Mike Portnoy
* April 20, 1967
United States
Michael Stephen Portnoy is the acclaimed drummer of Dream Theater as well as various side-projects such as Liquid Tension Experiment, TransAtlantic and OSI (Office Of Strategic Influence).

Although Mike Portnoy taught himself how to play the drums, he did take music theory classes in high school. During that time he began playing in local bands Intruder, Rising Power and Inner Sanctum, the latter of which released an album. He left the band after being awarded a scholarship to attend Berklee College of Music in Boston.

Mike Portnoy names his biggest influences as Rush drummer Neil Peart, and composer/guitarist Frank Zappa. Other favorites include drummers Terry Bozzio, Vinnie Colaiuta, Simon Phillips, John Bonham, Keith Moon, Ringo Starr and Bill Bruford and bands such as The Beatles, Queen, Yes, Rush, Pink Floyd, Metallica, Jellyfish, Iron Maiden, Phish, Radiohead, U2 and Jane's Addiction. In the late 1980s and early 1990s he was also a fan of rap music, but his interest has since waned.

He has also been the catalyst for founding several other progressive rock groups and projects: TransAtlantic, Liquid Tension Experiment, and O.S.I., touring as well with Mexican drummer "Chucho" Dávila giving free clinic sessions to local Music Stores in Texas this 2005.

Mike Portnoy has released five instructural DVDs, Progressive Drum Concepts, Liquid Drum Theater, Ten Degrees of Turbulent Drumming, Drums of Thought, and Drumavarium.

Mike Portnoy's long list of Awards include 19 Modern Drummer Magazine Reader's Poll Awards, including "Best recorded performance" (5 times) and "Best Progressive Rock Drummer" (10 times in a row), making him the youngest drummer (at 37 years of age) to be inducted into their Rock Drummer Hall of Fame.

How did he manage to become so succesfull? According to Mike Portnoy himself:
"As anybody who knows me personally would tell you, I am the walking definition of Obsessive Compulsive Disorder. I always have been and probably always will be... This curse for me means that when I "get into" something, I can't just casually enjoy it. I become obsessed with every aspect of it..."
Let's start from the very beginning. Mike Portnoy was born on April 20, 1967 and raised in Long Beach, New York, where his interest in music started at an early age.
"My father was a rock n' roll disc jockey, so I was always surrounded by music constantly. I had this huge record collection when I was real young and loved the Beatles and then later on Kiss. It was inevitable that I'd become a musician."
Although Mike taught himself how to play the drums, he did take music theory classes in high school. During that time he began playing in local bands Intruder, Rising Power and Inner Sanctum, the latter of which released their own album. Mike left the band after being awarded a scholarship to attend Berklee Music College in Boston.

An avid collector of many things, Mike Portnoy has a vast array of Dream Theater memorabilia including bootlegs, posters, clippings and everything else under the sun with the band's name on it. He is also responsible for capturing everything the band does on video tape and DAT.

Mike Portnoy and his wife Marlene live in Rockland, NY with their daughter Melody Ruthandrea, son Max John, dog Bongo and cat Cypress.

Mike Portnoy joined Megadeth on stage for a rendition of teh song "Peace Sells" during the two bands' joint appearance at the Toronto stop of the Gigantour festival tour on Saturday, September 3, 2005. Megadeth skinsman Shawn Drover reportedly played guitar alongside brother Glen while Portnoy sat behind Shawn's kit.
comments (sign in and write yours)
Mike Portnoy's brands
Mike Portnoy's references (29)
releases (54)