|After brief stints on violin and piano, and several years of playing trumpet in the school band, I started playing bass at age 13. It wasn't long before I was swept away by the sounds of jazz, r&b, and fusion music, discovering my musical influences along the way: Herbie Hancock, Marcus Miller, Ron Carter, Miles Davis, Anthony Jackson, John Coltrane, and many, many others. After graduating from the Pittsburgh High School for the Creative and Performing Arts (CAPA), I attended Duquesne University for two years as a Double Bass Performance Major.
As a professional jazz bassist for the last ten years or so, I've been fortunate enough to have shared the stage with some of music's greatest artists including:
Milt Jackson, George Benson, Jon Faddis, Rick Margitza, James Moody, Mark Murphy, Curtis Fuller, Rebecca Parris, Gary Burton, Richie Cole, Kenia, Warren Vache, Mark Whitfield, Joe Harris, Gary Bartz, Slide Hampton, James Williams, Grover Washington Jr, Kei Akagi, Roger Humphries, Kenny Drew Jr, Clark Terry, Kenny Blake, Joe McBride, Johnny Griffin, Mark Elf, Grady Tate, Jimmy Ponder, Dave Stryker, Ronnie Cuber, Joe Negri, Steve Slagle, Billy Price, Dianne Schuur, Marlena Shaw, Monty Alexander, David "Fathead" Newman, and many others.
I also had the privilege of touring the world with trumpeter Maynard Ferguson as musical director ('97-'99), as well as playing in the late, great saxophonist Stanley Turrentine's last touring group ('99-'00).
Maynard Ferguson, Brass Attitude (Concord Jazz)
Rick Gallagher, Sweet Potato Eyebrows (Serendipity)
A Sleigh, A Song & A Baby Boy (Serendipity)
Joe "Sonny" Barbato, Crackerjack (Cool Sun Records)
Mike Tomaro and The 3 Rivers Jazz Orchestra,
Night Owl Suite (Sea Breeze)
BEAM, Inception (Beam Music)
SALSAMBA, The Traveler (Clave Records)
Brazilia (Northstar Recordings)
Rueben Brock, Dig (DHP Records)
Billy Price, The Soul Collection (Green Dolphin)
Funky, Funky SOUL! (DVD)
East End Avenue (Bonedog Records)
A New Home (tracks w/ Roger Humphries & RH Factor, Jon Faddis, and Louie Bellson) (Sony, MCG)
The Scott Boni New Jazz Quartet, Mumphrey's Bounce (Headquarters)
As an instructor/clinician, I've been involved with programs at LaRoche College, Slippery Rock University, Kiski Area High School, and others as well as the annual Mellon Jazz Student Spectacular ('97, '00). Right now, I'm enjoying my position as Bass Instructor and Jazz Band director at CAPA High School.
Currently, I'm freelancing and teaching privately in the Pittsburgh area, and playing with various groups including OPEK and SALSAMBA, as well as my own group, the PAUL THOMPSON PROJECT. Stay tuned.
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