Allan Thomas


8/11/10 – Been a busy time for us here at Black Bamboo Recordings the last few months. Here are a few highlights regarding the new upcoming CD, and other BBR related happenings.

Bassist Jimmy Johnson (James Taylor) adds his amazing chops to ‘It All Comes Down To Love’ and ‘Soldier Of Misfortune’ on his own recording rig at home in LA.

Drummer Rick Shlosser fresh off the road with Van Morrison records drums on ‘The Downturn’, with John Propich engineering in LA.

‘Making Up For Lost Time’ CD mixers Mike Shipley and Brian Wohlgemuth mix the first completed song from CD #6 – ‘The Downturn’, with Brad Blackwood mastering in Memphis.

‘The Downturn’ is released as a single-song download at

at and also at iTunes, with many of the other major digital distributers to follow in the coming weeks.

Begin work on ‘Deep Water’ – the 9th track on the upcoming record.

Finish recording and editing singer songwriter Steve Connella‘s 5th song for his upcoming CD in the works, with Stephen Barncard in the mixing chair and mastering by Dave Collins. Begin recording Hawaiian singer songwriter Norman “Kaawa’ Solomon‘s solo acoustic CD.

Reviewing footage of ‘The Downturn’ YouTube video in-the-works.

So, if you think it’s easy running a a huge international empire like Black Bamboo, and that all I do is ride the waves, ha think again, cause we busy as bees.

MARCH 2010 News

3/1/10 – One year into the recording of the as yet untitled CD #6. Musicians aboard at this point are: Bryan Kessler electric guitar, Michael Ruff all manner of keyboard and Accordion, Kirk Smart bottleneck slide and electric guitar, Rick Rosas bass, Hutch Hutcherson bass, JP Allen harmonica, Trey Thompson bass, Sylvain Carton tenor sax, Cliff Hugo bass, Jeff Richmond electric guitar, plus Angela Rose and Caz West backing vocals. Slated to join forces on the record are Rick Shlosser drums, Jimmy Johnson Bass, and Judd Miller electronic wind instrument.

3/10/10 – DJ Alf McCarthy of RTE Radio in Ireland plays ‘The Journey’ from the ‘Brooklyn Boy In Paradise’ CD.

FEBRUARY 2010 News

2/8/10 – DJ Alf Mcarthy is spinning ‘Troubled Times’ from the ‘Brooklyn Boy In Paradise’ CD on his RTE Radio show in Ireland:

2/13/10 – French music magazine Le Cri Du Coyote mentions ‘Brooklyn Boy In Paradise’:

“Maybe there are still fans of rock fm. perhaps even among the coyotes, the more that this is a tad rock fm. A little flirting with the country. In this case the 5th cd of this veteran (14 unreleased songs dating from the 80’s) will find thanks to their ears.”

2/14/10 – English Americana music magazine Maverick reviews ‘Brooklyn Boy In Paradise’: 4 stars – A wide range of styles coming together to such an awesome degree that the result of this musical merge is an undeniably mouth-watering album. Hawaii-based and long serving artist Allan Thomas has released yet another album of some outstanding tracks which are just amazing from their first few seconds that happily penetrate the ears and embed themselves in the psyche. Perhaps the best track of the 14 has to be ‘Lost In Your Touch’, with an enticing picking style to begin proceedings. This track has a Lee Greenwood feel about it due to the style in which Allan uses. With accompaniment that certainly has a classy and superior edge to it, this is one track which is worth buying the album for. The same can be said about ‘Love Can Change Your World’. Possessing the most Americana sounding groove of the album, this tune is that good that it wouldn’t be surprising if it was found in an upcoming Judd Apatow film due to it’s intergenerational appeal. ‘She’s Starlight’ too has a quality sound about it, with a relaxed feeling all around from it’s very start. The song is also infused with blues. Being a purely instrumental track, this can sometimes be a difficult musical trick to successfully pull off , but here Allan delivers beyond all expectations, as do the other members of his band who excel here. Demonstrating that not all albums sound as though they should have been released many years before, due to the timeless nature which these songs possess. This is by all means a cracking album that is ideal for anybody who appreciates one excellent song after another. RH

JANUARY 2010 News

12/9/09 – Home of westcoast music in Denmark, Blue, has added ‘Brooklyn Boy In Paradise’ to it’s Best 50 of 2009 list.

