Epitaph Records has reported that influential punk producer Thom Wilson (who is probably best known for producing The Offspring‘s iconic 1994 album Smash) died on February 8th from unknown causes. Epitaph CEO and Bad Religion guitarist Brett Gurewitz issued the following statement:
“In ’82 when I was just getting started, Thom Wilson was a guy all the bands in the scene looked up to. He was the pro in our midst who loved punk and was willing to take kids under his wing to help them sound great. His work with TSOL and the Adolescents set the bar for everything that came after, including The Offspring’s multi-platinum LP Smash, which was the best-selling independent release of all time. Thom was a friend, a teacher and a great producer. He will be missed.”
As mentioned in the statement above, most of Wilson’s production and engineering work came in the punk scene. After starting his career in the 70’s by producing records soft rock acts Burton Cummings and Seals and Crofts, he began migrating to working on punk rock records in 1981, first teaming with Stiv Bators on his Disconnected album. He also worked with T.S.O.L. on their first four releases, The Adolescents on their self-titled 1981 debut, and then went on to produce/engineer records by The Offspring, The Dead Kennedys, The Vandals, Bad Religion, Social Distortion, Face to Face, Iggy Pop, The Bouncing Souls and The Aquabats, among others.
Dying Scene sends Wilson’s family condolences.