Greg Thompkins: Jazzman
When Greg Thompkins was in his late teens, he didn't have a car. But he did everything he could to see musicians play and learn his instrument, the saxophone.
Thompkins is now 55 years old, and he is a successful musician and teacher. He has been playing the sax since he was 14 years old. He plays tenor because the tone is both low and high. He is self-taught but also had good teachers, including Ron Diehl, Glenn Cashman, and George Garza. His hero is John Coltrane, the legendary saxophone player, “a very strong influence.”
Thompkins has played with many bands with many different styles -- “blues, rock, and all kinds of stuff.” But his love is jazz and he said an artist can “find himself” by focusing on one style. He practices every day.
“I don’t just like music,” he said. “I believe in music.”