May 28, 2007

Roadrunner Records U.K. has a question-and-answer sessions with DREAM THEATER vocalist James LaBrie and drummer Mike Portnoy. They follow here in their entirety.

James LaBrie

Q: Your age:

James: 24, of course, ah ah ah!!! No, 43.

Q: Your all-time favourite record and why?

James: Oh, jeez, how can I choose only one album? Here are some of my favourite ones:

DEEP PURPLE "Machine Head"
YES "Fragile"
RUSH "2112"
RUSH "Hemispheres"
RUSH "A Farewell To Kings"
METALLICA "Master Of Puppets"
JUDAS PRIEST "British Steel"
IRON MAIDEN "Piece Of Mind"
QUEEN "A Night At The Opera"

Q: Your favourite song at the moment:

James: Right now I'm deep into SYSTEM OF A DOWN's music, so I'd say… well… maybe "Science".

Q: What's on your iPod right now?

James: The latest thing I put it in there was the last PORCUPINE TREE album.

Q: What was your greatest experience on tour?

James: Probably the most recent great experience on tour was when we went down to Santiago, Chile and we played there for the first time in front of 25000 people. That was amazing… and unexpected. We knew it was gonna be good, but we didn't expect that kind of reception, so it was very cool.

Q: What was your most horrible experience on tour?

James: Trying to sing with an injured voice. And it lasted for seven years. So that's my most horrible experience on tour: no doubt about it and we had several experience in many years of touring!

Q: What was you most embarrassing moment on the stage?

James: Ah, ah! There are few of those! One was during the "Images And Words" tour and I got my hair cut by John Myung's bass; they were stuck into his tuning pegs. The other one was in Romania, I guess, and I fell off the stage and I was laying on my back yelling "Aaargh… aaargh!" in front of thousands of people. Those two were the top embarrassing moments.

Q: Do you have any sort of ritual before you go on stage?

James: Oh yeah! I always do some vocals exercise before I warm up, I do a little bit of stretching. I jog everyday, almost three miles a day. When I'm on stage I drink lot of hot water. So these are the kind of rituals that allow me to perform at the best I can possibly be, at any given time.

Q: With which band would you love to tour and why?

James: RUSH! I don't' even have to think about it. RUSH! If we had a tour with RUSH, I'd flip out. A tour with DREAM THEATER and RUSH would be the ultimate tour!

Q: Which song would you like to cover and re-invent with your style?

James: Uhm, I'd like to cover an entire QUEEN album, if possible. Freddy Mercury is my all-time favourite singer and I'd like to re-invent his vocals line with my voice, to recapture the magic of his voice with mine. He was the best vocalist and frontman… ever!

Q: Who is the true metal god?

James: I would say Dimebag Darrell, he was the riffmaster, so intense… that guy was unnatural! If I had to choose a vocalist, I'd say Ronnie James Dio and Rob Halford.

Q: If I couldn't be a musician, I would work as...

James: I think I would be a paramedic, something like that. [/End]

Mike Portnoy:

Q: Your age:

Mike: 40

Q: Your all-time favorite record and why?

Mike: Uhm, for me it's easier to give my top 10 than my top one. I will break down my top 10 in 5 classics and five modern. Here it is:

THE BEATLES "Sgt. Pepper"
DAVID BOWIE "Ziggy Stardust"
ELTON JOHN "Goodbye Yellow Brick Road"
THE WHO "Tommy"
BEASTIE BOYS "Paul's Boutique"
MR. BUNGLE "Mr. Bungle"
MUSE "Absolution"
JELLYFISH "Split Milk"

Q: Your favourite song at the moment?

Mike: "Capillarian Crest" by MASTODON. It's a fuckin' amazing song!

Q: What's on your iPod right now?

Mike: If you go to my personal MySpace page you can find an updated column of what's on my iPod. Anyway, right now I'm listening to some new releases, especially the new MACHINE HEAD album and the new PORCUPINE TREE album.

Q: What was your greatest experience on tour?

Mike: There are a lot of great experiences on tour, but one of the highlights was when we played with an orchestra for the "Score" DVD. It was an incredible moment.

Q: What was your most horrible experience on tour?

Mike: Dislocating my wrist on the stage: I had my wrist snapped completely backwards. It happened in Munich, Germany, 1997.

Q: What was you most embarrassing moment on stage?

Mike: It was Toronto, 1994: during my drum solo I had a back problem and I couldn't move anymore. We had to stop the show and we had to ask if there were a doctor in the audience. I had to get worked in the backstage for about 15 minutes and we had to hold the show until I could move.

Q: Do you have any sort of ritual before you go on stage?

Mike: The last thing I do before I go on stage is taking a piss!

Q: With which band would you love to tour and why?

Mike: There's only two left, METALLICA and RUSH. Whoever else we wanted to tour with, we have...

Q: Which song would you like to cover and re-invent with your style?

Mike: Once again, whatever I wanted us to cover we have, but there's one particular cover that would be cool to do in our style and it's "Rhapsody In Blue" by George Gershwin. I think we would do a pretty fuckin' cool arrangement of it.

Q: Who is the true metal god?

Mike: Dimebag Darrell.

Q: If I couldn't be a musician, I would work as...

Mike: Film Director.

Q: Best advice ever given to you?

Mike: Lift up the toilet seat before you pee! Ah, ah!

Q: With which person (alive or dead) would you love to spend some time and why?

Mike: My mom.

Q: Which places would you like to travel to?

Mike: I still haven't seen Hawaii, probably is the only place left where we didn't play...

Q: Favourite movie?

Mike: "Children Of Men", a really great movie.

Q: Favourite film directors:

Mike: I'd say three: David Lynch, Stanley Kubrick and Quentin Tarantino.

Q: If you had to choose an actor to play you in the movie about your life, who would you choose?

Mike: Tough question...Uhm, I don't' know...Woody Allen? Ah, ah, ah!

Q: Any last words?

Mike: This is for the fans: stop yelling "Metropolis" between every song! Ah ah!

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