Reader Spotlight: Lorna Thomas

Lorna ThomasMeet Lorna Thomas, a bassist from Edinburgh, Scotland and our player in the spotlight for April 5, 2011.


I started to play bass when I was 14, by learning the latest Duran Duran single. Three months later, I was out gigging with local bands and had at last found something that I felt I was good at doing.

That was back in the 80’s, when female musicians where a rarity.

After studying music for three years in Perth, Scotland, I was fortunate enough to join a already well-established band and the touring, TV and radio shows came in full force. This is where I truly learnt my trade.

Jumping to the present day, this year so far has been the most hectic ever. I’m so grateful for all of the opportunity’s I have been given.


Edinburgh, Scotland

Day gig:

When I’m not doing music, I work for a local youth project as a seasonal music worker, helping teenagers develop their musical skills and help them to get out there. It’s great to be giving something back and passing on the knowledge that I have learnt along the way.

Years experience:

Not long enough… 20 years.

Bands & Gigs:

Yes, I play with several singer songwriters in Scotland:

My main being Jill Jackson. She has had top ten hits in the UK with a previous band, but is now concentrating on her own career. We have just released a new album Back to Zero. We’ll be touring later this year.

Sandra MacBeth likes to be described as “Dirty Pop” and has opened up for Pink, The Proclaimers, Kt Tunstell and others. She released her debut album, Conjugal Scene, which is available on iTunes. We’re off to Barbados in May to play at festival alongside Eddie Reader.

Donna Maciocia is great fun to play with. I get to play with my big muff pedal and octave pedal.. It’s very quirky and musical!

Willie Logan is a blues guitarist who made the finals of Guitar Magazine’s guitarist of the year competition in 1997. He has released several albums and we’ve just completed a three week tour in Germany.

I think that’s enough for now… Phew!


  • Yamaha BB2005 5 String Bass
  • Fender 1978 Precision Bass
  • Washburn AB10 Semi Acoustic Bass
  • Ashdown Amp
  • Boss Octave Pedal
  • Big Muff Pedal

Why I play the bass:

My dad was a folk singer, and music has always a daily part of life. If I was lucky, he would take me to the folk club that he would be running or playing at that night. I attempted to learn guitar when I was 8, but my hands were too small so gave up. I eventually found my way to the bass, and it has been a life long friend ever since.

My bass superpower/claim to fame

I was lucky enough to do a gig for The Gospel Truth Choir in January, which meant getting to support Tom Jones as part of Glasgow’s Celtic Connections Festival.

I’ve also met John Taylor several times too, which was amazing.

But I love nothing more than getting together with my friends and just going for it musically and having fun!

My influences

Duran Duran in a nut shell.. I fancied the pants of Simon Le Bon but John Taylor’s bass lines were the first thing I would listen too. I can’t remember when I first heard James Jamerson, but he also became a huge influence on me and my playing. I’m not really into flash players, though I do appreciate them. I just love a great groove and a simple line to complement a song.

More on the web:

Want to be featured in an upcoming Reader Spotlight? Just fill out the interview questionnaire.

Get daily bass updates.

Get the latest news, videos, lessons, and more in your inbox every morning.

Share your thoughts

  1. Fantastic to see Lorna on here, she is one of the most strong, dynamic players established on the scene. Finally, it’s about time Lorna got the recognition she deserves, and I absolutely love playing with her!

  2. Its about time. I may be her big brother and take the micky rather alot. But I have also worked in TV for 20 years as an Entertainment and music Journo and I know talent and dedication when I see it. She works hard and has natural ability and enjoys what she does. Thats what makes her a great bass player..she can’t cook though!

  3. Lorna is a fantastic bass player and all round gorgeous lady! She stepped in with the choir for one of our recent gigs and she was truly awesome. She is in high demand not only in Scotland, but tours all over the world. Great to see you here! Much respect ! Tracey Braithwaite – Director of the Gospel Truth Choir.

  4. Jules Paternoster

    I concur! Lorna is an AWESOME bass player! I have often sat in her living room wondering what marvellous record she has on, only to find out it is Lorna herself banging out the tunes!

    Great BASS FACE too!

    NB: I would think this even if she didnt make me such great cups of tea! :)

  5. Alison MacBeath

    Lorna is a very talented bass player – absolutely love listening to her play. This girl will go a long way.

  6. tracey baker

    i was at collage with lorna on a different course she was always fab and i love that she has done so well much love tracey

  7. Opal Jessica

    Lorna is simply amazing xD it’s great that she’s on here can’t wait to see her rising higher xD.

  8. I was in a band with Lorna Thomas at secondary school and she was a fantastic bass player then let alone now. Pleased to see Lorna has been recognised for her talent.