Jon “Bowzer” Bauman, born on September 14, 1947 in Brooklyn, New York, was something of a child prodigy at the piano, and started classical lessons at age seven.
He attended the prestigious Juilliard School beginning age 12 and ultimately graduated Magna Cum Laude from equally prestigious Columbia College in New York.
In 1969, Jon joined several of his Columbia classmates in “Sha Na Na” and created the character of “Bowzer.”
With “Bowzer” the dominant character on stage, Jon was a major force in leading the group to their successful TV series.
At its peak, “Sha Na Na” was the #1 syndicated show in America, and was also seen in 32 foreign countries. The series ran for four years first-run and another three in syndicated strip.
While remaining the star of “Sha Na Na,” Jon branched out on his own and made over 150 solo appearances. He guest starred on programs ranging from “The Barbara Mandrell Show” to “Super Password,” and guest hosted such shows as “An Evening at the Improv.”
He also appeared with the group in the phenomenally successful movie, “Grease,” and sang the “Born To Hand Jive” number on the “Grease” album, then the biggest-selling soundtrack album of all time.
I remember him well.
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