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Thomas Joseph Abate III (born August 20, 1983, in Methuen, Massachusetts), formerly known as Poverty, is a hip-hop artist and actor from the New England area.
As a teen he was dragged around the east coast by a drug addicted mother, sleeping in shelters as she prostituted and sold drugs to support him. He eventually wound up in Portland, Maine, where he started gaining popularity by performing at local hip-hop clubs.
The album made its way to Hollywood, California, where Thommy was hired as a songwriter for Columbia Records. While Thommy worked as a ghostwriter, he also continued to pursue his own music career and recorded a demo with hip-hop producer Tycoon (50 Cent, Mickey Avalon, Pussy Cat Dolls). He landed a national tour with Lyricist Lounge and opening performances for 50 Cent, KRS ONE, DMX, Nelly, and Fabulous.
Thommy’s charismatic persona translated on the big screen as clearly as it did in his music. He landed a significant role in the 2006 Film, "Waist Deep" (Tyrese Gibson, The Game, Meagan Good). With the sudden death of his mother, Thommy returned to Maine. This dark period spawned the most prolific music of Thommy's young career. He found himself back on the streets bouncing between shelters and squatting in the basements of abandoned apartment buildings.
By re-living what had sparked his creativity in the first place, he realized it was too late to save his mother, but he could still save himself. He did away with the moniker "Poverty" and named his new project simply "Thommy". The song “I Don’t Wanna Grow Up” portrays the carefree lifestyle that fueled his imagination as a young kid, mischievous and poetic. Thommy defies the classification of the hip-hop genre. Anthemic and vivid, Thommy is the soundtrack and voice of the "I-pod" generation that knows no musical limits.