Slim Jim Phantom
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Slim Jim Phantom
Slim Jim Phantom
Slim Jim Phantom Adelaide 2006.jpg
Slim Jim Phantom - Australia and New Zealand tour (2006)
Background information
James McDonnell
Slim Jim Phantom
Born (1961-03-21) March 21, 1961 (age 57)[1]
Brooklyn, New York City, New York, U.S.
  • Drummer
  • musician
  • songwriter
  • Drums
  • vocals

James McDonnell (born March 21, 1961), known by the stage name Slim Jim Phantom, is the drummer for Stray Cats.[2] Alongside band mates Brian Setzer and Lee Rocker, he spearheaded the neo-rockabilly movement of the early 1980s.

Phantom currently plays in the band Kat Men with Imelda May guitarist Darrel Higham.


Born in Brooklyn and raised in Massapequa, New York, Phantom grew up listening to his parent's jazz records and by the age of ten took up the drums. "To be honest I think the drums chose me, I can't remember ever wanting to do anything else." remembers Phantom. Immersing himself in the art of drumming and the world of music, Phantom took lessons with Mousie Alexander (who played with Benny Goodman) which included the study of jazz and working through books by Jim Chapin and Ted Reed.[]

By the late 1970s he was playing in bands with his school friend and bassist Lee Rocker and they soon joined forces with guitarist Brian Setzer. During downtime from the Stray Cats, Phantom played in several groups, notably one with Rocker and guitarist Earl Slick, which produced two albums,[3] and The Swing Cats. Phantom also played with Jerry Lee Lewis. He formed Col. Parker along with former Guns N' Roses guitarist Gilby Clarke, releasing the album Rock n Roll Music in 2001.[4]

SJP drumming on a two-piece kit while standing

He often performed with the Stray Cats using only a bass drum, snare drum, hi-hat and a crash cymbal, rather than a full drum kit.

Most recently he has been involved with three main projects; his own roots-rock trio, Dead Men Walking with Kirk Brandon, Mike Peters and Captain Sensible and The Head Cat starring Lemmy and Danny B. Harvey.

He was married to the actress Britt Ekland from 1984 to 1992 and has a son, T. J. (born 1988) with her.



  1. ^ "Official Web Site". Slim Jim Phantom. Retrieved . 
  2. ^ Huey, Steve "Stray Cats Biography", Allmusic, retrieved 2010-11-21
  3. ^ Demalon, Tom "Phantom, Rocker & Slick Biography", Allmusic, retrieved 2010-11-21
  4. ^ Prato, Greg "Col. Parker Biography", Allmusic, retrieved 2010-11-21

External links

  This article uses material from the Wikipedia page available here. It is released under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share-Alike License 3.0.



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