Longtime Portland Music Promoter Mike Thrasher Has Died

The owner of the Hawthorne Theatre helped establish Portland as a touring destination for underground punk, metal and rap acts.

Mike Thrasher, the concert promoter who helped establish Portland as a touring destination for underground punk, metal and rap acts, has died, according to multiple social media reports. He was 48 years old.

A cause of death has not yet been disclosed.

A former musician, Thrasher first started booking bands at the defunct Northeast Portland rock club EJ's in the early 1990s. He founded Mike Thrasher Presents in 1994, promoting some of the first Portland shows from the likes of the Killers and White Stripes.

In 2005, Thrasher took over as the owner of the Hawthorne Theatre, turning it into one of the city's main all-ages music venues and branching out into booking hip-hop and standup comedy.

"He's got the best street team in Portland," Trevor Solomon, the former executive director of MusicfestNW, told Oregon Business in 2011. "If you're a punk rock kid you know Mike Thrasher shows. If you're an indie kid, you go to see what's the next hot thing coming up."

Update, 3 pm March 3: Mike Thrasher Presents has issued a statement on Thrasher's passing, confirming that the company will continue and requesting friends and fans donate to the Portland Rescue Mission:

The world is a less colorful place today after the passing of concert promoter Mike Thrasher. For over 25 years Mike’s...

Posted by Mike Thrasher Presents on Tuesday, March 3, 2020