Bruce Thomas, Bassist for The Attractions, Discusses the Art of the Bassline on Nakedly Examined Music

Bruce is best known as Elvis Costello’s bassist on about a dozen albums as The Attractions, but Bruce has been in bands since 1970 and has done numerous session gigs, most notably for Al Stewart’s early albums, plus The Pretenders, John Wesley Harding, Billy Bragg, and many more.

Your Nakedly Examined Music host Mark Linsenmayer interviews Bruce  to discuss his work on “Blood Makes Noise” by Susanne Vega from 99.9 Degrees (1992), play clips from several of the most famous Attractions tunes (using when possible the 1978 Live at the El Mocambo album) plus “La La La La Loved You” by The Attractions (w/o Elvis) from Mad About the Wrong Boy (1980), the first half of the title track of Quiver’s Gone in the Morning (1972), and we conclude by listening to a cover of The Beatles “There’s a Place” by Spencer Brown and Bruce Thomas from Back to the Start (2018). Intro: “Radio Radio” by The Attractions feat. Fito Paez from Spanish Model (2021). For more about Bruce’s musical and literary projects, see

Hear all of “Radio Radio” in Spanish plus the original. Hear the full versions of the Attractions clips: “Chelsea,” “Pump It Up,” “Clubland,” and “Everyday I Write the Book.” Hear all of “Gone in the Morning” plus “Killer Man,” whose bass solo is at 4min in. Here’s Bruce demoing some of his partsWatch the video for “There’s Is a Place.” Here’s one of the Al Stewart albums that Bruce plays onHere he is live just pre-Attractions with The Sunderland Brothers and Quiver.

Nakedly Examined Music is a podcast hosted by Mark Linsenmayer, who also hosts The Partially Examined Life Philosophy Podcast, Pretty Much Pop: A Culture Podcast, and Philosophy vs. Improv. He releases music under the name Mark Lint.

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  • James says:

    I am familiar with his work, the most wonderful composer and performer, I think that there are literally a few like him in modern art, and let him still please us with his wonderful works! Good luck to him in his work

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