Tom Smith is a jazz saxophonist, flautist, clarinettist and pianist based in London, who was a BBC Young Jazz Musician of the Year finalist in both 2014 and 2016.
From a very early age Tom was immersed in music, starting with studying piano and clarinet and eventually settling on saxophone, as well as teaching himself flute along the way. While learning with Katie Brown and Gareth Hunt he became involved with the Junior Jazz course at the Royal Academy of Music and joined the National Youth Jazz Collective, and now he is studying as an undergrad at the Royal Academy of Music.
Tom gigs regularly around the UK with both his own groups and as a sideman in other bands (NYJO, Jonny Mansfield’s Elftet and the Billy Marrows Octet), as well as being involved in a lot of function work, playing in pit bands in musicals as a woodwind doubler and in educational workshops. Tom is also a very active composer and arranger, writing primarily for his septet, which has released an EP, but also for many other groups of varying sizes and variety, from pieces for saxophone quartet to larger scale big band works. One of his compositions was broadcast on BBC4 and Radio 3 with Tom playing alongside the Gwilym Simcock trio as part of his appearance on the BBC Young Jazz Musician of the Year in 2014 and three more were broadcast as part of the 2016 competition.
‘So passionate, punchy and joyful…the band was vibed up by this young nutter at the front!’ – Django Bates
‘Tom really brought it, he tore the house down’ ‘His original compositions were some of the best we heard all night’– Julian Joseph
‘Fantastic sound, really assured playing and phrasing…very engaging’ – Jason Yarde
‘Technically outstanding abilities and a punchy, soulful tone’ – Soweto Kinch
‘I felt that he wanted to kind of push the boundaries and take a few risks’ – Tim Garland
‘Tom certainly knows how to work a crowd, audience going wild!’ – BBC
‘Something really special…a player to seek out again’ – Jon Turney, London Jazz News
‘I was incredibly impressed by his compositions, and also just generally a fantastic energy to his playing’ – Gwyneth Herbert
‘He’s quite the showman…he’s huge fun to watch’ – Josie D’Arby
‘The sound he makes is huge’ –Joe Stilgoe