The west coast vocal master…
Tommy Funderburk has been one of the most hired background singers since the early 80’s. Tommy Funderburk was born in North Carolina, and grew up in the southern parts of the United States. He listened to the Beatles, r&b and soul music. Tommy played in a band at college while planning to be a high school history teacher. The band opened for Andrae Crouch. Crouch and his drummer encouraged Tommy to come to L.A. There he met someone from Earth, Wind and Fire who introduced him to David Foster and Jay Graydon who were looking for a singer for their project Airplay. Funderburk joined Airplay as their lead singer. The rest is history… Tommy’s career as a session singer and songwriter had started.
Tommy met drummer Bob Wilson from the group Seawind and in 1984 they formed The Front and recorded an album that was followed by a U.S tour in 1984 and a European tour in 1985. On the tour the line-up was Tommy Funderburk on vocals, Bob Wilson on drums, Buddy Nuanez on guitar, a bassplayer and John Andrew Schreiner on keyboards.
In 1986 you could hear him sing a track called “Never Too Late To Start” on the movie soundtrack “Running Scared”. Tommy Funderburk also participated on a collection album called “Voices” featuring some great singers including Tommy Funderburk, Bob Carlisle, John Elefante among others. The track featuring Tommy Funderburk is called “Lift Up My Voice”.
In 1987 Bob Wilson and Tommy Funderburk reformed the band and brought in Larry Williams on keyboards and saxophone, changed name to What if and released an album on RCA.
A couple of years later Tommy met Bruce Gaitsch at a recording session with Richard Marx, and they wrote a song together that would later be included on the King of Hearts album. They were signed by Polygram, but for some reason Polygram never released anything… The album “King of Hearts” was released in 1994 in Sweden, Japan and Germany, and it included some songs from the sessions for Polygram and some new material.
In 1994 Tommy Funderburk sing lead vocals on some parts on the Boston album “Walk On”. In 1995 an album featuring Tommy Funderburk and bassist David Miner was released called The Dwelling Place. In 1996 Tommy was a part of the Jay Graydon All Star Band tour, together with Jay Graydon, Joseph Williams, Bill Cantos, Sherwood Ball, Tris Imboden, Jay Oliver and Ned Doheny.
In 1996 Tommy Funderburk and Bruce Gaitsch recorded a follow-up to the first King of Hearts album called Joy Will Come. That album was released during the Autumn 1996 in Sweden, Germany and Japan.
In 1997 Funderburk did back-up vocals for Whitesnake on their album “Restless Heart”.
King of Hearts is no longer a working group – Tommy Funderburk and Bruce Gaitsch have both moved on to other things. In December 1997, Thoughtscape released a King of Hearts compilation CD called No Matter What, and that’s probably the last thing we’re gonna hear from King of Hearts.
In June 1998, Pony Canyon (Japan) released an acapella album featuring Tommy Funderburk, Joseph Williams, Bobby Kimball and Jason Scheff. The album contains acapella covers of hits from the seventies, for example Stairway To Heaven, I Shot The Sheriff, What’s Goin’ On and Sir Duke.
Tommy Funderburk works together with Greg Mathieson to write songs for his soloalbum that were expected to be released in Japan in May 1999. The album wasn´t released, and Tommy Funderburk continues to do vocal works in the studio for many artists such as: Andrae Crouch, Motley Crue, Whitesnake, Boston, Yes, Steve Lukather, Richard Marx, Russ Taff, Amy Grant, Rick Springfield, Starship, REO Speedwagon, Coverdale Page, Jon Anderson and many others.
Anything For You
Frontiers Records 2005
Tracks: Learning How To Love, Remember Our Love, Anything For You, Only You Can Give Me, To Say You Love Me, You Got The Love, Skin, The Garden, Second Chance & Say A Little Prayer.
Musicians on the Anything For You album: Tommy Funderburk, Fabrizio V. Zee Grossi, Arny Rothstein, JM Scattolin, Rob Vanni, Phil Brown, Joachin Cannaiuolo & Biggs Brice.
The Dwelling Place
Pioneer Records 1994
Tracks: Behold He Does Not Sleep, The Calling, Holy Holy Holy, He Walks With Me, Be Still, How Great Thou Art, Resurrect My Eyes, All of My Love, Dwelling Place, Rain On Us, Great Is Thy Faithfulness & Always.
Musicians on the The Dwelling Place album: Tommy Funderburk, David Miner, Novi Novog, Walter Rodriguez, Kate Miner, Tata Vega, Yvonne Williams & Reggie Burrell.
RCA Records 1987
Tracks: What if, If This Is Love, Perfect World, One Look, Ride The Hurricane, She Rocked My World, Love Is A Fire, When Right Is Wrong & Turn And Walk Away.
Musicians on the What If album: Tommy Funderburk, Bob Wilson, Larry Williams, Michael Landau, Larry Klein, Casey Young, Paulinho Da Costa, Bill Champlin, Bob Carlisle, Eric Persing, Jakko M Jakszyk & Dann Huff.
Refuge Records 1984
Tracks: It's Hard To Take, Holy Night, All Under Him, King Of Glory, The Promise, Silent Night, Tonight & How Long.
Musicians on the The Front album: Tommy Funderburk, Bob Wilson, Larry Williams, Dann Huff, Dennis Bellfield, Kevin Clark, Tom Kelly, Linda McCreary, Tata Vega, Andraé Crouch, Phyllis St. James & Kristie Edwards.