Someone ought to erect a monument to Pete Thomas for services to rock music – MUSIC MAGAZINE
Quite a remarkable statement on its own, but the fact that the person honoured in this way is not a guitar hero but a self taught sax player and college trained composer is even more remarkable. Pete has subsequently been paid a further compliment by Virgin Vision when they asked him to make a saxophone instruction video for worldwide release.
But then Pete Thomas doesn’t mess around. One of his first professional gigs was with Fats Domino. Pete is probably one of the first British musicians to feature with this 11 piece New Orleans band both as a soloist and as a member of the legendary horn section.
It was this connection that led to a musical partnership with Joe Jackson as co-arranger and saxophonist on records and world tours. This partnership was resumed on Joe Jackson’s film score and soundtrack album for Francis Ford Coppola’s movie Tucker for which Pete features as a soloist.
More recently he was commissioned by Island/Polygram to produce the live recording and mixing of PJ Harvey’s Forum concert for MTV and video documentary Reeling as well as co-producing with her the tribute to Kurt Weill: Ballad Of The Soldier’s Wife for Sony Classical.
Not satisfied with simply helping others to create great music he has recently been involved in composition and production himself with some highly acclaimed work which has led him into the demanding world of TV films, commercials and record production. His successes in this area include composing music for Michael Caine’s feature film Blue Ice (commissioned source music), American Kick Boxer II (full score), The Late Show: Movies From Hell – BBC2, Signals – Channel 4 ,Best – The Movie and a series of stylish, unique and highly musical TV ads for Tennent’s, Dry Blackthorn, Sainsbury’s, Orangina, Holsten Pils, Playstation, Pantene and many more.
His music for the Tennent’s ad was used as the soundtrack to the film Night in the Naked City (directed by Amanda Roberts)
When he’s not touring or working as a composer he’s much in demand as a multi-horn session player and arranger. He works with producers such as Adamski, Flood, Rod Argent, Pete Wingfield, Gus Dudgeon, Robin Millar, Stuart Colman, and Marshall Jefferson on projects for artists including PJ Harvey, R.E.M., Cliff Richard, Elton John, Richard Thompson, Robert Cray, Keziah Jones and Kim Wilde.
As well as his Rock and Pop music credits Pete is well respected as a jazz musician. One time member of award winning fusion band Swift he has also featured with the Thad Jones Orchestra, Loose Tubes, Slim Gaillard, Jimmy Witherspoon, Jon Hendricks and Laverne Baker.
Pete Thomas is a consummate musician and an uninhibited performer, totally at ease in any musical idiom. He deals equally effortlessly with conducting an orchestra or programming for a modern pop session. He’s totally at one with the synthesizers, samplers, computers and midi controllers demanded by and responsible for today’s commercial music as well as breaking new ground by pioneering the saxophone-to-MIDI interface.
– International Musician
Listen to Pete Thomas on Spotify
This latest release evokes the sleazy world of 1940s basement bars and demonstrates how the sax remains a truly emotional instrument. Discarding the flurry of of notes approach, Pete makes each note count and every blast tells a story. The title track sets the tone with its steamy lines, while the ballad Love Them is sumptuously refined. This is a superb package for any aspiring player as well as fans of this timeless style
– Keith Ames – (Musician Magazine)
Pete Thomas delivers an unabashed , R & B tinged love letter…this is meat and potatoes, served with a hot sauce.
– Clive Davis (Sunday Times review of Mr Lucky)
Storming sax from top exponent Pete, who benefits both from having the talent to compose a string of blistering numbers and the opportunity to call upon a crack team of supporting musicians…Riveting across all 16 tracks.
– Keith Ames – (Musician Magazine)
Thomas plays an impressive growling saxophone that has a humourous, teasing air of menace.
– Mary Ellison (Jazz Express)
Pete Thomas, saxophonist sublime…Thomas’s saxophone playing is something special.
– Richard Mazda (New Hi Fi Sound)
His first album gives only a brief idea of what he can do but jazz purists cannot sneer at him.You don’t have to look constipated to take a good solo.
– Jack Massarik (The Wire)
Thomas is a demonic player, abrasive and articulate.
– Russell Lack (The Wire)
Pete Thomas is indisputably an accomplished saxophone player and this is beautifully exemplified on the echoey, haunting Raptures.
– Karen Faux (Music Week)
It would be difficult to find a musician more unpretentious and unaffected than Pete Thomas.
– Simon Mills (Girl About Town)
Pete Thomas’s dirty sax rules…
– Lloyd Bradley (Q Magazine)
Someone ought to erect a monument to Pete Thomas for services to rock music. (Before you rave about **** check this guy out for yourself).
Only when Pete Thomas arrives on stage to blow a few screaming choruses through a tenor which is large enough on him to scuff his shoes do you feel that a kindred spirit may be in the building.
– LaurieTaylor (NewSociety)
(Review of Slim Gaillard at Ronnie Scotts