LA bass-guitar extraordinaire Thundercat is playing Auckland City Limits this weekend. To help prepare you, The Spinoff retraces his career in 112 seconds.
Thundercat, known to his mother as Stephen Bruner, is a bass guitarist, singer, songwriter and producer from Los Angeles. If you don’t think you know his songs, you probably do. And if you actually don’t know his songs, you will know songs that he’s played on.
As a teenager, Bruner was a member of a boyband that apparently found some success in Germany, before joining thrash punk band Suicidal Tendencies at 18. Since then, Thundercat has been lending his agile playing to everyone from electro-jazz fusionist Flying Lotus to cosmic jazz revivalist Kamasi Washington, to New Zealand pop export Kimbra and, most famously, rap prophet Kendrick Lamar.
Oh, and he makes his own records, combining jazz fusion and smooth R&B, with his distinctive sound – a six-string bass often played more like a lead guitar and often through any number of effects sounds like any almost any instrument.
Should you go see him? Definitely. Will he be bringing Michael McDonald and Kenny Loggins with him to play his instant-class ‘Show You The Way’? Who knows!
Thundercat plays at 3:45 pm on the Aroha stage at Auckland City Limits, sponsored by Spark, at Western Springs Stadium and Park on 3 March 2018. Tickets are available here.
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The Spinoff Weekly compiles the best stories of the week – an essential guide to modern life in New Zealand, emailed out on Monday evenings.