12/18/09 – Good Noise radio in the Netherlands is playing ‘Unlock The Heart’ from the ‘Brooklyn Boy In Paradise’ CD

12/27/10 – Massimo Ferro DJ of the Mystery Train radio show in Italy is playing tracks from “Brooklyn Boy In Paradise’ CD

1/1/10 – Begin writing ‘Everything Happens For A Reason’ for CD #6.

DECEMBER 2009 News

12/6/09 – Par Winberg a reviewer of European based One of the worlds leading onlinezine’s about Modern rock, Alt rock, Post-grunge, Midwest rock and Powerpop – reviews Brooklyn Boy In Paradise:

“I’ve been following Allan Thomas for quite a while. His albums “Coconut Culture” and not least “The Island” are both pleasant soft westcoast albums in a mix of of Gino Vannelis softer side, America and not least James Taylor. This album is a collection of unreleased material (1980-1994) and is also a pleasant one.

There are a bunch of real cool songs like “Lost In Your Touch” that sounds a lot like Vanellis 80’s era and “Soldier Of Misfortune” with a touch of Donald Fagen. As it is a CD with unreleased material there are some stuff that aren’t that interesting but overall there are a lot of cool and good things on here. And the man sits on a very good voice. And yeah – did I tell you that the man did his first record back in 1966…”


12/8/09 – Stephen Barncard in San Francisco, records tenor sax man Sylvain Carton on new version of The Gift (for CD #6), while AT listens and directs session from Black Bamboo Studios in Kauai.

12/9/09 – Blue Heaven radio show in Holland is playing ‘Soldier Of Misfortune’ from the Brooklyn Boy In Paradise CD.

NOVEMBER 2009 News

11/7/09 – Jurgen Debodt of Belgium music entertainment website Keys and Chords reviews ‘Brooklyn Boy In Paradise’.

Allan Thomas from Hanalei, Hawaii has a musical career of over 40 years. “Brooklyn Boy in Paradise” contains 14 previously unreleased songs. The compositions date from the period 1980 to 1994 and were also in that period. The songs are carefully produced, rather on the quiet side. (Most of the folk songs bathed in the atmosphere that we know from artists like Crosby, Stills & Nash, James Taylor … (Outliers are ‘The Gift’, ‘Troubled Times’ and the gently rocking “Bad Behavior”. (Fans of the folk-rock music of recent decades will be fascinated to hear this CD. ( (

11/9/09 – Columnist Peter Nordgren of Netherlands roots music website reviews Brooklyn Boy In Paradise in his Best Right Now column – “Allan Thomas has been doing his thing for a long time and he released his first LP already in 1971, though he hasn’t made plenty of them since. He’s a singer/songwriter with a laid-back, sometimes little jazzy style, at times reminding of Steely Dan, and he’s also played together with Donald Fagen. This album contains some unreleased tracks and it’s very good, but I strongly recommend the album ‘Making Up for Lost Time’ from 2007”.

11/19/09 – DJ Massimo Ferro of the Italian radio show Highway 61 is playing tracks from Brooklyn Boy In Paradise –

OCTOBER 2009 News

10/15/09 – Black Bamboo Studios wraps up production on two Stephen Connella songs for his upcoming CD release.

10/16/09 – DJ Vasja Ivanovski of 94.1 FM Radio 2 in Skopje Macedonia is playing ‘The Journey’ and ‘Rock The World’ from the ‘Brooklyn Boy In Paradise’ CD on her Mojo/Alt show.

10/17/09 – Production continues on AT’s 6th CD, with the 1992 song ‘Soldier Of Misfortune’ written by AT and longtime writing partner Bryan Kessler.

10/22/09 – Americana radio show Radio FM Free ULM in Germany is playing ‘The Journey’ form the Brooklyn Boy In Paradise CD.


