Happy 2021! It’s time once again for my annual year-end review, and well . . . I’m not going to mince words: 2020 sucked. Every week, I’d hear a sad story about a beloved venue or festival closing its doors and saw colleagues and friends lose their livelihoods as too many of our elected leaders showed no regard for the people they claimed to represent.

Some days, I was fine, while on other days, I’d alternate between feeling beaten down by the constant onslaught of bad news or enraged by the injustices happening around me. Then, there were times where I felt like I was in an absurdist play. When I look back at the words that I wrote on January 1 last year, that The Aaron Clift Experiment planned to “take a few months off from live performing in order to work on new songs,” I can’t help but laugh at the irony of how those few months turned into a whole year that’s still going.

But, you know what? – we made it to this moment and have to help each other carry on. I think back to songs I’ve written over the years like “Eye of the Storm” and “If All Goes Wrong” to remind myself that even in the worst of times, there’s always hope in tragedy; light in darkness.

2020-05-24 Beat Route Radio Festival 010

So, in the spirit of better times, let me fill you in on a few of the good things that happened in 2020 and what The Aaron Clift Experiment has in store for 2021.

While all of us in the band were social distancing in 2020 and weren’t able to bring you traditional live shows, I did manage to perform a few solo vocal + piano livestreams thanks to the amazing sponsorship of Beat Route Radio and Progstock.

Aaron Clift performing at Beat Route Radio Virtual Festival

Livestreams aren’t the same as a performance in front of a live audience, but I got to meet and interact with many of you during these festivals performances, and for that, I’m incredibly grateful.

Another highlight of performing in this format was not only playing ACE songs that we hadn’t performed live before, such as “Back to the Water,” but also premiering new songs.

Aaron Clift playing keyboard at progstock

That’s right – we’ve got new music! If you followed us closely on Instagram and Facebook this year, we shared snippets of demos of some of our new songs (for example: go check out our IGTV and Facebook video series on new song, “The Color of Flight”).

So, what lies ahead? If all goes right (sorry, couldn’t resist the pun!), we’ll be heading into the studio later this year to record our 4th album and will release it soon after! We have a lot more exciting news that’s currently under wraps, but we’ll be filling you in on it in the coming months.

Thank you for your continuing support for me, The Aaron Clift Experiment, and for being there for each other in 2020. It was a tough year, but 2021 is going be better!


Happy 2020, ACE fans!  2019 was a year of growth for The Aaron Clift Experiment, so I thought that I’d look back at some of the highlights before we head into the new decade:

We began the year with a series of great shows in Austin, covering highlights from our career so far with a special emphasis on songs from “If All Goes Wrong.”

In April, we introduced our new rhythm section: drummer, Chase Ozment, and bassist, Clif Warren.  As you can see, they’re great at drum stick dueling!  But, in all serious, Chase and Clif are amazing players and have helped take our live sound to the next level.

Speaking of our live sound, in June, we recorded our second live album, “Live at One-2-One Bar,” which we released in August along with a series of videos of this incredible show.

We capped off 2019 with a series of local concerts, culminating in the Holiday Charity Rocktacular for Austin Pets Alive in December.  This charity concert featured many of our favorite Austin bands and ended up raising hundreds of dollars for Austin Pets Alive!

So, what lies ahead for us?  We’ve been hard at work on a lot of new songs, which we hope to debut in 2020.  While we plan to take a few months off from live performing in order to work on these songs, I know that when we come back, you’ll know that the wait was worth it.

Thank you all for making 2019 a great year for the band, and here’s to a great 2020!


Today begins a brand-new chapter of The Aaron Clift Experiment.  Tim Smith has decided to leave the band and pursue a new musical direction, and Christopher Aboujaoude has decided to follow his music career outside of Austin.  We wish Tim and Christopher the best of luck with their musical pursuits and thank them for excellent drum and bass work that they’ve done with the band over the last few years.

Managing the change of two band members, let alone the entire rhythm section, isn’t easy, but we’re excited to announce that we found a bassist and a drummer who more than fill the big shoes left by Tim and Christopher.  Please welcome Clif Warren (bass) and Chase Ozment (drums):

Hailing from the deserts of New Mexico, Clif Warren has been playing bass since 1986 in a myriad of styles – from rock, metal, funk, gospel, and even Broadway show tunes.  But above all, Clif has had an abiding love for prog rock, most recently performing bass in the Austin-based progressive rock band, Proud Peasant.  His primary influences include Geddy Lee, Geezer Butler, Chris Squire, and Steve Harris.

A senior jazz performance major at the University of Texas at Austin, Chase Ozment has been playing music since age 10, percussion since age 12, and drum set and jazz since age 13.  He grew up in Temple, Texas and travelled to various State and National level competitions with the Temple High School Highlighters jazz band (including the UT jazz festival).  Today, in addition to performing with The Aaron Clift Experiment, Chase plays drums with Big Wy’s Brass Band, Clusterfunk, and Cicadus.

Clif and Chase bring maturity, excellent chops, and lots of excitement to The Aaron Clift Experiment’s sound.  We can’t wait for you to meet them as they make their official debut with the band at our April 16 show at Come and Take it Live.  When you come out there, please be sure to welcome them to the ACE family!