Biography

Thomas Sauerborn is a Cologne-based drummer, composer and bandleader.

He studied at the Conservatorium van Amsterdam (CvA) and the Hochschule für Musik und Tanz in Köln (HfMT), honing his personal style of drumming with esteemed professors and learning the craft of composing and counterpoint. He later completed his master's degree at the Rytmisk Musikkonservatorium (RMC) in Copenhagen on a DAAD scholarship, diving deep into his artistic vision of improvisation and launching his research into solo music for a suspended cymbal.

Thomas is dedicated to exploring the free spirit and open-mindedness in music, believing in the deeper, synergistic effects that long-term musical endeavors can achieve on the one hand, as well as the magic of spontaneous encounters with improvisers on the other.

In this respect, he works collectively in various bands. There is the club-friendly experimental trip music band Das Ende der Liebe, whose latest album SCHNE*E was ranked among the top 20 albums of 2022 by GROOVE magazine.
Or the European intuitive-improvisation outfit Mount Meander with Lucas Leidinger, Karlis Auzins (LV), and Tomo Jacobson (PL/DK), which has so far released two internationally acclaimed albums, among others, on the Portuguese label Cleanfeed.
And last but not least the Cologne Trio Pollon with Theresia Philipp and David Helm, which has been nominated for the German Jazz Prize 2023 with their current album ∆∆∆.

His debut album as a bandleader and composer, KYIWI, was released in 2021, and he continues to innovate with his own record label, Anunaki Tabla, founded in 2019 with Berlin-based artists Kenn Hartwig and Andreas Völk.

In 2024, he released his first solo album, [zimbel], showcasing his expertise in cymbal research and experimental music. He will be performing [zimbel] at Cologne Jazzweek 2024.

Besides his creative roles as a band member and leader, Thomas is an active part of the German Jazz and Improvised Music scene. He works with Headless Society, The Resonators, Janning Trumann 4, Shannon Barnett's Wolves & Mirrors, Subway Jazz Orchestra, Sebastian Gramss' URSCHALL, Colonel Petrov's Good Judgement and has toured extensively, performing in countries across Europe, Africa, Asia, and North America.