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tom lawton


Jazz Studies


    • Tom Lawton is known for his facility with both traditionally rooted jazz forms and free improvisation. He has played from age seven and studied classical music with Horace Alwyne, Joseph Barone, Judith Willoughby, Robert Durso and Edna Golandsky. His jazz studieswere with Gerald Price, Al Stauffer, and Bernard Peiffer.

      Tom has been a member of the Jazz Studies faculty at Temple University since 1992 and has given jazz clinics and master classes at Rowan University, the Painted Bride Art Center and Bloomsburg University. In addition to teaching jazz piano, harmony, and improvisation, Lawton specializes in teaching the Taubman piano technique to jazz pianists. He performs extensively at jazz festivals, concert venues and clubs. Currently in the Philadelphia area he performs with Larry McKenna, Lee Smith, Bobby Zankel, Norman David’s Eleventet, Monkadelphia, Joanna Pascale, Mary Ellen Desmond and Miss Justine.



      In 2009 Lawton received an American Composer’s Forum Community Partners Grant. This included a residency at the Philadelphia Senior Center and commission for which he wrote a seven-movement suite for jazz trio.

      2010 BC3 Cultural Incentive Grant to perform above work at BC3.

      In 2005 Lawton received a Pennsylvania Council on the Arts Fellowship, administered by the MidAtlantic Arts Foundation.


      Recent east coast performances with San Francisco vocalist Jackie Ryan.

      The Cremona Jazz Festival in Cremona, Italy.

      New York & Philadelphia: jazz collaborations with violinists Arnold Steinhardt and

      Diane Monroe. And in Zurich, Switzerland with Ms. Monroe.

      With Don Byron, Dave Douglas and Mark Feldman in Norway,the Molde Jazz Festival

      and in Finland the Pori Jazz Festival.

      In Paris: finalist in the Martial Solal International Jazz Piano Competition, 1989.

      In Philadelphia, numerous appearances in the Philadelphia Museum of Art Jazz series.

      Also performed with Dave Liebman, David Murray, Ben Schachter,

      Tim Hagans, John Swana, Terell Stafford, Bootsie Barnes, Steve Slagle.

      Tom has performed in jazz festivals of Cape May, Mellon, West Chester University.

      He has also performed at the Painted Bride Art Center, Franklin & Marshall College,

      Indiana University of PA, Octave Club, Curtis Institute, Symphony Space (New York)

      and with the Ocean City Pops Orchestra.






      RETROSPECTIVE/DEBUT - Tom Lawton Quintet.

      CEREMONIES OF FORGIVENESS - w. Bobby Zankel.

      THREE STRANDED CORD - w. Peter Paulsen.

      THERE’S ROOM FOR ALL - w. Norman David’s group Four.

      MONKADELPHIA - w. Chris Farr, Tony Miceli, Jim Miller, Micah Jones.

      NOEL FROM THE HEART - w. Barbara Montgomery.

      THINGS AIN’T WHAT THEY USED TO BE - w. Sy Platt, al Stauffer.

      PIANADELPHIA - compilation of solo performances by Philadelphia jazz pianists.

      CREPESCULE - w. Monkadelphia.

      OMNIBUS - w. Ben Schachter.

      PROFILE - w. Larry Mckenna.

      Additional recordings with Katie Eagleson, Neil Wetzel, Julie Charnet, Demetria,

      Tonia Tecce, John Thysen, Neil Leonard.


      SEVEN VIGNETTES FROM BROAD & LOMBARD, performed at Philadelphia Senior

      Center, Moonstone Art Center, and Bucks County Community College.

      For the Network for New Music, ROAD MAPS FOR TRIO, performed at Temple

      University & Ursinus College.


      ARCHETYPAL ARCHIVES, Temple University.

      ISLAND, Les Halle in Paris, France.