New Jersey native Dena Tauriello began drumming at a very early age. She fell in love with the music of the Carpenters and the notion of becoming a drummer after seeing a concert and meeting Karen Carpenter backstage. Dena spent some time banging on pots and pans before parental harassment took hold - she began private lessons at age eight. Dena studied privately until she was 16. She also joined several 'garage' bands, the first of which when she was 13. She played her first paying gig within the year and was hooked. Dena also played in school bands, orchestras and area select bands from grammar school into high school. It was during this time that she cultivated her taste for rock & roll, collecting hundreds of records and playing along to the classics.
Music was put on hold while Dena attended Penn State University, earning a B.S. in Human Development & Family Studies. Upon returning home to New Jersey, she worked her way back into music, performing with local theater productions, cover bands and original projects. While earning her post-graduate degree from Seton Hall University (M.A. Education/Counseling), she worked consistently throughout New Jersey and Manhattan, doing both live shows and studio work.
This experience proved invaluable in 1998 when she received a call to audition for New York City-based female rockers Antigone Rising. The band consistently toured for several years, racking up 280 show per year. They were signed by Lava/Atlantic and released "From the Ground Up" in conjunction with Starbucks' Hear Music Debut series. It has sold well over 250,000 copies.
Other opportunities included a VH1 special, appearances on the Today Show, Tonight Show, Emeril Live and A&E's Breakfast With the Arts, as well as opening slots for the Rolling Stones, Aerosmith, Allman Brothers, Rob Thomas and Joan Jett. Some of Dena's other recent projects include sessions with Lisa Loeb and Robert Randolph, live appearances with local acts, African hand drumming school workshops (NJ After 3) and wellness workshops (Greystone Psychiatric Hospital, Carol G. Simon Cancer Center). In addition to touring with Antigone Rising, she is working with Rock & Roll Hall of Fame legend Bernie Worrell (Parliament/Funkadelic,Talking Heads) as an occasional member of the Bernie Worrell Orchestra and also works on a for-hire basis.
Dena is a certified drum therapist with the DAD program (Drums and Disabilities), a freelance writer for Modern Drummer magazine, staff member at the Fine Arts Connection (Pine Brook, NJ), clinician, private teacher, and adjunct Professor of Music at Passaic County Community College.