Bio

Thollem is a perpetually traveling pianist, keyboardist, composer, improviser, singer-songwriter, activist, author and teacher. He’s spent most of his life living on the road throughout North America and Europe. His work is ever-changing, evolving and responding to the times and his experiences, both as a soloist and in collaboration with hundreds of artists across idioms and disciplines. Thollem’s known internationally as an acoustic piano player in the free jazz and post-classical worlds, as the lead vocalist for the Italian agit-punk band Tsigoti, as an electronic keyboardist through a multitude of projects and as the long-term temporary guida of the Sicilian Improvisers Orchestra.

Born and raised in the San Francisco Bay Area, Thollem began playing the piano, composing and improvising as a child, absorbing the sounds of his culturally diverse upbringing. As an adult he has continued to incorporate the breadth of musics he has experienced on his extensive travels. Since 2005, he has played over 1,500 concerts throughout N. America and Europe as a soloist and in collaboration with other musicians, dancers and filmmakers. In that time span, as lead facilitator or co-leader, Thollem has released close to 100 albums on 23 different vanguard labels. A very brief cross section of his many collaborators include William Parker, Pauline Oliveros, Stefano Scodanibbio, Nels Cline, Rob Mazurek, Ravish Momin, Michael Wimberly, Mike Watt and Carmina Escobar. He is the founding director of Estamos Ensemble, a Mexican-American cross border ensemble for musical exchange, the long-term temporary Guida of the Sicilian Improvisers Orchestra and is a published author about art, politics and his travels in NewMusic Box, The Anthology of Essays On Deep Listening, Full Moon Magazine (Prague) and First American Art Magazine.

Thollem at Blue Note in NY, NY

“Thollem will take you on journeys across varied landscapes that flow effortlessly from one to the next — somehow emerging logically even in their unpredictability.”

Joan Jeanrenaud, liner notes for Meeting at the parting place

for European booking inquiries: booking@scarrymonster.com
for all other bookings