Thomas was born on a military base in Germany and reared in the
southeast-honed his songwriting abilities while fronting in a
variety of local bands in his high school years (he lists such
artists as Van Morrison, Elvis Costello, Al Green and R.E.M. as
influences). While enjoying the local scene, Thomas was introduced
to matchbox20 drummer Paul Doucette and bassist Brian Yale. After
playing together for a few years in bands and touring regionally,
the threesome (Thomas, Doucette, and Yale) decided to start a
new band-what was to become matchbox20. After recruiting the talents
of Adam Gaynor from Criteria Recording Studios in Miami and Kyle
Cook from the Atlanta Institute of Music, the lineup was complete.
band quickly joined forces with producer Matt Serletic, who co-produced
the Collective Soul albums, and began tracking demos. It wasn't
long before the project attracted attention from both coasts.
And soon matchbox20 found itself added to the Lava/Atlantic roster.
The band wasted no time and headed back into the studio with Serletic
to record their debut album, Yourself Or Someone Like You.
Thomas is a storyteller whose lyrics focus mainly on personal
relationships, and he delivers his lines with a certain intimacy,
like two friends sharing a good secret. Yourself Or Someone Like
You builds momentum from the strong vocal delivery of principal
songwriter Thomas, who doesn't so much sing these songs as bite
into them. He's complimented by the background vocals of lead
guitarist Kyle Cook and rhythm guitarist Adam Gaynor, whose electric
and acoustic guitar arrangements are combined with the rhythm
section of drummer Paul Doucette and bassist Brian Yale.
instinctive union among these five musicians--immediately evident
during the band's electrifying live shows--is a reminder of what
can be achieved when musicians never lose sight of the fact that
the song is the most important thing. "I think we get up
there and try as honestly as we can to convey the songs as energetically
and heartfelt as we can," says Thomas. "These are our
songs and we really feel good about 'em. I don't think we try
and put any dramatics into it, but after a show when we're just
talking to people, they'll tell us, You know you were so into
it, that was so intense to watch.' To us, we were just playing
the songs and losing ourselves in them. It's like if you come
to a rehearsal, you're gonna see the same thing. It's not something
that we can help really."
season by matchbox twenty," the long-awaited second Melisma/Lava/Atlantic
release from matchbox twenty, stands as a great leap forward for
one of today's most compelling rock n' roll groups. This soul-infused
collection of modern classics amply demonstrates the band's remarkably
expressive range and power. matchbox twenty has grown into a creative
musical machine firing on all cylinders. Thomas's rich vocals
have ripened in both strength and maturity, as have Kyle Cook
and Adam Gaynor's heartfelt harmonies and chiming twin guitar
arrangements. Binding these elements together is the inventive,
propulsive rhythm section of bassist Brian Yale and drummer Paul
we made our first record, we hadn't really been a band for very
long," Thomas says. "We hadn't had any really good fights,
we hadn't had any really good laughs, we hadn't done much of anything
together. But now, so much has happened to us that we've formed
a character within ourselves. So this is really the first time
we're saying, 'This is matchbox twenty making a record,' because
now matchbox twenty is its own entity. This is the first one where
we can really say, this is our sound."
in Atlanta and Nashville during the second half of 1999, "mad
season by matchbox twenty" was produced by dual Grammy Award-winner
Matt Serletic. "mad season by matchbox twenty" highlights
the continuing development of Thomas's gifts as a writer, with
songs that focus on the binding elements of our increasingly unconnected
world. Where many sophomore records reflect an artist's newly
isolated existence - with songs either telling of bus windows
and endless highways, of the terrible traumas of fame and fortune
- here Thomas spins poignant stories of love and loss, of life
and how to live it.
parents divorced when he was 2. He ran away at 12. Went to high
school and slept on park benches and at friends'. A friend taught
him to play a piano and started a band that played Richard Marx
and U2 covers. Then his career went on the uprise when he joined
became a father when his son, Maison Avery William Thomas, was
born on July 10th 1998 and the mother is Kerry.
is married to Marisol Maldonado. Anyone watched that wedding special?).
is on Santana's CD Supernatural. They perform the song "Smooth"
together. That song has earned them both Grammys.