Dream Theater’s John Petrucci recently spoke to the Guitarist for an interview and claimed that Dream Theater is capable of playing every song from Rush‘s music catalog.
Mike Portnoy, John Petrucci, and John Myung are big fans of Rush, and they have repeatedly stated how much the band has influenced them. When they formed Dream Theater in 1985, the trio began their music career by covering Rush and Iron Maiden songs. They even decided on the name Majesty for the band after agreeing that the ending of Rush’s ‘Bastille Day’ was majestic.
Throughout most of his childhood, John Petrucci picked up the guitar and committed himself to improve his capabilities. At that time, he was influenced by progressive rock and heavy metal bands like Metallica, Iron Maiden, and of course, Rush. After embarking on a musical career with Dream Theater, he covered these bands’ songs in many instances.
In a recent interview with Guitarist, John Petrucci recalled when he obtained his first guitar using his own money. Petrucci stated that he was a teenager at that time, and he began playing guitar at 12. Reminiscing those good days, the guitarist said he is still playing with John Myung in Dream Theater after meeting each other when both were 12.
According to Petrucci, he would play with everybody at that time. One of his friends was into metal, and so he would play songs by bands like the Scorpions and Sabbath with him. Another was a fan of Hendrix and the Dead, so they would jam on their songs. After recalling he was in a band named Centurion, Petrucci also said he and Myung knew each song of Iron Maiden and Rush.
Speaking about the first guitar he bought with his own money, John Petrucci told Guitarist the following:
“I was a teenager at that point. I mean, I started when I was 12, it was probably a couple of years later when I was 14 or so. It’s funny, I was playing with John Myung back then, and we still play together in Dream Theater – he’s the bass player – and we met each other when we were 12.
I would go jam with everybody in those days. One guy was really into metal and old bands like The Scorpions and Sabbath, so we would jam on all that stuff. And then I had a bunch of guys that were totally into Hendrix and The Dead, so we would jam on that stuff.”
He then continued:
“There was also a band that we called Centurion, and we would play covers, anything from Mötley Crüe to Rush, Iron Maiden… John Myung and I just learned every single Iron Maiden song there was and every Rush song.“
Apparently, John Petrucci and his childhood friend and bandmate John Myung have been covering Iron Maiden and Rush songs since their teenage years. As they started listening to Rush at a young age, it isn’t surprising that Petrucci and Myung knew the band’s songs by heart.