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Tabitha's Secret was a band formed in March 1993 in Orlandomarker, Floridamarker. It was originally composed of lead vocalist Rob Thomas, John Goff, and Jay Stanley on guitar, Brian Yale on bass (Colin Crisman was the original bass player), and Chris Smith playing drums., Brad Presa was the bands roadie. In September 1993, Paul Doucette joined the band as a second percussionist, only to replace Chris Smith entirely a year later. Some of the band's most popular songs were "And Around", "Dear Joan", "Unkind", "Forever December", "Paint Me Blue", and "3 A.M.".


The Split

In 1995, songwriter/producer and representative for Atlantic Records, Matt Serletic, approached the members of Tabitha's Secret concerning a long-term record deal, which neither Jay Stanley nor John Goff were interested in, believing that it would be better to sign a single album deal and reevaluate the situation after the release of the album. However, Serletic pressed on with his desire to sign the band. It is commonly believed that Serletic was more interested in helping Thomas find his voice than he was in the band Tabitha's Secret. In spite of objections from Stanley and Goff, Rob Thomas decided to take the offer.

Stanley and Goff's refusal to sign a long-term production contract, along with alleged pressure from the record company to drop the two guitar players, convinced Thomas, Yale, and Doucette to fire Stanley and Goff. Shortly after, Thomas, Yale, and Doucette signed a two-record deal with Atlantic Records. Atlantic Records introduced the trio to two guitarists: Adam Gaynor and Kyle Cook. With Cook on lead guitar and Gaynor on rhythm guitar, the five comprise Matchbox Twenty, a world-renowned band.

The Lawsuit

Matchbox Twenty's first album, Yourself or Someone Like You contained the song "3 A.M." This song was written and performed as Tabitha's Secret, as was released on the band's self-titled/self-published cassette EP. Stanley, DeWitt and Goff sued Matchbox Twenty claiming fiduciary breach of contract. This lawsuit lasted five years and was settled in 2000.


The first recording released by Tabitha's Secret was a self-titled and self-published EP featuring the name "Tabitha's Secret?" and original artwork by Perry Souza.

The first post-breakup Tabitha's Secret album was entitled "Don't Play With Matches" (a thinly-veiled reference to Stanley's ex-bandmates), released in 1998.

The next recording, in 2000, was entitled Live, and features recordings from Tabitha's Secret's shows.

In 2001, Jay Stanley joined with Tony Miceli and George Spatta to re-mix, re-master and overdub the original recordings from the self-titled EP, much to Thomas's disapproval. Unfortunately for Thomas, the laws in the US state that any audio recording may be released providing the songwriter is provided royalties. Therefore, as long as Thomas receives payment as a contributor he has no legal standing to stop the release.Thomas has been quoted as saying he is angry that Stanley is making a living from his past.

Recently, Jay Stanley has begun to release new Tabitha's Secret material, entitled the "Vault". Currently, three releases are available, Vault(s) 1, 2 and 3.

Band members

Former members

  • Rob Thomas – lead vocals (March 1993–1995)
  • John Goff – guitar, backing vocals (March 1993–1995)
  • John "Jay" Stanley – guitar, backing vocals (March 1993–1995)
  • Brian Yale – bass guitar (March 1993–1995)
  • Richard DeWitt – guitar (March 1993–1994)
  • Paul Doucette – drums, percussion (September 1993–1995)
  • Chris Smith – drums, percussion (March 1993–September 1994)
  • Colin Crisman – bass guitar (March 1993)
  • Scott Sullivan – drums, percussion (March 1993)
  • Kyle Cook – lead guitar, backing vocals (1995)
  • Adam Gaynor – rhythm guitar, backing vocals (1995)

Additional personnel

  • Mike Pilarski – instrument tech, roadie (March 1993–1995)
  • Matt Serletic – songwriter, producer, representative (1995)



  • Don't Play with Matches (1997)
  • Live (1999)
  • Tabitha's Secret? (2001)
  • The Vault Vol.1 (2007)
  • The Vault Vol.2 (2007)
  • The Vault Vol.3: The Covers (2007)

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