Basic Background Info

Birth: March 7, 1953
Location: Stockbridge, Massachusetts
Band: Bob Dylan, Jon Bon Jovi, Bob Seger, Belinda Carlisle, Indigo Girls, Meat Loaf, Lisa Germano, Melissa Etheridge, The Rolling Stones, Joe Cocker, Lynyrd Skynyrd, Alice Cooper, Travis Tritt, Willie Nelson, Rod Stewart, Avril Lavigne, Puddle of Mudd, Meat Loaf, John Fogerty, Tony Iommi, Melissa Etheridge
Genres: Rock, Pop, Country
Instruments: Drums
Occupation: Musician


Kenny Aronoff wasn't named the best Pop/Rock Drummer for five years or Best Studio Drummer for four years by Modern Drummer readers for no reason. Kenny Aronoff's talent behind the drums makes him one of the most influential and busiest drummers in the music industry.

Born in Stockbridge, Massachusetts, in 1953, Kenny Aronoff taught himself to play drums as a child. Kenny Aronoff joined his first band at ten and continued playing in local bands until he was in high school. However, when Kenny Aronoff was sixteen, he chose to concentrate on studying classical music. Members of the Boston Symphony Orchestra and, in particular, infamous tympanist Vic Firth, educated Kenny Aronoff. He also studied at the University of Massachusetts before leaving his native town for Bloomington, Indiana. Kenny Aronoff earned his bachelors degree and a Performerís Certificate from Indiana University and during the summers he played at music festivals for the education and experience.

After graduating from Indiana University, several orchestras offered Kenny Aronoff positions playing timpani. However, Kenny returned to the East Coast and studied drum set and played in Boston and New York, focusing on jazz and fusion music. After just one year, Kenny Aronoff retuned to Indiana, where he played for several years in a local band.

Kenny's talent quickly outgrew the Midwest club circuit and in 1980, he joined the John Mellencamp band, whose popularity peaked in the 1980s with albums like American Fool, Uh Huh, and Dance Naked. Kenny Aronoff toured with Mellencamp for seventeen years and recorded ten albums. While working with Mellencamp in the 1980s, Kenny Aronoff solidified his role as a studio musician, recording with an impressive range of artists - Bob Dylan, Jon Bon Jovi, Bob Seger, Belinda Carlisle, Indigo Girls, Meat Loaf, Lisa Germano, Melissa Etheridge, The Rolling Stones, Joe Cocker, Lynyrd Skynyrd, Alice Cooper, Travis Tritt, and Willie Nelson. More recently, Kenny Aronoff recorded with Rod Stewart, Avril Lavigne, Puddle of Mudd, Meat Loaf, John Fogerty, Tony Iommi, and Melissa Etheridge.

In addition to the Mellencamp tours, Kenny Aronoff has joined these acts on the road as well: The Smashing Pumpkins, Bob Seger, Melissa Etheridge, John Fogerty, Joe Cocker, Willie Nelson, and Michelle Branch.

Kenny Aronoff also capitalizes on his talent by helping students learn from him. He produced instructional videos (Power Workout One, Power Workout Two, and Laying it Down: The Basics of Rock Drumming) and performed many drum clinics. Kenny Aronoff also instructed as an associate professor at Indiana University in the 1990s and sponsors a scholarship to a percussion student each year.

Kenny Aronoff continues recording and performing with an array of talented artists. In January 2008, this included Like A Storm, Marco Mendoza, Steve Wengart, Soren Anderson, JR Richards, Jon Peter Lewis, and Brent Lundy. In February 2008, Kenny Aronoff performed live at the 50th Grammy Awards with John Fogerty, Jerry Lee Lewis, and Little Richard. They played 'Comin' Down the Road' (a song Fogerty wrote for Creedence Clearwater Revival and never recorded), 'Great Balls of Fire,' and 'Good Golly Miss Molly.'


