Music Machine Singer Sean Bonniwell Passes
December 29, 2011 at 12:36 PM (PT)
SEAN BONNIWELL, lead singer and songwriter of the '60s L.A.-based garage band MUSIC MACHINE, has died at the age of 71. The L.A. TIMES reports that BONNIWELL died DECEMBER 20th of lung cancer at a medical center in VISALIA, CA.
The five-piece originally called themselves THE RAGAMUFFINS in 1965 but changed their name to MUSIC MACHINE, honing their chops through a regular gig at the HOLLYWOOD LEGION LANES bowling alley. Their lone top-20 hit, "Talk Talk." is often credit as a signature sound of the garage band movement -- and a precursor to punk.
"The band was looked on as an early pre-punk punk band. We wore all black and dyed our hair black," noted bassist KEITH OLSEN, who later produced albums for FLEETWOOD MAC and many other groups. "But we were perfectionists, that was kind of our trademark."
Born on AUGUST 16th, 1940, in SAN JOSE. BONNIWELL formed his first band in high school after hearing "Only You" by THE PLATTERS. He later played guitar with folk groups THE NOBLEMEN and THE WAYFARERS before turning to rock.