Joe Bonamassa quits social media: “I fear I'm going to be provoked into saying something I might regret”

Joe Bonamassa
(Image credit: C Brandon/Redferns)

Blues ace Joe Bonamassa has announced he’s taking a step back from social media following a row with a user who criticized his physical appearance.

In a now-deleted comment on one of Bonamassa’s Instagram posts – screenshotted by Killer Guitar Rigs (opens in new tab) – user rich_tones wrote, “Time to shave the head Joe, it’s over. Your hair had a good run but it’s not in retirement.”

It took JoBo three minutes to clap back, writing, “How ‘bout this Rich. You do you and let me do me. We understand each other?”

When another user chimed in, commenting, “Joe’s rockin’ the power donut [a hairstyle in which a man is bald on top with hair around the back and sides of his head]” Bonamassa replied, “I’m about to rock a sold out show in Tuscon… What are you up to this evening?”

Joe Bonamassa

(Image credit: Joe Bonamassa/Instagram via Ultimate Guitar)

The following day, the guitarist publicly addressed the spat with an Instagram post that has since been deleted.

He wrote: “After sleeping on this I have come to a conclusion. Last night I allowed a few clowns to cause me to go onstage angry. That is not fair to you, the fans.

“Also, this isn’t what I signed up for eight years ago. Social media has become such a distraction for me. This place feels like it has the maturity of high school and I fear I am gonna be provoked one day into saying something I might regret.

“So I’m leaving this wonderful place to the influencers and good-looking. Enjoy it before it destroys your soul. I will see you in real life somewhere down the road and in Riverside tonight. Any posts on this page going forward will not be from me. Thanks for the eight years.”

Joe Bonamassa

(Image credit: Joe Bonamassa/Instagram via Killer Guitar Rigs)

As the post has now been deleted, the permanence of JoBo’s social media retirement is unclear, though his words certainly make it seem so.

Joe Bonamassa recently joined Guitar World to look back to his best-selling 2003 album, Blues Deluxe, for a lesson in phrasing, dividing by two and making his playing more economical.

And in other JoBo news, the guitarist joined forces with Epiphone last month for an elegant and well-appointed signature 1962 ES-335 guitar – which has already received rave reviews.

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Sam is a Staff Writer at Guitar World, also creating content for Total Guitar, Guitarist and Guitar Player. He has well over 15 years of guitar playing under his belt, as well as a degree in Music Technology (Mixing and Mastering). He's a metalhead through and through, but has a thorough appreciation for all genres of music. In his spare time, Sam creates point-of-view guitar lesson videos on YouTube under the name Sightline Guitar (opens in new tab).