Tom Reid was born in Kilkenny, Ireland, the fourth of ten children. He grew up to the sounds of his mother singing and he can’t remember a time he wasn’t singing himself. At age 11, he was sent to a religious boarding school. His experiences there inspired the title song of his album Broken Glass.
At 17 he moved to London where he took a number of jobs from bartending to factory work to the building sites. With his first paycheque, he bought Tom Paxton’s album Morning Again and soon fell in love with the music of John Prine, Kris Kristofferson, Bob Dylan, Leonard Cohen, Townes van Zandt, Eric Bogle, Stan Rogers and Harvey Andrews.
In his early 20s Tom made his way to Australia, where his first son was born. He became involved in the folk music scene, singing at clubs and festivals. He remained in Australia for 10 years and then headed back to England in the late 1980s, where he raised a family and worked in construction. Alongside this, he busked and sang in pubs.
Tom made his first album, When Kings Make War, in Ireland in 2001. The album is comprised of songs by artists who inspired him.
For years, his family had encouraged him to try his hand at writing his own songs and aged 60, Tom finally gave in. He hasn’t stopped since.
In 2012, he met Gerry Diver, whose musical wizardry and understanding of Tom’s lyrics made him the perfect producer for Tom’s first album of original songs, Broken Glass.
Tom currently lives in London and continues to work in construction. He is a regular floor singer at the Islington Folk Club and his third album is underway.