Spencer Thomas Band

Spencer Thomas Band

 Austin, Texas, USA
BandBluesSoul

Spencer Thomas belts out his soulful juke joint groove with a smooth blend of polish and sweat. His band’s heavy-hitting line-up holds the bar high for Texas Blues Bands.

Biography

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WINNERS of the 2009 Heart O' Texas Blues Challenge, The Spencer Thomas Band represented Austin at the 26th International Blues Challenge this January (2010) in Memphis.

A Blues Singer and Songwriter in a guitar town, Thomas drags his Texas Blues Band deep into soul and swamp pop territory.
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The Spencer Thomas Band released "Live From The Saxon Pub" on V-8 Records in January 2010. The CD features 8 live tracks recorded at the famed South Austin venue.
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Spencer's first solo album, "Voodoo Dream" was named to the 'Texas Top Ten' in The Austin Chronicle's 2007 Critic Picks.

Long time music guru at The Chronicle, Margaret Moser wrote that he "does his stuff with the kind of Texas panache that should be getting raves from peers and press."
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Spencer was named "Best White Soul Shouter" by Third Coast Music Magazine following a 2007 SXSW showcase .
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Spencer's voice was featured on Pat Boyack & The Prowlers "Super, Blue, and Funky" (Bullseye Blues/ Rounder Records - 1997). Together, they played top blues venues across the country, such as
- BB King's (Memphis & LA),
- Buddy Guy's Legends(Chicago),
- House of Blues (Boston & Orlando)
- Slippery Noodle (Indianapolis)
- Stevie Ray's (Louisville)
- Grand Emporium (Kansas City)
- Mother's (San Luis Obispo)
- Blue Cafe (Long Beach)
- Memphis in May Fest 1998
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Spencer's first band, The Solid Senders (w Keith Ferguson on bass), released two CD's on Holland's Tramp Records and toured Norway and The Netherlands in 1994 - 1995.
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In the late 1990's, Thomas and his band, The Big Pow Wow, hosted a popular weekly blues jam and welcomed a generation of new musicians to the Austin scene.
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Spencer maintained his own band The Spencer Thomas Band intermittently between these other groups, and has performed continuously on the Texas scene since 1998.
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PERSONAL HISTORY –
Spencer was born in 1956 in the hill country north of San Antonio, and grew up tuned in to the popular hits on AM radio and local jukeboxes. A good student and athlete in school - and otherwise a fairly regular seventies kid - his passion for music was really ignited when he stumbled in to the musical counter-culture springing up around his Central Texas home, most notably in Luckenbach and in Willie Nelson’s rise to Outlaw notoriety.

From San Antonio to Lubbock, to New Mexico and back again, Spencer left a trail of odd jobs as tire changer, cedar chopper, land surveyor, oilfield worker, bicycle mechanic, bartender, and . . . student of English Literature. In 1980, he landed in Austin with a Bachelor of Arts from UTSA and dreams of making it as a singer/songwriter/rockstar.

Having first picked up the guitar at college in Lubbock, Spencer later fell in with a group of casual pickers in the New Mexico oil town of Hobbs. He and his cronies learned songs by John Prine, Neil Young, and the like.

A loner in Austin, Spencer began putting his lyrics to music and haunting the local open mic circuit, where his vocal talent was appreciated and encouraged. However, while his guitar was his best friend in writing songs, he soon learned it distracted him while performing, and he decided to specialize. He started looking for a band that wanted a singer.

Meanwhile, Austin’s ever evolving scene had moved away from the cosmic cowboys’, and in turn had embraced punk, new wave, reggae, and world music.

Spencer finally found his voice in the post T-birds / Stevie Ray blues revival of the mid-eighties. At the age of thirty, Spencer joined his first band, and became vocalist for The Solid Senders. Hector Watt was the band’s founder and guitarist, and he is responsible for introducing Spencer to the blues.

The Solid Senders became a mainstay of Austin's live music scene for a decade, eventually boasting Keith Ferguson on bass. The Senders gained an international reputation after cutting two albums for the Dutch label, Tramp Records.

Spencer's national debut was in 1997, with Dallas guitar slinger, Pat Boyack. After singing eight songs on Pat's third release, "Super Blue and Funky" (Bull's Eye Blues - Rounder), Spencer performed with Boyack’s band at major blues venues and festivals across the country.