Album Year Album Name Album Band
1980 Nothin' Matters and What If It Did John Cougar
1982 American Fool John Cougar
1983 Never Kick a Sleeping Dog Mitch Ryder & the Detroit Wheels
1983 Uh-Huh John Cougar Mellencamp
1985 Scarecrow [Gold Disc] John Mellencamp
1985 Scarecrow John Mellencamp
1986 Knife Feels Like Justice Brian Setzer
1987 Lonesome Jubilee John Cougar Mellencamp
1988 Heaven on Earth Belinda Carlisle
1988 Loaded Dice Bill Carter
1989 Big Daddy John Cougar Mellencamp
1989 Good Evening Marshall Crenshaw
1989 Holly Knight Holly Knight
1989 Home The BoDeans
1989 Jefferson Airplane Jefferson Airplane
1989 March Michael Penn
1989 Runaway Horses Belinda Carlisle
1989 Too Long in the Wasteland James McMurtry
1989 Very Special Christmas Various Artists
1990 Bang! Corey Hart
1990 Blaze of Glory Jon Bon Jovi
1990 Brick by Brick Iggy Pop
1990 Change of Season Hall & Oates
1990 Dancing with Tigers Tom Borton
1990 Guitar Trouble Tommy Conwell & the Young Rumblers
1990 Nomads Indians Saints [Bonus Tracks] Indigo Girls
1990 Nomads Indians Saints Indigo Girls
1990 Song of the Sun Jim Beard
1990 Under the Red Sky Bob Dylan
1991 All American Boy Vinnie James
1991 Arkansas Traveler Michelle Shocked
1991 Bitterblue Bonnie Tyler
1991 Blood on the Bricks Aldo Nova
1991 Fire Inside Bob Seger & the Silver Bullet Band
1991 Hiding out in Plain Sight Caroline Doctorow
1991 Life's Too Short Marshall Crenshaw
1991 Live Your Life Be Free Belinda Carlisle
1991 Lovescape Neil Diamond
1991 On the Way Down From the Moon Palace Lisa Germano
1991 Pretty Blue World Billy Falcon
1991 Sue Medley Sue Medley
1991 Whenever We Wanted John Mellencamp
1991 Whole Lotta Noise Seth Marsh
1991 Will T. Massey Will T. Massey
1991 World So Bright Adam Schmitt
1992 Candyland James McMurtry
1992 Free-for-All Michael Penn
1992 Her Greatest Hits Belinda Carlisle
1992 King of the Blues [Box] B.B. King
1992 Never Been Rocked Enough Delbert McClinton
1992 Patty Smyth Patty Smyth
1992 Rites of Passage [Bonus Tracks] Indigo Girls
1992 Rites of Passage Indigo Girls
1992 Singles Corey Hart
1992 Strange Weather Glenn Frey
1993 30th Anniversary Concert Celebration Bob Dylan
1993 Bat out of Hell II: Back into Hell Meat Loaf
1993 Bob Carlisle Bob Carlisle
1993 Coneheads Original Soundtrack
1993 Go Slow Down The BoDeans
1993 Happiness Lisa Germano
1993 Heat, Dust and Dreams Johnny Clegg & Savuka
1993 Human Wheels John Mellencamp
1993 Rumble Doll Patti Scialfa
1993 Watching the Dark Richard Thompson
1994 Billy Pilgrim Billy Pilgrim
1994 Bob Dylan's Greatest Hits, Vol. 3 Bob Dylan
1994 Burning for Buddy: A Tribute to the Music of Buddy Rich Various Artists
1994 Cold War Kids Tony Carey
1994 Conway Twitty Collection Conway Twitty
1994 Cover Girl Shawn Colvin
1994 Dance Naked [Clean] John Mellencamp
1994 Dance Naked John Mellencamp
1994 Geek the Girl Lisa Germano
1994 I Love Everybody Lyle Lovett
1994 In My African Dream Johnny Clegg & Savuka
1994 It's Now or Never: Tribute to Elvis Various Artists
1994 Language of the Heart Sanne
1994 Live: My Truck Is My Home Marshall Crenshaw
1994 Rhythm Country and Blues Various Artists
1994 Se Son Rose Fioriranno Eduardo Bennato
1994 Still Climbing Cinderella
1994 Stones in the Road Mary Chapin Carpenter
1994 Street Angel Stevie Nicks
1994 Unplugged Collection, Vol. 1 Various Artists
1994 Waymore's Blues, Part 2 Waylon Jennings
1994 What I Live For Tab Benoit
1994 You Can't Resist Patricia Conroy
1995 4.5: The Best of the Indigo Girls Indigo Girls
1995 Christmas of Hope Various Artists
1995 Circus Leaving Town Philip Claypool
1995 Come Together: America Salutes the Beatles Various Artists
1995 Hog Wild Hank Williams, Jr.
1995 It's a Mystery Bob Seger & the Silver Bullet Band
1995 Jewel of the South Rodney Crowell
1995 Lake Placid Blues Tony Joe White
1995 Living Under June Jann Arden
1995 NASCAR: Runnin' Wide Open Various Artists
1995 Raisin' Cain Jesse Dayton
1995 Randy Newman's Faust Randy Newman
1995 Road Goes on Forever The Highwaymen
1995 Solo Collection Glenn Frey
1995 Spanner in the Works Rod Stewart
1995 Standing on the Edge John Berry
1995 Welcome to the Neighborhood Meat Loaf
1995 Yelling at Mary Mary Karlzen
1995 Your Little Secret Melissa Etheridge
1996 A.K.A. Wham Bam Sam Hank Williams, Jr.
1996 Amanda Marshall Amanda Marshall
1996 Concert for the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Various Artists
1996 Excerpts From a Love Circus Lisa Germano
1996 Falling into You Celine Dion
1996 In My Lifetime Neil Diamond
1996 Just When We're Thinking It's Over The Cox Family
1996 Mr. Happy Go Lucky John Mellencamp
1996 Off the Beaten Path Dave Koz
1996 Organic Joe Cocker
1996 Passages Keith Stegall
1996 Restless Kind Travis Tritt
1997 Across from Midnight Joe Cocker
1997 Anchorless Kacy Crowley
1997 Best That I Could Do (1978-1988) John Mellencamp
1997 Blue Moon Swamp John Fogerty
1997 Bridges to Babylon The Rolling Stones
1997 Burning for Buddy: A Tribute to the Music of Buddy Ri Various Artists
1997 Captain of the Ship Tsuyoshi Nagabuchi
1997 Catie Curtis Catie Curtis
1997 Collection Bob Carlisle
1997 Destination Anywhere [Japan] Jon Bon Jovi
1997 Destination Anywhere Jon Bon Jovi
1997 Deuces Wild B.B. King
1997 George of the Jungle Original Soundtrack
1997 Growing, Pains Billie Myers
1997 Heaven & Hell Joe Jackson
1997 Let's Talk About Love Celine Dion
1997 Man at the Piano Craig Brenner
1997 Mirabal Robert Mirabal
1997 Moment in the Wind Karen Newman
1997 Moon Hut Kim Fox
1997 One Step Up/Two Steps Back: The Songs of Bruce Spring Various Artists
1997 Shakin' with the Money Man Eddie Money
1997 Sounds of the Season Various Artists
1998 Anchorless [Bonus Track] Kacy Crowley
1998 Calle Mayor Revolver
1998 Cookbook Bass Extremes
1998 Crown of Jewels Randy Scruggs
1998 Destination Anywhere [Australia] Jon Bon Jovi
1998 Flaming Red Patty Griffin
1998 Footloose [Expanded Edition] Original Soundtrack
1998 Greatest Hits Joe Cocker
1998 Greatest Hits Patty Smyth
1998 Growing, Pains [Australia] Billie Myers
1998 Happy? Jann Arden
1998 Indigo Girls/Strange Fire/Nomads Indians Saints Indigo Girls
1998 Jade Corey Hart
1998 Let's Talk About Love [Australia] Celine Dion
1998 Premonition John Fogerty
1998 Rock and Roll Doctor: Lowell George Tribute Various Artists
1998 Tell Me [#1] Billie Myers
1998 Undiscovered Soul Richie Sambora
1998 Very Best of Meatloaf Meat Loaf
1998 When the Night Is Through Mary Cutrufello
