Journey’s Deen Castronovo Says Peter Criss Inspired Him To Be A Drummer

During his recent interview with The Real Music Observer, journey drummer Deen Castronovo named his biggest influences, especially at the beginning of his career. One of them was former KISS drummer Peter Criss, and the musician shared his ideas about Criss and the other muses.

Castronovo’s musical career as a drummer has always been full of notable, successful, and prolific projects with Journey, Generation Radio, Ozzy Osbourne, Steve Vai, Paul Rodgers, and GZR. His unique way of playing drums always drew significant attention no matter which musician he was playing. Of course, like most of his peers and predecessors, many legendary drummers inspired him while choosing his career and style.

Thanks to his drum teacher, the Journey icon’s long-time fans know that Castronovo has been a KISS fanboy since he watched their performance when he was eleven. Therefore it’s not surprising that he cited the band’s original drummer, Criss, as one of his inspirations. He reflected his respect and admiration for the late Rush drummer Neil Peart by adding that he wished to be a progressive musician like him.

In addition, he mentioned Capture and The Smiths’ music’ effect on him along with Frank Zappa’s Terry Bozzio, and Castronovo highlighted that he was into metal music before he focused on progressive rock. The drummer didn’t forget to credit Metallica’s Lars Ulrich, whose performances in ‘Ride the Lightning and ‘Kill ‘Em All’ were ‘unbelievable,’ and Slayer and Testament’s Dave Lombardo.

In Castronovo’s words, he said:

“There four that are influential, Peter Criss who got me wanted to be a drummer, the makeup and other stuff. So I wanted to be a drummer, and I could play his parts as a young beginning drummer. That’s the best stuff to learn; he’s a great player. Then, I saw Rush, Rest in Peace, Peart. I became a prog drummer and wanted to be a progressive drummer like Neil Peart. Then, I listened to Capture because I knew all the Journey stuff before that but never heard The Smiths open up and tear it up.

The drum solo on there, I was like, ‘Who’s that guy.’ Nagging stuff from him, and then Terry Bozzio, of course. There were a lot of metal drummers I was really into. I grew up playing thrash and heavy stuff, so Dave Lombardo from Slayer, Lars Ulrich back when ‘Ride the Lightning and ‘Kill ‘Em All’ came out. His drumming on that is phenomenal. Those are the guys you wanted to be like and that kind of direction where I went to the first, got three or four years before all the big stuff happened.”

You check out the interview below.