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Billy Thompson has been delivering virtuosic guitar work that has electrified audiences in the U.S. and throughout Europe, setting the tone for this veteran musician’s sizzling performances, both live and in studio. In his original music, he combines world class slide guitar, searing licks and soulful vocals with a unique amalgamation of styles including blues, rock, funk, New Orleans and R&B.
Billy has played with legends such as Little Milton, Albert King, Earl King, and Art Neville, while opening for the likes of Robert Cray, B.B. King, Sonny Landreth, The Neville Brothers and Joe Cocker, to name a few. He has performed on Barbara Walter’s “The View”, with the San Diego Symphony, the 2002 Super Bowl celebration as well as for the grand opening of L.A.’s House of Blues. Billy has also accomplished some impressive theatrical stints including lead guitar for the Broadway show “Ain’t Nothin’ but the Blues” and for Tony Award winning playwright Keith Glover’s Bluesical, “Thunder Knocking on the Door,” which he recorded with platinum recording artist Keb Mo.
Exciting things are happening for Billy in 2013, as he has released is highly anticipated new CD entitled, "Friend." Along with his touring players, this release hosts guest appearances from Bill Payne (Little Feat, J.J. Cale), Ron Holloway (Warren Haynes, Tedeschi/Trucks), James “Hutch” Hutchinson (Bonnie Raitt, Neville Brothers), Kenny Gradney (Little Feat, Delaney & Bonnie) and Mike Finnigan (Jimi Hendrix, Joe Cocker).
Billy’s fifth and last full-length release, A Better Man, was produced by Grammy winner, Tony Braunagel (Robert Cray Band), featuring a host of world class players, including Mike Finnigan, 8-time Grammy winner Johnny Lee Schell (Phantom Blues Band), Kenny Gradney, James “Hutch” Hutchinson, Lenny Castro (Eric Clapton, Rolling Stones) and The Texacali Horns' Joe Sublett & Darrell Leonard (Little Feat, Phantom Blues Band).
“A Better Man” was nominated by Blues Blast Magazine for 2012 Contemporary Blues Album of the Year and received excellent reviews nationwide including "Bluesbreaker of the Week" on Dan Aykroyd's "Elwood's House of Blues Hour" as well as “B.B. King’s Bluesville’s Pick To Click” for several months.
The Billy Thompson Band continues to play many great venues, such as B.B. Kings (NY), House of Blues (Chicago), Blues Alley (DC), Rosa's Lounge (Chicago) and Humphrey's Concerts by the Bay (San Diego), as well as touring festivals including the Western Maryland Blues Festival, Washington Folk Festival, Paoli Blues Festival, the New York State Blues Festival and the Michelob Dayton Blues Festival.