1998 Whistle Down the Wind Various Artists
1999 15 Favorites Shenandoah
1999 All the Way: A Decade of Song Celine Dion
1999 Angels Would Fall Melissa Etheridge
1999 Breakdown Melissa Etheridge
1999 Bridges to Babylon [Japan Bonus Track] The Rolling Stones
1999 Change Dave Uhrich
1999 Dance Naked [Bonus CD] John Mellencamp
1999 Edge of Forever Lynyrd Skynyrd
1999 Greta Gaines Greta Gaines
1999 In the Life of Chris Gaines Garth Brooks
1999 Let It Go Jimmy Ryser
1999 Let's Talk About Love [Canada Bonus Tracks] Celine Dion
1999 Loud Guitars, Big Suspicions Shannon Curfman
1999 Luxury of Time David Mead
1999 Michael Hutchence Michael Hutchence
1999 Perfect World Philip Claypool
1999 Ready Eddie Eddie Money
1999 Ricky Martin Ricky Martin
1999 Ricky Martin [Australia Bonus Video Tracks] Ricky Martin
1999 Ricky Martin [Australia Limited Edition] Ricky Martin
1999 Shake Your Bon-Bon Ricky Martin
1999 Useful Music Josh Joplin Group
1999 Your Little Secret [Bonus CD] Melissa Etheridge
2000 20th Century Masters - The Millennium Collection: The Best of Glen Frey Glenn Frey
2000 Bounce Original Soundtrack
2000 Charlie Watts/Jim Keltner Project Charlie Watts & Jim Keltner
2000 Deuces Wild [Import Bonus Tracks] B.B. King
2000 Farm Aid: Keep America Growing, Vol. 1 Farm Aid
2000 From Out of the Blue The Sky Kings
2000 Iommi Tony Iommi
2000 Long 33 1/3 Play Buffalo Nickel
2000 Original Gold Belinda Carlisle
2000 Retrospective Indigo Girls
2000 Rockin' Country Party Pack Confederate Railroad
2000 Sound Loaded [Australian] Ricky Martin
2000 Sound Loaded Ricky Martin
2000 That's the Way It Is [US CD] Celine Dion
2000 Truth Michael Sweet
2000 Undiscovered Soul [Import Bonus Tracks] Ritchie Sambora
2001 3 Different Views Tim Mahoney
2001 5:30 Saturday Morning Lennon
2001 Afferrare Una Stella Edoardo Bennato
2001 Audio Dog Bruce Kulick
2001 Dragontown Alice Cooper
2001 Earl Scruggs and Friends Earl Scruggs and Friends
2001 Goddess in the Doorway Mick Jagger
2001 Greatest Hurts: The Best of Jann Arden Jann Arden
2001 March [Bonus Tracks] Michael Penn
2001 Mi CorazÛn Jaci Velasquez
2001 Monster Blues Various Artists
2001 MTV's Spyder Games Original Television Soundtrack
2001 Music from a Painted Cave Robert Mirabal & Rare Tribal Mob
2001 Skin Melissa Etheridge
2001 Spirit Room Michelle Branch
2001 Trick Pony Trick Pony
2002 Albatross Gary Stier
2002 Big Room [Japan Bonus Track] M2M
2002 Big Room M2M
2002 Footloose [Australian Bonus Tracks] Original Cast Recordings
2002 Forgive Rebecca Lynn Howard
2002 Freedom Andy Griggs
2002 Fun Rose Falcon
2002 Great Divide Willie Nelson
2002 Ignition [Avalon] Two Fires
2002 Lovin' Side Travis Tritt
2002 Master of Disguise Original Soundtrack
2002 Movie Soundtracks Various Artists
2002 On a Mission Trick Pony
2002 Respect Yourself [Australia Bonus Tracks] Joe Cocker
2002 Respect Yourself Joe Cocker
2002 Rockin' Side Travis Tritt
2002 Sharp Dressed Men: A Tribute to ZZ Top Various Artists
2002 Small Worlds: The Crowell Collection 1978-1995 Rodney Crowell
2002 Solo Collection [Japanese Bonus Track] Glenn Frey
2002 Something Worth Leaving Behind [UK Bonus Track] Lee Ann Womack
2002 Something Worth Leaving Behind Lee Ann Womack
