Sandy Gennaro

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Santo Michael Gennaro (born July 3, 1951 in Manhattan, New York)[1] is an American rock drummer. He has recorded and toured with many musical artists including Blackjack, The Monkees, Pat Travers, Cyndi Lauper and Joan Jett. Gennaro teaches drums and has written instructional books.

Early years[edit]

Born "Santo Gennaro" in Little Italy, (Manhattan's Lower East Side), Gennaro grew up on Staten Island, New York.[2] At the age of 3 he showed interest in a toy drum and later at age 13 he played a friend's snare drum, which prompted him to buy his first drum set. At age 14 he joined his first band "The Black and Blues". Gennaro took private lessons and by 16 he was touring the New York/New Jersey/Pennsylvania circuit, playing high school dances, parties and minor musical events. At 18, Gennaro toured the Midwest playing night clubs and bars in a Cover band. In 1976 Gennaro moved to California and joined rock quartet Blackjack, featuring Michael Bolton, guitarist Bruce Kulick and bassist Jimmy Haslip. Blackjack recorded two albums and toured with Peter Frampton which eventually led Gennaro to record his first hit single with the New York-based singer Benny Mardones, "Into the Night" and LP Never Run, Never Hide. This was the beginning of Gennaro's association with the Pat Travers Band and afterwards his connection with singer/songwriter Cyndi Lauper, whose debut album She's So Unusual became a multi-platinum hit. Lauper hired Gennaro for the Fun Tour as well as other national and international tours and he appears on the concert video for the singer's single "Money Changes Everything". From here Gennaro went on to record and tour with Bo Diddley, Joan Jett and Johnny Winter.

Recording career[edit]

Gennaro's recording career includes Blackjack, Pat Travers, Cyndi Lauper, Robin Gibb, Craaft, Joan Jett, Junkyard Angels, and the Monkees.

Professional expansion[edit]

Gennaro toured with Craaft [it] throughout Europe/UK as the opening band for Queen during mid-1986. He participated on every The Monkees reunion tour from 1987 until the death of Davy Jones in 2012.

Gennaro frequently served as a counselor and teacher at David Fishof's Rock and Roll Fantasy Camps since 2007.[3] Gennaro taught at The Collective[4] in New York City for 27 years where he created the Music Business program, teaching private lessons and master classes before moving to Nashville.

Gennaro wrote several articles for Modern Drummer magazine.[5][6][7] He is also the creator of "Drum Basics"[8] and "Contemporary Rock Styles for the Drums."[9] His writing is featured in the October 2016 issue of Drumhead Magazine (owned by Jonathan Mover) issue #057, page 70 "The Top 10 Straight 8th and 16th note Grooves Every Drummer Should know....And Why" [10][11]


  • 1979 Blackjack – Blackjack, Polydor PD-1-6215
  • 1980 Blackjack - Worlds Apart, Polydor PD-1-6279
  • 1980 Benny Mardones - Never Run Never Hide, Polydor PD 2391 449
  • 1981 Pat Travers – Radio Active, Polydor PD 2391 499
  • 1982 Pat Travers – Black Pearl, Polydor PD 2391 553
  • 1984 Cyndi Lauper – "Money Changes Everything LIVE!" (single) Epic/Portrait 3P-582
  • 1985 Cyndi Lauper – The Goonies (soundtrack)
  • 1985 Robin Gibb – Walls Have Eyes, Polydor 827 592-1
  • 1986 Craaft – Craaft Epic 26880
  • 1990 Joan Jett – The Hit List, CBS Associated Records ZK 45473
  • 1994 Junkyard Angels – Out of the Junkyard Onto the Curb, Midnight Fantasy Records 9839-2
  • 2001 Micky Dolenz, Davy Jones, Peter Tork – 2001: Live in Las Vegas, Not On Label 772801
  • 2002 The Monkees – Live Summer Tour (DVD), WIN Media – DVD-UK003d
  • 2013 Pat Travers Band – Can Do, Back On Black Rock Classics RCV123LP

Compilation albums[edit]

  • 1991 Pat Travers – The Best of Pat Travers, Polydor 849 374-2
  • 2014 Cyndi Lauper – She's So Unusual (A 30th Anniversary Celebration), Portrait 88883706352
  • 2015 Pat Travers – Feelin' Right - The Polydor Albums 1975-1984, Polydor 5352821

Personal life[edit]

On May 12, 1990, Gennaro married Shari Lynn Athey in North Carolina.[12] Gennaro currently lives in Nashville, Tennessee, where he continues to teach, write, record, perform and travel for music and speaking engagements.


  1. ^ "Santo Michael Gennaro in the U.S. Public Records Index, 1950-1993, Volume 1". Retrieved 10 June 2016.
  2. ^
  3. ^
  4. ^
  5. ^ Gennaro, Sandy (September 1984). "Your First Big Break". Modern Drummer. 8 #9: 54.
  6. ^ Gennaro, Sandy (October 1985). "Approaching The Scary Monster". Modern Drummer. 9 #10: 42.
  7. ^ Gennaro, Sandy (May 1987). "Touring Europe". Modern Drummer. 11 #4 (90): 90.
  8. ^ Gennaro, Sandy (August 1994). "Drum Basics". DVD/Book/CD Alfred Publishing
  9. ^ Gennaro, Sandy (May 2007). "Contemporary Rock Styles". CD/Book-Hal Leonard Publishing
  10. ^ Gennaro, Sandy (October 2016). "The Top 10 Straight 8th and 16th Note Grooves". Drumhead Magazine (057): 70.
  11. ^ Gennaro, Sandy (October 2016). "Drumhead Magazine".
  12. ^ "Santo Michael Gennaro in the North Carolina, Marriage Index, 1741-2004". Retrieved 10 June 2016.

External links[edit]