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August 11 /11:00 am 4:00 pm
Toronto bassist Luke Vajsar (pronounced “v-eye-sar”) was born in Prague, Czech Republic, and immigrated with his family to Hamilton, Canada in 1989. In elementary school at the age of 10, Luke was given the opportunity to play trombone in music class and was immediately captivated. Even though he selected bass as his first instrument, he was chosen by his teacher to play the trombone in the school big band, which in turn had him playing in regional competitions winning national and provincial awards throughout Hamilton and neighbouring regions. At the age of 13, his guitar playing progressed into playing the bass.
As he developed his skills on the bass, he was in high demand with local bands, which thus introduced him to the world of studio recording. By his mid twenties and after moving to Toronto, Luke’s solo bass playing began developing a signature style and sound that incorporated jazz, funk, blues, and rock. His music was enhanced by the use of a loop pedal and various effects that projected a unique tone and atmospheric sound. In this time, Luke decided to begin recording his songs which culminated in the independent release of 11 albums. In 2006, Luke began to expand his musical horizon by joining Toronto’s drum’n’bass pioneers, ‘Codex’, where he played bass guitar and sang back-up vocals for the band. After working on a couple of albums with the band, Luke asked the groups producer (Luca d’Addario) if he would be interested in co-producing an album for his solo work. In 2013, Luke released, ‘Adventure’, an eight song solo bass and vocal opus.
By 2015, Luke decided to step up the game by hiring Luca again as producer for his next recording project, but this time expanding the production team by hiring uber producer Scott Keenan (Parachute Club, Dream Warriors) to co-produce and mix the album.
2016 is here, ‘Hyenas’, as it is called, showcases not only his bass playing skills, but Luke plays all the instruments including guitar, trombone as well as performing all the vocals. Recording and mixing was done at the Skycrib Studios recording facility in downtown Toronto, with the mastering done by renowned Canadian mastering engineer Phil Demetro at Lacquer channel. With Hyenas, Luke began toying with the idea of calling his new sound, ‘Mellow Madness’. The description of his music derives from the subtlety of the vocal melodies juxtaposed with the bass rhythms.
This year has already been quite a busy for Luke Vajsar. The feedback from his live performances in the Toronto music scene has been of fascination and bewilderment. Music icon and journalist Alan cross, has described his songs as “a beauty for one of those days when words just won’t quit and all you want do is slide away on a great bass line” The Rogers Television show “Toronto Sessions” has called his music “One of the funkiest Toronto has to offer”.
As he ventures forward, Luke Vajsar is busy spreading the news. He has recently played a music festival in Prague and as well has been playing venues in Montreal, but of course, Toronto is home as he is constantly performing and has recently established a residency at the local venue “Motel”.