Deen Castronovo

Deen Castronovo

Deen J. Castronovo (born August 17, 1964) is an American drummer and singer, best known for being a member of classic rock band Journey and hard rock acts Bad English, Revolution Saints, and The Dead Daisies. He also has been a touring and studio member for Ozzy Osbourne, Steve Vai, Paul Rodgers, Black Sabbath bassist Geezer Butler's GZR, Hardline, and others.

Deen Castronovo
Birth nameDeen J. Castronovo
Born (1964-08-17) August 17, 1964 (age 55)
Westminster, California, U.S.
GenresHard rock, heavy metal
Occupation(s)Drummer, singer
InstrumentsDrums, vocals, percussions
Years active1982–present
LabelsFrontiers Records
Associated actsJourney, Revolution Saints, The Dead Daisies, Bad English, Dr. Mastermind, Wild Dogs, Cacophony, Hardline, Planet Us, Soul SirkUS, GZR, Ozzy Osbourne, Vasco Rossi, Steve Vai, Paul Rodgers, Matthew Ward, Marty Friedman, Fear Factory, Johnny Gioeli

Early lifeEdit

Deen Castronovo was born in the city of Westminster, California and started drumming at the age of 6. He grew up in Keizer, Oregon.,[1][2] where he attended South Salem High School.[3] Deen cites Steve Smith, Neil Peart, Terry Bozzio, Kiss, Rush, Van Halen and AC/DC as musical influences.[4]


Castronovo is the former drummer for bands Wild Dogs, Bad English, Journey and is the current drummer for Revolution Saints and The Dead Daisies.

He also played on the song "Smoke of the Revolution" on the Neal Schon solo album Late Nite (1989).

Wild Dogs (1982–1987)Edit

Wild Dogs is an America rock band from Portland, Oregon formed loosely in 1981 by Jeff Mark, Danny Kurth, Matt McCourt, and Pete Holmes. Drummer Pete Holmes was lured away by Black 'n Blue and was replaced by Jaime St. James. The band had an appearance on a compilation series, but before a full album could be recorded with Shrapnel Records, St. James left the band to also join Black 'n Blue. It was at this point Deen was first discovered by McCourt, who recruited the local, and then only 16-year-old drummer Castronovo to join the band.

Deen played on the self-titled debut album Wild Dogs (1983), the followup Man's Best Friend (1984) and Reign Of Terror (1987). The band was known for its live show, that featured McCourt's props and Castronovo's showmanship.

Bad English (1987–1991)Edit

While working with Wild Dogs, Deen met and began working with Tony MacAlpine, which led to an introduction to future long-time collaboration partner, Neal Schon. Shortly after, Neal would invite Deen to audition for a new band with Jonathan Cain, John Waite and Ricky Phillips, which became Bad English. After two albums, which included being nominated for Best New Group in 1989 at the International Rock Awards, Bad English disbanded in 1991. In 1995 a Greatest Hits was released.

Hardline (1991–1992)Edit

Again working with Neal Schon, Deen played drums and sang backing vocals on Hardline's debut album Double Eclipse. The album's first single "Takin' Me Down" peaked at No. 37 on Billboard's Hot Mainstream Rock Tracks chart. The album's second single, a cover of the Danny Spanos song "Hot Cherie," rose to No. 25 on the Hot Mainstream Rock Tracks chart.

Ozzy Osbourne (1995)Edit

Deen appeared on the 1995 release Ozzmosis, the seventh solo studio album by Ozzy Osbourne. The album reached number 22 on the UK Albums Chart and number four on the US Billboard 200. Deen also toured with Ozzy on a portion of the 1995 leg of the Retirement Sucks Tour.

Journey (1998–2015)Edit

Journey, Live in Minneapolis, Minnesota on September 16, 2008

Deen continued to be in various bands along with Schon, from Hardline to Paul Rodgers. After a 3-year stint with Vasco Rossi, he joined Journey, where he would spend the next 18 years and 5 albums as the drummer, backing and occasional lead vocalist.

While not the original drummer for Journey, Deen is the longest-serving drummer to date, having played on the albums Arrival (2001), Red 13 (2002), Generations (2005), Revelation (2008), and Eclipse (2011).

As a vocalist, he sang "Still They Ride", "Mother, Father" and "Keep On Runnin'" (and on rare occasions, "Faithfully" and "Where Were You") in concert in order to let the main lead vocalists take a break. In the studio, he performed lead vocals on "A Better Life" and "Never Too Late", which were featured on Generations.

