Pat Thomas began playing music at the age of eight. He studied classical music and reggae was an early interest. Thomas was inspired to take up jazz after seeing legendary pianist Oscar Peterson on television. By 1979, Thomas was performing seriously as an improviser. His experimental leanings manifested themselves in the form of electronics -- he plays and programs electronic keyboards and uses pre-recorded tapes in his music. In 1986, he became a member of Ghosts, a band that also included flutist/saxophonist Pete McPhail and percussionist Matt Lewis. In 1988, Thomas' interest in electronic music was rewarded with a commission to write two new compositions for his own ten-piece electro-acoustic ensemble, Monads; the group included vocalist Phil Minton, violinist Phil Durrant, bassist Marcio Matttos, and trumpeter Jon Corbett. Thomas was invited to participate in guitarist Derek Bailey's Company Week (an annual series of concerts featuring different combinations of improvisers) in 1990 and 1991. He's played in drummer Tony Oxley's quartet and Celebration Orchestra, and with soprano saxophonist Lol Coxhill in a variety of combinations. Other ad hoc collaborators have included Steve Beresford, Thurston Moore, and Eugene Chadbourne. In 1992, Thomas formed the quartet Scatter with Minton, Roger Turner, and Dave Tucker; the band toured the U.K. in 1993 and 1997. Thomas is also a member -- with drummer Joe Gallivan and electric guitarist Gary Smith -- of Powerfield, a power trio that's recorded for Gallivan's newjazz.com label. Thomas has recorded for several independent jazz labels in Europe, including Incus, Leo, Intakt, and Acta. In 2001, Emanem released 3 Pianos, by Thomas and fellow pianists Beresford and Veryan Weston.
Pat Thomas Biography
by Chris Kelsey