Kenny Aronoff Remembers His Friend Neil Peart: ‘Everything Had a Purpose’

When Kenny Aronoff wanted a foreword for his 2016 memoir Sex, Drums, Rock ‘n’ Roll!: The Hardest Hitting Man in Show Business, he went right to his friend Neil Peart. “I wanted someone who understood me,” Aronoff recalls to Billboard. “We had met and he had similar tastes in all kinds of things so I felt he’d be best for the job.” The two had met when Peart asked Aronoff — whose voluminous credits include John Mellencamp, Chickenfoot, Smashing Pumpkins and, most recently, John Fogerty, Joe Satriani and Jerry Lee Lewis — to play on his two Burning for Buddy albums during the mid-’90s. They stayed in touch ever since, and in the wake of Peart’s death he recalls their friendship and Peart’s impact and influence.