Born Joseph Peter DeRenzo, November 1st 1958 in Orange County, CA.
Fashions his own pair of drumsticks after seeing The Beatles on TV. While his dad's record collection included Frank Sinatra, Duke Ellington and Ray Charles, Joe was drawn to the sounds of the late 60's via album covers. Most notably Jimi Hendrix and Cream. The music from such albums as Are You Experienced? and Disraeli Gears was in stark contrast to the vinyl turning on the home stereo. This juxtaposition of jazz and rock would would be the beginning of his musical influences. After hearing the Chick Corea album ''Light as a Feather'' and the Weather Report masterpiece ''Mysterious Traveller'', Joe began listening to the music of Keith Jarrett, Pat Metheny, John McLaughlin and Herbie Hancock.
These influences have continued through the years, culminating in the release of Joe's two CDs he produced with the help of longtime friend and jazz pianist Tom Zink. Also on board for these projects are founding members of The Yellowjackets, pianist Russell Ferrante and bass player Jimmy Haslip along with longtime member and reedman Bob Mintzer. Jazz guitarist Brian Hughes, bassist Kevin Axt, reedman Glen Berger, vocalist Anne Walsh, trumpeter Steve Crum, guitarist Gannin Arnold, percussionist Richie Gajate-Garcia and vocalist Adonis Tsilimparis round out the rest of the albums personel.