Jump to content

Mike Mangini

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Mike Mangini
Mangini in 2011
Mangini in 2011
Background information
Birth nameMichael Anthony Mangini
Born (1963-04-18) April 18, 1963 (age 61)
Newton, Massachusetts, U.S.
Years active1987–present
Formerly of

Michael Anthony Mangini (born April 18, 1963) is an American musician, primarily known as the former drummer of progressive metal band Dream Theater, with whom he played between 2010 and 2023. He has also played for bands and artists such as Annihilator, Extreme, James LaBrie, and Steve Vai. Before joining Dream Theater, Mangini was a faculty member at Berklee College of Music.[1] Between 2002 and 2005, he set five World's Fastest Drummer records. Mangini appeared on the Discovery Channel show Time Warp, displaying his drum skills for high-speed cameras.[2]

Early life and career


Mangini first started playing the drums when he was two and a half years old, being inspired by Ringo Starr of The Beatles.[3] He would mimic Buddy Rich performances. Other influences include Bobby Colomby, Danny Seraphine, John Bonham, Neil Peart and Terry Bozzio.[4]

After graduating from Waltham Senior High School in 1981,[5] Mangini put aside his music studies to pursue a computer science major at Bentley University. After graduating he started programming software for the Patriot Missile program.[6]

In 1987, Mangini scored one of his first high-profile gigs, playing drums for Boston's Rick Berlin Band. This would be his first collaboration with bassist Philip Bynoe.

In 1991, Mangini joined the thrash metal band Annihilator, playing drums on several tracks for the band's album Set the World on Fire. He went on to tour with the band in support of this album until 1994. That year, he joined Boston hard rock band Extreme, replacing original drummer Paul Geary. Mangini played on three songs on Extreme's 1995 album Waiting for the Punchline, and appeared with the band on the Late Show with David Letterman.[7]

After Extreme disbanded in 1996, Mike was informed through drummer Jonathan Mover that guitarist Steve Vai was auditioning drummers for his live band. Mike successfully auditioned for Vai's band and relocated to Los Angeles. From late 1996 to early 2000, Mangini was drummer of Vai's live ensemble, which also included bassist Philip Bynoe, guitarist Mike Keneally and beginning in 2000, guitarist Dave Weiner. Mangini appeared on Vai's studio albums Fire Garden and The Ultra Zone, and the live album Alive in an Ultra World.[8]

Mangini in 2004

During a hiatus on Vai's Ultra Zone tour in 2000, Mangini returned to Boston, where he served as an associate professor at Berklee College of Music. He also formed the short-lived band Tribe of Judah with former Extreme frontman Gary Cherone and bassist Pat Badger. Mangini appeared on his second and third Annihilator albums titled All for You and Metal, respectively.

In 2005, Mangini accepted a full-time teaching position at the Berklee College of Music in the Percussion Department. He resigned in 2010 after joining Dream Theater.

Mike played drums for the band Into The Great Divide on their self titled album released in 2018. The album is all instrumental that has many similarities to his former band Dream Theater.

In 2023, Mike released his first solo album, Invisible Signs, under the name Mangini.

Dream Theater


In late 2010, Mangini auditioned to succeed Mike Portnoy as the drummer for Dream Theater.[9] He had previously appeared on three solo albums by Dream Theater's lead singer, James LaBrie. Mangini was announced as Dream Theater's new drummer on April 29, 2011, several months after he actually joined.[10] He appeared on every Dream Theater release from 2011's A Dramatic Turn Of Events to 2021's A View from the Top of the World. Distance over Time, Mangini's fourth studio album with Dream Theater, featured his debut as a lyricist, on the song "Room 137".

On October 25, 2023, Dream Theater announced the departure of Mangini, along with the return of founding drummer Mike Portnoy.[11]

Other projects


Mangini served as the drummer for Dream Theater bandmate John Petrucci on the G3 tour, along with bassist Dave LaRue, in 2012 and 2018.

In 2015, Mangini joined progressive rock band U.K. for their Final World Tour.[12]



Mike plays and endorses Pearl drums, hardware and percussion.

He plays and endorses Zildjian cymbals, Vater drumsticks, Remo drumheads and Shure microphones.[13]



Selected album appearances

Nuno Bettencourt
  • Schizophonic (1997) – tracks "Swollen Princess" and "Fine By Me"
Mike Keneally
  • Sluggo! (1997) – track "Egg Zooming"
Steve Vai
MullMuzzler/James LaBrie
Sal DiFusco
  • Nevertheless (2000)
  • Great Exploits (2002)
  • Vanishing Mist (2008)
Tribe of Judah
Mike Visconti
  • Take 3 (1999)
  • In Other Words (2003)
  • Boston Accent (2007)
Tim Donahue
  • Madmen & Sinners (2004)
Rush Tribute
  • Subdivisions (2005)
Shredding the Envelope
  • The Call of the Flames (2009)
Daniel Pique
  • Boo!! (2009)
Dream Theater
Into the Great Divide
  • Into the Great Divide (2018)
Rob Silverman
  • Drumology II (2022) – track "Victory"
Cross Country Driver
  • The New Truth (2023) – tracks "Wild Child", "Rio Tularosa" and "Shine"[14]
  • Invisible Signs (2023)


  1. ^ Dixon, Guy (November 5, 2010). "A Drummer's Dream: Playing to the beat of the heart". The Globe and Mail. Retrieved April 5, 2011.
  2. ^ "Mike Mangini on Discovery's Time Warp". YouTube. Archived from the original on December 21, 2021. Retrieved July 8, 2011.
  3. ^ Baird, Dave. "Interviews: Mike Mangini (Dream Theater)". dprp.net. Archived from the original on February 27, 2018. Retrieved October 31, 2014.
  4. ^ Haid, Mike. "The Amazing Mechanics of Mike Mangini". mikemangini.com. Archived from the original on October 31, 2014. Retrieved October 31, 2014.
  5. ^ "Boston Globe article on Mike Mangini – VAI.COM". www.vai.com. Retrieved April 25, 2021.
  6. ^ Omar, Aref (November 8, 2008). "Man-genie drummer". New Sunday Times. Retrieved June 30, 2011.
  7. ^ "Extreme – "Hip Today" (Late Night TV Performance, 1995)". YouTube. Archived from the original on December 21, 2021. Retrieved March 19, 2017.
  8. ^ Mangini, Mike. "CDs and DVDs". Mike Mangini official website. Retrieved October 18, 2015.
  9. ^ "The spirit Carries On". Roadrunner Records. Retrieved June 30, 2011.
  10. ^ "AND THE NEW DRUMMER IS..... MIKE MANGINI". Archived from the original on May 10, 2008. Retrieved June 30, 2011.
  11. ^ "Dream Theater announce the return of drummer Mike Portnoy". Dream Theater. October 25, 2023.
  12. ^ "UK 2015 | Highline Ballroom". Highline Ballroom. Archived from the original on July 4, 2015. Retrieved June 5, 2018.
  13. ^ "Gear – Mike Mangini's Official Website". mikemangini.com.
  14. ^ Cross Country Driver - "Rio Tularosa" ft. Mike Mangini & dUg Pinnick - Official Audio, retrieved March 17, 2023