Johnny Thunders

Johnny Thunders (July 15, 1952 – April 23, 1991), born John Anthony Genzale, Jr., was an American rock and roll/punk rock guitarist, singer and songwriter. He came to prominence in the early 1970s as a member of the New York Dolls. He later played with The Heartbreakers and as a solo artist. John Genzale was born in Queens, NY, where he first lived in East Elmhurst and then Jackson Heights. His first musical performance was in the winter of 1967 with The Reign. Shortly thereafter, he played with "Johnny and the Jaywalkers," under the name Johnny Volume, at Quintano's School for Young Professionals, around the corner from Carnegie Hall, on 58th Street near 7th Avenue. In 1968 he began going to the Fillmore East on weekends. In late 1969 he got a job as a sales clerk at D'Naz leather shop, on Bleecker Street in the West Village. In the summer of 1970 he went to England for the Isle of Wight Festival. In London he hung out at the Speakeasy Club and bought clothes on King's Road. Toward the end of 1970 he started hanging out at Nobodys, a club also on Bleecker Street in the West Village. It was near there that he met future Dolls Arthur Kane and Rick Rivets.


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