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An Abbreviated Biography

     Tom Thumb & the Hitchikers was originally formed in June 1984 by three musician friends who shared a love and knowledge of rock and soul music. The trio, along with a female vocalist, launched the Hitchikers’ debut performance at the Acapulco Restaurant in Playa del Rey, for which the band earned free beer and tacos.

     From that inauspicious start, Tom Thumb & the Hitchikers has grown monumentally, not only in size, but in talent and popularity. The group’s initial play list was originally more folk rock than dance music: Donovan, Simon & Garfunkle, Lovin’ Spoonful, Mama’s & Papa’s and Linda Ronstadt - anything with great harmonies. Indeed, the band’s best feature was its extremely tight three and four part vocal harmonies.

     Because the quartet wanted to become a dance band, it added a drummer, lead guitarist and later, a three piece horn section.

     By 1987, the now nine piece band had replaced its entire song list with classic rock & soul dance hits, while retaining the strong vocal harmonies that set the early Hitchikers apart from other bands.

     Tom Thumb & the Hitchikers regularly performs at wedding receptions, corporate parties, private school and charitable fund raisers, yacht clubs, country clubs and private clubs, including the Jonathon Club, Los Angeles Country Club, Bel Air Bay Club, Balboa Bay Club and the Beach Club. The Hitchikers are unquestionably one of the best and most requested dance bands in Southern California.

     After more than twenty seven years, Tom Thumb & the Hitchikers still strives to create the best dance music possible for your event. We perform only the best and most danceable music from the 1950's through the 1980's, with an emphasis on 60's rock & soul. No other eleven piece band has the versatility to perform a set of swing tunes, a samba and bossa nova set, two sets of 50's music, a set of British invasion rock, a set of American rock n’ roll, a set of surf music, three sets of soul music, a blues set and a few country rock numbers.

     Today, as always, Tom Thumb & the Hitchikers boasts a set line up of top musicians and singers, with credits too numerous to list in this biography.

Please accept our promise that you won’t be disappointed with Tom Thumb & the Hitchikers, the best dance band in Southern California!



Dennis Neil Jones

     Dennis plays bass and keyboards in Sgt. Pepper and sings lead and background vocals. Dennis began his musical training with piano lessons at the age of five. At twelve, he took up the guitar. As a teen growing up in Dublin, California, he played rhythm and bass guitar in Bay Area bands throughout high school, often competing for gigs with Tom Kolb’s bands. (See Kolb bio)

     After enrolling at the University of Southern California, he studied piano and gave his first performance on that instrument during USC’s Songfest at the Greek Theater. At the end of his senior year, he formed the rock band “Home Cooking” which enjoyed modest popularity at several southland Universities.

     After graduating from law school and passing the California and Nevada bar exams, Dennis formed Tom Thumb & the Hitchikers in 1984. That eleven-piece band is still going strong and is a SoCal favorite of many corporations, charities, private social clubs, country clubs, private schools and wedding planners.

     Dennis lives on a small ranch in upper Ojai, California.



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