BIOGRAPHY

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John Petrucci is best known as the guitarist, producer, lyricist and founding member of the two-time Grammy nominated progressive metal band Dream Theater as well as the guitarist and founding member of the acclaimed Liquid Tension Experiment. As a solo artist, John is a long standing veteran of Joe Satriani’s G3 tours along with Steve Vai, Eric Johnson, Paul Gilbert, Steve Morse and Steve Lukather.
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Born John Peter Petrucci on July 12, 1967, he grew up in Kings Park, New York, a small  suburban town on Long Island where he began playing guitar at age 12. His early  influences included Steve Morse, Al DiMeola, Steve Howe, Allan Holdsworth, Stevie  Ray Vaughan, Randy Rhoads, Joe Satriani, Steve Vai, Alex Lifeson, Yngwie Malmsteen,  Rush, Yes, Iron Maiden, The Dregs and Metallica. At age 18 after graduating from high  school, he attended the prestigious Berklee College of Music in Boston along with  schoolmate/bassist John Myung where they fatefully met drummer Mike Portnoy and quickly formed the nucleus of what was to become Dream Theater

For the last 30+ years John has taken his band on an extremely successful and  rewarding musical journey. With upwards of 12 million in gold and platinum CD and  DVD sales including the 1992 RIAA certified Gold release Images And Words, Dream  Theater continue to be the premier leaders in progressive metal music on an  acclaimed, international level. Throughout their career, the band has garnered multiple  Billboard 200 Top 10 chart debuts, received 2 Grammy nominations for Best Metal  Performance and have earned numerous accolades including their 1999 concept  album Metropolis Pt. 2: Scenes From A Memory landing the #1 position in  RollingStone.com’s reader’s poll for Your Favorite Prog Rock Albums Of All Time  and winning Band Of The Year in the 2014 Progressive Music Awards. Their  ambitious 2016 double CD rock opera The Astonishing debuted at #1 on the Billboard  Top Rock Albums chart. Most recently, the band’s 2019 release Distance Over Time landed at #5 on the Top Current Albums chart and #24 on the Billboard 200 chart amid worldwide critical acclaim. Distance Over Time was voted Album Of The Year and Album Cover Of the Year in Japan’s BURRN! magazine 2019 reader’s poll and  garnered multiple top 10 positions in Guitar World’s 2019 reader’s polls including #1  Album Of The Decade, #2 Best Riff Of The Decade for Paralyzed and #5 Best  Guitar Solo Of The Decade for S2N. In 2019 Dream Theater received the International Band Of The Year award at the 2019 Progressive Music Awards in  London. The band’s Fall 2020 live release, Distant Memories, chronicling their  Distance Over Time Tour: Celebrating 20 Years Of Scenes From A Memory, was  named Live Album Of The Year by The Prog Report. Since 1992, Dream Theater has  performed in front of millions of devoted fans throughout a multitude of expansive world  tours in support of the band’s 14 studio albums to date. 

As a guitar player, John has been featured on the cover of numerous guitar publications  throughout the world including most recently on the March 2019 issue of Guitar World and the January 2020 issue of Guitar Player. He’s received many notable awards  including the 2007 Guitarist of the Year as named by the readers of Total Guitar  magazine and Best Metal Guitarist in the 2010 Reader’s Choice Awards poll in Guitar  Player magazine. John was named Best Metal Guitarist again in the 2011 Guitar Player’s Reader’s Choice Awards poll and one of the 20 Greatest Metal Guitarists  Ever in a 2011 poll for Total Guitar as well as being voted Best Guitarist in Classic  Rock Presents Prog Magazine’s 2011 readers poll. In 2013 John was voted Best  Shredder in Guitar World’s Reader’s Poll and in 2014 John secured his place in the  magazine’s Hall Of Fame. In 2019 John was included in Guitar World’s 20 Best  Guitarists Of The Decade issue and was voted #1 guitarist in the UK’s Prog magazine  reader’s poll. He was also named Guitarist Of The Year in Spain’s Mariskal Rock  magazine and voted #1 Prog Guitarist In The World Today by MusicRadar. In 2020  John was voted the #1 Guitarist in Japan’s BURRN! magazine reader’s poll and Best  Prog Guitarist of 2020 by MusicRadar. In 2021 he was named Guitarist Of The Year  by the readers of Prog Magazine. 

John met his wife Rena Sands in 1989 and the two would later marry in September  1993. Rena was the guitarist and founding member of the all-female metal band  Meanstreak. Rena continues her career as guitarist with the all-female tribute to Judas  Priest appropriately named Judas Priestess who can be seen playing regularly  throughout N. America. 

In 1995 John released his first instructional video called Rock Discipline and was also  a contributing columnist in Guitar World magazine’s Wild Stringdom monthly lesson  series. A book by the same name would later be released as a collection of the lessons  featured in the magazine. 

In 1998 and 1999 John released Liquid Tension Experiment and Liquid Tension  Experiment 2 respectively, along with Jordan Rudess on keyboards, Mike Portnoy on  drums and the inimitable Tony Levin on bass. Both albums would not only prove to be  worthy and enjoyable side projects, but also favorites among fans worldwide. 

