“Derek’s music seems to step out from some strange musical time machine where the past and the future meld into a beautiful strange blend of sonic molecules.”
— -Malcolm Burn producer (Emmylou Harris, Bob Dylan)
“I had the pleasure to go to Pinnacles on Telo island for a ten day surf trip recently and wanted to talk about my surf guide, Derek Thomas, for a moment. Derek met us in the airport on the way in and immediately made us feel at home and at ease with our trip. Derek was as excited as we were about the ten days ahead and the surf we would experience around the Telo islands. I was blown away by how much he knew about the area, the surf breaks, and the people.

I would say we all became friends after just a day between the early morning surfs to the evening pool sessions we practically spent all day together. Every excursion went off without a hitch as Derek was always on time, knowledgeable, and well organized. Derek’s talent was not just about surfing, as he entertained us on the boat and in the bar after dinner with great jam sessions on his guitar. I can say that this was the best surf trip I have been on thanks to Derek and the rest of the crew at Pinnacles. I’m looking forward to returning as soon as possible.” -
Stuart and Jeanie Schlesinger- Northern California/ Nicaragua
“Top 10 Americana Albums of 2014. “ Best Of LA Americana Music 2012”
— -Turnstyled Junkpiled
“I have had the good fortune of catching Derek as a surf guide at two very prestigious locations, Pinnacles on Telo and Ocean Divine. As is easy with Derek’s nature, we have now become close friends and have continued discussing and sharing of great music and books. As a surfer Derek is highly experienced and truly “rips” ,as a guide he has always been very knowledgeable of the locations we have visited and highly attuned to where the best waves will be located in terms of tides, directions of winds and crowds.

My surfing personally has improved thanks to Derek’s attention and guidance. His musical talent that is available most evenings brings the perfect end to your day. I have to thank Derek personally on the spiritual guidance and advice he has given me, he is soulful human.”
Alex Illing- Porto, Portugal
“The man is on top of the LA-scene and we for sure gonna keep tabs on Mr Thomas. The vibe and the feeling is there, it’s Americana greatness with a soul-surf touch. Don’t miss his awesome tune Honey Whiskey.”

-Kentucky Seven music blog
During a recent surf holiday experience up in the Telo Islands, Indonesia I had the pleasure to meet & be treated to the unparalleled services of Derek Thomas. I found Derek to be a relational professional, having confidence in his knowledge of the ocean & how to provide our group with exactly what our needs were.
Nathan Hodge- former WSA tour surfer
“Tara and I wanted to reach out and thank you for an amazing trip at “Pinnacles on Telos”. Words can’t describe how happy and pleased we were with your incredible services and hospitality. You made us so comfortable that we were able to put away the hustle and bustle of work and leave it all behind.

You put us on solid waves everyday, giving us important line up information and pushing us to charge knowing we were safe to do so. To be able to surf 17 of 24 sessions by ourselves is unheard of!!! I appreciate your knowledge of the breaks and reefs as you put us in perfect position every time and we could not be happier about our wave count during the trip.

We also really enjoyed your early evening performances on guitar as well as the sunset cruises which really set the tone for a great evening. You truly are a very talented musician, singer and songwriter!!!
Tara and I still can’t get over the amazing romantic dinner for two that you did for us under the stars. To have you play your finger style guitar for us as we wined and dined next to a bonfire while staying on a private island in paradise will be something we will remember for the rest of our lives. My wife Tara couldn’t of been anymore happier as she honestly said that was one of the best days she ever had. Talk about Stoke!!!

Again, we can’t thank you enough for everything you did for us........ A Truly Epic Surfing Honeymoon!”

Tom and Tara Addison- Florida
We met Derek Thomas on our surf holiday aboard yacht charter “Ocean Divine” in the Maldives during the summer of 2017. He introduced himself as our surf guide and by the time we left he had quickly become a lifelong family friend. Just a few months later we invited him to our home in Nosara, Costa Rica for Christmas. Board, guitar in hand, we had another memorable surf trip with the family! Derek has an undeniable love for people, the water and music. Always professional and upbeat he is definitely stoked to share his knowledge and expertise. He had a knack of keeping us comfortable in new surf breaks and was quick to help when asked. Fun to watch him rip but also quick to let you drop in when a great wave came your way. After epic surf sessions, Derek would often play his guitar and harmonica for us. Equally as talented, Derek knew how to keep the good and fun vibes going!! If you need the absolute best surf guide, look no further! You’ll be lucky to have him!!
Eddie & Jen Delaney- Austin Texas/Costa Rica
“Derek Thomas is a master of mood, creating songs that connect strongly on an emotional level, songs that make a home for themselves inside us so that soon they feel like our own.”
— -Michael's Music Log
“ We spent ten days at Pinnacles, having organized a trip there for a couple of mates and our families. Derek acted as our host on the island concerning himself with every detail of our surfing experience. He worked so hard for us in aspects of our trip too numerous to mention and he did it with soul and grace. It was an expensive holiday by our standards and it more than met our high expectations. I know I speak on behalf of all of us that this was in a large part thanks to Derek. A beautiful guy and as a bonus he is a very good musician. We loved listening to him playing guitar and singing. Couldn’t recommend him more highly.”

Andrew and Penny Knight- Cape Town South Africa
Derek Thomas provided surf guide and overall “guest relations” duties during my time at Pinnacles in Indonesia . His service was faultless. He provided excellent information on all the breaks we surfed, especially when it was first time out. And then surprised us with some excellent chilled live music as we kicked back at the bar in the resort in the evening. A very talented surfer & musician, it was a pleasure to spend time with Derek. He would be a valuable asset to any surf resort or surf charter boat.

Best wishes,

John Finlay
CEO World Surfaris
“Derek Thomas’ thoughtful, evocative lyrics and smoky vocals are at the forefront of the music. A gifted singer-songwriter who promises to make his mark not only in California, but also on the music scene as a whole.”
Just dropping you a note from both of us to thank you for an unforgettable holiday. From the moment you collected us at the airport and set the tone with your music on the boat it was bound to be a fabulous 10 days. I’m sure you thought we were a pretty challenging group when we arrived but in your subtle way you managed to put us all in our boxes!

You were so much more than an amazing surf guide. We really loved your music and you playing for us was a real treat and totally unexpected. Thanks Derek, your attention to detail and way of making everything hassle free was really appreciated. A holiday to remember in the right way. Please stay in touch and you are welcome to stay with us if you’re ever in Cape Town.
Good luck with your music and best wishes.”
Martine and Nick Critics- South Africa/ England
“In particular among the crew on Ocean Divine, our surf guide Derek Thomas is the standout. He is knowledgable about the breaks and conditions, a pleasure to be with, and a natural with the locals. He is also a gifted muscian and provided us with much appreciated music under the stars on several evenings.”

Cathleen and Greg Pecchia
Corona del Mar, California

live music clips