Tom Lilienthal(photo by Chris Parsons) and his wife, Patricia, now reside in the San Francisco Bay Area. For three years, they resided in San Miguel de Allende, Guanajuato, Mexico. This locale provided Tom with several wonderful musical opportunities in which to play, some of which included doing a concert featuring L.A. recording artist Julie Kelly (vocalist) backed by Gabriel Hernandez Cadena (keyboard – Dizzy Gillespie, Roy Hargrove, The Afro-Cuban Jazz Allstars), Rick Shlosser (drums – James Taylor, George Benson, Van Morrison), Jaimie Valle (guitar – Sammy Davis Jr., Steve Allen) and Tom as well as performing at the 17th San Miguel International Jazz & Blues Festival backing up DennisGruenling (blues harmonica) and SteveGuyger (blues harmonica/vocals) along with Ken Basman (guitar) and Rick Shlosser (drums) and performing with Tom Coster (keyboard – Carlos Santana, Vital Information) in a couple of concerts near Puerto Vallarta, Mexico. As well as performing, Tom continues to teach and record in the United States.
(Click on all photos to enlarge)
Some of the other musicians that Tom has played with are Dave Garibaldi (drums – Tower of Power, Denise Williams), Andy Narell (Steel Pans), Susan Muscarella (piano), Dave LeFebvre (sax), Paul McCandless (oboe, sax – Oregon, Wynton Marsalis), Steve Erquiaga (guitar – Bobby McFerrin, Joe Henderson), Jeanie Tracy (vocals – Herbie Hancock, Freddie Hubbard), Frank Martin (keyboards – Stevie Wonder, James Taylor), Jim Nichols (guitar – Chet Atkins, Toots Thielemans), Larry Dunlap (piano – Cleo Laine and John Dankworth, Larry Coryell), Larry Vann (drums – The Whispers, Martha Reeves, The Marvalettes), Colin Bailey (drums – Clare Fischer, Joe Pass) and Jimmy Pugh (Robert Cray, Etta James, Van Morrison, BB King).
One of the many reasons that Tom enjoyed living in Mexico full time was having his talented friends from the U.S. come down for visits so they could hang out in paradise and play some music together for the folks down there. In 2004, Frank Martin (keyboards) and his family came down for a fun filled week, staying in La Cruz. Shortly thereafter, Paul McCandless (sax), from the group Oregon, came down to La Cruz and sat in on one of Philo’s open mic nights. In April of 2010, BernieRivera (sax, flute, vocals) and Billy Rivera (drums, vocals) came down for about ten days, stayed with Tom aboard his sailboat, Dream Seeker, and played two very well received concerts at Philo’s and Anna Banana’s in La Cruz with the addition of Chas Eller (keyboards – Kilimanjaro). Later that same year, the brothers returned with Bill Swartz (guitar – Tom Fogerty of CCR) and again, they added Chas Eller (keyboards). This time, they played four successful concerts. They played Los Arroyos Verdes in Bucerias, The Encore in Bucerias, Philo’s in La Cruz and Anna Banana’s in La Cruz.
From the beginning… Tom was born in San Francisco, California and raised just outside the small city of San Anselmo in Marin County, just north of San Francisco.
He graduated from college, focusing on bass and performance, with a BA in music and a California State teaching credential. Since that time, he has developed his skills in the music business as a performer and teacher. While continuing to play music professionally, he was the instrumental music director at Albany High School in Albany, California where, with the invaluable help and support of the students, parents and community, he created an innovative, award-winning program for the school and community.
Tom was fortunate to be on the scene in the San Francisco Bay Area from the early 1970’s until 2007 when he moved to Mexico. During his career as a professional bassist, he’s had the opportunity to play music with many of the world-class musicians that were responsible for creating and furthering the funk, fusion and jazz scene during this important time.
He was the leader of Festival consisting of band members Kim Park (sax, flute, keyboard – Stan Kenton, Clark Terry, Louis Bellson, Stan Getz, Jack Sheldon, George Benson), Scott Morris (drums – Richie Cole, Bobby McFerrin, Tom Fogerty of CCR), Julie Kelly and Bill Swartz. While on one of their long-term gigs, Mark Russo (sax – Tower of Power, The Yellowjackets, Kenny Loggins, The Doobie Brothers) came in five nights a week for several months to perform with the group. Mary Fettig (sax and flute – Stan Kenton, Flora Purim and Airto, Marian McPartland, Tito Puente) also came in on numerous occasions to play with the band. One night, most of the members of the Tower of Power horn section joined Festival on stage. On another night, members of the Stan Kenton Band came to sit in after one of their concerts. Madeline Eastman (vocals) and Bruce Foreman (guitar – Richie Cole, Bobby Hutcherson, Ray Brown, Freddie Hubbard, Joe Henderson) were two of many subs that worked with the band. On occasion, Tom would add a horn section consisting of Ron Stallings (sax – Huey Lewis and the News, Boz Scaggs), Steve Campos (trumpet – Stan Kenton, Woody Herman, Dr. John, Big Brother and the Holding Co., Boz Scaggs) and Wayne Wallace (trombone). Festival, with the addition of Mark Russo, toured and recorded the album, “Deal It Out” with Tom Fogerty of Creedence Clearwater Revival.
Tom performed with The Coasters, The Drifters and The Shirelles, as well as at the Monterey Jazz Festival with Margie Baker (vocals) and at the Concord Jazz Festival with his group, Festival, featuring Mary Fettig and Marc Russo.