Meet the Jolly Ramblers

Chuck Thiel
Chuck, the concertina player, lead vocalist, and leader, is the son of the band’s originator Albert Thiel, who passed away May 12, 1994. Chuck has been a Jolly Rambler since 1962. Father of Jason, Jeremy (died of cancer at age 34), and Jamison, he makes his home in Lester Prairie. After teaching high school English for 25 years, Chuck plays music and organizes and directs tours.
Ken Schmidt
Ken has been a Jolly Rambler since 1971. He plays trumpet, saxophone, and valve trombone and does many of the vocals. He also arranges much of the band’s music. Ken and his wife Cathy live in LeCenter where Ken retired as a high school science teacher. They have two grown sons.
Jason Thiel
Jason is a third generation Jolly Rambler who became a full-time member in January 1995. Jason most often plays keyboard and does vocals, but occasionally will be found playing trumpet and even behind the drums. A graduate of St. Cloud State University, he now works for Bally Sports North in Minneapolis and lives in Bloomington with his wife Mary and sons Jacob, Noah and Benjamin.
Jacob Thiel
Jacob, the son of Jason and Mary, was born in 2008 and made his public debut with the band on his great-grandpa's drum set in 2013. A fourth generation Jolly Rambler, Jacob can be found most often on trumpet, but occasionally he still plays drums. A sophomore at Bloomington Jefferson High School, he plays in the school's Marching Band as well as the Wind Ensemble, Jazz Collective and Big Band.
Noah Thiel
Noah, Jason and Mary's middle son, was born in 2010 and has made various appearances on drums throughout the years. He's now playing trumpet more often and continues to add more songs to his library. An eighth grader, Noah has joined the Jefferson High School Marching Band and plays in the middle school band.
Benjamin Thiel
Benjamin, the youngest of Jason and Mary's sons, was born in 2012 and spent his early years as the band's roadie, always jumping in to help pack and carry equipment. Now, he's picked up the sticks and plays drums. Ben is a fifth grader and plans to begin learning another instrument soon.