Born in Rochester, New York on 24 January 1948, the light bulb went on for Tom Canning at the age of five, when he heard live recordings of African Pygmies drumming and chanting. Tom began a lifelong love and appreciation for the depth and mysterious power of the music of the American culture. Little Richard, Fats Domino, and Jerry Lee Lewis were early roots-rock influences for Tom, as well as such legendary pianists as Erroll Garner, James Booker, and Oscar Peterson.
Tom moved to Los Angeles in the early 1970’s, and worked on a wide variety of albums with such artists as T-Bone Burnett, Delbert McClinton, and the late Freddie King. He also began his highly productive relationship with Al Jarreau, co-writing and co-producing on Al’s first seven albums, as well as receiving a Grammy nomination for his arranging skills.
Over the years, Tom has worked with such diverse artists as Bonnie Raitt, Robbie Robertson, Glenn Frey, and Joe Walsh, Elvis Costello, Albert Lee, Juke Logan, Freddie King, and Johnny Shines. He has also produced critically acclaimed albums for Stephen Bruton, Scott Cossu, and New Age artist Ray Lynch.
Over the past three years, Tom has been busy performing and recording with the French artist Johnny Hallyday. Tom has done three albums with Johnny, including a live album last summer 2000 in Paris at the Eiffel Tower, in front of 750,000 people!
Tom was thrilled to have been called to play keyboards on John Mayall’s WAKE UP CALL album, and was equally delighted to go back into the studio with Mayall for the acclaimed album, ALONG FOR THE RIDE. With Maggie Mayall, he co-wrote The Witching Hour on The Bluesbreakers’ latest album STORIES.