Paul Thompson (musician)

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Paul Thompson
Thompson with Roxy Music, LG Arena, Birmingham, England, January 2011
Thompson with Roxy Music, LG Arena, Birmingham, England, January 2011
Background information
Birth namePaul Thompson
Born (1951-05-13) 13 May 1951 (age 69)
Newcastle upon Tyne, England, United Kingdom
GenresGlam rock, rock, art rock
InstrumentsDrums, percussion, guitar
Years active1970–present
Associated actsRoxy Music, Angelic Upstarts, Concrete Blonde, Lindisfarne, Metaphors, Andy Mackay

Paul Thompson (born 13 May 1951) is an English drummer, who is best known as drummer for the rock band Roxy Music (from 1971 to 1980 and then from 2001 onwards).[1] He was also the drummer for the Oi! band, Angelic Upstarts and the American alternative rock band Concrete Blonde. He is a member of Andy Mackay's project with the Metaphors and joined the reformed Lindisfarne in 2013.

Early life and education[edit]

Thompson was born in Newcastle upon Tyne, Northumberland.[2] He lived in Jarrow, north-east England, from the age of six months and attended West Simonside Infants and Junior School.[citation needed]


In 1965, Thompson joined The Tyme who played at local youth clubs.[3] His next group was a local band called The Urge, which he joined when 17 years old. Fatigue from performing with them seven nights a week in local clubs and pubs led him to fall asleep on his job as an apprentice metalworker, which resulted in his dismissal.[4]

Alongside John Miles, he was a member of The Influence. Thompson joined Roxy Music in 1971 and was credited as drummer on six albums, as well as touring and performing on solo records with his bandmates Bryan Ferry, Brian Eno, Andy Mackay and Phil Manzanera.[citation needed] In 1980, Thompson took leave from Roxy Music due to a thumb injury. Later that year he left the band, owing to musical differences between himself and Bryan Ferry.[5] During this period Thompson played with rock band Concrete Blonde.

In 1987 Thompson joined the RAF in Squadron 2624 RAuxAF (County of Oxfordshire) attaining the rank of corporal, he left in 1993.[6]

In 2001, he reunited with fellow Roxy Music band members for a tour. He also toured with Ferry, supporting his Frantic album in 2003 and also appeared at the Isle of Wight Festival 2005[7] on 11 June 2005.[citation needed]. Thompson played live gigs with Andy Mackay, The Metaphors,[4] and was credited on their CD London! Paris! New York! Rome! in 2009.[4] He joined the Newcastle upon Tyne Lindisfarne in 2013.[2]

Influence and following[edit]

Drummer Roger Taylor of the new wave band Duran Duran has stated that Thompson's drumming was a big influence over his development.[8] Fans of Thompson nicknamed him "The Great Paul Thompson", because of his drumming skills and power.[9]


  1. ^ [1] Archived 9 June 2012 at the Wayback Machine
  2. ^ a b Morton, David (10 December 2015). "From Roxy Music to Lindisfarne with ace North East drummer Paul Thompson".
  3. ^ "The Official Roxy Music Tour 2001 Paul Thompson Biography". 13 May 1951. Retrieved 3 March 2015.
  4. ^ a b c "Interview: Roxy Music's Paul Thompson". Chronicle Live. 6 February 2009. Retrieved 3 March 2015.
  5. ^ Chronicle, Evening (6 February 2009). "Interview: Roxy Music's Paul Thompson".
  6. ^ "Roxy Music - Paul Thompson's Solo and Session Work - on". Retrieved 12 May 2020.
  7. ^ "Roxy Music on Isle of Wight bill". 18 March 2005. Retrieved 13 January 2021.
  8. ^ "Interview: Duran Duran drummer Roger Taylor". Retrieved 24 February 2013.
  9. ^ "Paul Thompson Biography". Retrieved 1 February 2011.

External links[edit]