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Shannon Leto

Shannon Leto at 2008's Guitar Center Drum-Off Finals.
Background information
Birth name Shannon Christopher Leto
Born March 9, 1970 (1970-03-09) (age 40)
Bossier City, Louisiana
Genres Alternative rock[1]
Occupations Musician, Photographer, Actor
Instruments Drums, Guitar
Associated acts 30 Seconds to Mars, The Wondergirls

Shannon Christopher Leto (born March 9, 1970) is an American drummer and an occasional actor. He is the brother of musician and actor Jared Leto, both are part of the rock band 30 Seconds to Mars.



Shannon Leto was born in Bossier City, Louisiana. He has been playing drums since 1977, and currently plays in the band 30 Seconds to Mars, whose singer is his younger brother Jared Leto. Some of Shannon's favorite drummers include John Bonham, Stewart Copeland, Keith Moon, Nick Mason, and Lars Ulrich, all of whom he notes as influencing his own playing style.

With the band, he practices six to seven hours a day. In an interview with Modern Drummer magazine in February 2006, he stated: "Rehearsing that much has helped to build up my stamina and make my playing more precise". He has also said that he doesn't like playing to tape or to a loop, and prefers the more organic way of doing things, experimenting with electronics the band creates on their own.

Bob Ezrin, who helped produce 30 Seconds to Mars's debut self-titled album, referred to Leto as "one of the most inventive drummers I've worked with. He isn't satisfied with simply adding a beat; his drum parts are an integral part of the orchestration of the record. He's also a great live drummer who is lots of fun to watch, with a presence and energy level that are mesmerizing" [2].

Leto describes his band's music as having the grandiosity of Pink Floyd and the energy of The Sex Pistols. His other musical influences include The Cure, the first two albums from Metallica, Led Zeppelin, The Who, early The Police, and Steely Dan. He appeared on a few episodes of My So-Called Life with his brother Jared before forming 30 Seconds to Mars in 1998 with the addition of bass player Matt Wachter and later joined by friend Tomo Miličević on guitar.

He also expresses interest in writing, Abstract art, progressive rock, self-interpretation, and practices photography.

For his drums he uses Sabian Cymbals, Vic-Firth 5an drum sticks, Remo Pinstripe heads, Sonor Drums, And DW Hardware.

He is also occasionally an actor; initially he appeared in some episodes of the series My So-Called Life with his brother Jared, and he played a small role in Prefontaine and Highway, in which his brother starred.


Drum kit: Sonor Designer - Red

  • 7.5" x 14" Snare drum
  • 8" Rototom
  • 8" x 8" Tom
  • 9" x 10" Tom
  • 12" x 14" Tom
  • 16" x 18" Floor Tom
  • 18" x 20" Bass drum
Shannon Leto at 2008's Taste of Chaos tour.


  • All Remo Pinnstripes on Toms, Coated Ambassadors on Snare Batter, and Clear Powerstroke 3's on Bass Drum

Cymbal (Sabian):

  • 14" AA Hit-Hat
  • 7" AA Splash
  • 19" AAXtreme Crash
  • 19" AA Medium Crash
  • 20" AA Crash
  • 21" AA Ride

Percussion mallet: Vic Firth 5AN (length 16", diameter 0.565")

Hardware: Tama Iron Cobra II

Pedals: Drum Workshop 9000



30 Seconds to Mars

The Wondergirls

  • 1999 - Drop That Baby
  • 1999 - Let's Go All The Way


Year Title Other notes
1994 My So-Called Life In the three episodes: Self-Esteem, Strangers in the House, Why Jordan Can't Read
1997 Prefontaine His brother Jared Leto is the protagonist of the film
Way Out West - Blue Videoclip
2001 Sol Goode Uncredited with his brother Jared, also Uncredited
2002 Highway His brother Jared Leto is the protagonist of the film


  1. ^
  2. ^ Modern Drummer Vol. 30, no 2

External links


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