Shannon Leto is an American drummer and an occasional actor.
Leto was born in Bossier City, Louisiana on March 9, 1970. Self-taught on the drums since he was eight years old, he plays for the band 30 Seconds to Mars, and is the older brother of the band's singer, actor Jared Leto.
Some of his 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, Shannon Leto practices six to seven hours a day. In an interview with Modern Drummer 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.1
Bob Ezrin, who helped produce 30 Seconds to Mars' 2002 self-titled album, called Leto "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". (Modern Drummer Vol. 30, no 2)
Shannon Leto 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 by joined by friend Tomo Milicevic on guitar.
Leto is also a guitarist and pianist. His interest in always learning more about the art of music, he has said, has made him want to continuously take risks and challenge himself, which is reflected in 30 Seconds to Mars’ artistic vision.
Shannon Leto also enjoys writing and photography. He expresses interest in abstract art, progressive rock, and self-interpretation.