Band leader. Honky-tonk hero. Even soundtrack writer for a book (a Canadian first, for a Will Ferguson novel.) Survivor and singer of cautionary tales. You want it, you got it from Tom Phillips, whose career has turned itself inside out so often that at times he appears to be a shape shifter. During the past few years, Phillips’ transformation was also physical as he swapped alcohol for coffee and his trademark cowboy boots and shirts for polished shoes and tailored suits.
An esteemed statesperson of the Calgary music scene, Phillips earned his laurels over decades. He recorded with Gordon Lightfoot’s band, released several albums with his legendary long time honky-tonk band The Men of Constant Sorrow (MOCS), paid homage to Hank Williams on the Sorrow Bound project, and recorded a solo acoustic album, as well as one of punk and rock covers.
A Tom Phillips song gets under your skin, undressing truths so simple they’re frightening. If you’ve been stranded on the highway, woken up in the wrong bed, walked home barefoot in a ball gown in the morning rain, or wished you could have a re-do on any of these choices, Phillips has a song for you.