Castronovo was fired by Journey in August 2015 following a June 2015 domestic violence arrest.[5][6][7] He was replaced by Omar Hakim on the band's 2015 tour[8], with longtime drummer Steve Smith subsequently rejoining the band.

Soul SirkUS (2004–2005)Edit

After the Planet Us project did not produce an album, Neal Schon was determined to see the material he had written come to life. At the 2004 annual NAMM Show in Los Angeles, Schon met up with Jeff Scott Soto and tested the waters with a jam session. While in Los Angeles, Schon also attended a showcase featuring Marco Mendoza. Inviting Soto, Mendoza and Deen Castronovo to join him, the new band, Soul SirkUS, began rehearsing and eventually recorded 11 songs for their debut album, World Play. Although all the foundation tracks on the album were originally written for Planet Us, only one completed song from that band was used for Soul SirkUS debut.

In early 2005, with a completed album titled World Play (the "black sleeve" version) the band was ready to tour, but Castronovo fell ill due to extreme exhaustion. Soon after, Castronovo bowed out of Soul SirkUS based on his doctor's recommendation and was replaced by Australian drummer Virgil Donati.

Ultimate there were 3 editions of the album. The Black Sleeve version was the original with Deen drumming, the Green Sleeve version was an American edition remastered, the Yellow Sleeve had two versions: a European edition of remaster that included a bonus DVD, and a Japanese edition of the remaster included a bonus track. The Black Sleeve version is the only one with Deen.

Revolution Saints (2014–present)Edit

While still with Journey, Deen, Jack Blades (Night Ranger, Damn Yankees and Shaw Blades), and Doug Aldrich (Whitesnake, Dio, The Dead Daisies) formed Revolution Saints. The band, where Deen served as lead vocalist and handled drumming duties, released its self-titled debut album on February 24, 2015. A follow-up album, Light in the Dark, was released on October 13, 2017.[4] The album was ranked #8 on Dr. Music's 2017 "Album of the Year" list.[9]

The Dead Daisies (2017–present)Edit

The Dead Daisies in 2017

On November 4, 2017, it was announced that Deen would become the new drummer for The Dead Daisies, replacing Brian Tichy. Deen and the band almost immediately began song writing and hit the studio,[10] again with producer Marti Frederiksen (Aerosmith, Gavin Rossdale, Mötley Crüe, Buckcherry), to record a follow-up to the successful Make Some Noise (2016) album and Live & Louder (2017) release. The new album, Burn It Down was released April 6, 2018 in multiple formats including: CD, colored vinyl, picture disk vinyl and digital download.[11] The band began a 26-date UK and European tour April 8, 2018 in Glasgow, UK.[12]

Gioeli-Castronovo (2017–present)Edit

Johnny Gioeli and Deen Castronovo first played together on the debut Hardline album, "Double Eclipse", which was released in 1992. 25 years later, the two were reunited in Italy to commence work on the debut Gioeli-Castronovo album, "Set The World On Fire", available July 13, 2018. Both men have continued on their musical paths since they last saw one another, with Gioeli continuing to lead Hardline as well as being the lead singer of Crush 40 and Axel Rudi Pell's band, while Castronovo spent time with various bands.

Other projectsEdit

Deen's first big gig came at the age of 16 with a band called The Enemy, who opened up for bands like Blue Öyster Cult and Foghat. He has played in Cacophony, Dr. Mastermind, Planet Us (a short-lived supergroup with Sammy Hagar, Michael Anthony, Joe Satriani and Neal Schon), Social Distortion, and GZR (formed by Black Sabbath bassist Geezer Butler), as well as in backing bands for Vasco Rossi, Paul Rodgers, and Matthew Ward.

After working with Paul Rodgers, he began doing session work with Steve Vai, whom with he made two albums. Steve later called for him to audition for Ozzy Osbourne, which resulted in him recording Ozzmosis and doing a South American Tour with Ozzy. After Ozzy, he began doing session work for producer Michael Beinhorn, recording with Social Distortion, Geezer Butler's solo project and Hole.

He has released an instructional video entitled "High Performance Drumming" in 1991, and has been involved with the Boys & Girls Club of Salem.

In 2019, he toured with guitarist Neal Schon on the "Journey Through Time" tour, which features former members of Journey performing songs from the band's entire discography (including some no longer performed by the official Journey). He acted as the drummer and shares lead vocal duties with keyboardist Gregg Rolie.

