Tommy Thompson, Smokestack Lightnin' Program Manager

Place of Birth: Waycross, Georgia and, no, I don't give a hoot in hell for the Georgia Bulldogs

Tommy and his grandson ColeHobbies, Interests: The Blues (of course), Boating, Fishing, rocking on the porch of my St. Johns River cabin and Florida Gator sports. Also have a 2007 Shelby Mustang GT500 that I take to Car Shows in Mustang Club Events in the Central Florida area. 

Family Facts: Raised in the wilds of North Central Florida near Gainesville. Graduated from the University of Florida in 1967. Spent 5 years as a captain in the U.S. Air Force stationed in Germany before returning to Orlando, Florida in late 1971. Retired from the commercial banking business after 35 years. Have been a part time Blues Programmer since 1991, and now, since retiring, spend most of my time programming and managing Smokestack Lightnin' which has grown into a much bigger enterprise than I ever thought possible.

Influenced By: My Mother was my original musical influence. She was big into the jazz standards of the 40s and 50s (Sinatra, Tony Bennett, Les & Larry Elgart, Julie London, The Four Freshmen and many more). She played music virtually every waking hour so it truly is the soundtrack of my life. When I first discovered Rock & Roll and then the Blues she thought I had literally lost my mind. Then she caught on. Before she died she became the biggest fan Stevie Ray Vaughan ever had. Go figure.

In the Blues my idol and #1 lifetime influence is actually disc jockey John R to whom I listened every night of my life starting from about age 10. He was the lead DJ at radio station WLAC in Nashville and introduced me to the blues with his aggressive programming. My early favorites were Slim Harpo, Lightnin� Hopkins, Muddy Waters, B.B. King and of course The Howlin� Wolf. 

Other Stuff: My wife, Susan, of 42 years, passed away in 2009 after a long battle with M.S. Both kids, Buffy and Steven, are grown and out on their own so it's just me. �Stinky� my trusty feline companion passed away in 2014.That's my two Grandsons, Chase and Cole, in the picture. They live in the Dallas area.

Favorite Quote: �I bought you a brand new Ford, you said I want a Cadillac! I bought you a ten dollar dinner, you said thanks for the snack! I let you live in my Penthouse, you said it was just a shack! I gave you seven children and now you want to give 'em Back!� Oh Baby, how Blue can you get? B.B. King , 1963

Second Favorite Quote: �On the plains of hesitation bleach the bones of countless millions who, at the dawn of decision, sat down to wait, and waiting died�. Sam Ewing




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