9/1/09 – Rootstime, one of the biggest Blues and Roots websites in Belgium and the Netherlands reviews Brooklyn Boy In Paradise:

At the age of eight singing Sam Cooke’s hit “You Send Me” was the start of the musical career of Allan Thomas, now of Hanalei, Hawaii. In the past 40 years he has developed. The raw voice of Sam Cooke soul led him also to other soul music from that time, and in the following years he shifted his horizons further R & B, blues, jazz, folk and rock music. In 1967 he became a victim of the popular songwriter microbe after a girl left him with a broken heart. He started his first own compositions down to pens and later to incorporate. After so many years claiming more than 300 songs he composed, in which almost all topics were touched upon. With intervals of about every 10 years, appeared an album of Allan Thomas on the market. The latest in this series of 4 studio CD’s was “Making Up For Lost Time” from 2007. Now he has again released a CD entitled “Brooklyn Boy In Paradise” showing 14 unreleased songs. The compositions date from the period 1980 to 1994 and were also in that period. Only they never got released in that time. That Allan Thomas throughout the past 40 years of diverse musical influences and musicians ditto picked up is beyond question. Most of the folk songs bathed in the atmosphere that we know from artists like Crosby, Stills & Nash, Boz Scaggs and James Taylor. If we have about 14 songs we can not specify absolute outliers. All songs are carefully produced, rather on the quiet side and with good vocals from Allan Thomas. The streamlined sounding songs are “The Gift”, “Troubled Times”, the gently rocking “Bad Behavior”, the guitar instrumental “She’s Starlight”, “Love Can Change Your World” and the swing of a tempered groove provided by “Unlock The Heart “. Between all the electronic force of the 21st century, with this CD, mainly Allan Thomas fans of folk music in the style of the past decades managed to captivate. (valsam) “Fourteen tracks that were composed and recorded between 1980 and 1994 now rightfully and finally reached a state release on this album. They demonstrate the song writing capabilities of Allan Thomas and make you dig into the archives for his previous recordings ” Freddy Celis

9/2/09 – Belgium DJ Raymond Swennen of the show Radio FM Goud, is playing tracks from Brooklyn Boy In Paradise on it’s Roots Revival show during the month of September.

9/3/09 – The Country Startpage is a Dutch website featuring country music and Americana recording artists. They have recommended Brooklyn Boy In Paradise on their homepage.

9/4/09 – Well known German rock and roots music website Rocktimes reviews Brooklyn Boy In Paradise:

It sounds a little like James Taylor and a bit like Cliff Richard, plus a shot of Michael Franks, then times as light as Stevie Wonder. I really do not know quite how to classify this music. So – just ask me detached from all models. It has something of pop music, after the second title, yet no trace of rock, the saxophone-emphasizes the loose flaky ambience that here ‘cozy’ building. The keyboards, not the guitars, are the ones who determine what is happening, to Thomas’s expressive voice, which I like very much. “Rock The World” does not rock, but for me this is a good pop song with good arrangements. “Lost In Your Touch”, that sounds like the programmed drums that disturbs me then something that sounds like ‘plastic’. The song, however, thrives on good harmonies, and the singing is done well, including the background vocals. As in the other titles already on notice that the bass plays an important role, the man has a sound as he played “Fretless”, he is able to combine the elements of the other instruments well, and is prominent, but not too superficial, listen. (For the respective pieces, which I believe is Michael Ruff, as the website shows.) Even with the next title is striking that the arrangements to move strongly around the keyboards. About this ‘carpet’ lifts then see “Fear of Falling” from a slightly distorted guitar solo and gives this title the end point, including the highly committed singing some drama! “Troubled Times”, about the awards, unfortunately gooey-sounding drums placed the guitar playing the title even a touch of blues, the first title that sounds a little different. This in my view, this track suffers somewhat from the fact that the arrangement is very easy to knit, while at the same time, however, gives little more insistent. The style will change again, with “The Journey” now comes the side of the folkies and singer / songwriter to bear, Thomas’ vocals here with his empathy fits well into this genre! Up to here as a short interim verdict, “Rock My World” I like best, it sounds like, together with the first title yet most professional, the following tracks sometimes act very amateurish. Perhaps it is because we are dealing with the information gathered on this record are older titles, created at different times, as Thomas himself says, “This collection is composed of recordings of songs I wrote between 1980 and 1994.” This explains the sometimes ‘old’ acting keyboard sound. Clearly, they are ‘Outtakes’ from four studio albums of the artist which did not find their way onto disk. Together with his friend and producer Stephen Barncard he decided then to put together this collection. I believe the fragmented nature of music is explained by this fact. Given that Thomas made his first recording contract in 1966 with a major producer Huey P. Meaux graduated, had earlier acquaintance with the famous Brill Building in New York – that talent and Hitschmiede that has become an integral part of American music history at all – in 1971 he published his first LP, and worked in the ’70s with jazz brothers Nat and Cannonball Adderley, you can expect to have many different influences, reflected in the music. And in fact, it is also true that many sources show their effect, however, Thomas has not been able to make it his own and unmistakable style. After moving to California, the artist continued to Hawaii, which was in 1980. Here he is still alive today and is currently preparing his sixth album, and I am curious how it will sound, as if it could be good approaches, which promises to present this collection of songs, there is manifested and developed, then a very good album will be at hand! This disk in any event, unfortunately, provides only an overview, one with strengths and weaknesses, I believe. Sometimes the lascivious expression of the music for me is a little too lascivious and a little more pressure would have been very well done! Ah yes, the fact remains – “Rock The World” from 1991 is my favorite track. Wolfgang Giese –

