Hey, MD readers and fellow drummers, this is JoJo from Judas Priestess. I’m currently playing in an all-female Judas Priest tribute band that is a blast! I remember wanting to play drums in the second grade and being told, “Girls don’t play drums,” so I put away my dreams of being a drummer—which lasted until I got my first Kiss album.
As a teenager I loved Kiss, Judas Priest, Led Zeppelin, and AC/DC. Peter Criss and John Bonham were my inspirations to play, and after years of begging my parents for a drumset, at seventeen years old I finally got my first kit and was determined to learn how to play it. I’m mostly self taught and learned by playing along to my favorite albums, figuring out the drum parts by pressing down on the turntable to slow the music down. I took my first lesson at a local music store three years later and was told that my drums were set up backwards because I’m left-handed. I switched the set to lefty but it was too late—I was already used to playing on a right-handed kit. However, this turned out to be an advantage for me later on, especially when I started playing double bass.
My first band was Missdemeanor, an all-female metal band based out of New York. We were signed to an independent label and toured the U.S. and Canada. After Missdemeanor I played with another New York band, the Creeps, which consisted of members from the Cycle Sluts From Hell. After that I played on and off in several original and cover bands, until last year, when Judas Priestess was formed. I feel that Scott Travis is one of the greatest drummers in metal, so it’s great to have the opportunity to replicate his drumming in this tribute band. We just celebrated our one-year anniversary at the Stone Pony in New Jersey; we play a lot in the New York City area and are currently setting up several mini tours throughout the U.S. for 2011.
Playing drums is a natural passion for me. I enjoy playing and listening to all types of music, but my favorite music to play live is heavy metal and hard rock, as I just love the energy, intensity, and powerful nature of it all! When I’m covering most songs I like to add my own nuances to them, and anything I’ve written is just a combination of ideas that I’ve learned listening to other drummers. What matters most to me is playing the music I love, regardless of where it came from—feeling that energy in the songs and the musicians I’m playing with and the people who come to listen. I’m thankful to be able to play and share my passion for drums with others and to be a part of the music community. Thank you, Modern Drummer, for inviting me to your blog page and for introducing me to the drummers and music lovers of the world!
For more on JoJo Tubeato and Judas Priestess, go to www.myspace.com/judaspriestessband, or look them up on Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube.