At a certain cataclysmic tipping point he was directed towards the West, eventually ending up, like so many, staring with sleep-deprived eyes at the Pacific Ocean and planning his next move. He worked for a while selling public address and sound reinforcement systems, where he met Allen in 1989. While writing and recording the original songs that would eventually end up as the first Mermen album “Krill Slippin”, Allen heard his compositions, and together they decided to make a recording. A short ad in a local paper stating simply “Surf Bongos” brought in Martyn Jones, and the Mermen were born.
This was a new era for Jim, now 35 and who, up until this point, had never heard Dick Dale and had only played music for himself. Jim went on to compose and produce five more highly-acclaimed albums with the Mermen over the next eleven years. Ever restless, walk into Jim Thomas’ work space these days and you get of glimpse of the obsessive and inquiring mind behind the music. Here is a fully equipped recording studio, cluttered with surfboards, guitars, and all kinds of electronic gizmos and inventions are books on music, art, technology, poetry, the ocean and surfing. Jim cites the soundtrack of definitive surf movie The Endless Summer as imprinting upon him the dreamy and poetic notions of the surfing ethos, and a sense of something that is quintessentially “California Dreamin”.
A passionate surfer for over 30 years, he will tell you The Endless Summer movie may have been the most influential inspirational event that led to his “life” as a surfer/so-called surf musician. Somewhere along the line music making became inextricably fused with surfing. The threads have woven together in a lush Hendrixian, “1983 A Merman I Will Turn to Be” orchestral tapestry that is the Mermen’s music. (The band’s name “MERMEN” was derived from the Hendrix tune.) The Mermen tale has unfolded over the last 20 years, but is not yet finished.
Jim is currently busy composing and recording the band’s as-yet-untitled seventh release. Never far from the sea, he resides in a beach town in Central California. 2) Born and raised New Jersey native Jim Thomas, cultivated his love of music while attending school in South Carolina playing piano in the progressive Jazz Quartet, That’s Not Jazz. After leaving school, Thomas continued to expand his musical pallet, playing varying instruments in several jazz, pop, and indie groups throughout New Jersey and New York eventually settling into growing Philadelphia Music Scene. During the winter and spring of 2007, Thomas starting recording the demos which would eventually become his first LP, The Blue Floor, which was released in August of 2009..
In 2008, Thomas started Blue Floor Records with a primary focus on artist development and creative songwriting. Read more on Last.fm. User-contributed text is available under the Creative Commons By-SA License; additional terms may apply..
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