After Bull’s Eye Blues opted out of a fourth record for Boyack, Spencer resumed playing with his band, keeping to the regional Texas scene. He has also worked with an ensemble group known as Reverend Ben T. and The Well Kept Secrets, and enjoys performing intermittently with other veterans of the Austin scene such as showman extraordinaire, Larry Lange, Bobby

Lyrics

Trouble

Written By: Spencer Thomas

Trouble -
You give me trouble all the time.
Trouble - Oh, I got a worried mind.
You tell me I'm your only one,
But I believe any minute you could be gone.

You give me heart ache, trouble and lies.
Baby, Baby, Baby, I don't understand why.
I miss you when we're apart,
But when we're together you just break my heart.

You give me trouble - trouble and doubt.
Trouble - Oh, how we gonna work it out?
You know after all I've tried
Sometimes it looks like you don't want to be satisfied.

What more can I give you, Baby?
You got everything I had.
When I ask for a little bit,
You haul off and get mad.

Well, I know that you love me, Baby
Or you wouldn't want to hurt me so bad.
Still, I keep on tryin' to please you.
That is so sad.

You come home in the morning.
And I ask you where you been.
You say I'm trying to start something,
And you walk out the door again.

Yeah, that's trouble - all the time
You give me trouble, and a worried mind.
Trouble; nothing but trouble.
You give me trouble.

Voodoo Dream

Written By: Spencer Thomas

I woke up screamin' from a voodoo dream.
There was a black cat scratchin' at my window screen,
Chicken feathers stickin' on my front door.
Stone cold shiver runnin' through my soul.
I believe. I believe. Woe is me.
Believe somebody put a spell on me.
It was a voodoo dream.

I was swimmin' up a hill through a thunderstorm.
I took a bull by the throat tryin' to avoid his horns.
I felt like I was slippin' off the end of my rope.
Cryin' to Saint Jude, "I got no hope."
I believe. I believe. Woe is me.
Believe somebody put a spell on me.
It was a voodoo dream.

I woke up screamin'.
I didn't think that I was dreamin'.
It seemed so real.
That's the way that it feels.

I went to the gypsy for a mojo trick, y'all.
She said, "Your life-line was running to a dead end quick, now.
Go bury five hundred dollars in a paper sack,
In a corner of the graveyard, and don't look back."
I believe. I believe. Woe is me.
Believe somebody put a spell on me.
It was a voodoo dream.

I got that goofy dust all around my bed,
Candles burnin' over my head.
Been drawing crosses out on the tombs of the dead.
Man, I need to sleep, but I'm too afraid.
Somebody - somebody went and put a hoodoo on me.
Somebody went and put a hoodoo upon me.
Was it you that put your hoodoo on me?
Was it you that put your hoodoo on me?
Whoa, I think it was you.
Whoa, I think you put your spell upon me.
I believe. I believe.
I believe. I believe. Woe is me.
Believe somebody put a spell on me.
It was a voodoo dream.
Voodoo Dream.

That's What Love Will Make You Do

Written By: Milton Campbell

When I see you smile, I start to shake inside
When I see you stroll, I lose my self control
That's what love will do for you;
That's what love will make you do.
Well, no matter how hard I fight it,
I'm still in love with you.

If you're ever in need, there's no limit to what I'd do,
I'd work eight days a week, bring all my money to you,
That's what love will do for you;
That's what love will make you do.
Well, no matter how hard I fight it,
I'm still in love with you.

Now they talk about beauty, Baby
You can stand the test (yes you can)
Now they talk about makin' love,
Honey, you're the best, yes you are
I don't want to brag about you too much
and give others ideas
I'm trying hard to express myself,
Baby this is how I feel.
That's what love will do for you;
That's what love will make you do.
Well, no matter how hard I fight it,
I'm still in love with you.

Blackjack

Written By: Ray Charles

Well, let me tell you people,
all about that blackjack game.
It's brought me nothin' but trouble,
I have only myself to blame,
Hey, hey, hey, yeah
How unlucky can one man be?
Well every quarter I get,
Blackjack takes it away from me.

My friends won't come around me
All because I've been so blind.
I can't even borrow a nickel
I've almost lost my mind,
Hey, hey, hey, yeah
How unlucky can one man be?
Well every quarter I get,
Blackjack takes it away from me.

Now I sat there with two tens,
And I thought I'd have some fun.
Dealer hit sixteen with a five -
Just enough to make twenty-one
Hey, hey, hey, yeah
How unlucky can one man be?
Well every quarter I get,
Blackjack takes it away from me.

