Honor Thy Father

Album: Train Of Thought (2003)
Play Video

Songfacts®:

  • Dream Theater drummer Mike Portnoy was very close to his father Howard, who died of cancer in 2008 and was the subject of their song "The Best of Times," but that's not what this song is about. Portnoy wrote, in response to a question on his website, that if you combine a word from the line before the instrumental break ("Don't cross the crooked step") and a word from the title, you know who the song is about. >>
    Suggestion credit:
    Matthew Daubert - Mequon, WI
  • This song runs 10:14, one of five songs on the Train Of Thought album that's over 10 minutes long. Dream Theater is a prog metal band, but the album is far more metal than prog, with a clear Metallica influence. On the band's previous tour, they sometimes covered Metallica's Master Of Puppets from start to finish.
  • Dream Theater often works clips from movies into their songs; on "Honor Thy Father" there's a long rip of them starting at the 5:18 mark. Most of them - the parts about regret - come from the 1999 movie Magnolia. Clips from Ordinary People (1980), At Close Range (1986), and The Royal Tenenbaums (2001) also appear.

Comments: 4

  • Damien from Edmonton, CanadaUm, James raps in this song... enough said
  • Devon from Westerville, Ohthis song rocks. dream theater is sweet.
  • Nick from Erwin, NcMike Portnoy wrote this song about his stepfather. When asked about what inspired him to write that song, he stated in an IRC chat: "I'm not very good at writing love songs, so I decided to write a HATE song!!!"
  • Szabi from Novi Sad, SerbiaNotice the inserts during the instrumental, many DT song contains such parts selected from movies, news, etc.
see more comments

Editor's Picks

Stan Ridgway

Stan RidgwaySongwriter Interviews

Go beyond the Wall of Voodoo with this cinematic songwriter.

Bill Medley of The Righteous Brothers

Bill Medley of The Righteous BrothersSongwriter Interviews

Medley looks back on "Unchained Melody" and "You've Lost That Lovin' Feelin'" - his huge hits from the '60s that were later revived in movies.

Intentionally Atrocious

Intentionally AtrociousSong Writing

A selection of songs made to be terrible - some clearly achieved that goal.

Danny Clinch: The Art of Rock Photography

Danny Clinch: The Art of Rock PhotographySong Writing

One of rock's top photographers talks about artistry in photography, raising funds for a documentary, and enjoying a County Fair with Tom Waits.

John Doe of X

John Doe of XSongwriter Interviews

With his X-wife Exene, John fronts the band X and writes their songs.

Desmond Child

Desmond ChildSongwriter Interviews

One of the most successful songwriters in the business, Desmond co-wrote "Livin' La Vida Loca," "Dude (Looks Like A Lady)" and "Livin' On A Prayer."