There are rock stars, and then there are stars who happen to be rockers. Great rockers. Know what great rockers do when they grow up? They produce... more great rockers and, if Kevin Tooley has anything to do with it, another great star or two. This very successful musician, music producer and native New Yorker has traversed decades of tours, groupies, cities and continents to enter an elite class within the music industry.
Highly desired as a drummer during the Punk & New Wave era, Tooley played with The Mundanes and Cool It Reba. He survived rock-and-roll hall-of-famers John Cale and Lou Reed’s boot camp, mixing with the likes of Roy Lichtenstein and Andy Warhol among countless other art legends and music royalty.
Growing up in Yonkers, New York, Tooley had his first drum lesson with the legendary Gene Krupa at the age of nine. At age 18 his band, The Mundanes, was opening for theRamones, Talking Heads and the B-52s. At 20 he was playing drums for German countertenor Klaus Nomi (noted backup singer for David Bowie) and John Cale of The Velvet Underground, touring worldwide. He has shared the stage with English singer/songwriter Eric Burden of The Animalsand has written and produced for vocalist Julee Cruise, best known for ‘Falling,’ the theme song from David Lynch’s television series, Twin Peaks.
Some of Tooley’s credits include Julee Cruise (2002) The Art Of Being A Girl (producer); Klaus Nomi (1999) Eclipsed: The Best Of Klaus Naomi (drums); and Eric Andersen (2004) The Street Was Always There (shaker). Demonstrating his versatility, he also shared his talents with The Hotheads (1996) World Wide Vibe (producer-background vocals /drums/ arranger/piano/percussion).
Tooley has worked with many other notable artists, including Bobby Thomas Jr. of Weather Report, Lenny Kravitz, Macy Gray, Tommy Two Tone, Amber, Chris Frantz ofThe Talking Heads, Mike Wancheck and Andy York of The John Mellencamp Band and Chris Spedding of Roxy Music.
Tooley has created various television and film scores, and he had a track placed with the Grammy-nominated television series, The Sopranos. Additional credits are MTV Europe and Garland Jeffreys, whose collaborated albums include Johnny’s Blues: A Tribute to Johnny Cash (drums) and Light of Day: A Tribute to Bruce Springsteen (drums and percussion), both of which made In recent years Tooley has played with the Miami-based indie group, KAYAKMAN, producing their CD Starhunter and plays drums occasionally at South Beach’s famed RokBar. He has owned studios in Miami and New York, working with Little Wayne to Cappadonna of the Wu-Tang Clan to Charli Baltimore to Betty Wright, the clean up woman herself.
Kevin Tooley is currently working in New York City with ‘80s icon band, Certain General. His most recent project is Dog Soldier Society (DSS), a four-piece rock-and-roll band that formed at Collective Hardware on the Bowery, just a few blocks away from where it all began at CBGB’s, Manhattan’s legendary rock club.