Don't Give Her Tequila

Written By: Spencer Thomas

You can give her scotch, gin, or vodka too.
But here's one thing you better don't do.
Don't give her tequila. 'Cause if you give her tequila,
You can bet you'll regret you met.
You'll be looking for a safety net.

Now if you like the lady frisky and fine
Be quick and stick to whiskey and wine.
Don't give her tequila, 'cause I'll guarantee ya -
Your good times shot down in flames.
What a shame.

Have you heard that story 'bout Jeckyl and Hyde?
You give her one shot, you're in for a ride.
She's a hair trigger on the Mexican booze -
A time bomb tickin' with a real short fuse.
If you give her tequila, maybe next time you see her
She'll be dancin' in her birthday suit,
Daring all the cops to shoot. Whoa.

She'll nurse a martini or snifter of brandy,
And never get saucy, bossy, or randy
till you give her tequila. Man, tequila.
You flip a switch in her brain and she's off
Like a runaway train.

She can drive fine on a six-pack of beer.
Walk a straight line on everclear.
But don't give her tequila. 'Cause if you give her tequila
Say good-bye. Oh, why would you give her tequila?

No, don't give her tequila. Don't you give her tequila.
Well, whatever you do, Man, I'm telling you:
You can bet you'll regret you met,
And you'll be working without a net.
So, Friend, never forget: Don't give her tequila.
Man, don't give that girl none of that cactus juice.

Missin' Persons

Written By: Spencer Thomas

Well, Missin’ Persons Department?
Say, can you find my baby, please?
She went missin’ from our apartment.
Everything’s gone ‘cept the key.
Ain’t no sign of a struggle, but it look like foul play to me.

She ‘bout 5 feet five, she got eyes of blue,
Reddish brown hair, and she built like – whew
Missin’ persons send out your CSI’s
Put out one of them APB’s.
You know it ain’t like my girl to be gone so long from me.

Sen all your cop cars, with flashing red lights.
Look down in the bottom and out there in The Heights
Can you please find my baby?
Look in every dive and club
I’m afraid she’s been abducted by that Mean Gangster of Love.

Mr. Detective, stop foolin’ with that vice.
I need my baby ‘cause she treat me so nice.
Missin’ Persons, you’re my last hope.
You got to find my baby fast.
My neighbor told me she was slippin’ out for smokes and gas.

Now if you find my baby, please hold her down.
If she say I mistreat her, you know she’s just foolin’ around.
Missin’ Persons, Missin’ Persons. Aw, Missin’ Persons, if you please.
Go on and do your job – bring my Honey home to me.

Discography

In The Can for 2010 - Spencer w/ Michael Holt and gulf coast musicians in Port Arthur, TX Studio. To be released on GREAT RECORDINGS label.

2010 - "Live From The Saxon Pub" with the current band. the maiden voyage of V-8 Records. Produced by Michael Holt.

2007 - "Voodoo Dream" First solo album featuring 11 original songs and some of Austin's A-list session players. (self-released)

1997 - with Pat Boyack & The Prowlers "Super, Blue, and Funky." Bull's Eye Blues (Rounder)

1997 - with The Solid Senders. "Dig My Wheels". Tramp Records-Holland.

1996 - with The Big Pow Wow. Aar Aar Records, Austin.

1994 - with The Solid Senders. "Everything's Gonna Be Allright". Tramp Records-Holland.

Set List

Original titles include:

Boogie Woogie Mambo
Missin' Persons
Don't Give Her Tequila Bug-O-Love
She Took Me To The Cleaners Trouble
Voodoo Dream Whoop Te-Nah-Ne
Tears In The Wishin' Well Anaconda
I Love My Guitar I'm On My Way
One Way Livin' Black Cat
Judgment Day

Selected Covers include:

Can I Change My Mind - Tyrone Davis
Blackjack - Ray Charles
Checkin' On My Baby/ Stomach Ache - Junior Wells
Take A Bath - Charles Sims
Old Red - Long John Hunter
That's What Love Can Make You do - Little Milton

Change Your Way Of Lovin' - Pee Wee Crayton
Call Me Rockin' - Rockin' Sidney
You Belong To Me - Magic Sam
I Take What I Want - Sam And Dave
It's My Soul - Clifton Chenier
You Know That You Love Me - Freddie King
My Dearest Darling - Etta James

and many more . . .