Speed King... uphill... in a snowstorm... and possibly drunk). However, to get the playing spot-on with an archival video, and keep the timing coming in and out of it close enough to match up with that clip, and watching the video monitor to your left while playing the crossovers... that is pretty difficult, and impressed me plenty.

People on the YouTube link go back and forth about Jason just as the thread has here. I think he (a) splits a fine difference between being "son of Bonham" and doing his own thing; (b) is showing respect and love, not just trying to make fast bucks; (c) is a solid drummer in his own right.

People get so wound up over how many beats per minute they can budda-budda their double bass, or was that really a 32nd or 64th note, or was the sticking LRLLRL or LRRLRL, or is this guy or that guy a great drummer or just overexposed. Back in Bonzo's day, it wasn't nearly like that. A good drummer made you dance, made you move, got you out of your seat. There's another thread where someone asked "Why isn't there anyone like Keith Moon on the scene today?" and the answer is simple... he wouldn't have survived the YouTube flamers. I can just see somebody saying "this guy sux joey jordeson is WAY BETTER". But Bonzo and Moonie invented the languages that those guys speak. Without the Who busting instruments, we wouldn't have Slipknot wearing their freak masks.

In any case, I may swing out to see the Zep Experience when it swings through Seattle next month. It looks like a good time. (I just hope Jason's cymbals sound better live... every time he hit them I winced! Wasn't there just another thread about terrible soundmen...?)


Senior Member
30 years down the track and "Led Zep" is still so popular - a tribute to them and the great songs they wrote.

It's both inspiring and sad to see Jason B reviving this phenomenon. Pity they're not coming to Oz.....


Silver Member
Jason Bonham is an outstanding drummer, but the fact of the matter is that nobody is bonzo. doesn't happen.


Platinum Member
Can't wait just got my tickets for the Oct. 30th show @ the Fox theater here in Detroit. I got 3rd row behind the orch. pit. I'm really excited & i don't. care about the haters out there he did a great job @ the O2 arena.

What if you had a famous dad who passed away wouldn't. you want too pay tribute too him?

he's John Bonham's son I don't. believe he gonna have any $ problems he's doing this out of his heart not greed.



Hey Backsmith, were you the guy having the rockgasm the reporter reported on? I know I was in heaven on Sunday!![/QUOTE]

yeah quite possibly, I don't know what row he was in but I was in the 16th row having a few rockgasms of my own.