RIP Gene Thomas: Swamp-Pop Singer of "Sometimes" Passes Away at 74

Gene Thomas, the Texas singer and songwriter whose 1961 swamp-pop hit "Sometimes" was recorded at Houston's Gold Star Studios (later SugarHill), and was later covered by Doug Sahm, passed away Sunday morning. Houston musician Buzzy Smith announced Thomas' death on his Facebook page.

The Palestine native was 74. He had been diagnosed with advanced lung cancer in July, Thomas' wife Darlene posted on his Facebook page at the time.

According to Vicki Welch Ayo, author of the forthcoming book Boys From Houston, Thomas (born Gene Thomasson) picked up a guitar at age 12 and was performing in Houston by his 18th birthday. He cut "Sometimes" with "two friends and two hired musicians," and although it was ignored at first, it eventually went to No. 1 in all the big Texas cities, Ayo says.

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Chris Gray has been Music Editor for the Houston Press since 2008. He is the proud father of a Beatles-loving toddler named Oliver.
Contact: Chris Gray