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David Clayton-Thomas

David Clayton-Thomas (born David Henry Thomsett, 13 September 1941) is a Grammy Award-winning Canadian musician, singer, and songwriter, best known as the lead vocalist of the American band Blood, Sweat & Tears. Clayton-Thomas has been inducted into the Canadian Music Hall of Fame and in 2007 his jazz/rock composition "Spinning Wheel" was enshrined in the Canadian Songwriter's Hall of Fame. In 2010 Clayton-Thomas received his star on Canada's Walk of Fame.

Clayton-Thomas began his music career in the early 1960s, working the clubs on Toronto's Yonge Street, where he discovered his love of singing and playing the blues. Before moving to New York City in 1967, Clayton-Thomas fronted a couple of local bands, first The Shays and then The Bossmen, one of the earliest rock bands with significant jazz influences. But the real success came only a few difficult years later when he joined Blood, Sweat & Tears.

Clayton-Thomas's first album with the band, Blood, Sweat & Tears (which was released in December 1968) – despite its eponymous title, it was actually the band's second album – sold ten million copies worldwide. The record topped the Billboard album chart for seven weeks and charted for 109 weeks. It won five Grammy Awards, including Album of the Year and Best Performance by a Male Vocalist. It featured three hit singles, "You've Made Me So Very Happy", "Spinning Wheel", and "And When I Die" (on the Hot 100, each peaked at No. 2 and lasted 13 weeks) as well as a memorable rendition of Billie Holiday's "God Bless The Child".

With Clayton-Thomas fronting the band, BS&T continued with a string of hit albums, including Blood, Sweat & Tears 3 which featured Carole King's "Hi-De-Ho" and Clayton-Thomas's "Lucretia MacEvil", and Blood, Sweat & Tears 4, which yielded another Clayton-Thomas-penned hit single, "Go Down Gamblin'" and "Lisa Listen to Me".

In 1972 Thomas released his first Columbia solo album after BS&T, simply titled "David Clayton Thomas". In 1973 the second solo album Tequila Sunrise was issued by Columbia. In 1974 he issued the Harmony Junction album on RCA. In 1975 Thomas returned to front Blood Sweat & Tears again on the Columbia albums New City and, in 1976, More Than Ever. In 1977 they released Brand New Day on the ABC label. In 1978 Thomas issued another solo album on ABC, titled simply Clayton. In 1980 BS&T issued the MCA album Nuclear Blues, which also included Thomas. Later in the decade Columbia issued the double live BS&T album Live And Improvised again with Thomas. In 2004, Clayton-Thomas left New York for Toronto and launched an All-Star 10-piece band. Since then, he has toured and recorded almost a dozen albums under his own name.

Birth and Death Data: Born September 13th, 1941 (Kingston upon Thames)

Date Range of DAHR Recordings: 1969

Roles Represented in DAHR: vocalist


Company Matrix No. Size First Recording Date Title Primary Performer Description Role Audio
Decca 121860 7/29/1969 I got a woman David Clayton-Thomas vocalist  
Decca 121861 7/29/1969 Say boss man David Clayton-Thomas vocalist  
Decca 121862 7/29/1969 Who's been talkin' David Clayton-Thomas vocalist  
Decca 121863 7/29/1969 Poison ivy David Clayton-Thomas vocalist  
Decca 121864 7/29/1969 Done somebody wrong David Clayton-Thomas vocalist  
Decca 121865 7/29/1969 Tobacco road David Clayton-Thomas vocalist  
Decca 121866 7/29/1969 Boom boom David Clayton-Thomas vocalist  
Decca 121867 7/29/1969 Good lovin' David Clayton-Thomas vocalist  
Decca 121868 7/29/1969 Shayos David Clayton-Thomas vocalist  
Decca 121897 7/29/1969 Lucy David Clayton-Thomas vocalist  
Decca 121898 7/29/1969 Barbie Lee David Clayton-Thomas vocalist  
Decca 121899 7/29/1969 Want you I don't David Clayton-Thomas vocalist  
Decca 121900 7/29/1969 Right up tight all right David Clayton-Thomas vocalist  
Decca 121901 7/29/1969 Howlin' for my darling David Clayton-Thomas vocalist  
Decca 121902 7/29/1969 No no David Clayton-Thomas vocalist  
Decca 121903 7/29/1969 I'm a hog for you David Clayton-Thomas vocalist  
Decca 121904 7/29/1969 Call it stormy Monday David Clayton-Thomas vocalist  


Discography of American Historical Recordings, s.v. "Clayton-Thomas, David," accessed January 25, 2021,

Clayton-Thomas, David. (2021). In Discography of American Historical Recordings. Retrieved January 25, 2021, from

"Clayton-Thomas, David." Discography of American Historical Recordings. UC Santa Barbara Library, 2021. Web. 25 January 2021.

DAHR Persistent Identifier



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