Tom Scott (musician)  

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Kunstformen der Natur (1904) by Ernst Haeckel
Kunstformen der Natur (1904) by Ernst Haeckel

Tom Scott (born May 19, 1948) is an American saxophonist, composer, arranger, conductor and bandleader of the west coast jazz/jazz fusion ensemble The L.A. Express.



Scott was born in Los Angeles, California. He is the son of prolific film and television composer Nathan Scott, who had more than 850 television credits and more than 100 film credits as a composer, orchestrator and conductor, including credit for composing the theme songs for Dragnet and Lassie.

His best-known works are the theme songs for TV series from the 1970s and 1980s — Starsky and Hutch (a track entitled "Gotcha!") and The Streets of San Francisco, and his soprano sax solo and fills on the 1975 #1 hit single Listen to What the Man Said for Wings. In 1982, Scott also collaborated with Johnny Mathis to write & record two versions – lyrical and instrumental – of "Without Us", the theme to the 80's sitcom Family Ties. His song "Today" is sampled in the Pete Rock & CL Smooth 1992 hit They Reminisce Over You (T.R.O.Y.).

Tom Scott's professional career began as a teenager, as leader of a jazz ensemble Neoteric Trio, and then as a "first-call" (i.e. high-demand) session musician. He has dozens of solo recordings for which he collected thirteen Grammy nominations (three of which he won). He also has numerous film and television scoring credits, including composing and conducting the score for the movie Conquest of the Planet of the Apes. He has also appeared on records by such diverse artists as George Harrison, The Grateful Dead, Paul McCartney, Steppenwolf, Whitney Houston, Barbra Streisand, Joni Mitchell, Blondie, Eddie Money, Steely Dan, Pink Floyd, The Blues Brothers, Quincy Jones, Carole King, Olivia Newton-John and Frank Sinatra.

He produced two CDs for tenor vocalist Daniel Rodriguez formerly ‘The Singing Policeman’. The first of which, The Spirit Of America, has sold over 400,000 copies to date. Scott has also conducted over thirty symphony orchestras around the U.S. as music director for Rodriguez.

Scott is a member of the The Blues Brothers musical ensemble, despite his absence in the 1980 motion picture of the same name. He was also the leader of the house band on two short-lived late night talk shows: CBS' The Pat Sajak Show and Fox's The Chevy Chase Show. He is also recognized as a prominent musical director on several major awards telecasts. He was the Musical Director of the 68th Academy Awards in 1996, several Emmy Awards telecasts from 1996 to 2007, Ebony Magazine's 50th Birthday Celebration, several People's Choice Awards telecasts, and a variety of other shows.

Scott also records with Les Deux Love Orchestra.


As leader

  • The Honeysuckle Breeze (Impulse!, 1967)
  • Rural Still Life (Impulse!, 1969)
  • Hair to Jazz, 1970
  • Paint Your Wagon, 1971
  • Great Scott, 1972
  • Tom Scott and The L.A. Express, 1973
  • Tom Cat (with The L.A. Express), 1974
  • New York Connection, 1975
  • Blow It Out (features "Gotcha", the theme from Starsky and Hutch), 1977
  • Intimate Strangers (partially live), 1978
  • Street Beat, 1979
  • Apple Juice (live), 1981
  • Desire, 1982
  • Target, 1983
  • One Night - One Day, 1985
  • Streamlines, 1987
  • Flashpoint, 1988
  • Them Changes (with The Pat Sajak Show house band), 1990
  • Keep This Love Alive, 1991
  • Born Again, 1992
  • Reed My Lips, 1994
  • Night Creatures, 1995
  • Bluestreak (with The L.A. Express), 1997
  • Smokin' Section (with The L.A. Express), 1999
  • New Found Freedom, 2002
  • Bebop United (live), 2006
  • Cannon Reloaded, 2008

As sideman

With Don Ellis

With Alphonse Mouzon

With Oliver Nelson

With Bill Plummer

With Howard Roberts

With Lalo Schifrin

With Gábor Szabó

With Air Supply

With Bob Thiele Emergency

With Carole King

Unless indicated otherwise, the text in this article is either based on Wikipedia article "Tom Scott (musician)" or another language Wikipedia page thereof used under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License; or on original research by Jahsonic and friends. See Art and Popular Culture's copyright notice.

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