In 1969, he released his first solo album for the prestigious Flying Dutchman label. However he made an earlier album that is still unreleased even now.
He changed his name to Leone in 1974 because of an interest he had in numerology at the time. He did not legally change his name and he reverted to Leon shortly thereafter.
Thomas is best known for his work with Pharoah Sanders, particularly the 1969 song "The Creator Has a Master Plan" from Sanders' Karma album. Thomas's most distinctive device was that he often broke out into yodeling in the middle of a vocal. This style has influenced singers James Moody, Tim Buckley and Bobby McFerrin, among others. He said in an interview that he developed this style after he fell and broke his teeth before an important show.
Thomas died of heart failure on May 8, 1999.
|This section requires expansion. (December 2008)|
- Spirits Known And Unknown (Flying Dutchman, 1969)
- The Leon Thomas Album (Flying Dutchman, 1970)
- Blues and the Soulful Truth (Flying Dutchman, 1972)
- Full Circle (Flying Dutchman, 1973)
- Gold Sunrise on Magic Mountain (live) (Flying Dutchman, 1971)
- Live In Berlin with Oliver Nelson (Flying Dutchman, 1971)
- The Leon Thomas Blues Band (Portrait, 1988)
- Facets (compilation) (Flying Dutchman)
- Anthology (compilation) (Soul Brother Records)
- A Piece of Cake (Palcoscenico Records)
With Pharoah Sanders
- Karma (1969)
- Jewels of Thought (1969)
- Iphizo Zam (1973)
- Shukuru (1983)
- Oh Lord, Let Me Do No Wrong (1987)
With Archie Shepp
- Kwanza (1974)