MIKE PORTNOY To Play On 'Pan Rocks' RUSH Tribute Project

October 3, 2018

Steel drum orchestra Pan Rocks will enter the studio this fall to record its tribute to RUSH. Mike Portnoy (SONS OF APOLLO, THE WINERY DOGS, DREAM THEATER) will handle drumming duties. The bassist and guitarist will be announced in the coming weeks.

"I am excited to take part in this unique musical experience, which is unlike anything I have done yet in my career," says Mike Portnoy. "And it is always an honor to pay tribute to one of my biggest inspirations, my hero and friend, Mr. Neil Peart."

Pan Rocks is a 50-to-100-plus-piece steel drum orchestra founded by rock steelpannist Tracy Thornton. The RUSH recording is a follow up to the 2017 Pan Rocks "Project LA", which featured the music of LED ZEPPELIN, KISS and JANE'S ADDICTION, all performed by the steel drum orchestra and a band consisting of Billy Sheehan (MR. BIG, SONS OF APOLLO),Stephen Perkins (JANE'S ADDICTION, PORNO FOR PYROS),Tracii Guns (L.A. GUNS),and Bruce Kulick (KISS, GRAND FUNK RAILROAD).

Thornton has once again called on Matt Starr (MR. BIG, ACE FREHLEY) to produce the new project. "I'm grateful to have the opportunity to help Tracy realize his vision for this amazing project," says Starr. "Hearing 50 steel pan drummers play RUSH is just mindblowing. I can't wait for everyone else experience it."

The Pan Rocks orchestra is made up of steel pannists from around the world.

'I'm excited to have the opportunity to celebrate the music of RUSH, the band that inspired me to become a musician in the first place," said Tracy Thornton. "Our crowdfunding campaign will give the fans an opportunity to get involved. Plus, we have some very cool, interactive, and exclusive rewards planned."

Regarding the future of the project, Thornton said: "My goal is to keep pushing the boundaries and highlighting the capabilities of steelpan instrument in the rock and roll genre, and reach more music enthusiasts. Ultimately, we are working towards a touring show with both Western and traditional Trinidadian Carnival elements."

The recording will once again take place at Ocean Studios in Burbank, California. The project will be mixed by Smiley Sean and mastered by Grammy Award-winning mastering engineer Dave Collins (METALLICA, THE POLICE).

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