Basic Background Info

Birth: April 18, 1963
Location: Newton, Massachusetts
Band: Steve Vai, Annihilator
Genres: Rock, Thrash Metal, Heavy Metal, Speed Metal, Progressive Metal
Instruments: Drums
Occupation: Musician, Teacher, Clinician, Author


Mike Mangini first played drums as a five-year-old in Newton, Massachusetts. Mike Mangini practiced diligently every day and, when he was nine, he could imitate many of Buddy Richís performances. Until graduating from high school, Mike Mangini participated in school bands and excelled in regional competitions. Mike Mangini went to Bentley College in Massachusetts, graduated with a degree in Computer Science, and went on to create programming software for the Patriot Missile program. Mike Mangini also worked on a program that analyzed links between a person's brain and their body.

But Mike Mangini's passion for music dominated everything else. Mike Mangini began teaching private drum lessons and, in 1987, he started playing in the Rick Berlin Band with Phillip Bynoe. In 1991 Mike Mangini recorded several tracks on thrash metal band Annihilatorís Set the World on Fire and then toured with the band in support of the album. Mike Mangini left Annihilator to replace Extreme's drummer (Paul Geary) in 1994. 

When Extreme disbanded two years later, Mike Mangini auditioned for the drum seat in Steve Vai's live band. Mike Mangini got the gig and moved to Los Angeles to perform behind Steve Vai with Phillip Bynoe, Mike Keneally, and Dave Weiner. Mike Mangini performed with Steve Vai until Steve suspended their tour in 2000.

Mike Mangini returned to Boston and became an associate professor at the Berklee College of Music. For a short time, he also worked with Gar Cherone and Pat Badger in Tribe of Judah (along with Dale Bozzio) and recorded as a session drummer in the studio. In 2005 Mike Mangini accepted a full-time teaching position on the percussion faculty at Berklee. Mike is also an accomplished educational author whose specialty is complex rhythms and timing. Mike's education contributions are not limited to the classroom or textsóhe is also a renowned international clinician.
At the end of 2010, Mike Mangini auditioned for Dream Theater, along with Thomas Lang, Derek Roddy, Marco Minnemann, Peter Wildoer, Virgil Donati and Aquiles Priester. In April 2011, Dream Theater announced that Mike Mangini would occupy Portnoy's vacated drum seat.   


Album Year Album Name Album Band
1993 Set the World on Fire Annihilator
1995 Waiting for the Punchline Extreme
1996 Fire Garden Steve Vai
1997 G3: Live in Concert Joe Satriani/Eric Johnson/Steve Vai
1997 Merry Axemas: A Guitar Christmas Various Artists
1998 Sluggo! Mike Keneally & Beer for Dolphins
1999 Keep It to Yourself Mullmuzzler
1999 Six Pack: Multi-Artist Radio Sampler Various Artists
1999 Ultra Zone Steve Vai
2000 Accidental Collision of Atoms: The Best of Extreme Extreme
2001 Alive in an Ultra World Steve Vai
2001 Mullmuzzler 2 James LaBrie
2002 Bag of Tricks Annihilator
2002 Exit Elvis Tribe of Judah
2002 Frozen Thought Michael Lee Hill
2002 Tourist Chris Emerson
2003 Chris Emerson Chris Emerson
2003 Infinite Steve Vai: An Anthology Steve Vai
2004 All for You Annihilator
2004 Best of Annihilator Annihilator
2004 Madmen and Sinners Tim Donahue
2004 Set the World on Fire/In Command: Live 1989-1990 Annihilator
2005 Elements of Persuasion James LaBrie
2005 Subdivisions: A Tribute to Rush Various Artists
2006 Prime Cuts Robert Berry
2007 Decades, Vol. 1: Love Songs of the 70's Donny Osmond
2007 Elliott Yamin Elliott Yamin
2007 Love Songs of the '70s Donny Osmond
2007 Metal Annihilator
2007 Musicians For Minneapolis Various Artists
2008 Prime Cuts James Labrie
2008 Original Album Classics Steve Vai
2008 Satisfied Taylor Dayne
2009 Out of Oblivion Brosh
2010 New World Man: A Tribute to Rush Various Artists
2011 A Dramatic Turn of Events Dream Theater
2013 Dream Theater Dream Theater


  • Mike’s technical aptitude is his signature. He holds many of world’s fastest drummer records: fastest matched grip (1,247 strokes in 60 seconds), fastest hands (1,203 single-stroke notes in 60 seconds), fastest traditional grip (1,126 strokes in 60 seconds), and fastest single stroke foot (13,222 hits in 15 minutes).

Instruments of Choice



Drums: Pearl
Cymbals: Zildjian
Hardware: Pearl
Heads: Remo
Electronics: Shure
Sticks: Zildjian

Pics & Clips