Published by Cel Manero from Global One Media, Inc.
Prog metal legend and Dream Theater drummer Mike Portnoy almost landed a very unexpected gig
Mike Portnoy, the drummer for Dream Theater and a prog metal icon, shared in a recent interview with Drumeo that he had an unexpected opportunity to temporarily join Canadian arena rock band Nickelback. Portnoy revealed that he received a call from Nickelback in the spring of 2022, and they asked him to play a show with them as their drummer, temporarily replacing Daniel Adair who was undergoing surgery. Portnoy expressed his willingness to take on the gig, and although the festival where the performance was planned got canceled, he was close to playing with Nickelback.
Mike Portnoy elaborated on the Nickelback opportunity, mentioning that Chad Kroeger, the frontman for Nickelback, sent him the setlist for the potential gig. Portnoy humorously recounted his lack of familiarity with Nickelback’s music, saying, “My daughter and my wife were like ‘You’re gonna know every one of these songs,’ and I was like ‘I’ve never heard any of these songs!’ I don’t listen to the radio so I don’t know any Nickelback songs.” Despite the unfamiliarity, Portnoy was open to taking on the challenge and playing with the band.
In October, it was officially announced that Mike Portnoy would be reuniting with Dream Theater, the band he originally left in 2010. Portnoy expressed his excitement about returning to the group and the prospect of creating new music together. He stated, “The idea of creating new music together is so exciting, and I absolutely cannot wait to hit the road and get to play live for a whole new generation of fans that weren’t ever able to see this lineup before.”
Portnoy explained that the reconnection with his former Dream Theater bandmates began during the pandemic. He reconnected with John Petrucci, and their collaboration extended to Petrucci’s solo album and a new album with Liquid Tension Experiment. This ultimately led to Portnoy being asked to go on tour with Petrucci.
As for the possibility of new Dream Theater music, it remains unconfirmed. However, Portnoy’s return to the band marks the exit of Mike Mangini, with all parties seemingly remaining on good terms.