Benny Mardones

(Polygram) “Never Run, Never Hide” (includes the Top 10 single “Into the Night”)

“When I see footage of a classic drummer, Bonham, Krupa, Baker or Rich — I think of the best drummer I’ve ever played with — Sandy Gennaro — he stands alone.”

-Benny Mardones

Having never met him before, Benny came up to me during a break in my rehearsal with Blackjack and asked “were you playing the drums in that room just now?” When I nodded yes, he said, “Do ya wanna play on my record?” I suggested we talk about it when I was done rehearsing, so I met with him and his producer, Barry Mraz, in their rehearsal studio down the hall as they went through material they were considering for Benny’s upcoming LP. They played me a piano/vocal version of “Into the Night” — it had “hit record” written all over it. The convinced me to say yes to the project. It felt like a tight knit band as we built those songs from scratch at Quadradial Studios in Miami. “Into the Night” became a Top 10 single in 1980 then it was re-released again in 1990 and it went Top 10 again! I still hear it all the time on the radio, in supermarkets, in elevators, etc.


Special thanks to Doc McGhee who managed Barry Mraz, and Eric Gardner who managed Benny at the time. We’re all friends to this day.