Roo AOTD #61 Thundercat

All aboard the hype train for Bonnaroo 2024! Only 74 days until we are all on the Farm again, can you believe it? It’s coming up fast and we can’t wait to be dancing with all of you at Bonnaroo! Today’s Artist of the Day is the one and only Thundercat. Learn more about the artist below. Don’t forget to check out all of our artist spotlights! Thank you for reading these posts!

Stephen “Thundercat” Bruner

Artist Biography

Thundercat, aka Stephen Bruner, is a bassist who has been a sought-after studio bassist for artists recording jazz, punk, R&B, and hip-hop. He was raised in Los Angeles and grew up in a musical family. His father, Ronald Bruner, Sr., is a seasoned drummer who has performed and recorded with artists including Diana Ross, the Temptations, and Helen Baylor. Thundercat’s older brother, Ronald Jr., is a Grammy award-winning drummer for his work with Stanley Clarke. His younger brother, Jameel Bruner, is a Grammy-nominated keyboardist as part of the Internet. The Bruners as a family have played together in a variety of combinations. Thundercat started his career in the early 2000s while still in high school. He joined his brother Ronald Jr. in the band Suicidal Tendencies, replacing Robert Trujillo who went on to play with Metallica. Thundercat was able to play Trujillo’s three-finger riffs with just his thumb. While still playing with Suicidal Tendencies, he and Ronald Jr. toured with Stanley Clarke and were members of Young Jazz Giants and the Next Step. These groups featured artists including Kamasi Washington, Cameron Graves, and Miles Mosley. Additionally, Thundercat contributed to many Sa-Ra projects including work with Flying Lotus. In 2011, he was heard on recordings by Snoop Dogg and Ty Dolla $ign. The same year he released his debut album The Golden Age of Apocalypse. His second album came in 2013 titled Apocalypse and marked his Billboard 200 debut. In the following years, Thundercat did session work with Mac Miller, Flying Lotus, Kendrick Lamar, and Kamasi Washington. He contributed to Kendrick’s “These Walls” which won the 2015 Grammy for Best Rap/Sung Collaboration. Thundercat’s next album came in 2017 titled Drunk which featured Kenny Loggins and Michael McDonald on the single “Show You the Way.” It hit number 50 on the Billboard 200. By the end of the 2010s decade, Thundercat added additional session work with artists including Childish Gambino, Janelle Monáe, Kali Uchis, Anderson .Paak, and Danny Brown. His next album came at the turn of the decade titled What It Is which was a tribute to the death of Mac Miller. This album entered the Billboard 200 at number 38 and won the Grammy for Best Progressive R&B Album. In more recent years, Thundercat has worked with artists including Silk Sonic, the Gorillaz, and Tame Impala. You might have even seen him in The Book of Boba Fett where he portrayed the Modifier.


Afrofuturism, Funk, R&B, Bass

Scheduled at Bonnaroo

Friday (Link to Daily Schedules)