Mike Portnoy

AMERICAN ROCK AND METAL DRUMMER

Personal Life

Michael Stephen Portnoy was born and raised on Long Island, New York on the 20th of April, 1967. One can say that he grew up in a fairly musical environment since his father Howard Portnoy worked as a DJ at a local radio station. In Portnoy’s own words: “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 really young and loved the Beatles, and then, later on, Kiss. It was inevitable that I’d become a musician.

As a young boy, Portnoy gained an appreciation for music early, mainly because he had access to his father’s LP collection. He grew up loving legendary rock bands such as Queen, Rush, The Who, Iron MaidenLed Zeppelin, and The Beatles, to name a few. While he claims to be a self-taught drummer, he did study music theory when he was in high school. It was also during that time that he began drumming for local bands, two of which (Inner Sanctum and Rising Power) released independent albums.

He would leave his last high school band (Inner Sanctum) after earning a scholarship to the prestigious Berklee College of Music in Boston, where he would meet guitarist John Petrucci and bassist John Myung. The three formed a band initially named Majesty, before changing their name to Dream Theater.

Career

Portnoy is most well-known for his stint as drummer for Dream Theater, which is considered among the best progressive metal bands of all time. His technical skill as a drummer is the stuff of legend, which allowed him to win a massive 30 awards from the Modern Drummer magazine as a member of the band. He also has another feat as the second youngest person to be inducted into the Modern Drummer Magazine Hall of Fame, next to the legendary Neil Peart. 

On the 8th of September 2010, Mike Portnoy decided to leave Dream Theater to pursue other projects. He would also leave Avenged Sevenfold after filling in for their former drummer, Jimmy Sullivan, who tragically died during the making of the band’s Nightmare album. Portnoy would actually try to reunite with Dream Theater, but was turned down because the band had already hired Mike Mangini as his replacement. 

Portnoy is also known for his wide variety of side projects and tribute bands. For instance, he founded the band Liquid Tension Experiment, which features fellow Dream Theater guys John Petrucci and Jordan Rudess. He also founded Transatlantic, called a progressive rock “supergroup” that features keyboardist/vocalist Neal Morse of Spock’s Beard, guitarist Roine Stolt of Flower Kings, and bassist Pete Trewavas of Marillion. Over the years, Portnoy would also create tribute bands to Led Zeppelin, The Beatles, The Who, and Rush, as a way for him to perform songs written by his drumming heroes. 

idea

Did You Know?

Portnoy has a massive collection of Dream Theater memorabilia, which basically includes everything with the band’s name on it. He’s also a massive fan of classic films such as A Clockwork Orange and Jacob’s Ladder, to name a few.

FREE REPORT REVEALS...

Top 10 Tricks

To Playing The​

Drums

Quick Guide...

Getting Started with
Music Lessons

Quick Guide...

Getting Started with Music Lessons

EVERY FRIDAY

Get the 4 Things We Have Been Loving, Using and Reviewing

Free Report Reveals...

10 Secrets To Successful Music Lessons

Join 4,729 Subscribers Who Receive Free Tips

Our community can help YOU learn any musical instrument in the best way possible - sign up now

EVERY FRIDAY

Get the 4 Things We Have Been Loving, Using and Reviewing

EVERY FRIDAY

Get the 4 Things We Have Been Loving, Using and Reviewing

Your Video Is Waiting!

How To Save Time & Money When Choosing A Musical Instrument

EVERY FRIDAY

Get the 4 Things We Have Been Loving, Using and Reviewing

Your Video Is Waiting!

How To Save Time & Money When Choosing A Musical Instrument

Join Ted's List Now To Get Your Tips & Tricks

Sign up now to find out how to save time & money when choosing a musical instrument

Join Ted's List Now To Get Your Tips & Tricks

Sign up now to find out how to save time & money when choosing a musical instrument

THE SPOTLIGHT IS WAITING

Join Ted's List Now To Get Your Tips & Tricks

Sign up to save time & money when choosing a musical instrument

EVERY FRIDAY

Get the 4 Things We Have Been Loving, Using and Reviewing

Your Video Is Waiting!

How To Save Time & Money When Choosing A Musical Instrument

Every Friday

Get the 4 Things We Have Been Loving, Using and Reviewing

ONE-2-ONE ADVICE PACKAGE

Need Professional Guidance On What To Buy?

Our 0ne-2-0ne Advice Package is a 15 minute phone-call with one of ted’s list’s professional musicians.

They can guide and advise you on what instrument to purchase and where from; often securing a discount along the way.

£50 £25

THE SPOTLIGHT IS WAITING

Your Tips & Tricks Are Waiting

Sign up to save time & money when choosing a musical instrument

EVERY FRIDAY

Get the 4 Things We Have Been Loving, Using and Reviewing

EVERY FRIDAY

Get the 4 Things We Have Been Loving, Using and Reviewing

EVERY FRIDAY

Get the 4 Things We Have Been Loving, Using and Reviewing

Join Ted's List Now To Get Your Tips & Tricks

Sign up now to find out how to save time & money when choosing studio gear

THE SPOTLIGHT IS WAITING

Join Ted's List Now To Get Your Tips & Tricks

Sign up to save time & money when choosing a musical instrument

Join Ted's List Now To Get Your Tips & Tricks

Sign up now to find out how to save time & money when researching singing techniques

Your Video Is Waiting!

How To Save Time & Money When Choosing A Singing App

EVERY FRIDAY

Get the 4 Things We Have Been Loving, Using and Reviewing

THE NEW ARTS ACADEMY...

Join Ted's List Now To Get Your Tips & Tricks

Sign up to save time & money when choosing a musical instrument

Join Ted's List Now To Get Your Tips & Tricks

Sign up now to find out how to save time & money when choosing a musical instrument

EVERY FRIDAY

Get the 4 Things We Have Been Loving, Using and Reviewing

Join Ted's List Now To Get Your Tips & Tricks

Sign up now to find out how to save time & money when choosing a musical instrument

Join Ted's List Now To Get Your Tips & Tricks

Sign up now to find out how to save time & money when choosing a musical instrument

Join Ted's List Now To Get Your Tips & Tricks

Sign up now to find out how to save time & money when choosing a musical instrument

Your Video Is Waiting!

How To Save Time & Money When Choosing A Musical Instrument

Your Video Is Waiting!

How To Save Time & Money When Choosing A Musical Instrument

Your Video Is Waiting!

How To Save Time & Money When Choosing A Musical Instrument

Your Video Is Waiting!

How To Save Time & Money When Choosing A Musical Instrument

Your Video Is Waiting!

How To Save Time & Money When Choosing A Musical Instrument