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While in graduate school at West Virginia University I formed Rasta Rafiki with several other musicians. Sharing guitar duties with John Schmitt, I contributed significantly to many of the songs that encompassed our 3 releases. Rasta Rafiki combined island styles and Americana for an original mix. In 1991 this endeavor became a steady job for each of us with 3 full length releases and 175 touring dates a year we performed from Massachusetts to Florida and west to Colorado. This intensive schedule gained me valuable experience and insights, performing on bills with virtually every reggae band that was touring America in the 90's. Rafiki went their separate ways in January of 1997, at which point I became a member of The Recipe.
As guitarist in the Recipe for 2 years we toured the country playing festivals and bars from California to Maine.
In November 1999, I parted ways with The Recipe, and formed The Tom Batchelor Band. The band consists of myself on guitar and vocals, Gregg Lowley on drums and vocals Jon Vehse on bass, Rob Raese on guitar, and Glenn Rowsey on steel drum. Each member brings many years of experience on their instrument, and extensive knowledge of wide ranging musical styles to the band. The core of what we do consists of reggae and rock covers, as well as originals from these and other genres. My original compositions range from straight forward rock and funk, to reggae and island romps. Live we enjoy exploring all the realms of improvisational possibilities within the song structures, delving into genres as diverse as jazz, ska, and country. In 2008 we release "Runes" a ten song CD consisting of original material recorded over several years. We've been gigging mostly in West Virginia and the surrounding areas, and aspire to spread the vibe to the entire world. I hope you will come out and check us out live. Peace. T.P.B.