Matt Thompson started formal percussion training at the age of nine, although he has been tapping and hitting things for as long as he can remember. With a classical violinist for a mom and a jazz trumpeter/pianist as a dad, he was exposed to a wide variety of music from an early age. Two pivotal concerts solidified his desire to become a drummer. The first was Chick Corea with Roy Haynes on drums, the second was Rush on their Signals tour in 1982.

In 1988 Matt won a scholarship to Berklee College of Music but instead chose to tour and perform throughout the late '80s and early '90s. His travels brought him to Dallas, TX where he discovered Ed Soph, Keith Carlock, Dan Wojciechowski and the University of North TX jazz program. He attended from 1996 - 2000, earning a Jazz Studies degree. At UNT Matt studied with Ed Soph, Bob Schietroma, Ron Fink, Henry Okstel, Mike Drake, Srini Poovalar and others, learning drumset, classical percussion, Indian, African and a multitude of Afro-Cuban styles.

Two weeks after graduating, Matt got a call from heavy metal icon King Diamond with an offer to tour the world as part of the group. Matt still holds the drum chair for King, longer than any other drummer. With King, Matt has shared the stage with hundreds of bands, including top acts such as Lynyrd Skynard, Motley Crue, Megadeth, Slayer, Hellyeah, Exodus, Ghost, Volbeat, Testament, Nightwish, Behemoth, Nile, and many others. During the Mayhem festival in 2015 Kerry King (Slayer) performed with King Diamond for the 2nd half of the tour on the song "Evil" (Mercyful Fate). With Legacy of Disorder, Matt has toured with Gwar, Municipal Waste, Ghoul, Kylessa, Fear Factory, Shadows Fall, and others. Shaolin Death Squad has played shows with Sleepytime Gorilla Museum, Estradasphere, The Invincible Czars, Opposite Day, Dillinger Escape Plan, and many others.

In 2007 Matt was nominated for two Grammys, one for Best Metal Performance for King Diamond's "Never Ending Hill" and one for Best Polka Album for Brave Combo's "Polka's Revenge." Matt also drums for Shaolin Death Squad, Aghora, Legacy of Disorder and Synkronizity. In 2010 he was invited to be a guest clinician at Croatia Drum Camp in Groznjan, Croatia alongside Mike Mangini and Petar Curic.



Band List (Live/Studio): Horizon, Necromancer, Omnipresence, Vertigo, Judgement, Power Play, Country North, Trespass, Jon Davis, Morris Rose, Rutley, FOA, Truncator, King Friday, Almost Human & the A.H. Bong Quartet, Surgeon, Michael Harris, Rich Logan, Dr.Benjamin Remedy, Mushroom Groovy, Citizen Lane, Front Line, Maylee Thomas Band, Richland Jazz Ensemble, Burlington County Jazz Ensemble, UNT 7,6,5,4,3,2 O'Clock Lab Bands, UNT Brazillian, Afro-Cuban, South Indian and advanced South Indian percussion ensembles, The Pierre Croydon Cartoon Collective, Bugs Henderson, The Rounders, Pops Carter and the Funkmonsters from Outer Space, Jeff Taylor, Nina Katrina, Dallas Brass and Electric, Carey Richards Big Band, Rodney Booth, South Jersey Philharmonic, Andy Timmons, Wompi, Alligator Dave, Big Daddy Alright, Where's Arnie, Lady Avis, Groove Academy, Submersed, Devin Leigh Band, Mark Austin Band, Bell Curve, Brandon Bentley, Orlando Salinas, Tio, Conundrum, Cliff Temple, Jet Black, Radio Edit, 420 Blues, Batcastle, Djugdish, Shaolin Death Squad, The Spectacle, Kung Diamonte, Single Bullet Theory, Infinity Minus One, James Murphy, Agrat, Ron Keel, Rickie Byars Beckwith, Kitty Violet, Autumn Barr, Backseat Continental, Dixie Rex, Dirt + Earthy Vibes, High Def, CSL House Band, Charles Holt, The Killhawks, Cormac's Ruined House, Legacy of Disorder, Brave Combo, Sara Hickman, The Nice Musics, Post-Human, Nagual, Omid Afkhami, FM, Good Question, Gustavo Dobles, Bubba Hernandez and Los Super Vatos, Derek Sholl, The Bright, Battle School Launchy, Ink Dot Boy, Jimi Tunell, Joey Love, Bonnie and Nick Norris, Local Yoakum, Immortal Dominion, Sol Kitchen, Neil Turbin, Kill Ritual, Dan Spitz and Duexmonkey, Silver Loves Mercury, Anaphase, Ryan Hall, 10 Hands, Mick Cervino, Aghora, A Roomful of Teeth, The New Pigs of Future City, Synkronizity, Arms of the Sun, Ghoul, Sault, Plano Symphony Orchestra, Ashley Brown, Courtney Cox, Vinnie Moore, Wings of Dahak, Rathmore, King Diamond

© Matt Thompson 2012