Tommy Sims: What A Bassist, Producer!

Discussion in 'Bassists [BG]' started by scatman, Oct 14, 2003.

  1. scatman


    Jun 12, 2003
    I know some threads have brushed the subject of this great bassist (Michael McDonald's "All I Need").

    But I'm still wearing out his debut album from 2000, Peace And Love. That is as well produced of an album as there was in the LAST TWO DECADES. But because 1) he's from Nashville, and 2) Hip hop unfairly rules most of the airwaves (especially New York), he will get no credit as being the best producer since Quincy Jones.

    However, though the public knows little about him, cats like McDonald, Eric Clapton, Garth Brooks and Amy Grant know a whole lot about him.
  2. Fran Diaz

    Fran Diaz

    Mar 28, 2002
    Santander, Spain
    he also toured (and probably did some studio work) with Bruce Springsteen in 92-93.

    keep groooovin'
  3. Scatman,
    I'm with you! I've heard his work with various Christian artists and I am very impressed with his Producer chops as well as his playing!

    I encourage all readers of this thread to do a search and check him out!
  4. lo-freq

    lo-freq aka UFO

    Jan 19, 2003
    The Republic of Texas
    I have several Contemporary Christian CD on which Tommy Sims plays bass. All are really good, with a great bass sound on the recordings.

    My favorite (as far as his playing -- plus the overall music is really good) is the self-titled CD by 'Out of the Grey' -- really good, tasteful, & inventive bass lines.

    [For reference, my favorite electric bassist is Gary Willis.]
  5. ...anyone got any ideas about how to get that tone like Tommy's?
  6. burk48237

    burk48237 Supporting Member

    Nov 22, 2004
    Oak Park, MI
    Great Player, I agree on the Out of the Gray CD, In fact when I got it I saw pattatuchi's name on the credits and thought one of the hot bass licks was his, turned out to be Tommy! He did some nice stuff with Russ Taft, I was a little dissapointed in Peace and Love though,great writing, but for a solo album from a bass player it sure didin't have a lot of bass! He got famous in the christian scene with a band called Whiteheart, I played in an opening act for them in the early 80's and He was running a 70's Fender Jazz, Can't remember the amp.
  7. Wow, I was also in a Christian band in the 80's that opened for Whiteheart and I remember he was a killer player but don't totally remember his set-up. I thought it was a Yamaha BB series bass. That was what I was playing at the time also.

    That "Out of the Grey" CD (only the first one) was killer. I think Charlie Peacock produced it. None of their subsequent CD's were even close. The song "I'll leave the light on" has one of my favorite bass lines ever. I think that one was maybe Jimmie Lee Sloas? Sounded fretless. Very innovative and one of those lines that I stand in awe of as one I would never have thought of.
  8. 20db pad

    20db pad

    Feb 11, 2003
    I been everywhere, man...
    None. At all.
    IIRC, he has a writing credit on the Eric Clapton tune "Change the World" - that's a sure sign he's writing 'em better than I could :p
  9. jerry

    jerry Doesn't know BDO Gold Supporting Member

    Dec 13, 1999
    On the Springsteen tour he played what looked like a old Fender Jazz disrespect to Gary Tallent who I also admire, but Tommy Sims was bringing some very cool grooves to the Springsteen canon.
  10. burk48237

    burk48237 Supporting Member

    Nov 22, 2004
    Oak Park, MI
    Bassdr, Boy you brought back some memories, Charlie Peakock, who I think is still the best christian sonwritter/producer has always had GREAT BASS on his albums, Ecsp. "The Secret of Time" and "Love Life" and Tommy Sims handled almost all of that bass chair. In fact those Albums really turned me on to Tommy more then the 80's rock of Whiteheart. Jimmy Lee Sloas I saw with the Imperials (I want say how lon ago that was!) and he was excellent. He's also done some nice stuff with Al Green . Charlies last album(Kingdon Come) had James Genius on it along with Bela Fleck!
  11. Sounds like you've been around Chrisitian music for...well, as long as me. I was a huge Imperials fan. I saw them live many times, and loved the Russ Taff years. The only bass player I remember in their band was Jackie "one way" Street. He also played some on their albums.

