Collaborations with film makers include:
Martha Colburn, ACVilla, Peter Sparling, Tuia Cherici, Carlos
Sandoval, David Latreille and Marcos Sánchez D.
Collaborations with dancers and dance companies include:
Germaul Barnes (Bitahkiz Ayeli), Gary Masters, Limón West Dance
Company, Peter Sparling, Viewsic Expressions, Black Bones
Thollem is a pianist, keyboardist, composer, improviser, singer-songwriter, activist, author and teacher. He's spent his life skirting and erasing the edges of boundaries musically, culturally, geographically. 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. Though Thollem's widely known as an acoustic piano player, he's also the lead vocalist for the Italian agit-punk band Tsigoti and has recently branched out significantly into the world of electronics through a multitude of projects.
Thollem was born and raised in the San Francisco Bay Area, studying the standard classical piano repertoire, composing and improvising since he was a young child and absorbing the myriad of sounds of his culturally diverse upbringing. After dedicating his 20s and 30s to grassroots political activism, he's refocused his attention these last 15 years on a breadth of musics that incorporate his myriad experiences and curiosities. In this last decade alone, he has played well over 1,000 concerts throughout N. America and Europe as a soloist and in collaboration with hundreds of musicians, dancers, and filmmakers. As leader or co-leader, he has released over 50 albums in that span on 22 different vanguard labels to international critical acclaim. “Thollem is an astounding pianist who understands the huge scope of the instrument” (Terry Riley) and who continues to delve into the furthest reaches and sub-genres of Post-Classical, Free Jazz, Noise, Punk, dance and film. A brief cross section of his many recent collaborators include William Parker, Pauline Oliveros, Stefano Scodanibbio, Nels Cline, Mike Watt, Rob Mazurek, Martha Colburn and ACVilla. He is the founding director of Estamos Ensemble, a Mexican-American cross border ensemble for musical exchange as well as the lead singer of the Italian agit-punk band Tsigoti. He's also a published author about art, politics and his travels in The Anthology of Essays On Deep Listening, Full Moon Magazine (Prague) and First American Art Magazine. In 2017, Thollem is developing his second feature-length film through an 8 month, 48 state odyssey with his partner, videographer ACVilla: Silver Ochre's Who Are U.S. 2017.
Recent Musical collaborators include:
Stefano Scodanibbio, Pauline Oliveros, William Parker, Nels Cline, Susie Ibarra, Francesco Dillon, Daniele Roccato, Mike Watt, Marco Rogliano, Alex Cline, Amy Denio, Faruq Z. Bey, Jad Fair, Brian Chase, John Butcher, Sara Lund, Ernesto Martinez, Eduardo Gonzales, Raven Chacon, LaDonna Smith, Richard Waters, Scott Looney, Jesse Rowland, Gino Robair, Jon Raskin, Ben Wright, Marco Eneidi, Michael Wimberly, Steve Mackay, Tim DuRoche, Ron Stabinsky, Jack Wright, João Castro Pinto, Bruce Ackley, Greg Saunier, John Dieterich, Tim Barnes, T.D. Skatchit, Chris Brown, Ernesto Gonzales, Laura Ortman, Nate Wooley, David Brandt, Nehemiah St. Danger, Gene V Baker, Jesse Gilbert, Jordan Glenn, Justin Pinkerton, Will Northrich-Redmond, Sam Coomes, Luca Nostro, Paolo Ravaglia, dSCI, Joao Pedro Viegas, Gerard Cox, Adam Smith, Anthony Poretti, Andrew D'Angelo, Rob Jost, Ullrich Mitzlaff, Syliva Tarozzi, Joel Grip, Adrienne Webster, Marko Novachkoff, Makoto Soto, Henry Kaiser, Ed Petterson, Pete Abbott, Tom Carter, Jeff Lederer, Mick Hobbs, Liz Albee, Billiana Voutchkova, David Michalak, Tom Nunn, Margaret Cassetto, Abigail Alwin, Carlos Santos, Dave Stone, Gianluca Gentili, Paulo Curado, Scott Amendola, Carlos Zingaro, Daniel Carter, Federico Ughi, Carrie Shull, Crowmeat Bob, Patrick Breiner, Luke Polipnick, John DeHaven, JT Bates, George Cartwright, Davu Seru, Damo Suzuki, C Spencer Yeh, Fay Victor, Michael Evans, Ravish Momin, Patrick Holmes, Eric Hubel, Steve Baczkowski, Ravi Padmanabha, Derek Johnson, Wes Steed, Ross Hammond, Dax Compise, Shawn Hale, Eric Hall, Andrew Dewar, Davey Williams, R Keenan Lawler, Sandy Ewen, Michael Carey, Skeeter Shelton, Joel Peterson, James Cornish, Kurt Prisbe, Simone Sfamelli, Valerio Cosi, Enzo Franchini, Ron Brendle, Scott Rosenberg, Jacopo Andreini, Matteo Bennici, Piero Spitilli, James Ilgenfritz, Arrington De Dionyso, Mark Southerland, Theresa Wong, Carmina Escobar, Vinny Golia, Alexander Bruck, Julián Martínez Vázquez, Zane Merritt, BC Grimm, AJ Grimm, Ron Stabinsky, Bob Ventrello, Doug Smith, Nick Driscoll, Ben Willis, Pat Reinholz, Masaru Koga, Chloe Jane-Scott, Brian Tairaku Ritchie, Kjell Nordeson, Ava Mendoza, Emilio Tamez, Darin Gray, Glenn Kotche, Rent Romus, CJ Borosque, Mia Zabelka, Csaba Csendes, Karl Evangelista, Matt Ingalls, Michael Guarino, Jeff Harshberger, Shawn E. Hensen, J Ashley Miller, Annie Ellicott, Allie Naifeh, Lauren Sonder, Bob Bucko Jr., Rick Eagle, Jeff Hobbs, Sean Adams, Roberto deHaven, Christopher Johnedis, Paul Hoskin, Fletcher Németh, Sabrina Siegel, Christian Pincock, Mark Weaver, Tim Orr, Tom Djll, Phillip Everett, Eric Marshall, Markus Hunt, Bob Ventrello, Doug Smith, Charles (Charlie) Evans, Laurie Amat, Bob Marsh, Hafez Modirzadeh, Heather Treadway, Ian Kerr, Dave Wayne, Shirt, Shane Ronet, Jerry Soga, Crawford Philleo, Emily Hay, Mark Hoetzler, Dan Grabois, Todd Hammes, Renee Baker, Shaun Johnson, Karl Seigfried, William Porter, Greg Blackburn, Phyllis Sanders, Todd Matthews, Curt Oren, Nick Zielinski, Andy Burton, William Hooker, Andre St. James, Paul Kikuchi, Greg Campbell, Adam Holquist, Rick Lopez, Angela C Villa, Kris Tiner, Spirit, Moe! Staiano, Larry Ochs, Million Brazilians, Michael Bettine, Karen Stackpole, Lisa Mezzacappa, Jessica Lurie, Michael Wimberly, David Tronzo, Tara Khozein, David Menestres, Markus Hunt, Michel Doneda, Rob Mazurek, Jane Rigler.