Enthusiastic, energetic, powerful and excited are only a few of the adjectives that describe Tony "Thunder" Smith. As the drummer for the future Rock n’ Roll Hall of famer Lou Reed, Tony has brought power and finesse to the musician’s stage for many years. As a Paiste artist, Tony has been in so many high profile gigs that any drummer would easily be jealous.
John McLaughlin, Jeff Beck, Jan Hammer, Lou Reed, Marianne Faithful, Pat Dinizio and Carlos Santana are just a small group of artists that have recorded or toured with Tony. In addition to his heavy touring schedule, film and commercial work, Tony also maintains a full teaching schedule at the prestigious Berklee College of Music.
As a teacher, Tony "Thunder" Smith's infectious excitement is seen as he teaches his students at Berklee. The chops he passes down are the tools that help many of his students continue to succeed in their own careers as musicians once they leave school. It is impossible to walk the halls of Berklee with Tony and not be stopped by a drummer asking a question or letting their teacher know how grateful they are for the lessons shared.
As the power behind Lou Reed’s ever evolving band, it is easy to hear the “Thunder”. Each night Tony Smith is setting the tone for the performance and making sure to keep an eye on Lou. While the songs that the band plays are “pop-rock”, the band is never just going through the motions. Lou is always communicating with the band, changing the groove, feel and arrangements on a nightly basis. Tony "Thunder" Smith is always there to shift the tone in any way that the band leader wants.