Roy Ayers

What is left to be said about Roy Ayers? Don’t the words of Kamaal Williams’, one of the big blokes in the underground London jazz scene, speak volumes? “You need to listen to Roy Ayers — that’s where all that shit is taken from.”

That shit probably refers to anything that passes for something a little bit jazz, but definitely also a little bit soul and funk. Every young artist that fuses lush synths, sweet vocals and boom bap with all kinds of jazzy details, hints to Ayers. Do you like Tom Misch, Ezra Collective and Joe Armon-Jones? There’s a little bit of Roy Ayers in alladat. Guess everybody does indeed love the sunshine…

With roots in the post bop era, his vibraphones were a crucial element in the turn to jazz-funk and, in hindsight, the danceable acid jazz. The way he used vocals and synths, truly bridging the gap between soul and jazz once and for all, eventually gave him the nickname as the Godfather of Neo Soul. So no Soulquarians without Roy Ayers Ubiquity.

It is a true gift to be able to have him at Super-Sonic Jazz festival. A must-see for fans of all the outliers of (jazz) music, young and old.


Read about Kamaal Williams’ vision on Roy Ayers: