"Jimmy, I cannot believe the situation you're in … this is terrible. It's a crime to be held for 12 years you got in Russia … I'm sorry that you got caught in that wheel of injustice. It's just horrible … I just want to say hang on my drum brother …God bless you. I hope your release comes soon.” ~ Liberty Devitto, Drummer, Billy Joel (April 2023)
Joe Bergamini is a very dear and long time friend of Jimmy. He is known throughout the music industry as a best selling author of drumming books, like Taking Center Stage with Neil Peart, and is now working with Steve Gadd on his biography. Joe is the winner of 4 Modern Drummer Awards and is a music industry consultant. He has an extensive resume as a Broadway drummer, performed with several bands, and still teaches drum lessons to prominent drummers.
"Jimmy, I have thought about you so many times during this ordeal you are going through. Your parents have filled me in on a lot, with your health and so forth. I just wanted you to know I am thinking of you and remembering all the great times we had playing together. I'm wishing you strength to hang in there until you can get out and come back home. I heard your message about Neil and Moving Pictures through your dad. It really is amazing how wise he was at such a young age. I also remember how much you loved Phil Collins, and I was recently checking out his drumming again, and that made me think of you as well. I hope they do the right thing over there soon and release you to the U.S. When that time comes, I look forward to seeing you and talking music in person."