APOLLO: The ancient Greek and Roman God of music and poetry.
SONS OF APOLLO: The new supergroup featuring members of Dream Theater, Mr. Big, Guns
‘N Roses, and Journey.
SONS OF APOLLO ARE:
Mike Portnoy – drums and vocals
Derek Sherinian – keyboards
Billy Sheehan – bass
Ron “Bumblefoot” Thal – guitar and vocals
Jeff Scott Soto – vocals
In early 2017, rumors began circulating about a new secret project including former Dream
Theater members Mike Portnoy and Derek Sherinian. Finally, on August 1st, the duo revealed
the details to the rest of the world, introducing their new band, SONS OF APOLLO.
Reuniting to form SONS OF APOLLO, Portnoy and Sherinian join forces with guitarist Ron
“Bumblefoot” Thal (ex-Guns N’ Roses), bassist Billy Sheehan (The Winery Dogs, Mr. Big, David
Lee Roth) and vocalist Jeff Scott Soto (ex-Journey, ex-Yngwie Malmsteen’s Rising Force).
Their debut album, Psychotic Symphony, will be released October 20 on InsideOutMusic/Sony
Psychotic Symphony was produced by the dynamic production duo of Portnoy and Sherinian,
also affectionately known as “The Del Fuvio Brothers,” the nickname given to them over 20
years ago during their time together in Dream Theater.
SONS OF APOLLO formed very organically, its seeds planted with a predecessor group, as
Portnoy explains: “Derek and I reunited shortly after I left Dream Theater in 2010 and we
put together an all-instrumental touring band with Billy Sheehan and Tony MacAlpine. That
was my first time working with Derek since the ‘90s when he was in Dream Theater, and it
was just great to be working with him again. Ever since that tour, which was really just a
one-off live thing, he has been nudging me to start a real, original, full-time band. The
timing just had never been right, because I had too many other things on my plate. Long
story short, the time was finally right to take the bait and put together a band.”
“Mike and I work at a relentless pace in the studio,” continues Sherinian. “The music is
modern, but we have an old-school soul. What is unique about SONS OF APOLLO is that we
have true rock n’ roll swagger along with the virtuosity– a lethal combination!”
But what to call the next great supergroup? “Derek was mainly the one behind the name,”
says Portnoy. “I have a list that I keep on my phone of about a hundred different band names,
which I constantly have to refer to every time I have a new band every year (laughs). So I
pulled up the list and Apollo was one of the names on the list. It was a word that both of us
really liked. We started fiddling with different variations of the word. One of the original
band names we were working with was Apollo Creed, the character from the Rocky movies,
but after lots of different discussions on different variations, Derek suggested SONS OF APOLLO and it seemed to stick. Apollo is the god of music, so with that in mind it seemed
like a fitting name.”
With Portnoy, Sherinian and Sheehan having previously toured together in the
aforementioned lineup that came to be known as PSMS, playing instrumental versions of
various songs drawn from each member’s history, SONS OF APOLLO was the next logical step.
They kept that fire burning and stoked it higher by bringing in a different guitarist, adding a
vocalist, and creating all original material. The nine songs comprising Psychotic Symphony
incorporate the progressive style and individual technical prowess Portnoy and Sherinian
shared together in Dream Theater, combined with the swagger and groove of Van Halen,
Deep Purple and Led Zeppelin.
“I have known Mike and Derek for a long time, so when they came to me with SONS OF
APOLLO, I jumped on this straight away,” says Thomas Waber, Label Manager/A&R
International of InsideOutMusic. “However, the album they ended up recording exceeded
my already high expectations by a long mile! We couldn’t be happier about it!”
SONS OF APOLLO will hit the road in 2018 for their first worldwide tour.
“This is a real band,” Portnoy declares. “This is going to pick up for me and Billy where The
Winery Dogs left off, in terms of this being the next logical full-time thing for us. I’m not
saying The Winery Dogs have broken up, because we haven’t, we’re just on a break. SONS
OF APOLLO is absolutely going to be a full-time band and we plan on touring all over the
world throughout 2018 and, honestly, it is the priority for all five of us.”
Sherinian agrees, “We will go on a worldwide crusade in 2018 to bring SONS OF APOLLO to
as many people as possible. Apollo was the God of Music, and we are his mighty offspring!”