Mike Byrne (musician)

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Mike Byrne
Mike Byrne—a Caucasian male 21 years old drummer in a black and white photo
Mike Byrne drumming for The Smashing Pumpkins in 2011.
Background information
Birth name Michael William Byrne
Born (1990-02-06) February 6, 1990 (age 28)
Portland, Oregon, United States
Genres Alternative rock, math rock
Occupation(s) Musician
Instruments Drums, vocals, keyboards
Years active 2009–present
Labels Martha's Music, Caroline Distribution
Associated acts The Smashing Pumpkins, Spirits in the Sky, Bearcubbin'![1]

Michael William Byrne (born February 6, 1990) is a drummer who was a member of the band The Smashing Pumpkins. When Pumpkins frontman Billy Corgan called for rehearsals to replace Jimmy Chamberlin, Byrne auditioned and was chosen out of thousands of applicants. He played drums in Sky Saxon tribute band Spirits in the Sky for 6 shows in August 2009, along with Corgan, Kerry Brown, Kevin Dippold, Mark Tulin, Linda Strawberry, Ysanne Spevack, Mark Weitz, and Dave Navarro, and also performs drums on the Pumpkins project, Teargarden by Kaleidyscope. As a part of Teargarden, Mike contributed drumming duties on Oceania, the Pumpkins' eighth full-length album. On April 17, 2010, Byrne played his first show under the Smashing Pumpkins moniker in celebration of Record Store Day.[2]

On June 13, 2014, Billy Corgan reported that Mike Byrne had left the band.[3]

Early life[edit]

Byrne grew up in the Portland suburb of Beaverton, Oregon with his parents Eric and Chris Byrne and his sister, Elise Byrne.[4] He started playing the drums regularly at age 12[4] and later played in local bands The Mercury Tree, Bearcubbin'! and Moses, Smell the Roses. He also participated in marching band and marched on drumline while in high school.[5] During high school at Beaverton High School, where he graduated in 2008, he worked at McDonald's to save money for college.[4]

The Smashing Pumpkins[edit]

Byrne drumming with The Smashing Pumpkins in 2010

On August 17, 2009, he was officially named as the new drummer for The Smashing Pumpkins.[4][5] The Pumpkins were already one of his favorite bands, with Jimmy Chamberlin among his most influential drummers. His YouTube channel, which he created three years prior to joining that band, had been "MarquisinSpadez", a reference to the song "Marquis in Spades", from the Smashing Pumpkins' Zero EP.[6] In 2011, Mike won best "Up and Coming" drummer in Modern Drummer's Reader's Poll.[7]

In June 2014, Billy Corgan reported that Byrne had left the band.[8]

After The Smashing Pumpkins[edit]

Upon leaving The Smashing Pumpkins, Mike Byrne continued his efforts with his local band Bearcubbin!, in the Pacific Northwest. They have released 2 full length albums. During their visit to SXSW in 2014, they won the award for 'Worst Band Name' out of the thousands of bands attending.[9]

Musical influences[edit]

Byrne cites some of his influences as The Cure, Maserati, Maps and Atlases, and Pelican and enjoys post-rock and math rock.[10]


With The Smashing Pumpkins
With Bearcubbin'!
  • Live From the Bear Trap (2009)
  • Jewels & The Wallwalkers/ Bearcubbin'! (2010, split album)
  • Get Your Heavies Out (2011)
  • Girls with Fun Haircuts (2014)[11]
With Moses, Smell the Roses
  • Frenemies EP (2007)
  • Please Do Over (2009)


  1. ^ "Get Your Heavies Out | Bearcubbin'!". Bearcubbin.bandcamp.com. August 6, 2011. Retrieved 2012-06-15. 
  2. ^ "Watch: Smashing Pumpkins v3.5 on Record Store Day". 
  3. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on July 15, 2014. Retrieved 2014-06-13. 
  4. ^ a b c d White, Ryan (September 17, 2009). "Beaverton 19-year-old goes from McDonald's employee to Smashing Pumpkins drummer". The Oregonian. Retrieved 2009-09-18. 
  5. ^ a b Kreps, Daniel (August 18, 2009). "Rock & Roll Daily: Smashing Pumpkins' Drummer Announced, Corgan Hints At Album". Rolling Stone. Archived from the original on August 21, 2009. 
  6. ^ Mike Byrne's YouTube account.
  7. ^ "2011 Modern Drummer Readers Poll". Vater Percussion. Archived from the original on July 27, 2011. Retrieved June 8, 2011. 
  8. ^ Camp, Joe (June 15, 2014). "Smashing Pumpkins Drummer Mike Byrne Leaves Band". Pitchfork. Retrieved June 16, 2014. 
  9. ^ [1]
  10. ^ "Musicfest NW: Q&A with Beaverton local Mike Byrne, Smashing Pumpkins drummer". 
  11. ^ https://bearcubbin.bandcamp.com/album/girls-with-fun-haircuts

External links[edit]