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, New York, 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 56th Street near 7th Avenue.
In 1968 he began going to the Fillmore East and Bethesda Fountain in Central Park on weekends. His older sister, Mariann, started styling his hair like Keith Richards. In late 1969 he got a job as a sales clerk at D'Naz leather shop, on Bleecker Street in the West Village, and started trying to put a band together. He and his girlfriend, Janis Cafasso, went to see the Stones at Madison Square Garden in November 1969, and they appear in the Maysles' film, Gimme Shelter...
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