Dream Theater’s James Labrie Says ‘It’s Great’ To Talk To Mike Portnoy Again: We’ve ‘Dragged Negativity Too Long’


Ex-DREAM THEATER drummer Mike Portnoy attended the band’s concert on March 4 at the Beacon Theater in New York City. It was the first time portnoy has seen his former bandmates perform live since leaving the iconic progressive metal band over 11 years ago.

According to DREAM THEATER fans who attended the show, singer James LaBrie given portnoy a shout from the stage and Mike agitated. Several fans also took pictures of portnoy on site, with Mike and his wife reportedly watched the performance near the soundboard at the Beacon Theatre.

The next day, portnoy shared some behind-the-scenes photos from the concert and included the following message: “After 36 years, I finally got to see my 1st DREAM THEATER show last night! It was a wonderful evening and it was such a pleasure to spend time with my old friends again.”

Labrie discussed his renewed friendship with portnoy in a new interview with Rodrigo Altaf of Sound Perspectives. Talking about how Mikethe backstage reunion with his former bandmates took place, james said (as transcribed by BLABBERMOUTH.NET): “What happened was my manager… It’s like, two hours before the show… So you know the story with Mike and me. The thing is that there was sad during all this time when Mike and I didn’t agree is that when DREAM THEATER started, “Pictures and Words” [1992] and ‘Awake’ [1994], Mike and I was best friends – a long time ago – and then we started breaking up, for a number of reasons. It doesn’t matter – the details don’t matter – it’s just that we started having a problem with each other. And so about two hours before the New York show, my manager texted me and he was like, ‘Look, Mikewill be there tonight. He wants to come back to see you. He wants to make amends. I don’t wanna do this…’ And I said, ‘Franc‘ – to my manager, I said – ‘you put this in my lap two hours before I play in front of how many thousands of people in New York. I hope you are joking?’ So I thought about it. You know what? I went for a walk, believe it or not. I went incognito and went for a walk in New York. And I walked down the streets and I started thinking about it, and I was like, ‘You know what? Enough is enough. There is enough hate in this world; there is enough negativity in this world. Yes Mike wants to come to me and make amends, so I should be receptive. And I made contact… And John Petrucci [DREAM THEATER guitarist] was there too. So he said, ‘Mike wants to know if he can come back and say hello to you,” like I just said. And I said, ‘You know what? Yeah. Let him know. For sure. Tell him to come see me after the show. . And that’s what we did. We chatted. We had a good, long talk. We made up, we kissed and took a picture together.

“When I was on stage before all of this, I just said, ‘Hey, I just want you to know, Mike Portnoyis here. Hey, welcome, bro, to the show. And that was it.

“The thing is, you come to a point in life where you have to… You can’t carry that. Don’t carry hate, don’t carry negativity.” Labrie continued. “We wore it way too long, as far as I’m concerned, and it didn’t help; it just served the fucking division. It was very divisive and very damaging.

“Hey listen, just the other day Mike texts me, and he’s like, “Hey, jamesI just want to congratulate you on [DREAM THEATER‘s first-ever] grammys. You deserve it, you and the group. Awesome. Glory. Well done, all that. And I text Mike back, and I said, ‘Frick, man. Mike, that is very admirable of you. I said, “In my book, it’s really cool that you say those things.” And he said, “Awesome, man. To like.’

“So it’s great to be back,” james added. “We talk and argue and stuff. And that’s the kind of world I want to live in, as opposed to negativity and hate and shit… It’s not worth it. It is not worth the trouble. “

portnoywho co-founded DREAM THEATER 37 years ago, abruptly left the band in September 2010 while touring with AVENGED SEVENFOLD. It has since been replaced by Mangini (ANNIHILATOR, EXTREME, STEVE VAY).

