Thomas Armon Pridgen is drummer for The Mars Volta. He began recording music professionally at age eight, and won the Guitar Center Drum-Off at age nine. At age ten he became the youngest recipient for a Zildjian endorsement in the nearly 400 year history of the cymbal company.
Thomas Pridgen has studied with David Garibaldi, Walfredo Reyes Jr, Troy Luketta and Curtis Nutall.
Thomas Pridgen was also the recipient of a 4 year scholarship to Berklee College of Music in 1999 at the age of fifteen. He was youngest musician to ever receive this scholarship.
Just fifteen years old, Thomas Pridgen had already amassed an impressive list of credentials with performing on fourteen gospel albums.
Thomas Pridgen soon became a member of the well-known Berkeley High School Jazz Ensemble and Jazz Combo, under the direction of Charles Hamilton
During summer vacations, he studied at Stanford Jazz Camp and the Berklee in Los Angeles program.
Thomas Pridgen's talents have captured the attention of many professional drummers. Louie Bellson invited him to participate in a special drum performance in San Jose, California. He also was invited to perform on clinic tours with Walfredo Reyes, Sr. and Dennis Chambers.
Besides his work with The Mars Volta, Thomas Pridgen has also been involved with Eric Gales, the Omar Rodriguez-Lopez Group, Christian Scott and Wicked Wisdom.