2002 Stand Silvercrush
2002 Then Came the Night Tommy Shane Steiner
2003 Are You Happy Now? Michelle Branch
2003 Best That I Could Do [Australia Bonus Tracks] John Mellencamp
2003 Conception: An Interpretation of Stevie Wonder's Song Various Artists
2003 Couldn't Have Said It Better [Japan Bonus CD] Meat Loaf
2003 Couldn't Have Said It Better Meat Loaf
2003 Different for Girls Leslie Mills
2003 Essential Eddie Money Eddie Money
2003 Essential Mary Chapin Carpenter Mary Chapin Carpenter
2003 Grammy Nominees 2003 Various Artists
2003 Greatest Love Songs Joe Cocker
2003 Heart Land Betty Dylan
2003 Hotel Paper [France Bonus Tracks] Michelle Branch
2003 Hotel Paper Michelle Branch
2003 Ignition Two Fires
2003 Johnny English Original Soundtrack
2003 Journey Within Bernie Williams
2003 Labor & Spirits Emory Joseph
2003 Long Way Anna Wilson
2003 More Guitar Richard Thompson
2003 Randy Newman's Faust Randy Newman
2003 Rose Falcon Rose Falcon
2003 Thyrty: The 30th Anniversary Collection Lynyrd Skynyrd
2003 What a Girl Wants Original Soundtrack
2003 While You Can Lucy Woodward
2003 Who the Hell Is John Eddie? John Eddie
2003 Willie Nelson and Friends: Live and Kickin' Willie Nelson
2004 100,000,000 Bon Jovi Fans Can't Be Wrong Bon Jovi
2004 Anastacia [Bonus CD] Anastacia
2004 Anastacia [Bonus DVD] Anastacia
2004 Anastacia Anastacia
2004 Autobiography Ashlee Simpson
2004 Blue Moon Swamp [Bonus Tracks] John Fogerty
2004 Blue Skies Diana DeGarmo
2004 Breakaway Kelly Clarkson
2004 Deja Vu All Over Again John Fogerty
2004 Dynamic Trash AstroGin
2004 Fall New August
2004 Like a Star Jody Raffoul
2004 Lucky Ones Pat Green
2004 Lucky Melissa Etheridge
2004 Many Blessings: Silver Wave Artists Various Artists
2004 My Happy Ending [CD #2] Avril Lavigne
2004 My Happy Ending [EP] Avril Lavigne
2004 Pictures from Home John Gregory
2004 Shut Off the World Dirty Children
2004 So-Called Chaos Alanis Morissette
2004 Ultimate Collection Joe Cocker
2004 Under My Skin [Bonus Track] Avril Lavigne
2004 Under My Skin Avril Lavigne
2004 Words & Music: John Mellencamp's Greatest Hits John Mellencamp
2005 All Over the Road Mars Arizona
2005 All That I Am Santana
2005 American Fool [Bonus Tracks] John Mellencamp
2005 American Idol Season 4: The Showstoppers Various Artists
2005 American Made World Played Les Paul & Friends
2005 Beautiful to Be Alive ZoÎ Scott
2005 Besterberg: Best of Paul Westerberg Paul Westerberg
2005 Big Daddy [Bonus Track] John Mellencamp
2005 Brave Jamie O'Neal
2005 Breakaway [Bonus CD] Kelly Clarkson
2005 Chronicles John Mellencamp
2005 Covering the Bases Bronson Arroyo
2005 Dance Naked [Bonus Track] John Mellencamp
2005 Double Happiness Jimmy Barnes
2005 Fused Tony Iommi/Glenn Hughes
2005 Grandes Exitos Revolver
2005 Gratitude Gratitude
2005 Here I Am Marion Raven
2005 Homebrewed: Live from the Pabst [DVD] The Bodeans
2005 Homebrewed: Live from the Pabst The BoDeans
2005 Human Wheels [Bonus Track] John Mellencamp
2005 I'm Feeling You Santana/Michelle Branch/The Wreckers
2005 Krystal Meyers Krystal Meyers
2005 Let It Go Paul Colman
2005 Lonesome Jubilee [Bonus Track] John Mellencamp
2005 Long Road Home: The Ultimate John Fogerty/Creedence C John Fogerty
