Johnny Thunders' 20-year career -
a chronological timeline of his life.
From the New York Dolls, to The Heartbreakers in NY and London. Then 'So Alone', 'Gang War', 'Que Sera Sera', 'Copy Cats', etc; reunions and gypsy times in Paris, Stockholm, London & L.A. Compiled from various sources including Nina Antonia's biography 'Johnny Thunders- In Cold Blood' and my own recollections working with Johnny 82-91.
Please add dates, correct mistakes and leave comments.
Johnny has now sold his guitars for drugs and living in a squalid New York basement.
Wayne Kramer's ex-wife, rock photographer Marcia Resnik, introduces Johnny to CHRISTOPHER GIERCKE, an underground film-maker, who's interested in working with Johnny on a film project and takes him under his wing.
In 'Wired', the biography of John Belushi, Bob Woodward relates how on the 28th, Marcia took Belushi to Christopher's New York apartment, five days before Belushi's death in Hollywood. Woodward comments dramatically: "Giercke represented an extreme of counterculture. He was the rebellion and the underground that Belushi flirted with, the hardcore."
At Euphoria Sound Studios, Revere, Johnny records 'Diary Of A Lover', 'Look In My Eyes' and 'Green Onions', with Rolling Stones producer JIMMY MILLER. Musicians: Walter Lure & Billy Rogers.
Then with Nolan & Sciorrci, Johnny finishes the 'Too Much Junkie Business' recording sessions and flies to Sweden for a TV show, at Mandasborgen:-
Scandal in Sweden:- Johnny hits the front-page headlines, with the tabloids screaming: "Burnt Out, Wasted, A Drugged Human Wreck". They continue for the best part of a week.
23rd: More front page headlines: "I Don't Have The Strength To Play Tonight", and eventually:
"Police Arrest Pop Star".... Johnny is caught by the tabloids in a double-page spread - photographed in a classic "who, me?" pose when being confronted by a policeman and an air stewardess showing him an airplane medicine box, that someone has rifled and stolen all its drugs ...
Johnny is in London for a tour of the clubs (Hope and Anchor, Kensington, Rock Garden).
22nd: At the Venue he's joined onstage by Sylvain Sylvain, who can't hide his amusement when Johnny can't remember the chords to 'Chinese Rocks'. A Michael Beal photograph (featured in Nina Antonia's biography) shows him back-stage being held up by his band - by now TONY JAMES (former Generation X, future Sigue Sigue Sputnik & Sisters Of Mercy bassist), STEVE NEW (former Rich Kids guitarist), and Jerry Nolan.
Together with three other former Fresh Records employees we form JUNGLE, and buy the Fresh label from the owner.
3rd: The last UK date before flying back to Sweden with Tony and Jerry. Jerry meets Charlotte, who runs a fanzine. They soon are to marry, and Jerry stays in Sweden.
On his return Johnny gets busted at Heathrow for possession of a small amount of heroin, and is thrown into Pentonville Prison for a few days.
At Wickham Studios, three tracks are recorded as demos: 'Sad Vacation', 'Give Me More' and 'Ten Commandments Of Love'. The eventful European trip comes to a close, and Johnny returns to New York.
Gig at the Peppermint Lounge with Walter. (Or is this the 15th?)
15th: Johnny's 30th birthday is celebrated with a gig at the Irving Plaza, NYC., the same day Christopher Giercke formalises a management agreement with Johnny, forming a close partnership that is to last for three years.
6th: A gig at Jonathan Swifts club in Cambridge (USA) is recorded and later released as an extra live album with 'In Cold Blood', on New Rose Records.
A Swedish TV crew turn up to interview Johnny- his live TV recording there was taken off the air, they're turning it into a semi-documentary piece about the dangers of drugs.
30th: A gig at the Mudd Club is filmed and recorded for Lech Kowalski's movie, 'Stations Of The Cross'. It is later released on ROIR Cassettes under the same title.
At Downtown Studios, Boston, Johnny records another two numbers with Jimmy Miller: 'In Cold Blood', and 'Just Another Girl', later coupled with the Euphoria Sound Studios tracks to become the 'In Cold Blood' mini-LP (and issued as 'Diary Of A Lover' in the USA).