portnoy was the guest of Petruccithe second solo album of, “Terminal Velocity”which was published in August 2020 via Sound Mind Music/The orchard. The effort marked the first time Petrucci and portnoy recorded together for over a decade, as well as their first time playing together since portnoy deceased DREAM THEATER. John later shot down speculation among DREAM THEATER fans it’s only a matter of time before portnoy returns to the group, telling Spain metal hammer“I think it’s really important for the good of all — for the fans to understand that. I think it’s important, out of respect for both drummers — for Mike Mangini and Mike Portnoy — that there is no misunderstanding: “Oh, that means something else. It is [Portnoy] playing on my solo album, which is a really happy moment for me… I don’t want people to get the wrong idea. I don’t want to create drama or weirdness, because everything is positive. I made a solo album – finally, after 15 years – and asked my friend to play drums on it, who I hadn’t played with in 10 years. So that’s the vibe.”

In a 2017 interview with rockhok, portnoy insisted he “didn’t feel like getting together” with DREAM THEATER but said he would return to his old band “for the fans”. He explained: “The ball is in their court, to be honest. I don’t fancy finding them; it’s not necessarily something I’m looking to do or want to do. I’m very happy with the eighty-seven bands I have right now, so that’s something I need. But I would do it for the fans, because I’m a very sentimental person and I have a lot of good and good memories of those guys and the times. I’m a sentimental guy, so I would never shut the door on that. So really, the ball is in their court, honestly. [But] if you ask me the odds [of a reunion happening]I would say, don’t bet on it, because I know their personalities as well and I don’t think they’re the type to look back.”

Few years ago, portnoy Told Strong that he left DREAM THEATER because he wanted to broaden his musical horizons. “[I didn’t] I wanna go to my grave and just be the drummer DREAM THEATER“, he said. “I knew there was so much more than I had to offer.”

Since the departure in 2010 of portnoy, Petrucciwith the keyboardist Jordan Rüdesstook on much of the songwriting load during DREAM THEATERincluding the controversial 2016 concept double album, “The Amazing”2019 “The Distance in Time” and the band’s latest LP, 2021 “A view from the top of the world”.

Labrie previously mentioned his relationship with portnoy in a November 2021 interview with Radio Forest. He said at the time, “I haven’t spoken to Mike, to be completely honest, since he left the band. So I think that pretty much says it all. »

Labrie had previously apparently closed the door to the possibility of a DREAM THEATER reunion with portnoytelling chile Radio Future in an August 2013 interview: “This possibility, I never see it coming; it’s not going to happen. Because, above all, Mike Mangini is a full member of the band now, he’s a phenomenal drummer and he does everything you could want as a drummer in a band. It helps us achieve exactly what we want to do right now musically. And he’ll be our drummer until the day we finish doing this, when we wrap up. Mike Portnoy was a big part of our past, but I think that’s where it’s going to stay. He was a drummer from the past. And in so far as now and in the future it will be Mike Mangini, and we are all very attached to that. He’s an amazing drummer, he’s an incredible asset to the band, and he makes our wildest dreams come true in terms of what we do musically and what we do with every album. So that’s how it is.”

After 36 years, I finally got to see my 1st Dream Theater show last night! ? It was a wonderful evening and it was such a pleasure to hang out with my old friends again ☮️?

Posted by Mike Portnoy on Saturday March 5th 2022

OMG—MIKE PORTNOY at the Dream Theater show now!!! Mike Portnoy is at the DT show in New York ¾/2022 with his wife Marlene and James greeted him from the stage!

Posted by Amanda Palamara on Friday March 4th, 2022

Mike Portnoy AND Mike Mangini both reign. The two great eras of DT

Posted by Andrew Ryan Prater on Friday, March 4, 2022

Mike Portnoy is from a Dream Theater!!!!

Posted by ATR DT on Friday, March 4, 2022

With one of the greatest drummers of all time MIKE PORTNOY

Posted by Michael Halasan Clint Nababan on Friday March 4th 2022

Mike Portnoy watches the Dream Theater concert at the Beacon.

Posted by Dodjie Garcia on Friday March 4th, 2022

See this post on Instagram

A post shared by Mike Mangini (@mikemanginiofficial)


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