Nick Lloyd has become one of the top double bass makers in the country over the years, with award-winning basses being played worldwide, including talents as diverse as New York Philharmonic principal bassist Tim Cobb and YouTube sensation Adam Ben Ezra.
We talk about Nick’s early years learning the bass, apprenticing with various makers and learning the craft of bass making, the intricacies of making a bass, his standard bass designs, travel necks, his financing options for basses, and playing with the Kentucky Winders in Pakistan!
I was born in central Iowa, and first met the doublebass at age 8. In 1993 I moved to Boston to freelance and attend the Longy School of Music. As my interests developed, a question remained unanswered: how is a doublebass made? Well, Boston luthier & bassist John Styklunas was the first to answer that question.
It’s been over 20 years now, and my teachers also include Michael Shank, Paul Hart, and Daniel Hachez. All of these luthiers have helped me assemble the skills and high standards necessary to make and repair professional-quality double basses. Most importantly, my training has taught me to always respect the client, regardless of what kind of music they play.
Since establishing my Cincinnati shop in 2000, my instruments have received awards for tone and workmanship. In addition, I received the 2007 “Friend Of The Bass” award from the International Society of Bassists for organizing the Katrina Basses project.
In 2015, in conjunction with the State Department and musical group the Kentucky Winders, I became a U.S Cultural Ambassador. This position includes traveling internationally to promote traditional American music as well as performances with ethnic musicians of respective host countries.