Tom moved to New Orleans in 2008 to help rebuild the city post hurricane Katrina. Falling in love with early jazz and roots music, Tom found work as a freelance bassist for over a decade. After touring with Voodoo Town and Debauche, and freelance stints with Hannibal Lokumbe, Don Vappie, Steve Masakowski, Ellis Marsalis, Leon ‘Kid Chocolate’ Brown, Tom has immersed himself in the traditional and modern jazz scenes of New Orleans. While completing his Master of Music (Jazz Studies) degree at University of New Orleans, Tom studied bass with James Singleton (Astral Project), Roland Guerin (Allen Toussaint, Dr. John), and Peter Harris (Germaine Bazzle). Tom worked as a bassist for over a decade and is still very active in the New Orleans music community as a player and educator.
Tom Witek was born and raised in the musically diverse New York/New Jersey metropolitan area. From early childhood, Tom played trumpet in classical orchestra and jazz band ensembles in the Maplewood/South Orange, NJ school district. At the age of 13, Tom started playing the electric bass. Tom performed with various bands in high school and his musical horizons widened. After experiencing an incredible McCoy Tyner concert in New York, Tom knew he wanted to play jazz in order to become a great improvisational bassist. While in high school, Tom studied with South Orange resident and bass master John Lee (Dizzy Gillespie, Sonny Rollins) who served as a musical mentor for Tom in the New York City jazz scene Upon furthering his education, Tom studied with Andy Eulau during his undergraduate years at Rutgers University.
Tom appeared playing bass on FX popular series American Horror Story 'Coven' Season 3 Episode 7 'The Axeman’ in 2013. Under musical supervisor Jay Weigel, the group played John Coltrane’s ‘Sun Ship’ in the infamous scene. Tom also appeared as a bassist in the Hank Williams biopic 'I Saw The Light’ in ‘Lovesick Blues’ scene.
After spending over ten years in the Crescent City, Tom moved to the Magic City to attend The Frost School of Music at The University of Miami in pursuit of a Doctorate in Jazz Instrumental Performance.
The V.Tet - Octagami is released to purchase or stream on all platforms. The V.Tet features New Orleans based musicians on the recording and all compositions are written by Tom Witek. Octagami features Branden Lewis (Preservation Hall) on trumpet, Calvin Johnson (Big Sam’s Funky Nation) on soprano and tenor saxophone, Byron Asher (Skrontch) on clarinet and tenor saxophone, Evan Oberla (O.A.R., Sexual Thunder) on trombone, Georgi Petrov (Maggie Koerner) on guitar, Michael Torregano Jr (Allie Porter) on piano, and Trenton O’Neal (Deltaphonic) on drums. Please listen on all streaming platforms.