Aaron Lumley

aaronlumleybAaron Lumley is a Montreal-based double bassist and improviser. Maintaining a forward-thinking stance with his instrument regardless of the context, Lumley works with the rich, colourful and expressive potential of the double bass’ massive extended sonic range. Lumley’s music is characterized by a loud and raw acoustic gut-string tone, the employment of extreme textures and techniques, and contrasts between beauty and brutality, intensity and lyricism.
His involvement in a diverse array of musical projects spans solo concerts, ad hoc group improvisation, jazz, rock and roll, and collaborations with contemporary dance artists.

Aaron began playing bass in 2006 at the age of 25, inspired by an encounter with Dutch contrabassist, Wilbert de Joode. In the years following this meeting, Aaron quickly developed as a musician and travelled twice to Amsterdam to study with the Dutch master contrabassist and improviser.

Between 2006-2011, Lumley was an active member of Toronto’s avant garde music scene. During this time, Aaron worked with David Prentice, Kyle Brenders, The Swyves, Brandon Valdivia, Colin Fisher, Matthew ‘Doc’ Dunn, Julia Sasso and Mike Gennaro among many.

Aaron moved to Montreal at the close of 2011 in search of new musical opportunities. Since his arrival, he has performed in concert with Isaiah Ceccarelli, Jean Derome, Lori Freedman, Pierre Tanguay, Jamie Thompson, Pierre-Yves Martel, Nigel Taylor, Ida Toninato, Joshua Zubot, Philippe Lauzier, Brother of Moses and L’Ensemble Supermusique. He has also worked as a session player, playing bass in concert or on record with Esmerine, Saltland and Bernhari.

Aaron can frequently be found in ad-hoc performance settings with musicians and dancers from all over the world. He has performed with musicians from all over Canada (Peggy Lee, John Oswald), the USA (Michael Vatcher, Hamid Drake), the Netherlands (Cor Fuhler, Eric Boeren), Italy (Christian Ferlaino), Germany (Frank Gratkowski) and Australia (Mike Majkowski) and at festivals and venues all over Ontario, in Montreal, in St. John’s and Amsterdam.

In 2012, Aaron released his first solo album, “Wilderness” to critical acclaim.


Aaron Lumley est une contrebassiste d’avant-garde, improvisateur et compositeur. Dans sa musique, Il explore l’immense territoire sonore de la contrebasse avec la vitalité et l’urgence. Le travail de Lumley est caractérisé par le son acoustique fort des cordes boyau, l’utilisation de textures extrêmes, contrastes dramatiques entre la beauté et la brutalité, et l’esprit du rock and roll.

Aaron a commencé jouer de la basse en 2006, à l’âge de 25 ans, inspiré par une rencontre avec le contrebassiste néerlandais, Wilbert de Joode. La musicalité d’Aaron se développe rapidement et il a voyagé deux fois à Amsterdam pour étudier avec le maître hollandais de la contrebasse et de l’improvisation.

À partir de 2006-2011, Lumley a travaillé sans relâche sur la scène musicale d’avant garde de Toronto. Pendant cette période, il a joué avec Kyle Brenders, The Swyves, David Prentice, Mike Gennaro et plusieres autres.

Depuis la fin de 2011, il habite à Montréal où il collabore avec beaucoup de musiciens comme Isaiah Ceccarelli, Jean Derome, Lori Freedman, Pierre Tanguay, Jamie Thompson, Nigel Taylor, Ida Toninato, Joshua Zubot, Philippe Lauzier, Brother of Moses et L’Ensemble Supermusique. Il a travaillé dans la rôle d’un musicien de studio avec Esmerine, Saltland and Bernhari.

Aussi, Aaron a travaillé dans les situations ad hoc avec des musiciens et des danseurs de partout au Canada (Peggy Lee, Arthur Bull), aux Etats-Unis (Michael Vatcher, Hamid Drake), aux Pays-Bas (Cor Fuhler, Eric Boeren), l’Italie (Christian Ferlaino), l’Allemagne (Frank Gratkowski) et l’Australie (Mike Majkowski) et lors de festivals et des lieux à travers l’Ontario, à Montréal, à St. John’s et à Amsterdam.

En 2012, Aaron a sorti son premier disque solo, “Wilderness”, à la renommée des critiques.


“Wilderness resonates with incredible candor while Lumley reaches lonesome heights of the highest mystic calibre. Worth every repeated listen.” — Aaron Levin, Weird Canada

“Right out of the gate, this solo bass set is no-holds-barred, intense improvisation that grabs the attention.[…] Because he’s always changing how he elicits his sounds and which ones are combined there are no dull moments. For a solo bass recording ― often sober, oh-so-serious documents ― Wilderness is relentlessly energetic and engaging.” –Glen Hall, Exclaim!

“Wilderness presents eight highly organic solo improvisations. […] There’s a sense of testing ground here, usually without any sense of haste but with keen attention to the inner messages of sound, playing and listening for certain harmonic inferences and rhythmic possibilities. […] Lumley’s journey into sound is compelling, and results in music shaped less by impulse than by the suggestions inherent in the bass’s physical properties” — Stuart Broomer, Musicworks

“Lumley’s playing […] is caustic and raw, his energy and aggression bleed out through the recording. Wilderness is a punk record at heart, hidden within the free improv scene. The songs find themselves in this organic almost chaotic way, as if the notes are a need, not a want. It never feels like a solo outing that is just a bunch of acrobatic exercises without a band. Each thought is fully formed and has a path, however meandering, it still manages to grow and evoke emotion. Play this record at night when you are in the woods to help you communicate with the trees.” — Tadeusz Michalak, Offerings


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