• Butch Thompson on piano and clarinet

    The sweetness & bouyant rhythm

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    of New Orleans music

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    took hold of Butch & never let go.



  • Evolving Jazz Tradition

    Butch brings his own voice to the classic jazz repertoire of blues, stomps, ragtime and pop songs. From Scott Joplin's Maple Leaf Rag to Duke Ellington's Mood Indigo, from Jelly Roll Morton's New Orleans jazz to the virtuosic stride piano of 1920s Harlem, Butch has played his personal style from Cairo to Kansas City.


    Whether he's working solo, with his well-known Butch Thompson Trio, 8-piece band, or other ensemble (see Shows), Butch delivers variety and the pure, contagious joy of music making.

  • Jelly Roll Morton said it best

    Jazz was born in New Orleans, he said, from a gumbo of "everything from blues to opera. Jazz music is to be played sweet, soft, plenty rhythm. When you have your plenty rhythm with your plenty swing, it becomes beautiful."

some image One afternoon on a New Orleans porch. From left: Tom Ebbert, Brian O'Connell, Butch, Bill Huntington, Chuck Badie, Duke Heitger.

the man


For the last 20 years, I've performed an annual Christmas benefit concert at the Village Hall in my home town, Marine-on-St. Croix, Minnesota. When Santa and I scheduled this year's event (Dec. 7), we agreed that it would be the last one, and it's already sold out. The Village Hall was the venue for my very first performance as a child. It was also where I took square-dance lessons, saw Friday night movies (Abbott and Costello, Jimmy Stewart) and attended Boy Scout meetings. It was a big part of my life, and I would never rule out the place as a venue for my music.


Butch's Calendar here.

The Butch Thompson Trio Plays Favorites, celebrating 20 years
Yulestride Digipak edition, 20 year anniversary. Butch's own arrangements of Holiday music, from We Three Kings to Ave Maria, Jingle Bells to Silent Night, 17 tracks in all. CD PAGE


Butch Thompson is a Steinway Artist


Born in a small Minnesota river town, Thompson played Christmas carols on his mother’s upright piano by age three, and began formal lessons at six. He studied clarinet in high school, and as a teenager led his first professional jazz group, Shirt Thompson & His Sleeves.

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Butch hosts the Jazz Originals radio show on KBEM 88.5 FM in Minneapolis, Tuesdays at 7PM, and Sundays at 6PM (repeat).