Journey has reportedly dumped their lead drummer in the middle of the band’s U.S tour. Apparently, Deen Castronovo was involved in a domestic dispute that eventually led to his arrest in Salem last weekend. Journey now has a lead drummer, Omar Hakim, who has some serious credentials to his name.
Grammy award-winning percussionist Omar Hakim has replaced Deen Castronovo as the lead drummer for Journey while the band tours U.S. Castronovo is being replaced owing to his arrest on suspicion of domestic violence against a woman, reported TMZ. The band hasn’t clarified if Castronovo has been permanently booted off or if the suspension will last till the end of this tour. The team issued a statement last week about the decision.
“We have made the decision to have Omar Hakim play drums for the band’s upcoming U.S. concerts. We are very grateful to Omar filling in with his musical excellence.”
Law enforcement officials confirmed Castronovo was arrested early morning on Sunday. There are some serious allegations against the talented drummer.
According to court documents, “Castronovo unlawfully and intentionally attempt[ed] to place [the victim] in fear of imminent serious physical injury by words or conduct.”
The incident was later determined to be domestic violence, which led to his arrest. The drummer has been booked on charges of misdemeanor, assault, coercion, and menacing, confirmed Marion County Sheriff’s Office. Incidentally, this isn’t the first time the drummer is behind bars. He has been arrested once before in Oregon in 2012 on similar charges, which were officially labeled as domestic violence as well. He had allegedly assaulted his girlfriend. This time around the alleged assault of an unknown woman.
Castronovo is currently out on $20,000 bail, and his plea hearing is set on June 30. However, the band decided it was unwise to consider keeping the drummer and hence went ahead with Omar Hakim. Though Castronovo has been the lead drummer for Journey for over 17 years, Hakim has played with some major artists. Hakim has matched beat-for-beat with the likes of late Michael Jackson, Sting, Dire Straits Anita Baker, Madonna, Miles Davis, and many others.
Though Journey debuted in 1973, Castronovo didn’t become a part of the group until 1998, the same year in which Lead singer Steve Perry was replaced by Arnel Pineda. Of the original members, Neal Schon is the lead guitarist and Ross Valory is on bass.
Though the drummer may have some anger issues, he generously donated $10,000 to an Oregon high school after an arsonist destroyed his band room.
[Image Credit | Jason Merritt, Getty Images]