Porl Thompson performing live with The Cure in Las Vegas, 2009
|Birth name||Paul Stephen Thompson|
|Also known as||Porl Thompson, Pearl Thompson|
8 November 1957 |
|Genres||Gothic rock, alternative rock, post-punk|
|Instruments||Guitar, keyboard, saxophone, banjo|
|Associated acts||The Cure
Page and Plant
|Schecter Porl Thompson Signature Model|
Paul Stephen Thompson (born 8 November 1957), known for most of his professional career as Porl Thompson, is an English musician best known for his work with The Cure. He is not currently a member of the Cure, and now goes by the name Pearl Thompson.
Life and work
Thompson is the oldest of four children; he has two brothers and one sister (Robert, Andrew and Carol). Thompson was married to Janet Smith, the younger sister of Cure bandmate Robert Smith, and together they have three sons and a daughter.
Thompson was part of the original lineup of the Cure, which also included Robert Smith, Michael Dempsey, and Lol Tolhurst when the band was first formed in 1976; however, he was dropped by the time they released their debut album, Three Imaginary Boys, in 1979 because his lead guitar style was at odds with Smith's growing preference for minimalist songwriting. Formed the Exotic Pandas for a short period, He rejoined the band in 1983 on saxophone and helped record the album The Top. During the Top tour, Thompson played keyboard as well as the guitar, bass and saxophone. He also performed with The Glove when they appeared on television.
Thompson performed on four more studio albums (The Head on the Door, Kiss Me, Kiss Me, Kiss Me, Disintegration and Wish) and four live albums (Concert, Entreat, Paris and Show) as well as the videos The Cure in Orange and Picture Show . He also appears on the remix album Mixed Up and the deluxe issue of Three Imaginary Boys.
Thompson left the Cure in 1994 to play with Jimmy Page and Robert Plant of Led Zeppelin during the Page and Plant tour of 1995. He also played with Babacar, the band formed by Boris Williams following his departure from The Cure, and later formed his own solo project called Quietly Torn. Thompson worked with Plant again when he joined the singer's group for the 2002 release Dreamland.
Thompson still paints and has a collection entitled "100% Sky" posted at his website. He officially rejoined the band for a third time in June 2005 and recorded the live DVD, The Cure: Festival 2005 and appeared on their 13th studio album, 4:13 Dream.
Thompson also toured with The Cure for their 2007-2008 4Tour.
Without any official explanation, Thompson was absent from all of the tour dates that The Cure performed in 2011.
Up until 2012 (When Reeves Gabrels joined to assume 2nd guitar duties) Thompson had the distinction of being the only other person, besides Robert Smith, to have worked with every other member of The Cure both past and present. Although he and Matthieu Hartley were never in the same line-up, the two of them did work together on the single "I'm a Cult Hero".
In 2007 Schecter Guitars released a Porl Thompson Signature model featuring graphics by the British artist Kev Grey.
Thompson and designer Andy Vella are the co-founders of Parched Art, which has produced many of the record sleeves found on The Cure albums, many of which Thompson drew or painted.
- The Cure
- The Top (1984)
- Concert (1984)
- The Cure Live In Japan (1984) VHS
- The Head on the Door (1985)
- Standing on a Beach (1986)
- The Cure In Orange (1986), VHS
- Kiss Me, Kiss Me, Kiss Me (1987)
- Disintegration (1989)
- Mixed Up (1990)
- Entreat (1991)
- Wish (1992)
- Paris (1993)
- Show (1993)
- Galore (1997)
- Greatest Hits (2001)
- Festival 2005 (2005), DVD
- 4:13 Dream (2008)
- Page and Plant
- Robert Plant
- Dreamland (2002)
- Shelleyan Orphan
- Humroot (1992) 
- Babacar (1998)
pearl thompson