Tom Bernett - Leader, Drummer, Vocalist


Tom Bernett has more than four decades of professional experience as a drummer, vocalist, and entertainer. He is also a producer of audio and video projects, as well as producing live events.

During his career he has: worked in USO shows; traveled over 400,000 miles with 1970s show bands; played in dinner theater and regional theater pit orchestras; worked in commercial recording studios as a drummer, vocalist, and voice-over artist; toured with the American Cavalcade of Big Bands; backed internationally famous entertainers; and in recent years as a drum teacher, has had students accepted at Berklee College of Music, Indiana University School of Music, Appalachian State University School of the Arts, University of North Carolina at Greensboro, and University of North Carolina at Pembroke.

His recent jazz drumming credits include shows with Grammy-winning jazz guitarist Stanley Jordan, trumpet innovator Charles Lazarus, jazz vocalists Marlene Ver Planck and Melva Houston, and New Orleans trumpet phenom Shamarr Allen. Recent regional theater credits as a pit drummer include Evita and The Parchman Hour.

His past experience includes:

  • Local Clubs (Indiana, Michigan, Chicago), 1968-1969
  • USO Shows/Navy, 1969-1971
  • Touring Show Groups, 1971-1973
  • College Music Major, 1973-1974
  • Dixieland and Club Shows (New Orleans), 1974-1975
  • Touring Show Groups and Touring Pop Groups, 1975-1979
  • Celebrity Theater; Dinner Theater; and Studio Work (Chicago), 1979-1981
  • Touring Big Band Review, Las Vegas, 1981-1982
  • Corporate Shows, Studio Work, Club Dates (Minneapolis), 1982-1995
  • Independent Audio and Video Producer, 1995-2002
  • Drummer, Vocalist, Event Producer, Percussion Teacher, 2003-present
Over the years, he has played backup to: Steve Allen, Tiny Tim, Julius LaRosa, Steve Lawrence/Eydie Gorme, Jack Jones, Terry Gibbs, Art Lund, David Allyn, the Lettermen, the Spinners, the Temptations, Rodney Dangerfield, Redd Foxx, Phyllis Diller, Bill Cosby, Rich Matteson, Ray Papai's Nirva Nova Orchestra, Trumpeter Warren Kime, Skip DeVol, Bozo the Clown, the Emmett Kelly Jr Circus Show, the Cat's Pajamas, Fred Steele, Duke Kane & Company, Paul Lennon, and a whole bunch of others that he's forgotten.

When he is not busy performing with or promoting the Swing Street Little Big Band, he is also in demand as a free-lance and substitute drummer in the mid-Atlantic region, playing in regional theater orchestras and in various musical groups performing a multitude of styles including big band, retro pop, jazz, southern rock, beach music, blues, dixieland, and even Bavarian Oktoberfest music complete with lederhosen.

Note Tom's knees on the left end.

(Past member of AFM Minneapolis 30-73 and Chicago 10-208)

For more information or to book Swing Street for your event,
CALL: 910-692-8839 or EMAIL: