When FOREIGNER announced its 2018 summer tour, the opening act was listed as JASON BONHAM’S LED ZEPPELIN EVENING instead of JASON BONHAM’S LED ZEPPELIN EXPERIENCE, the name under which the drummer has been touring nearly a decade. As as result, many assumed that the tour press release and poster contained typos, but Bonham recently told Premiere Networks that that’s not the case, and that moving forward, his band will indeed go by the EVENING moniker due to a request from the LED ZEPPELIN camp, perhaps in advance of plans to celebrate the group’s upcoming 50th anniversary.
“They have plans for the terminology ‘Led Zeppelin Experience,'” Bonham explained. “And I was like, ‘Um, okay, but I need to keep the logo, JBLZE.’ One, I have the [custom license plate] tag on my car, and two, I have a huge backdrop that I paid for last year. For me, it’s about the music. So the name of it — I just wanted to keep the logo. So I said, ‘I got it. JASON BONHAM’S LED ZEPPELIN EVENING.’ I don’t know what they have planned, but I said, ‘Okay, I will clear the way so they can do what they wish.'”
JASON BONHAM’S LED ZEPPELIN EXPERIENCE was formed in 2009 to pay tribute to Bonham‘s father, legendary LED ZEPPELIN drummer John Bonham, who died in 1980 at the age of 32. “It was meant to be part of my way of expressing my love for music and expressing myself with a tip of the hat to my father,” Jason told Mixdown in a 2017 interview. “Soon after doing the 28 shows that we did with an orchestra, everyone said, ‘You’re not going to stop now, are you? You haven’t been here, you haven’t played there…’ And so I said, ‘As long as you guys want me to do it, I’ll do it.’ It’s really fan-based. It’s not us and them; it’s about love for LED ZEPPELIN, and that’s how it’s grown, as a very honest, natural, fan-based show. You guys all knew him as Bonzo; I knew him as dad, and there’s a great interaction.”
JASON BONHAM’S LED ZEPPELIN EVENING will kick off a summer tour with FOREIGNER and WHITESNAKE on June 15 in Bangor, Maine.