Jimmy Destri

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Jimmy Destri
Birth nameJames Mollica
Born (1954-04-13) April 13, 1954 (age 66)[1]
Brooklyn, New York, United States
GenresNew wave, pop rock, punk rock, pop
Occupation(s)Musician, keyboardist
InstrumentsPiano, vocals, organ, guitar, synthesizer
Years active1973–present
Associated actsBlondie

Jimmy Destri (born James Mollica, April 13, 1954, Brooklyn, New York City, United States) is an American musician. He played keyboards in the rock band Blondie, and was one of the principal songwriters for the band along with Chris Stein and Deborah Harry. Destri ceased touring with the band in 2004, but remained an official member for several more years.


Destri became interested in music in the late 1950s and early 1960s due to his uncle's being a drummer with Joey Dee and the Starlighters.[2] He formed his first band, the 86 Proof, in high school and they performed in local schools.[3] He played in a group named Milk and Cookies in the early 1970s, but was dismissed from the band just before they relocated to the UK.[2] He joined Blondie in 1975, using the Farfisa organ as his main instrument.[4]

As Blondie's career progressed, Destri became increasingly interested in synthesizers, and added them with his Farfisa to the overall band's sound. His sister, Donna Destri, sang backing vocals on the 1979 Blondie song "Living in the Real World" and on the album No Exit.[5]

Destri produced Going Up[6] by Joey Wilson for Modern Records, released in October 1980. As Blondie members took a break from both recording and touring as a group, Destri released the solo album Heart on a Wall in 1981.

After Blondie's break-up in 1982, Destri ran a company that bought, renovated, and sold old buildings. He also produced and remixed material for artists such as Prince and INXS.[7] Blondie reunited in 1997, and released two further albums (1999's No Exit and 2003's The Curse of Blondie) with Destri as keyboard player.[8] By 2004, Destri retired from touring with the band, but he intended to keep working with them in the studio. However, he played no part in the writing or recording of their next album (2011's Panic of Girls), effectively ending his tenure in the band.

After leaving Blondie, Destri has worked as an alcohol and addictions counselor in New York City. He took the decision to go into this line of work after recovering from a 25-year cocaine addiction in 2003.[9]

Destri composed or co-wrote several songs for Blondie, including:

In 2012, Destri formed the band Jimmy Destri and The Sound Grenade.[10]


  1. ^ "Blondie: American Rock Group". Encyclopedia Britannica. Retrieved September 30, 2018.
  2. ^ a b Porter, Dick; Needs, Kris (February 13, 2017). Blondie: Parallel Lives. ISBN 9780857127808.
  3. ^ "Biography - Official Jimmy Destri Web Site". jimmydestri.com. Archived from the original on November 12, 2013. Retrieved November 12, 2013.
  4. ^ "Blondie : Rip her to Shreds". Mojo. 1998. Archived from the original on September 27, 2011. Retrieved July 27, 2011.
  5. ^ "DONNA DESTRI". October 3, 2011. Archived from the original on October 3, 2011. Retrieved October 3, 2020.
  6. ^ "Going Up LP: Music". Amazon.com. May 5, 2012. Retrieved August 11, 2013.
  7. ^ Fox, Katrina. "August 2003 Jimmy Destri Interview". Archive.blondie.net. Retrieved August 11, 2013.
  8. ^ Walsh, Barry. "Review: Blondie, The Curse Of Blondie". Slantmagazine.com. Retrieved October 3, 2020.
  9. ^ "Official Blondie Web Site: Jimmy Destri". Archive.blondie.net. Retrieved October 3, 2020.
  10. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on July 4, 2018. Retrieved May 16, 2018.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)

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