Personal lifeEdit


Year Band Title Notes
1983 Wild Dogs Wild Dogs Drums
1984 Man's Best Friend Drums
1986 Dr. Mastermind Dr. Mastermind Drums
1987 Wild Dogs Reign of Terror Drums
Tony MacAlpine Maximum Security Drums on "Autumn Lords", "Hundreds of Thousands", "Tears of Sahara", "The Time and the Test" and "The King's Cup"
1988 Cacophony Go Off! Session drums
Marty Friedman Dragon's Kiss Drums
1989 Bad English Bad English Drums, percussion, backing vocals
1990 Joey Tafolla Infra-blue Drums
Matthew Ward Fortress Drums
1991 Bad English Backlash Drums, backing vocals
1992 Hardline Double Eclipse Drums, backing vocals
1993 Paul Rodgers The Hendrix Set EP live: Drums
1994 Tony MacAlpine Premonition Drums
1995 GZR Plastic Planet Drums
Frederiksen/Phillips Frederiksen/Phillips Drums
Ozzy Osbourne Ozzmosis Drums
Steve Vai Alien Love Secrets EP: drums on "Die to Live", "The Boy from Seattle", "Kill the Guy with the Ball" and "Tender Surrender"
1996 Fire Garden Drums on "Dyin' Day", "Blowfish", "Hand on Heart", "Little Alligator", "All About Eve" and "Damn You"
James Murphy Convergence Drums
Social Distortion White Light, White Heat, White Trash Uncredited drums
1997 GZR Black Science Drums
1998 Hole Celebrity Skin Uncredited session drums
1999 James Murphy Feeding the Machine Drums
2001 Journey Arrival Drums, backing vocals
2002 Red 13 EP: drums, percussion, backing vocals
Vasco Rossi Tracks Live: drums
2005 Journey Generations Drums, percussion, backing vocals, lead vocals on "A Better Life" and bonus track "Never Too Late"
2008 Revelation Drums, percussion, backing vocals
2009 Vasco Rossi Tracks 2 Live: drums
2011 Journey Eclipse Drums, percussion, backing vocals
2015 Revolution Saints Revolution Saints Vocals, drums
2015 Fear Factory Genexus Drums on "Soul Hacker"
2016 Jonathan Cain What God Wants to Hear Drums
2017 Revolutions Saints Light in the Dark Vocals, drums
2018 The Dead Daisies Burn It Down Drums, backing vocals
Gioeli-Castronovo Set The World On Fire Vocals, drums
Tourniquet Gazing at Medusa Lead vocals on "Gazing at Medusa"
2019 Restless Spirits Restless Spirits Drums, vocals on "Unbreakable", "Calling You" and "Live to Win"
2020 Revolution Saints Rise Vocals, drums
The Dead Daisies Holy Ground Drums


  1. ^ Lynn, Capi (May 6, 2009). "Drummer aims to spark musical journey for kids". Statesman Journal.
  2. ^ O'Brien, Kyle (October 13, 2011). "Journey drummer ready to rock at home". The Oregonian. Retrieved October 13, 2011.
  3. ^ Rafanelli, Rachael (April 15, 2015). "Journey drummer speaks at S. Albany High". KGW. NBC News. Retrieved 19 July 2015.
  4. ^ a b Dean, Mark (September 20, 2017). "Interview: Deen Castronovo of REVOLUTION SAINTS". AntiHero Magazine. Retrieved September 20, 2017.
  5. ^ Stephens, Stephanie (November 16, 2015). "Drummer Deen Castronovo: On a New Journey after Losing Everything". Parade.
  6. ^ Gaita, Paul (November 19, 2015). "Journey's Deen Castronovo On His Journey Back To Sanity And Sobriety". The Fix.
  7. ^ Wardlaw, Matt. "Deen Castronovo Confirms Journey Firing, Opens Up About Addiction: Exclusive Interview". Ultimate Classic Rock.
  8. ^ "Journey Drummer Booted From Tour". Retrieved June 30, 2015.
  9. ^ "Album Of The Year 2017". drmusic.
  10. ^ Colothan, Scott (November 4, 2017). "Former Journey drummer Deen Castronovo joins The Dead Daisies". Planet Rock. Retrieved November 4, 2017.
  11. ^ "Preview: "Burn It Down" - The Dead Daisies; Deen Castronovo Joins Band; Tour Dates".
  12. ^ Price, Jason (January 17, 2018). "The Dead Daisies To Unleash 'Burn It Down' On April 6th, 2018!".

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