Matt Thomas grew up in Indiana. , went to Ball State University where he graduated Cum Laude with a Bachelor of Science in Music Education in 1998. He received the Young Artist Award each year he attended Ball State. He went on to receive an MM in Music Performance from Northern Illinois University.
He accepted a position with the United States Air Force's Band of the Golden West, located at Travis Air Force Base. During his 11 years stationed with the band, he performed in venues throughout the West Coast and for many high profile events, including 4th of July at the Hollywood Bowl with Vince Gill and the LA Philharmonic, President Reagan's Interment Ceremony, and the Rose Bowl Parade.
As a freelance percussionist, Matt has performed with numerous orchestras, country bands, and jazz combos including the California Wind Orchestra, the Rockford Symphony, the Muncie Symphony Orchestra, and the Carmel Symphony Orchestra. In addition, he was featured with the NIU Steel Band on the Bozo Show, and performed as a soloist with the Buffalo Philharmonic on the Amadinda xylophone. His principle instructors have been Dr. Erwin Mueller, Rich Holly, Robert Chappell, Jeff Nearpass, Daniel Kennedy, and Afro-Cuban percussionists Reuben Alverez and Jesus Diaz.
His teaching philosophy is focused on mastering fundamental techniques while also enjoying music performance. He believes that music should move the soul -- and that goes for the performers too!