Trevor Dunn

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Trevor Dunn
Trevor Dunn 05N9397.jpg
Background information
Birth name Trevor Roy Dunn
Born (1968-01-30) January 30, 1968 (age 48)
Eureka, California, US
Genres Avant-garde, experimental rock, experimental metal, avant-jazz
Occupation(s) Musician
Instruments Bass guitar, double bass, guitar, violin, clarinet, saxophone, banjo, Wurlitzer electric piano
Years active 1985–present
Labels Ipecac, Tzadik
Associated acts Trevor Dunn's Trio-Convulsant
Mr. Bungle
Electric Masada
Secret Chiefs 3

Trevor Roy Dunn (born January 30, 1968) is an American composer, bass guitarist and double bassist.

Dunn came to prominence in the 1990s with the experimental band Mr. Bungle. He has since worked in an array of musical styles, notably with singer and Mr. Bungle co-founder Mike Patton; with saxophonist/composer John Zorn; brief collaboration with Secret Chiefs 3 and with his own avant-garde jazz/rock ensamble Trevor Dunn's Trio-Convulsant and later with rock driven group MadLove. He is also a member of the band Tomahawk, replacing founding member Kevin Rutmanis.


Early life and career[edit]

After four years of studying the clarinet, Dunn began playing electric bass at the age of 13.[1] His earliest musical influences included the Beach Boys, Blondie, Cheap Trick, and Kiss.[2]

Dunn studied double bass and music in college.

Mr. Bungle[edit]

In 1986, Dunn formed Mr. Bungle with vocalist Mike Patton and guitarist Trey Spruance. Mr. Bungle's early compositions mixed thrash metal, hard rock, death metal, ska and funk with an air of adolescent humor and vulgarity. With a background in metal, Dunn branched out his musical abilities playing jazz around San Francisco while immersing himself in different music.

Mr. Bungle released four demo tapes in the mid to late 1980s before being signed to Warner Bros. Records and releasing three full-length studio albums between 1991 and 1999. The band split in 2000.

Like the other members of Mr. Bungle, Trevor Dunn is reluctant to talk about what exactly caused their break-up (Dunn is especially hesitant about the subject). For that matter, Dunn is reluctant to talk about Mr. Bungle in general, though he claims to have enough material for a book about the band (and enough unreleased songs for a companion album). He initially stated that he was going to release a book, but the "book concept is FAR from being a reality. It's just a hazy thought in my mind at this point. Part of that haze includes demos, rehearsals, prank phone calls, unused photos, etc. The amount of unseen/unheard material I have collected over the years is somewhat baffling. Believe me, it's not going to happen anytime soon."reference needed

Secret Chiefs 3[edit]

Trey Spruance formed Secret Chiefs 3 with fellow Mr. Bungle members Dunn and Danny Heifetz in the mid-nineties.


In 1999, Mike Patton formed the supergroup Fantômas with Dunn on bass, Buzz Osborne of the Melvins on guitar, and Dave Lombardo of Slayer on the drums. Fantômas has released several albums of ecletic avante-garde, ambient, and heavy metal compositions.

Trevor Dunn's Trio-Convulsant[edit]

In 1998, Dunn formed his Trio-Convulsant. Their first release, Debutantes & Centipedes, features Dunn on bass, Adam Levy on guitar, and Kenny Wollesen on drums. The album Sister Phantom Owl Fish on Ipecac (2004) includes Ches Smith on percussion and Mary Halvorson on guitar.[3]


Citing his long hiatus from writing rock music, Dunn formed the band MadLove with Sunny Kim on lead vocals, Ches Smith on drums, Hilmar Jensson on guitar, and Erik Deutch on keyboard. They recorded their debut album, White with Foam, during 2008, and it was released on Ipecac Records in September 2009.


Trevor has recently joined the band Tomahawk, replacing Kevin Rutmanis.

Melvins Lite[edit]

Trevor teamed up with Melvins' King Buzzo and Dale Crover for several tour dates in 2011 billed as the Melvins Lite.

Other works[edit]

Dunn has participated in dozens of other recordings, both as a main collaborator and a guest musician. He is part of Mike Pride's MPThree, David Krakauer's Klezmer Madness, and the Nels Cline Singers. He has contributed to or played with:

Trevor Dunn live at Saalfelden Jazz Festival, in 2009


Bass guitars[5]

Selected discography[edit]

As Leader / co-leader[edit]

With Phillip Greenlief

  • 1996 − Phillip Greenlief / Trevor Dunn (Evander)

With Trio-Convulsant

With Shelley Burgon

  • 2005 − untitled (self-released) ("...but in fact it is metaphysically titled "How Far Is Far?")[6]
  • 2005 − At Blim (Audiobot) live recording with Brett Larner as guest
  • 2006 − Baltimore (Skirl)

Solo album (with guest musicians)

With MadLove

As band member[edit]

With Mr. Bungle

− Demo tapes
− Studio albums

With Secret Chiefs 3

With Fantômas

With Melvins (Lite)

With The Nels Cline Singers

With Tomahawk

As sideman[edit]

With Erik Friedlander

With Eyvind Kang

With Jamie Saft

With John Zorn

With the Rob Price Quartet

Album collaborations[edit]

Guest appearances[edit]


  1. ^ Andy Couch. "Ipecac Recordings – Trevor Dunn's Trio Convulsant". Retrieved 2011-07-07. 
  2. ^ "Biography". Retrieved 2011-07-07. 
  3. ^ "Discography". Retrieved 2011-07-07. 
  4. ^
  5. ^ "Geeking Out". Retrieved 2011-07-07. 
  6. ^ Trevor Dunn in the liner notes to the self-distributed album.

External links[edit]