Tony Thompson
Powerstation publicityphoto.jpg
background information
Born 15 November 1954
Died 12 November 2003 (aged 48)
Genre Dance, disco, funk
Associated acts Chic
The Power Station

Tony Thompson (November 15, 1954 – November 12, 2003) was a session drummer of Antiguan descent with a long list of studio credits. He is best known for his work with Chic.

Biography[edit | edit source]

Thompson first drummed for the 1970s group LaBelle. This led to a short period with the soul/disco band Ecstasy Passion & Pain, with Raymond Jones. A long tenure followed playing with the legendary R&B/dance/disco band Chic, where he helped create hits such as "Dance Dance Dance (Yowsah, Yowsah, Yowsah)," "Le Freak," and "Good Times". He also performed with members of Chic on "We Are Family" and "He's The Greatest Dancer" by Sister Sledge. Other work included "Upside Down" and "I'm Coming Out" by Diana Ross.

Following the temporary disbanding of Chic in 1983, Chic's former guitarist and bassist, Nile Rodgers and Bernard Edwards became prolific producers, and Thompson's drumming was much in demand among their clients. Thompson appeared with numerous artists such as Jody Watley, Madonna (on her 1984 album Like A Virgin), Rod Stewart, Robert Palmer, Mick Jagger, and David Bowie (on his 1983 Let's Dance album).

The Power Station[edit | edit source]

Thompson met members of Duran Duran during his stint on Bowie's Serious Moonlight tour. They talked about working on a side project together several times over the following months.

When it finally got off the ground, Thompson became a full-fledged member of The Power Station (along with Robert Palmer, and John and Andy Taylor from Duran Duran). His distinctive heavy drum sound can be heard on their self-titled 1985 debut album The Power Station. Produced by Chic's Bernard Edwards, the album included the hit singles "Some Like It Hot" and the remake of the T.Rex song "Get It On (Bang a Gong)".

In the mid 1990s he rejoined The Power Station for their 1996 reunion album Living In Fear and the subsequent Living In Fear Tour.

Later career[edit | edit source]

The enormous Live Aid charity benefit concert in 1985 saw Thompson playing with The Power Station as well as joining the remaining members of Led Zeppelin on stage (along with Phil Collins) at John F. Kennedy Stadium. During a reunion attempt in 1986, Led Zeppelin again asked Thompson to join them as a replacement for John Bonham; the reunion stalled in part because Thompson was in a serious car accident that year and was unable to continue participating.[1]

Thompson would go on to join groups such as The Distance, and Crown Of Thorns with Jean Beauvoir, and played on their first album Crown Of Thorns, then left the band and was replaced by Hawk Lopez.

Thompson died in November 2003, within a month of being diagnosed with kidney cancer. He was a member of the band Non-Toxic at the time of his death.

On September 19, 2005 Thompson and the rest of the Chic band members were inducted into the Dance Music Hall of Fame.

References[edit | edit source]

External links[edit | edit source]

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