    A friend of mine knows Charlie Peacock and just recently hung out with him. He's writing books now and still producing in New York. I think he needs to hook up with the Out of the Grey folks for another album. Listen to "I'll leave the light on" from that first album and tell me what you think of that line.
  12. burk48237

    burk48237 Supporting Member

    Nov 22, 2004
    Oak Park, MI
    BassDR, Your right about Jackie Street, I have pictures off him, I had front row with Russ on the Medals tour( man that makes me feel old), My bad. I had an old roomate Randy Coryell who I used to play in a band with, who toured with the imperials on keyboards back in the Russ Taft days. And no question the playing and production on that first Out of the Gray Album was sick! What was the name of the groups you played for. I was in a band for about 10 years in the Detroit area called Melchizedec we never could get the singer thing together, went through about 5 of them! The two other local bands I remember from Detroit that we played with a lot were Billy Sunday and Jubal. Billy Sundays Bass Player ( Will Pope- the popester) is still arround town, plays bass at a huge church (word of faith) and in some local bands. Still one of the best I've ever heard. I run into him about once a mounth at Lowdown. There are some tremendous Gospel players in Motown, World class players!
  13. The band I was with in the 80's was called Zeal. We won a local christian radio station's album project and recorded an album and toured in the midwest 1985-1987. The album got some midwest airplay. We all decided in 87 to go all out and move to Nashville. After a few months of delivering pizzas and playing a little, we opened for Petra and Jon Schlitt was digging us. He asked us if we'd be interested in playing for a "chick". We met and then played as Margaret Becker's band for a couple of years. I left the group early in that transition to pursue a career in medicine. The rest of the guys toured with Margaret until around 1988. She went on a big tour opening for Michael W. and everybody but the drummer got replaced. The bass job went to the guy who had played for the Winans, I don't remember his name. He was killer, played a Steinberger. Guitar guy was Rich Hordinski, who founded "Over the Rhine" and toured later with Phil Keaggy. My former bandmate Jeff Combs played drums on that tour and became ill near the end and died in 1990 from leukemia.
    Since that time I have been totally out of the scene. I still play at church in various worship bands. I still collaborate with some friends at the Christain Campus House at Purdue and do a little session stuff with a local christian rap guy, that's a real trip. I miss it though. The market is so much bigger now, we might have actually made a living at it if we did it today :) So what stuff do you listen to/like now? I have to admit that I don't listen to much Christian label stuff anymore.
  14. Dr. Cheese

    Dr. Cheese Gold Supporting Member

    Mar 3, 2004
    Metro St. Louis
    I know this is a zombie thread, but I just want to say that I picked up Isreal Haughton's solo CD, The Power of One, and this is the first time I have ever heard Tommy Sims and knew it. The man is super tight, funky, and grooving!:eek: He produced a bit of this CD too, and the man clearly knows his way around a studio.:bassist:
  15. diglo

    diglo Supporting Member

    May 21, 2007
    Get up! Get Get Get Down!
    Two of my friends, Andrew Ramsey & Shannon Sanders, started out producing with Tommy Sims. They said he was a "cold" bass player and great person to work with. He help tighten their skills. Since then, Drew & Shannon have worked with India.Arie, Johnny Lang and Robert Randolph to name a few. Gotta show love to "Real CashVille Representa's."
  16. burk48237

    burk48237 Supporting Member

    Nov 22, 2004
    Oak Park, MI
    Dr. That is a killer CD, I downloaded a bunch of cuts off it yesterday from I-tunes. Better to have Believed is a KILLER GROVE! The production sounds like a very updated Stevie Wonder. Did Tommy play bass on any of the tunes (since I downloaded I don't have credits).
  17. Dr. Cheese

    Dr. Cheese Gold Supporting Member

    Mar 3, 2004
    Metro St. Louis
    He played bass on every cut except one. I'm impressed!:bassist:
  18. tieftonservices


    May 12, 2007
    Cologne, Germany
    Endorsing Artist: Xotic, Aguilar, DR, VoVox, Basswitch, Big John
    make sure to check out "real" from israel houghton and "in the spirit" from michael mcdonald, both produced by tommy. he plays killer bass on the records. another great cd is "in the life of chris gaines" from garth brooks. tommy is one of my alltime favs, what a player. he is still using the fender jazz from the springsteen times. seems to be his main bass.
  19. lanceropolis


    Mar 10, 2009
    So. Cal
    Yeah "peace and love" is one of my favorites. Incredible bass talent, and from what I know, an incredibly humble guy. He is legit, I wish that everyone knew of him. He is amazing!
  20. mrufino1

    mrufino1 Supporting Member

    Aug 2, 2005
    Nutley, NJ
    I have been listening to that album online and I need to buy it, very very incredible. Now that I know that it is Tommy Sims, wow, just wow. It is a great CD (or online stream...).