Drumming up a dream support gig

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YOUNG drummer Tom Potter has gained his first support slot after making it to the top 10 of UK Young Drummer of the Year — despite being too young to attend the gig himself.

The 13-year-old, from Clarkston, made his way to Leamington Spa at the beginning of the month alongside almost 500 competitors under the age of 17.

An S2 Williamwood pupil, Tom has only been playing for three years thanks to tutoring by Jamie McGrory at the Loud ‘n’ Proud School of Rock in Paisley.

But all that practising must be paying off, as he was handpicked for the final 40 before making it to the top 10.

Tom told The Extra: “I played a two minute drum solo, which I had previously practised, a song to play along with that I was a month ago, and then another song with a live band, which I had never heard.

“I really enjoyed the competition and met lots of new friends — I felt very honoured to be selected for the top 10.”

The southsider may be runner up for the title, but his trip bagged him a support slot at the O2 ABC on March 17, alongside world-renowned drummer Thomas Lang, when promoters Mike Dolbear and Rhythm Base approached after the competition.

Unfortunately, the Drum Clinic session is for over 14s only — meaning Tom’s friends can’t come along to see him play — but it will allow him to rub shoulders with musicians both new and established.

The talented youngster’s idols include John Bonham of Led Zeppelin, and he’s hoping to be a professional drummer when he grows up.

He added: “My dream gig would be at a really large venue like a football stadium or an O2 arena. I would love to play with bands like Foals or Kings of Leon.”

For now, Tom’s keeping his hand in with two groups; a jazz band called The Williams Quartet and a covers band called Bad Jeff — as well as entertaining pupils, teachers and parents at various Williamwood events.

Proud dad Brian commented: “Although Tom was a runner up, to have played on such a stage was a remarkable achievement at the age of 13.”

Tickets to see Tom and more at the Thomas Lang Drum Clinic — March 17, 7pm start — are available from www.ticketweb.co.uk.