Sonny Bono - Musician And Politician

Sonny Bono was a good musician and after his music career ended, he found his niche working in Congress. Learn more about his life.

Salvador Sonny Bono was born in 1935 and raised in Detroit, Michigan. His father worked at the Ford motor company in Dearborn, Michigan. Sonny started singing for his mother's beauty salon customers at three years of age. In 1944, Sonny and his family were moved to Hawthorne, California.

In 1952, he wrote his first song "Ecstasy" and performed it on a local talent contest. He won the contest especially since he had all of his friends in the audience. He dropped out of Inglewood High School and started working at a restaurant. In 1954, he was married to his first wife whom he met at work. During his lunchtime, Sonny would walk the streets and plug his songs. Eventually, he was picked up. He began to look for full-time work in show business - the show business bug caught Sonny. He was able to quit his day job and pursue his dreams.

By 1959, Sonny was moonlighting as a talent scout. Because of this, he was fired and his marriage was also spiraling down. His first daughter was born during this time. Despite this, Sonny moved into his own apartment and met his next wife, Cher. They moved in together and the rest is history between the two of them with the rise and fall of their music career and marriage. They were divorced in 1974 and Sonny then went into the restaurant business with his new girlfriend, model Susie Coelho in Palm Springs, California.



After their split up, his professional life as a musician was non-existent. He turned his energies elsewhere. Nothing seemed to pan out until he made a break into politics as the mayor of Palm Springs in 1988. He was good at it and a success much to everyone's surprise. It seemed that politics was his calling.

In 1994, Sonny Bono was elected to the House of Representatives representing California's 44th Congressional District. Upon his death, his fourth wife, Mary Whitaker Bono, filled Sonny's seat in Congress.

In 1998, Sonny Bono died in a skiing accident in Nevada when his head hit a tree. He was on vacation at the time with his wife and children.

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