Victoria musician Syl Thompson pays tribute to the music of David Bowie during a Night of Bowie: The Definitive Bowie Experience Friday (May 19) at the Port Theatre. Photo Contributed

Victoria musician Syl Thompson pays tribute to David Bowie during Nanaimo performance

Thompson performs at the Port Theatre Friday (May 19)

For more than three decades, Victoria musician Syl Thompson has been paying tribute to the music of David Bowie.

In the early ’80s he toured extensively in the South Pacific and once he returned to Canada headlined for various cover bands. When performing in Richmond, a manager remarked at how Thompson looked and sounded like Bowie and suggested he cover a few of the Bowie’s songs. Soon after, Thompson was performing full sets of Bowie’s music. He renamed his band Major Tom and toured North America.

After his band dissolved in the mid-90’s, he earned a degree in digital audio engineering and opened his own recording studio on Vancouver Island.

Bowie’s music still pulled at Thompson and in 2013 he created A Night of Bowie and performed with bassist Rob Begg, guitarist John Gilliat and drummer Graham Howell along with brothers Marc Gawthrop and Rob Gawthrop.

Rather than grieve the arrival of the anniversary of Bowie’s death Thompson decided to join forces with other musicians.

He commemorated the date with his band Ground Control with a show in Sidney at the Mary Windspear Centre in January.

Thompson performs during A Night of Bowie: The Definitive Bowie Experience at Nanaimo’s Port Theatre on Friday (May 19) at 7:30 p.m.

Tickets are $40.50 available by calling 250-754-8550 or by visiting

For more information about Thompson, please visit

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