2005 Million in Prizes: The Anthology Iggy Pop
2005 Mr. Happy Go Lucky [Bonus Track] John Mellencamp
2005 My Very Special Guests [Bonus Disc] George Jones
2005 Nothin' Matters and What If It Did [Bonus Track] John Cougar
2005 Pieces of a Dream Anastacia
2005 Road Goes on Forever [10th Anniversary Edition] The Highwaymen
2005 Rocked, Wired & Bluesed: The Greatest Hits Cinderella
2005 Scarecrow [Bonus Track] John Mellencamp
2005 See the Sun Black Lab
2005 Shine [DualDisc] Trey Anastasio
2005 Shine Trey Anastasio
2005 Uh-Huh [Bonus Tracks] John Mellencamp
2005 Under My Skin [Bonus Tracks & DVD] Avril Lavigne
2005 Under My Skin [DualDisc] Avril Lavigne
2005 Whenever We Wanted [Bonus Track] John Mellencamp
2006 Bat Out of Hell III: The Monster Is Loose [CD/DVD] Meat Loaf
2006 Bat Out of Hell III: The Monster Is Loose Meatloaf
2006 Butchering the Beatles: A Headbashing Tribute Various Artists
2006 Damaged Goods Lennon
2006 Fly [Bonus Tracks] Zucchero Sugar Fornaciari
2006 Fly Zucchero
2006 Gold Cinderella
2006 Gold Joe Cocker
2006 Huecco Huecco
2006 In Your Dreams Zachary Hunter
2006 It's Alive! The New Cars
2006 It's All Coming Back to Me Now/Whore Meat Loaf
2006 Long Road Home: In Concert [DVD] John Fogerty
2006 Long Road Home: In Concert John Fogerty
2006 Nashville Rebel [Box Set] Waylon Jennings
2006 Rascals Have Returned [Maxi Single] Trevor Hall
2006 Right Where You Want Me Jesse McCartney
2006 Selections From the Cube [EP] Owen Sartori
2006 Somebody Wrote Love George Canyon
2006 Startin' with Me Jake Owen
2006 Still the Same: Great Rock Classics of Our Time Rod Stewart
2006 Yelling at Mary [Dualtone Bonus Tracks] Mary Karlzen
2007 Best Damn Thing [CD/DVD] Avril Lavigne
2007 Best Damn Thing Avril Lavigne
2007 Compadres: An Anthology of Duets Marty Stuart
2007 Cry Over Me [DVD] Meat Loaf
2007 Direction The Starting Line
2007 Entre Mariposas Yuridia
2007 Gravity John Sheldon
2007 Famous Puddle of Mudd
2007 Home at Last Billy Ray Cyrus
2007 Knife Feels Like Justice/Live Nude Guitars Brian Setzer
2007 Mig Mig
2007 My Rockabye Jane Jensen
2007 Revival John Fogerty
2007 Rumble/Guitar Trouble Tommy Conwell/The Young Rumblers
2007 Set Me Free Marion Raven
2007 Shake Them Ghosts GB Leighton
2007 Storm Travis Tritt
2008 Break The Silence Jon Peter Lewis
2008 Let's Talk About Love/Celine Dion Celine Dion
2008 One Hell of a Ride [Box Set] Willie Nelson
2008 Right Where You Want Me [Bonus DVD] Jesse McCartney
2008 Still Bodeans


  • (Kenny played at the 2005 Grammys with Melissa Etheridge and Joss Stone.)
  • Kenny joined Smashing Pumpkins in the late 1990s, after they became a drummer-less trio. They recorded the album Adore with drum tracks and guest musicians, but they decided they needed a drummer to join them on tour promoting the album. The tour benefitted local youth charities and played unusual venues like the Guggenheim Museum in Bilboa, Spain, the Tivoli Gardens in Copenhagen, and on a barge in Genoa, Italy.
  • Kenny has played on over 30 Grammy-nominated albums.

Instruments of Choice



Drums: Tama
Cymbals: Zildjian
Hardware: Tama
Heads: Remo
Electronics: Shure, Metrophones, Buttkicker
Percussion: Meinl
Sticks: Vic Firth

Pics & Clips