I am terribly saddened to hear that powerhouse Detroit drummer Terry Thunder Hughley made his transition today. Always ready with that winning smile and his righteous pocket, Terry anchored Detroit’s legendary Sun Messengers, and was also the house drummer for the Detroit Pistons, and through his illustrious career he supplied the rhythm for David Ruffin, 5 Special, Enchantment,The Dramatics, The Platters, L. J. Reynolds, New Birth, Little Carl Carlton, Mitch Ryder, Black Merda, Bobby Franklin’s Insanity, The Drifters, The Coasters, Kim Weston, Ollie Woodson of the Temptations, Sir Mack Rice, and many more.
Our paths really didn’t cross that often, but Terry was one of those cats who walks in the room, and you know he’s about to handle his business. He would laugh and joke, but when he hit that snare drum, you knew he was very serious about his craft.
We laughed that we were finally able to jam together when Steffanie Christi’an and I appeared as part of the 2014 Don Was Detroit All-Star Revue, as Terry manned his customary spot on the drummer’s throne. Watch the video of our performance of Bob Seger’s “Lookin’ Back” below.
Terry’s presence was as impactful as his playing, and he will be deeply missed. Rest In The Funk, Terry Thunder.