Rock the blue! 

Lots of dates coming in for 2022. July 4th is booked...yet another date with the NYPD.   I've done half a dozen of these over the past year.  Always very honored to play for these folks. Back the blue? I say ROCK the blue!

Special live video for Father's Day... 

In honor of June being COME ALIVE month, we’ll celebrate with LOOKING FOR COWBOYS from that album. I wrote this song for my dad as a Father’s Day gift.
 

Happy Anniversary! 

My dad was playing a gig and some mutual friends set up a blind date. The deal was, the singer who came up to request a certain song would be the one he was supposed to ask out. So he’s waiting on this song all night.  But the singer (my mom) chickens out and sends her friend up to request the song. On a break, my dad, kind of underwhelmed, says to the guys in the band, “Yeah, she’s all right, but her FRIEND – what’s SHE all about? What’s goin’ on there?”

They finally got it all straightened out and ended up getting married, a whole lot of April 14ths ago.

Hang out and have a drink and some tunes with us! 

I finally got to hang with my buddy and violinist extraordinaire Aubrey Richmond out in Los Angeles this past Thursday night - without actually having to fly into LAX! 

A year ago, when musicians everywhere suddenly found themselves home at night, Aubrey decided to just turn on the Facebook Live thing, crank up the fireplace, grab a few instruments, and hang out with a glass of wine or two (or three or four) and just talk. And talk. And talk. About anything. About everything. It has been communal therapy for musicians, and non-musicians for that matter. And this time, I was her special guest! 

Aubrey tours and records with everyone from Shooter Jennings to Guns & Roses’ Duff McKagan. Most recently, she played on Marilyn Manson’s latest release. Now, anyone THAT versatile is somebody you wanna hang out and have a drink with. Which is precisely what we’ve done for years, but now since we can’t do it in person, well... 

So we drank and talked - for three hours! Put a bottle of wine in front of an Italian dude who already talks way too much anyway, and that's what you get. We were having so much fun that viewers kept saying "play some damned music!" (which I eventually did get around to).

There's no way I'd subject you to three hours of that, so here’s a (mercifully) edited recap of our bi-coastal hang…

CLICK HERE

Becoming Cary Grant... 

My wife has indoctrinated me into Doris Day films from the late 50s and early 60s, which I've never seen.  This is our new thing now; we crack a bottle of wine and watch these at night.  I’m still getting used to being home at night, but since all the live dates are coming back, we’d better get in as many movies as we can.

Tonight I saw Cary Grant for the first time and I have assumed his continental English accent and elegant, subtle, nuanced baritone. It shall be the way I speak from this very moment on. Why, I'm even talking that way as you read this, as you can plainly tell. I daresay you'll all find this as dreadfully annoying as she does. The best part is that I've discovered yet another way to be dreadfully annoying.

Not the least bit Irish, but St. Patrick's Day is always very special to me... 

I'm not the least bit Irish, but St. Patrick's Day for me is always a special memory of my first-ever paying gig.  My dad was the guitarist in the backing band of an Irish singer who would come over from Belfast several times a year and play the US. They always did big business in NYC and upstate NY, and there was an enormous Irish festival there every year for St. Patrick's Day.

One day, my dad gets off the phone and says they're doing that festival again, and the guy needs a bass player for this gig on short notice.  I was eleven.  I had taken up bass two years earlier, and had just recently gotten my first-ever instrument, an old Hofner-copy Beatle-esque bass, with action so high you could win an archery contest with it (it still adorns my wall at home)...

...so I was suddenly pressed into duty.  One of my friends called as were were leaving, wanting me to meet the gang and play football.  "Tell him I gotta play a job" I said matter-of-factly, savoring the words.

There was no rehearsal.  My dad explained to me during the long drive to the festival that "It's pretty much all three-chord stuff, kinda simple and a lot of fun, but it moves pretty fast.  Just follow me and listen to the singer; you'll be fine."  I got there and met the other guys in the band, who had flown in from Ireland. I could barely understand any of them.  I remember my dad being really proud and thrilled that I was joining him.  We played about an hour, then took a break and I sat with the guys, having my first corned-beef and cabbage, and my first beer ("Don't tell your mother" my Dad whispered, conspiringly).  Then we played another two sets, I got paid a couple hundred bucks and just smiled the whole way home.

It marked the beginning of the end of whatever football career I may have been destined for. 

Ah, memories... 

When I was 15 or 16, we used to do Friday and Saturday nights at this rowdy old roadhouse in the middle of nowhere.  The other guys in the band were in their twenties and thirties, so they got me all the beer I could drink, and I just lined the empty bottles up on the top of my amp and played all night and thought, "Man, I'm 'on the road' - this is awesome!"  I probably thought I'd hit the big time.

They owners of the bar would put us up overnight at their seedy little motel down the hill (a place where even congressmen and their hookers wouldn't be found), and these nasty, venomous spiders ("Fiddlebacks" as they're also called) were nesting all over the rooms.  Now that I look back on it, that was by far the least dangerous thing about that gig.

 

There can be only one... 

To the throngs of you who have inundated me with inquiries about the “other” Jefferson Thomas (I was here first!), I am acutely aware of the problem.  You fire up your favorite listening device or platform or whatever, to hear yours truly and you occasionally come across songs that…really don’t sound like me. 

Now, to be clear, I have nothing against somebody else calling themselves “Jefferson Thomas” (what impeccable taste!), and I’ve heard the kid’s stuff and it ain’t bad.  He’s a kid, just starting out, and it’s his debut EP.  I commend him for showing the initiative to get his whole musical thing together and get it out into the world. 

I initially contacted his distributor, who was of minimal help for obvious reasons; only he should be able to make changes to his distribution accounts.  My distributors have been extremely pro-active and helpful, doing everything they can to get his release out of my accounts.

Finally, I went into private investigator mode (or stalker mode I suppose, depending on how you look at it), and tracked the kid down and emailed him.  He responded right away and was very nice and apologetic.  I told him there was no need to apologize, he had done nothing wrong; it was his distributor that assigned HIS release to MY accounts.  I told him only he was authorized to straighten this out with his distributor, and rightly so, and take charge of his music.

Then I thought I’d toss in a little incentive by pointing out that unless and until he acts, whatever money he should be making will be coming to me, and I really don’t want that.  I said, “I can see you really put the time in on this thing and did the work, and I wanna see YOU make YOUR money.”  Sadly, he said he didn’t care about that – which may have been the most disheartening part of this whole affair.  An entire generation is now completely ambivalent toward the concept of “intellectual property."  But I’ll save my prosyletizing on shit like that for some other time…   

It’s been over a year now, but we’re still working on this.  In the meantime, kid – I’ll take the eleven bucks I’ll get from your first billion streams and head to McDonalds.  Just livin’ the dream…

 

Yea Verily, 

The Jefferson

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