Sandi Thom – 20 Questions 

Due on tour, the Scottish electric roots artist, musician and songwriter accepted our invite to undergo one of Pete’s questions sets and we present her responses now but will soon present a chat with Sandi on this very site:

  • Your album showcase at the Gibson Guitar HQ in London prompted me to comment that your muse seemed to take in the best qualities of Sandy Denny and Bonnie Raitt, but to what extent are you influenced by their work? If indeed you are…

I am definitely influenced by strong iconic female singers like these two incredible artists. I would say Bonnie Raitt has more of an influence. Her ability to cross pollinate genres and release famous pop songs at the same time as bluesy darker songs has really been an inspiration for me.

  •  Suggest two or three great drum intro’s to songs or instrumentals (any genre) (tune /artist/ source album)

Guns N Roses – You Could Be Mine

Led Zep – When The Levee Breaks

Nirvana – Smells Like Teen Spirit

  • A favourite bassline on a blues or folk recording and why? (track / artist/ source album)

A song in my opinion blends blues and folk, and features a very prominent bassline would be The Chain by Fleetwood Mac. Most people around the world would be able to sing you that line but if we are talking about a walking bassline in the traditional blues sense, something like Help Me by Sonny Boy Williamson would be a great example of using a traditional walking blues baseline in a really cool way. I liked that song so much I put it on my fourth album ‘Flesh and Blood’

  • Do you currently have an favoured stage guitar for a/ acoustic and b/ electric – explain the choices please

I only play 12 strings on the stage at the moment. My favourite is a Taylor T5. I don’t normally like Taylors because they are too ‘bright’ for me but this 12 string has 5 different pick ups and can vary in sound from acoustic to electric. My second favourite is the Guild 12 string – which is hollow bodied and has a much deeper sound.

  • Name a great recording including in the title 1/ Cold 2/ Sun 3/ Rain (artist / title / source album for each please) and explain why chosen

Guns n Roses – November Rain. Considering Axel Rose was never taught how to play the piano but yet managed to compose and orchestrate such an amazing piece of music makes Guns n Roses in my book, one of the greatest bands of all time.

  • Name a TV series where the theme music was better than the actual shows and do you know who created or recorded it?

Eastenders – I think people watch it half because they like the music and half because they love the show. It wouldn’t be the same without the music and the famous closing theme.

  • Which song of yours do you find yourself explaining the most and why is that, do you think?

Most recently, songs like ‘Sun Comes Crashing Down’ and ‘Belly Of The Blues’ intrigue people the most. Because they are not self explanatory and they are quite cryptic so people are interested in the meaning behind them out of curiosity.

  • A recording that makes you laugh ….intentionally or otherwise! (artist / track / source album)

Barbie Girl by Aqua Because it is f****** stupid!

  • Name an album or a couple of albums where the cover or artwork could have been better, in your humble opinion….give any thoughts around this

My own – Flesh and Blood – My fourth album, definitely could have been better!

  •  Best rock’n’roll swagger recording NOT by the Rolling Stones (artist / track / source album)

Walk This Way – Aerosmith

  • Willie Nelson and Annie Lennox record a duet – what song do they sing and who backs them?

It will be a reggae version of Bohemian Rhapsody (maybe Sandi’s pulling our leg here – PS)

  • What’s the best keyboard solo or break that you can think of? Which artist / number / source album?

Burn by Deep Purple – Played by the late Jon lord

  •  An acoustic gem? (any genre) what song / tune and who by? What’s the appeal?

A Case of You by Joni Mitchell – its one of the best songs ever written.

  • Is there a song that both you and your Mum or Dad really like? Or liked?

The Big Ones Get Away – Buffy Sainte-Marie

  • Best comeback album of all time and why? (I like the recent Johnny Hates Jazz album….more than their original material)

Johnny Cash – American Recordings Hit an all time low in the 90’s and was labelless but teamed up with Rick Ruben, and made the best record he could ever make before he passed. Sometimes legends don’t die like legends, you watch their demise – the great thing about this album was it was the final watermark in Johnny Cash’s career and he kept his legendary success.


  • Name an actor or actress who made a listenable song recording – and what’s the appeal?

Jared Leto / 30 Seconds From Mars – he is the most successful in a non cheesy way, and is still a great actor but also a musician.

  •  Where are you planning to tour next?

I am touring the UK and Europe in November and December.

  • Carole King , Ben E King or Albert King? By all means say something about each.

If this is a battle of the kings – then none of the above – BB King. 😀

  • Which of your own recordings show you at your most a/ aggressive b/ relaxed c/ confused

None of those describe any emotions I usually feel in my album, however my third album is when I explored my darker feelings and got the blues.

  • What’s the title of your new single?

It’s ‘Earthquake’. And it’s about relationship troubles…..

Pete Sargeant

Sandi Thom’s new single ‘Earthquake’ is out Friday 27th November 2015 on MITA Records. Her new album ‘Weapons of Past Destruction’ will be released in early 2016 also on MITA Records. In addition, Sandi will be touring the UK this November/December at the following venues:

Saturday 7th November – Spire FM Spireworks, Salisbury, United Kingdom

Saturday 14th November – Connaught Theatre, Worthing, United Kingdom,133998,en.asp

Monday 16th November – Komedia, Brighton, United Kingdom

Tuesday 17th November – Jazz Cafe, London, United Kingdom

Saturday 21st November – The Stables, Milton Keynes, United Kingdom

Monday 30th November – Mono, Glasgow, Scotland, United Kingdom

Thursday 10th December – Gardyne Theatre, Dundee, Scotland, United Kingdom

Friday 11th December – The Live Rooms, Chester, United Kingdom

For more information visit:


(Thanks Cat, Glenn and Sandi)