Tom McGuinness

Tom was born in Wimbledon in 1941. Along with a whole generation, hearing Lonnie Donegan records on Radio Luxembourg inspired him to take up the guitar. His parents bought him a guitar and Bert Weedon's instruction book Play In A Day and so useful was this book that after a month he still couldn't even tune the guitar. Luckily, one lunch hour a school friend showed him two chords and he worked out the third chord for himself. Now he was equipped to play all the Rock'n'Roll hits of the 50s and he began to play in various amateur bands – firstly in youth clubs – then in pubs and clubs around London.

His first serious band was The Roosters where he played guitar alongside Eric Clapton. Tom then joined Manfred Mann on bass guitar just before they had their first hit 5-4-3-2-1. He soon switched back to guitar and stayed with Manfred Mann until they broke up in 1969.

He then took up with the songwriters Benny Gallagher and Graham Lyle and drummer Hughie Flint. The band was called McGuinness Flint and When I'm Dead And Gone was their biggest hit. Soon Gallagher and Lyle departed with their songs and McGuinness Flint slowly faded away..

In 1979 Paul Jones invited Tom to join a blues band - imaginatively called The Blues Band - for a couple of gigs. A couple of thousand gigs later the band continues to tour. In 1991 to celebrate Tom's 50th birthday, The Manfreds got together again and have remained together ever since.

Alongside making music Tom has also written for That Was The Week That Was, Time Out and The Tattler. Plus he penned a How-Not-To-Do-It-Yourself guide called So You Want To Be A Rock'n'Roll Star. He also co-directed the award winning South Bank Show on Jimi Hendrix. His compositions have been recorded by artists as diverse as Christie Moore, Don Williams, The Furies and Sylvie Vartan.

Tom continues to do 100 gigs a year with The Manfreds and The Blues Band. The Blues Band recently started work on a new album and Tom is part-way through recording a new solo album for release early next year. In the meantime, Repertoire Records will release a compilation album of new and previously released tracks this autumn, titled Playing For Time.