9/12/09 – DJ Johanna J. Bodde of the Roots/Americana music radio show Radiogirl on Radio Winshoten in the Netherlands is playing ‘Butterfly Jesse’ from the Making Up For Lost Time CD and ‘Bad Behavior’ from the Brooklyn Boy In Paradise CD.

9/18/09 – Hungarian music website HiFi City reviews ‘Brooklyn Boy in Paradise’:

The singer-guitarist-songwriter Allan Thomas thought of a title, and “brushed” the many compositions he wrote decades ago and made a new album. The Brooklyn Boy In Paradise titled disc has 14 songs from 1980 to 1994. Basically guitar centered music is played, in which the stringed instruments in addition to just the rhythm section and keyboardist roles are played. ‘The Gift’ ‘Troubled Times’, ‘The Journey’ and “Love Can Change Your World, are well-written and well-performed compositions, with professionalism and easily follow each other in the repertoire. Thomas and a very good selection of musicians between the consistency of all free mesterkéltségtŠQl. True team work with excellent production preparation. But what if, in spite of the acquisitions and phenomenal musicians, if the engineer’s work could not “grow up” to them. Fortunately, this was not the case here, because the disc sounds clean, clear and without tricks.


AUGUST 2009 News

8/15/09 – Well regarded Scandinavian roots music website recommends Allan Thomas 1971 Sire Records album ‘A Picture’ in it’s Best Moments column – 1. ALLAN THOMAS “A Picture” (LP Sire -71)

A singer / songwriter album from the golden years in 1971. A record that should not be particularly expensive and it is also to download from his website: [] – – Peter Nordgren

8/16/09 – British alternative music radio show Starship Overflow adds the song ‘Troubled Times’ from Brooklyn Boy In Paradise CD.

8/17/09 – Internet radio show and website American Music In Belgium, dedicated to American country folk rock and blues, recommends Brooklyn Boy In Paradise as one top 220 albums for 2009.

8/24/09 – Danish DJ Benny Sorensen is playing ‘After The Storm’ from the Brooklyn Boy In Paradise CD on his country radio show Skagensexpressen.

8/25/09 – Netherlands DJ Bart van der Pol is playing ‘The Gift’ from the Brooklyn Boy In Paradise CD on his Acoustic Rain country music radio show.

8/26/09 – French “Westcoast” music blog website Coolnights recommends Brooklyn Boy In Paradise and The Island CD’s: “We urge you to go visit the website of Hawaiian singer Allan Thomas, who just released a collection of unreleased tracks, embracing a period from 1980 to 1994. This album is titled “BROOKLYN BOY IN PARADISE” and contains some fine pearls. Albums by Allan Thomas are available for download on his site and three of his CDs, are on CD Baby, including “The Island”, a must for the Westcoast Music fan, not to be missed under any circumstances.”

8/27/09 – Netherlands DJ Paul Vangleder is playing ‘Troubled Times’ from the Brooklyn Boy In Paradise CD, on his Americana radio show RootsParadise.

8/28/09 – Netherlands DJ Rein Wortelboer is playing ‘Troubled Times’ from the Brooklyn Boy In Paradise CD, on his country radio show PeelGrass.