Interview with Mike Portnoy

wpid-portnoyoctober122012-2012-10-13-16-51.jpegPortnoy seems happier than he’s been in years. After watching him drum some of the greatest drumming I’ve ever heard or seen last night in Chicago (“Chicago or St. Paul or wherever we are. . .”), I was very excited to see this interview with him today.

Q.  And finally, how did you manage to get a progressive band like Dream Theater up and running in the late Eighties and early Nineties, at the height of prog-phobia?

A.  When we recorded Images and Words in 1991, it was at the height of the grunge explosion. It was Nirvana-ville at the time. You would think that us getting signed to a label and having success with that album was completely impossible, but somehow it clicked. The only thing I can think of is maybe it was a reaction to the fact that nobody else was doing it. We were so drastically out of fashion, but  there was an audience that was looking for something like that. For the first 10-15 years of Dream Theater’s career, prog was a dirty word. We always embraced it, we never had a problem with it, but all the critics would blast us for it and it wasn’t until the turn of the millennium that it started to turn around, and it was our perseverance that helped that happen.

Mike, I’ve been listening to you since “Pull Me Under.” Now that I’ve seen you live, I only think the absolute best of your ability and your personality.


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