“Music was a state of being; it was never something I had to consider.“



March 9, 1957 in Manchester, CT



Alto, Tenor, Soprano, Sopranino and Baritone Saxophones, Clarinet, Flute, Pan Flute, Shakuhatchi, Chinese Wei, Piano, and various percussion


in his own words

"I've found the truer I am to myself, and to my music, the better people react to it." - Hartford Courant

A versatile multi-instrumentalist, bandleader and composer, in the 80s and 90s, Thomas Chapin led a trio performing his own music playing in New York City’s downtown scene, and at festivals and clubs around the world. An outstanding composer of larger works as well, he sometimes augmented the trio with strings and horn ensembles.

Though leukemia tragically ended his life in 1998 at age 40, Thomas Chapin left behind a legacy of superb recordings and performances, and a reputation as one of jazz’s more extraordinary musicians – one of the few musicians to exist in both the worlds of the downtown, experimentalist scene and mainstream jazz.

He continues to be a highly influential and inspirational force to those who knew him and to those who continue to know him through his music and example.


As this site grows and develops, you can also find a near-definitive international article on Thomas Chapin, entitled "The Thomas Chapin Era," was updated and released in July 2016. The piece includes a thorough career history, major feature news articles, timelines, photos, music and video links, quotes by Thomas Chapin, musician colleagues, music industry persons, the press, and more.


Please take a moment to share your comments, inquiries or memories of Thomas Chapin.



Award Winning Thomas Chapin Film, Night Bird Song - Now Available Worldwide

The DVD, digital download, and streaming options, at 96 min., are now available.

Watch online on iTunes, Amazon Prime, and other platforms.

DVD available at Barnes and Noble and Best Buy.

A Special Edition 2-DVD set which includes a DVD of the film and a 2nd DVD with 6 hours of content, live performance and interviews, is also now available online and in stores.

Thomas Chapin: Night Bird Song Trailer


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