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26 – Akill’n It // Akil Thompson, Multi-Instrumentalist Session Player

Akil Thompson is a nasty multi-instrumentalist that can play any genre of music thrown at him. I guess all those years of his dad touring with Frank Zappa must have sunk in some how?? Growing up in a musical family and walking the concourse with Phil Collins as a kid isn’t your average way of growing up, but don’t let that fool you. Akil is creating his own legacy through hard work and talent. Akil studied Jazz Percussion and Composition at Belmont University, but has played guitar and recorded with some heavy hitters. Jonny Lang, LeAnn Rhimes, Ginny Owens, Dave Barnes, Mandisa, and Marc Broussard to name a few. Even Brandon shares a record with Akil! (Brandon recorded on a secret track. Don’t let him impress you.) Akil shares his funny story meeting Ginny Owens, throwing up on stage in a live recording, moving to Nashville in high school and those hard times, favorite records/artists, and his in sight in to session work. We learn that sometimes the worst times are usually the best times and things happen for reason. What are some of the biggest differences in recording in Nashville, L.A., Abbey Road, and from your own bedroom? Akil brought phenomenal stories to “The Bedroom” about his dad, session work, and living life in general in the music business. He also shares what inspires him and how he’s coming to terms about, “bucking the system,” to create more interesting, popular music. How did Akil play with Nick Carter, Jonny Lang, and Kelly Clarkson with no rehearsal? Listen, enjoy, and learn. Your guides discover how and why Akil Thompson is…Akill’n It.

BONUS CONTENT BELOW

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Akill’n it with these takes:

“My guitar playing is like a cross between U2, James Brown, and Sly and the Family Stone.”

“I approach my guitar playing like a percussion instrument.”

On recording-“I approach session playing as being a producer…try to serve the song.”

Check out Akil’s work on AllMusic:

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Credits

Brandon Harrington // SMI Co-Host, A&R, Music Director, Video Editing
Jason Kurkimilis // SMI Co-Host, Lead Audio Production & Engineering
Christian Barker // Executive Producer

Much love as always to our episode sponsor, Fat Bottom Brewing.
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