The year 2000 brought with it the unveiling of John’s record label, Sound Mind Music.  Created and run by his wife Rena, it’s first release was An Evening With John  Petrucci and Jordan Rudess, an acoustic-instrumental live concert of Latin/jazz  improvised music for guitar and piano. The concert was recorded in June of that year at  the Helen Hayes Performing Arts Center in Nyack, NY. The album was re-released in  2004 on Steve Vai’s Favored Nations record label and featured two additional tracks:  The Rena Song and The Bite Of The Mosquito

In 2001 John joined the North American run of the popular G3 tour with Joe Satriani and  Steve Vai. He performed as a trio with ex-DT band mate Mike Portnoy on drums and  bassist Dave LaRue of Dregs/Steve Morse Band fame. John would subsequently  continue on with legs in Mexico and Japan with Joe and Steve (G3 Live in Tokyo was  released in 2005) South America with Joe and Eric Johnson, Australia with Joe and  Steve, in North America in 2007 with Joe and Paul Gilbert and in South America in 2012  (DT bandmate Mike Mangini on drums) with Joe, Steve Morse and Steve Lukather. 

In 2005 John released his first and much anticipated solo album titled, Suspended  Animation on his Sound Mind Music label. The self-produced album of all instrumental guitar music featured Dave LaRue on bass and Dave DiCenso on drums.  Drummer and re-mixer Tony Verderosa also contributed to the CD and can be heard on  the song Tunnel Vision. The album was mixed by friend and long time DT producer/mix  engineer Kevin Shirley. Many of the songs John originally debuted live while on tour  with G3 would later make up the bulk of the CD.  

Throughout his career, John has spearheaded the research and development of  numerous signature guitars and guitar related gear with some of the most successful  and respected musical instrument manufactures in the world. Among those include a  complete line of signature Ernie Ball Music Man 6-string, 7-string and baritone guitars  featuring the critically acclaimed JP Majesty and JP BFR. In a 2015 forbes.com interview, EBMM CEO Brian Ball called John’s signature guitar the number two  selling signature guitar on the planet - and that’s only behind Les Paul, which is still  considered a signature guitar.” John is proud to bear his name on the first ever  continuous production signature Mesa Boogie JP-2C guitar amplifier as well as the TC  Electronic signature JP Dreamscape chorus/flanger pedal. He’s released several  signature DiMarzio 6 and 7 string pickups including the Crunch Lab, LiquifireIlluminator, Sonic Ecstasy, Dreamcatcher and Rainmaker as well as signature  DiMarzio JP guitar straps. John’s signature can also be found on his Dunlop JP95 wah  pedal and has designed several signature Dunlop JP Jazz III picks including his latest  Trinity pick. 

In 2015 John started ToneMission, a global initiative dedicated to tone-seekers around  the world who’s goal is to foster greater communication and sharing amongst players  and is committed to furthering the reach, development and proliferation of the art of the  instrument throughout the worldwide guitar community.  

In August of 2017 John hosted his first ever guitar camp at the Glen Cove Mansion on  Long Island, NY called John Petrucci’s Guitar Universe. Guest teachers included  Tony MacAlpine, Rusty Cooley, Andy James, Tosin Abasi, Andy McKee, Jason  Richardson and Devin Townsend and was a tremendous success.  

From January to May of 2018 John once again joined the G3 tour playing just shy of 80 shows  together with Joe Satriani and Phil Collen in N. America and with Joe and and Uli Jon Roth in  Europe. 

In August of 2018 John hosted his 2nd JPGU camp at the Glen Cove Mansion on Long Island,  NY. Guest instructors included Al Di Meola, Tony MacAlpine, Guthrie Govan, Rusty Cooley,  Andy James, Tosin Abasi, Jason Richardson and Jon Finn along with Mike Mangini and Dave  LaRue. 

In 2019 John was proud and honored to be named the recipient of the SENA Performer’s European Guitar Award and was presented the award at the prestigious annual event held in  Bergen Op Zoom in The Netherlands. Past year’s recipients have been Brian May, Joe Bonamassa, Steve Vai, Slash, Steve Lukather and Joe Satriani. On September 12, 2019, John received the Chris Squire Virtuoso Award at the 2019 Progressive Music Awards held at the famous Underglobe in London.

In August 2020, 15 years since his debut solo album Suspended Animation, John released Terminal Velocity, his greatly anticipated second solo effort featuring Mike Portnoy on drums  and Dave LaRue on bass. The album was released on John’s Sound Mind Music record label  through The Orchard Music distribution and received glowing reviews by both fans and critics  alike. The video for its title track surpassed 1.6 million views on YouTube and the album won Album Production Of The Year in the 2020 Prog Report Awards. 

In October of 2020 John launched his very own men’s beard grooming product line, in collaboration with Captain Fawcett, called Nebula. The line includes a beard oil, beard balm  and mustache wax and features top notes of exhilarating bergamot & aromatic myrtle riff with a bittersweet tang of grapefruit, rising to an intense heart of earthy, violet orris, dark coffee & tenacious woody cedar. 

In December 2020, John, alongside Tony Levin, Mike Portnoy and Jordan Rudess, announced the return of Liquid Tension Experiment. Their third studio album entitled LTE3 was released via InsideOut Music on April 16, 2021. 

John’s 3rd JPGU camp is set to be held in July of 2021 in Anaheim, California and will feature  an incredible assemblage of guest instructors including Tosin Abasi, Mateus Asato, Kiko  Loureiro, Plini, Jason Richardson, Joscho Stephan, Tom Quayle, Andy Wood, and Rena Petrucci. 

On May 3rd, 2021, John released Rock The Barrel, a signature small-batch craft bourbon whiskey, in collaboration with Iron Smoke Distillery. The 120 proof bourbon was hand-picked by John from the thousands of barrels aging at their award winning distillery in Fairport, NY.

Outside of music, John’s passions include bodybuilding, bearding, bbq, and all things Disney. He currently resides on Long Island, New York with his family.