Paul Thompson (US)
Paiste Artist Since Jul 2008
20" 2000 Color Sound Heavy China
6" 2002 Accent Cymbal
18" Signature Power Crash
21" Signature Full Ride
17" 2002 Crash
12" Sound Formula Reflector Splash
14" Signature Heavy Hi-Hat
Paul Thompson was born in Des Moines, Iowa. Paul’s first introduction to drums was at the age of 10. Paul also taught himself to play the guitar along to KISS songs and other albums from his parent’s collection. At the age of 13, he started his first band “Skumm/Rigor Mortis” which also featured Jim Root of Slipknot and Stone Sour. The band would perform concerts in Paul’s bedroom where he built a two-level stage equipped with aluminum walkways and a backdrop. The band recorded three self-made albums of original music.
Following high school, Paul played in clubs around the Midwest with the band “Filthy Wilma”. In 1990, Paul moved to Los Angeles and attended the Percussion Institute of Technology (PIT). While there, he studied with Joe Porcaro, Doane Perry, Ralph Humphrey, Casey Scheuerell and many others. While at Musician’s Institute, he met guitarist Todd Duane who he would later record his first major label release on Shrapnel records. Following the recording, Modern Drummer magazine did a review and article on the record where they compared Paul’s playing to Neil Peart, Steve Gadd and Al Foster. Paul has also contributed to the magazine through his transcription work.
Paul moved to Kansas City, Missouri in 1992 and played with the band Bad Blood until receiving a job offer to work at Prince’s Paisley Park Studios in Minneapolis, Minnesota. While working for Prince, Paul had an opportunity to hone his production and studio skills by working on Prince’s 1995 release – “The Gold Experience”.
In 1996, Paul moved back to Des Moines to form the Tyler Thompson Band with his brother Wade (bassist) and brothers Mike and Dave Tyler. Over the years, the band has recorded four albums. In 2002, the band recorded with Chuck Leavell (Rolling Stones, Allman Brothers, Eric Clapton) at the legendary Capricorn Studios in Macon, Georgia. After that experience, the Tyler Thompson Band toured with the Allman Brothers Band, Gov’t Mule and Phil Lesh.
In 1997, Paul joined The Coup de Grace, a Minneapolis based rock group featuring Jimmy Coup (Andrew W. K.) and guitarist Mark Chaussee (Marilyn Manson, Danzig, Fight). During his time with the Coup de Grace, the band shared the stage with Green Day, Alice Cooper, Deftones, and Skid Row to name a few. Paul played his largest show to date on May 23, 1998, when The Coup de Grace played for 40,000 at the Edgefest in Summerset, Wisconsin.
Missing the warmer weather on the west coast, Paul ventured to LA and took a job at Center Staging Musical Production in the drum department. In 2003, Paul joined To My Surprise a band formed by long time friend and Slipknot founder Shawn (Clown) Crahan for the release of their self-titled debut on Roadrunner Records produced by Rick Rubin.
Paul is comfortable playing all styles of music from metal to blues and jazz. Currently, Paul is playing for Shannon Curfman, The Kannibals and Tyler Thompson Band. He is a studio musician, educator, songwriter and producer who is preparing for the release of his new instructional DVD Crash Course. Paul is passionate about all styles of music and is a self-proclaimed student for life.