Luke Thompson


While studying at the Elder Conservatorium of Music (University of Adelaide), Luke was an invaluable member of The Adelaide Connection Jazz choir. Great basses who sing harmony, jazz and have the ability to solo beautifully are rare. 'The Connection' performed during Luke's tenure at the Sydney Opera house (1996) and at the International Association of Jazz Educators convention in New York City (1998).

In 2001, he joined the a cappella vocal group "Sonic Fix" performing three consecutive Christmas seasons in Tokyo, Japan.

Once he’d graduated from Uni, Luke was invited to lecture Jazz Voice at the Elder Con, and also took on the directorship of The Adelaide Connection, and inspired the students there for his long stint there between 2003 to 2015.

Luke's own performance history is long, as well, as he's fronted jazz ensembles of all sizes as a singer and a sax player, right up to singing out the front of the Mike Stewart big band in Adelaide for many years. He has appeared at many jazz and music festivals, fronting his own groups 'Luke and the Force' and 'Swing City Sextet' as well as Mike Stewart's big band in the acclaimed shows 'Basie, Sinatra and Beyond', 'Big Band Blues' and 'Backyard Swing'. Luke has also performed on some high profile shows at the Adelaide Cabaret Festival, including the Paul Kelly/Paul Grabowsky show 'Meet Me In The Middle Of The Air', with Andy Seymour's 'How Great Thou Art - The Gospel music of Elvis Presley' (2003/05) and with Trace Canini's 'Gospel Groove' (2009).

Luke's original CD "One by One" was recorded at Wizard tone studios and released in July 2016.

Luke recently re-located to Germany for 6 months and performed at the Vortex Jazz Club (London), The Oriole (London), C. Keller and a number of clubs and jazz venues across Germany

Anagram of your name? The Spunk Loom.

Anything strange about your name? It's strangely common.

Who or what inspired you to sing? My Primary school music teacher Ms. Lyall.

If you weren't a singer in The Idea of North, what would you be doing? Studying my Master in Education.

Most embarrassing moment on stage? Being introduced as the "guy who makes Michael Bublé look like a turd in a punch bowl".

Any on-tour shenanigans you wish to share? Simultaneously meeting and offending Steven Seagal and his entourage.

How do you prepare for a gig? Try to get a good night sleep the night before and a jog in the morning of the concert.

Top 5 favourite singers? James Taylor, Mark Murphy, Kurt Elling, Bobby McFerrin, Stevie Wonder.

Top 5 favourite bands? Elvis Costello and the Attractions, Elixir, Count Basie Orchestra, Cold Chisel, Miles Davis Quintet.

Top 5 favourite albums? October Road - James Taylor, Spontaneous Inventions - Bobby McFerrin, Vince Jones Live, Songs in the Key of Life - Stevie Wonder, Donny Hathaway Live.

Top 5 favourite vocal groups? New York Voices, Take 6, Singers unlimited, Lambert, Hendricks and Ross, The Idea of North (July 2017: I haven't been a member long enough for that to be a self-compliment!)

Top 5 favourite songs? Sweet Baby James, All the things you are, This old love, Moonlight serenade, Body and soul.

If you could only eat one cuisine for the rest of your life, it would be? Japanese.

As someone who started as a fan of TION and is now a part of the group, how would you describe that transition from audience to stage? For an audience member it all looks so easy for's like a duck swimming, there’s so much going on underneath. It’s been a steep learning curve but I’m loving every minute of it.

Favourite types of TION gigs? For an audience member it all looks so easy for's like a duck swimming, there's so much going on underneath. It's been a steep learning curve but I'm loving every minute of it.

Favourite or most memorable TION gig(s)(specific)so far Our concert as part of the Hannover A Cappella Woche 2017. It was our last gig of the international tour and the venue was gorgeous and the crowd were hanging on every note we sang.

Best part of this job? Sharing our hard work and talent with great audiences.

Worst part of this job? Not being able to take my wife and kids along for the ride.

What were you like in High School? Quiet and into sport and music.

What is your pet peeve? Bad manners.

What do you love about the other TION members specifically and individually, musically and also on a personal level?  Nick: One of the most positive and driven people I have met. He's ability to lock in on chords and to hold the longest notes ever is second to none…did I mention his comedic timing too? Naomi: Her vocal, musical and arranging skills are on another level (to 99.9% of humans). She really has mastered her craft over the 20 years I've known her. Nay can be brutally honest but warm and funny in the same breath. I'll update this post with Emma once I actually know her! Thus far, though, her voice is an awesome match for this group.

Favourite TION tour so far? Qatar/Switzerland/Germany, April/May 2017.

What is your ideal holiday? Snorkelling on the Great Barrier Reef or Europe in winter…two extremes!

Who does your hair, make-up? Any secrets? Adnan of Kensington has cut my hair for many years now. Fifteen buck a pop. It's clearly a massive priority for me.(In fact, I really go 'cause he's a great guy and I get to speak in German a bit with him.)

Who would you invite to your ideal dinner party? James Taylor

Which (10-ish) groups/bands would play at your ideal music festival if you were the director? Not sure about bands but I’d love to have James Taylor, Lior, James Blake, Bobby McFerrin, Esperanza Spalding, Kurt Elling, Elvis Costello, Paul Simon, India Arie, and Katie Noonan all headlining my festival.

Who would play you as the starring role in the movie of your life? Roger Federer (apparently we look alike)

Anything else we should know about you? My Grandpa, Buddy Thompson, was a professional country music guitarist and yodeller for some time in the Perry Bros. Circus.

I was captain of the Port Adelaide Under 17s football team.