Thomas Oliver is a New Zealand singer-songwriter, internationally recognised as one of the world’s leading players of the Weissenborn lap-steel guitar. He is set to release his first solo album of lyrical songs, Floating In The Darkness, on April 28th this year, featuring his Silver-Scroll award-winning hit, “If I Move To Mars”.
Thomas released the world's first full-length, all-instrumental, all-Weissenborn album in 2013, titled Beneath The Weissenborn. The album debuted at #6 on the NZ charts, received 5 star reviews, and sold out shows across the nation.
With over two million views on his YouTube channel, Thomas has developed an international audience from his home base in New Zealand, and has performed throughout New Zealand, Australia, Europe and Vietnam, and has toured and shared the stage with such legends as Joe Cocker, Eric Clapton and Fat Freddy's Drop.
“He joins Leo Kotke, Ry Cooder and Michael Hedges as someone who has made buying a guitar album a must.” – Stuff.co.nz *****
“Harper fans should investigate” – NZ Herald
His vast diversity in his vocal delivery has also earned him a reputation as a vocalist in Drum & Bass and other electronic music, and his list of collaborations includes some of DnB's most respected producers, including Black Sun Empire, Rido, Concord Dawn and Urbandawn, and boasts releases on prestigious labels including Andy C's RAM Records and Goldie's Metalheadz. More recently, his single, “If I Move To Mars”, was remixed by Urbandawn and released on Hospital Records in January this year.
October 2015 saw the release of his much-loved (and critically appraised) single “If I Move To Mars”, which would go onto win the prestigious APRA AMCOS Silver Scroll award a year later. With airplay support from ZM, The Hits and The Edge, it nabbed a place in the Official NZ Music Chart for 5 weeks. Accompanied by a specially crafted music video directed and produced by Ben Hawkins and Stephen Lambert of Weta Workshop, the song took visual form as Thomas drifted through space in a specially designed spacesuit.
Watch “If I Move To Mars” here: https://youtu.be/xlxBdc2IBJI
“If I Move To Mars” gave us a glance into the melting pot of Thomas’ largely self-produced, written and mixed new album, Floating In The Darkness, which was completed with the love and support of a successful crowd-funding campaign. The pledge reached $22,500, which was $5,000 over its $17,500 target, from fans and supporters, locally and worldwide, allowing Thomas to create the album he had conceptualized with the help of a few friends along the way such as Rhian Sheehan (co-wrote “Let It Be This One”), Grammy Award-winning engineer, Trina Shoemaker, Louis Baker (B/Vs on “Shine Like The Sun”), Vlado Meller and more.
Following his Silver Scroll win, Thomas released an acoustic version of “If I Move To Mars” and added to the star-studded Bob Marley tribute album, Stir It Up – Aotearoa’s Tribute To Bob Marley, with his spiritual, airy rendition of “Is This Love”. He then spent the latter part of 2016 between LA and Nashville in co-writing sessions.
Thomas now releases the second single from Floating In The Darkness in the satisfying, joyous groove of “Shine Like The Sun”.