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Biography

Ronnie Vannucci, Jr. is the drummer for the American indie rock band The Killers.

Ronnie Vannucci was born in Las Vegas, Nevada on February 15, 1976. As a kid, Vannucci claims to have banged on every object in his parents' house like a drum. At age 6, he became the youngest musician to perform in a Las Vegas band; he played drums for "Play That Funky Music White Boy" at a lounge in Caesars Palace. In fourth grade, Ronnie won his school's talent show for drumming. In junior high, Vannucci listened to punk rock and Britpop and wore white combat boots. He learned to play guitar from his dad after quitting the junior high school jazz ensemble over "creative differences". Ronnie attended both Clark and Western High Schools and formed his first band, Purple Dirt. During this time he'd listen to The Cure and Depeche Mode. He attended University of Nevada, Las Vegas.

Vannucci started teaching private lessons while drumming in a variety of bands that played everything and everywhere, from a desert show to a wedding.

Previous bands Vannucci was the drummer for include Atta Boy Skip (ska-punk) and Free Food (cover-band). Atta Boy Skip had a big underground following amongst Las Vegas high school students in the 1990s. Free Food was an all-cover oldies/classic rock band that played at local Las Vegas prisons and homeless shelters. In the late '90s he joined the melodic indierock group Expert On October with The Killers' current touring backup guitarist/keyboardist/vocalist Ted Sablay.

He joined The Killers in 2002 by Brandon Flowers and Dave Keuning, who co-founded the band. Later, it was Ronnie's idea to sneak The Killers into the Alta Ham Fine Arts Building on the University of Nevada, Las Vegas campus for practice. After an all-night practice, Ronnie headed off to his day job as a photographer at the Little Chapel of the Flowers. He co-wrote the song "Believe Me Natalie" with Brandon Flowers on the album Hot Fuss.

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