(established 2006; last updated 5/29/16)
The early bands that Johnny and others mention as
are pretty consistent: Flame, Zaphyre, Bitch, Bad Boys, The
and possibly Stiff Richard. But when they were active and who
band members were remains a bit sketchy. Some reports
another and a number of folks who have tried to help admit to having
vague memories. However, the following is some information
been pieced together. All of these bands would have had to
been active sometime between about 1976, when Johnny himself believes
he started playing in bands, and the fall of 1980, when he joined The
Kids. Many thanks to Yves, K., Shari, Lauri, K.A., Anthony, Michael D., and others
Check out these magazine blurbs that mention Johnny's early bands...
Reisfeld's 1989 Johnny Depp biography:
thanks to Maggy)
Johnny gives a brief recap of the bands in the January 24, 2008 Rolling
Flame was formed in around
1976, with a few 9th and 10th graders from the Miramar
played only the easiest rock songs, instrumentals only- nobody sang.
wore t-shirts with a flame on them. They were said to only play one
gig, at the St. Bartholomew's Catholic
school carnival, where they were rumored to play instrumental versions
of Chicago's 25 or 6 to 4 and Lynryd Skynrd's Freebird.
Yves Bouhadana can be seen as one of the
interviewees in the
A&E Biography and E! True Hollywood Story specials on Johnny
Pflum - drums
Quinones - bass
- Johnny Depp
Bouhadana - guitar
- vocals -
Zaphyre was together
1978, and reportedly played "100% Van Halen tunes".
Johnny has also described the band as "more Kiss-type stuff."
may have overlapped somewhat with Bitch. Quinones played "a
shiny Rickenbacker bass."
Quinones - bass
- Johnny Depp
- Stan Carter
- (possibly a bassist)
Bitch was together sometime between 1978 and 1980, and
reportedly played "90% Van Halen tunes". Other bands covered
included AC/DC, Frank Mariano and Mahogany Rush, Aerosmith, and
Destefanis - lead vocals
- Kenny Andrews - replaced
Destefanis on lead vocals; described as a "David Lee Roth clone"
- Johnny Depp - guitar
- Ron Norton
Jeff Lawson) who
later replaced Norton
- New Robert Davis - bass
Quinones - bass
Pierce - bass (probably replacing Quinones)
described as "loud as hell" and played quite a bit while they were
together. One memorable gig was at an all-girls' Catholic
school, Madonna High School, and they also played at a dance at a high
school in North Miami and one at the North Miami/Hollywood Armory.
Other venues included the AOR on Dixie
Highway and The Blue Waters on South Beach. They were
probably together for a year.
(l-r: Depp, Andrews,
while Destefinis was in the band, they auditioned for a talent
show (Friendship Train) at
Miramar High School, reportedly playing Van Halen's song Show Your Love
(aka I'm The One). They did not reveal the band's name to the
judges. They weren't picked because they were "too
loud", and because nobody in the band was still going to Miramar High
by that point.
Andrews went on to play in a band
Drive and now owns a recording studio in Japan. Norton went
play in other bands, such as Amazing Grace and the U.S. Furys, and
continues to play in bands in New York City to this day.
Boys were together sometime between 1978 and 1980, and reportedly
played "50% Van Halen
Bad Boys reportedly included a band member named Tommy Bircheat.
Larry Pierce and Ron Norton from Bitch were also members of
band. Jeff Lawson may have been a drummer for the band.
Jenco served as the band's announcer and Barney Manaker
helped to book them. This band may have overlapped to some
Richard was a band in
Broward, South Florida that Johnny was reported to have rehearsed with
David Dukes was
guitarist in the band. There was also a bassist named Ted
Sonnesso (aka Fat Teddy) and a drummer named Bob Beck. It's
known if Johnny officially
joined this band.
Runaways was another band that Johnny is reported to have been a member
of before he joined The Kids.
The best guess is that this band was around in about
Johnny is reported to have played at a Shamrock Shenanigans
Henry D. Perry Middle School, though it is unknown which band Johnny
may have been playing in at the time. In addition, he is
to have played at a guitar recital with Ron Davis and Joe Horvath in
1979. Anthony A. recalls Johnny being in bands called the Lil Generals and Jersey.
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