Benante joined Anthrax in 1983, prior to the recording of the band's debut album Fistful of Metal, and has been the band's drummer ever since. He is known for having a very fast double kick technique and has been credited as one of the pioneers of double-bass, as well as with popularizing the blast beat technique with thrash metal.
He is also an accomplished guitarist, having contributed lead guitar to S.O.D.'s Speak English or Die album, as well as the majority of the music for Anthrax. Along with his musician duties, Benante is also a graphic artist and has created many of Anthrax's album covers and T-shirt designs.
Benante is the uncle of Anthrax bassist Frank Bello, whose mother is Benante's older sister. His other nephew, Frank's younger brother, Anthony, was murdered in the Bronx, NYC, on March 25, 1996. To the grief of Benante, the murder was never solved.
Benante has stated in most of the old Anthrax interviews and videos that his favorite fictional character is Darth Vader.
Benante is an avid fan of the 1975 film Jaws, and owns a sizeable collection of the film's merchandise. He was featured in the documentary The Shark Is Still Working, which was included on the Jaws 2012 Blu-ray release.
Throughout the course of 2012, Charlie Benante faced several personal issues that forced him to miss several concerts with Anthrax. Early on in the year his mother died, which also resulted in Frank Bello (Charlie's mother being Bello's grandmother) taking some time off during the band's tour in Argentina. Benante stepped out again during the summer's Rockstar Mayhem Fest run after suffering a "minor hand injury". Also during the summer, Benante was involved in a domestic dispute with his wife in front of his daughter which had them both arrested. Benante later missed the band's UK and European tour in order to take care of "personal stuff" according to Scott Ian. In 2013 it was announced that Benante would be sitting out Australian tour dates, also for personal reasons. Concern was raised in 2012 by Metalsucks over Benante's well-being and future with the band.
^"This is the question. Well, recently Tama discontinued the pedals that I've been playing since like 1984, the Camco ones. And I was really, really bummed out about this. And I'm hoping they will bring those back fairly soon, or else my career is over (laughs)." – Special Interview: Charlie Benante. Retrieved on September 25, 2008.