Bren Plummer, bassist and composer

jazz and beyond


Double bassist, composer, improviser, and  educator, BREN PLUMMER was born in Seattle, WA, where, early on, he was exposed to the diverse musical traditions of jazz, classical music, and hip hop, as well as Seattle’s heavy underground grunge-rock scene.  After joining Seattle’s iconic Garfield High School jazz band and touring with the band through Europe, performing at the Montreux and North Sea Jazz festivals and under the baton of Quincy Jones, Bren moved to Princeton, NJ, where he found a different musical and cultural tradition.  In school he joined the orchestra, while outside of school he joined the musician’s union and played jazz professionally throughout New Jersey in the evenings.  

After moving back to Seattle to finish high school, Bren entered the New England Conservatory in Boston as a composition major, later switching to jazz bass full-time with Cecil McBee.  Outside of school, he retained a busy schedule as a session player and performer.  

After graduating in 2000, Bren performed with various bands and ensembles before moving back to Seattle to study classical bass with Barry Lieberman at the University of Washington.  There, he earned his Master of Music degree in 2005 and his Doctor of Musical Arts degree in 2010.

Bren is the Principal bassist in the Yakima Symphony Orchestra, a section bassist in Symphony Tacoma, a frequent performer with the String Orchestra of the Rockies out of Missoula, MT, and a regular sub around the Pacific Northwest with various orchestras such as Bellevue Philharmonic and Spokane Symphony.  He is also a freelance jazz bassist with a busy schedule.  In addition to performing as a sideman and in various orchestras and chamber groups, he leads his own ensembles, has recorded several jazz albums under his own name, and is active on the Seattle jazz scene.  Bren is on the faculty at the University of Montana, and Edmonds Community College, and maintains his own private teaching studio.

Bren has been called "an awesome bass player" by Christian Pincock 2019

"...always stylistically appropriate..." by Chris Burns 2019

“Forward thinking vision “ —Paul Rauch, All About Jazz 2017

“Plummer has shown himself to be a fine musician, with a deep, thick tonality that is original and engaging.” —Paul Rauch, All About Jazz 2017

“Arco or pizzicato, Plummer solos impressively” —Doug Ramsey, Rifftides, 2016

“Plummer keeps a busy schedule of appearances with local symphonies, plus a plethora of jazz gigs, and sports a fat, woody tone, with a deep sound and calm authority to his playing, as well as considerable bowing skills.” —Andrew Luthringer, Earshot Jazz 2016

“Fat, woody tone.” —Andrew Luthringer, Earshot Jazz 2016

“Deeply satisfying” —Andrew Luthringer, Earshot Jazz 2016

“Paying attention to Plummer’s music will be time well-spent.”  —Andrew Luthringer, Earshot Jazz 2017