One-armed Burnaby drummer becomes internet sensation
VANCOUVER -- "Duality" by the heavy metal band Slipknot is a challenging tune to play for most drummers. But 22-year-old Jack Thomas from Burnaby, B.C., has mastered the song, doing so with only one arm.
A video of one of his performances was uploaded on YouTube by Drumeo, an Abbotsford-based company that provides online drum lessons.
Within a week, the video had already been viewed 500,000 times.
"Drumming, for me, is the most therapeutic and uplifting thing that I have ever done," said Thomas.
On Sept. 4 2015, Thomas lost his dominant arm while at work. He remembers the moment it got caught in a conveyer belt before he blacked out.
Thomas recalls asking his co-worker afterwards if his arm was there.
"He said, 'Sorry buddy, but your arm is gone,'" said Thomas.
But he didn't let that stop him. Almost immediately after his surgery, Thomas picked up his drumsticks and practiced, something he says he does often at Lindsay Music Studios in Port Coquitlam.
Now, his YouTube video is shining the spotlight on his talent and garnering international praise.
"He’s like Def Leppard’s drummer, but with steroids," commented one viewer, referring to musician Rick Allen who beat the odds after losing his left arm in a near-fatal car accident.