The Last Remaining MC5 Member and Drummer Dennis Thompson Passed Away At 75

The Last Remaining MC5 Member and Drummer Dennis Thompson Passed Away At 75 | Society Of Rock Videos

via Click On Detroit | Local 4 | WDIV / Youtube

Dennis Thompson, the iconic drummer and sole surviving member of MC5, has passed away at 75. News of his death broke via the Detroit Free Press, revealing that Thompson had been undergoing rehabilitation at MediLodge of Taylor following a heart attack suffered in April.

In a poignant reflection shared on his website in 2018, Thompson reminisced about his early passion for music, recalling how he caught “the bug for playing music” at the tender age of 13. Despite disappointing his parents by choosing the band over school, Thompson expressed gratitude for their support. “Who would know what fate had in store for me,” he mused, reflecting on his journey from humble beginnings to rock stardom with MC5.

Thompson’s Impact on MC5’s Signature Sound

Joining MC5 in 1965, Thompson became an integral part of the band’s classic lineup, renowned for his aggressive drumming style that earned him the moniker “Machine Gun.” His contributions were instrumental to MC5’s groundbreaking sound, evident in their influential albums of the ’70s and their seminal 1969 LP “Kick Out the Jams.” Thompson’s impact extended beyond the studio, as he played on numerous live releases and reportedly contributed to tracks on MC5’s unreleased final album, “Heavy Lifting.”

Despite his hospitalization at the time, news of MC5’s induction into the 2024 Rock & Roll Hall of Fame class brought joy to Thompson. His response, a resounding “It’s about fucking time!” captured his candid spirit and unwavering dedication to the band’s legacy.

Reflecting on Thompson’s reaction to the honor, Becky Tyner, widow of MC5 vocalist Rob Tyner, recalled his palpable excitement. “Dennis was thrilled with it, so excited and happy,” she shared. Despite his health challenges, Thompson remained optimistic about his recovery, eager to return home to his beloved cat, Annie.

With Thompson’s passing, the world mourns the loss of a legendary musician whose indelible mark on rock music will endure for generations to come. As the final chapter of MC5 closes, Thompson’s legacy lives on in the hearts of fans and fellow musicians alike, a testament to his enduring influence and unyielding passion for music.

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