After Hours with the Thomson Quartet


After Hours with the Thomson Quartet, "Leaving"
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| 00:04:51
  • After Hours with the Thomson Quartet, "Leaving" 04:51
  • After Hours with the Thomson Quartet, "Empathy" 04:28
  • After Hours with the Thomson Quartet 23:18

Saxophonist Chris Thomson has made a name for himself around town for his delicate, airy tone and his ability to transcend genres. Known primarily as a jazz musician, Thomson has also performed on landmark recordings by indie songwriters like Mason Jennings (Birds Flying Away) and S. Carey (All We Grow, on which he played bass clarinet), and he lends a distinct style and nuance to everything he touches.

When Thomson put out a new EP, Empathy, earlier this year with his group the Thomson Quartet, Evan and I jumped at the chance to invite him into the studio to participate in our After Hours series. He's easily one of the most highly respected tenor players in the scene, and it was a treat to hear him and his band perform in such an intimate setting.

During our interview, I had to ask Thomson about what it was like to go between jazz and more pop-oriented projects, and we also talked in depth about how he's shaped his tone, how an accident affected his craft, and how becoming a father has given him a deeper understanding of the word Empathy.


Chris Thomson (saxophone)
Patrick Harison (accordion)
James Buckley (bass)
Cory Healey (drums)




Hosted by Andrea Swensson
Produced by Evan Clark and Andrea Swensson
Engineered by Evan Clark
After Hours Theme by Andrea Swensson, performed by the Thomson Quartet

2 Photos

  • The Thomson Quartet
    Chris Thomson performs in the Current studio with his group the Thomson Quartet. (Andrea Swensson/MPR)
  • The Thomson Quartet
    Bassist James Buckley performs with the Thomson Quartet in the Current studio. (Andrea Swensson/MPR)