It’s with great sadness that I must announce that drummer A.J. Pero of Twisted Sister and Adrenaline Mob has passed away. Reports are minimal at the point of this writing since it is absolutely a recent occurrence but the bands brief official statement can be found below:
“The members of Twisted Sister are profoundly saddened to announce the untimely passing of our brother, AJ Pero; The band, crew and most importantly the family of AJ Pero thank you for your thoughts and prayers at this time”.
The members of Adrenaline Mob who AJ was currently touring with added their own statement which I am putting in the memorial as well.
“We write this with tears in our eyes & our hearts broken to pieces.. our beloved brother AJ Pero peacefully passed away in his sleep this morning on the bus. We are in complete shock & our hearts & prayers go out to his family. It has been nothing short of an honor to have shared the stage with such a beautiful soul & legend! We love you AJ, rest in peace. We will cherish this last picture we all took together on tour forever! What a great night we had… we’ll miss you buddy!”
A.J. was born Anthony Jude Pero in 1959 and was a longtime Staten Island resident. He joined Twisted back in 1982 and was responsible for the drumming on some of the bands most influential works. Speaking personally, Pero was one of my own favorite drummers when I was learning the craft as I found his power and solid manner of playing to be right up my alley. One of my favorites to do in his style was “What You Don’t Know”, and this song actually helped me firm up interest in a band that I had no idea I was auditioning for at the time. Sigh. Pero would not be a part of the Sister lineup when he briefly rejoined Cities. Sister activity would be light for many years after until their 2001 return to recording and performance and it was awesome to hear the pounding thunder of Pero back on the kit for their reunion shows and eventual Twisted Christmas gigs. Over the years I was fortunate enough to meet him for a hot second after shows and he seemed quite the cool cat who was very interested in the support he was being given. When Twisted Sister performance activity slowed down based on various reasons and projects, Pero joined up as the latest member of Adrenaline Mob alongside Russell Allen and Mike Orlando. His input worked with the ever changing sound of the band for sure.
More about this local guy that righteously rocked the socks of millions of music fans can be learned from his official Wikipedia entry. This has been a terrible week in music history as in the span of only five days we lost Mike Porcaro (Toto), Bruce Crump (Molly Hatchet), Andy Fraser (Free) and now A.J. Pero. I can safely say that March has pretty much sucked so far with all these greats leaving us. I encourage fans of the man and musician that Pero was for most of his life to leave some reflections in our comments section below. I would love to hear from from you as he really was one of my earliest inspirations on the kit. Goodbye A.J. and thank you ever so much for the music and the good times that you gave to your public. On behalf of the PiercingMetal site I wish his family, band mates and friends the strongest sympathies I can muster. May you Rest In Peace and know you shall never be forgotten.
Official Artist Wiki: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/A._J._Pero
Let’s remember A.J. Pero as I am sure he would like to be remembered the most – playing drums for his longest tenured band, the mighty Twisted Sister. These shots were taken by me over the years at various shows.