Greta Van Fleet drummer Danny Wagner revealed why John Bonham is his favorite Led Zeppelin member in a new Lipps Service interview, where he was joined by bandmate Sam Kiszka.
Interviewer: Danny, were you listening to Mitch Mitchell, Ginger Baker… who inspired you?
Danny: At a young age, it was definitely Mitch Mitchell. My cousin, when I was probably seven years old gave me my first Hendrix CD, and he wrote in sharpie all of his favorite songs on drums and guitar.
And I would go listen to that, and I definitely still have the CD. Mitch Mitchell was my inspiration at a very young age to just start really moving my arms a little more, be a little bit more ambitious, but not too ambitious. He was pretty ambitious, and then also The Who, gosh, how can you not?”
Interviewer: At what point did you start getting into Bonham?
Danny: I would say that was when we first – I always listened to Bonham too, Zeppelin was always one of the most played bands on the radio, and he was so intriguing.
I think my introduction to Bonham in that was when we kind of started recording ourselves, the little garage demos and things – because you realize how hard it is to get that tone that he had.”
Interviewer: At a certain point, you get together, you’re playing biker bars, local clubs in Michigan, and what point do you meet Jason [Flom of Lava Records] and get a record deal with him?
Sam: Well, we were in Detroit, recording a lot of demos and stuff with producer Al Sutton, and Al saw something where he was reaching out to his friends in the industry.
Next thing you know, his lawyer knows a manager, that manager is still lifelong, and from there Jason took notice of us. And the idea was, we were going to go into the record label and audition and meet him, and then we’ll talk about it, but like a week went by, and things changed, Jason just signed us to the record label before we even met him.
I think he only heard like the EP and signed us, so then we went in and blew the roof off his place and did a little soundcheck there.
Interviewer: How old were you at that point when you got the deal with Jason?
Danny: Pretty not-old, I would say maybe 16-17. ”
Interviewer: Things happened so quickly for you guys. Any ‘pinch me’ moments? You opened up for the Foo Fighters, Guns N’ Roses, there’s so many milestones in these four-five years…
Sam: One that really shocked us all was Elton John personally calling us. I know that freaked me out for at least a few days.
Danny: Yeah, absolutely. Ultimate-Guitar.com transcribed the remarks.