Kevin Ayers

click his name to visit his own website

Kevin Ayers the former Soft Machine member and Mike Oldfield collaborator, and core member of The Canterbury scene that spawned Caravan, plays a rare live show.

Kevin grew up with Richard Sinclair (Caravan), Mike Ratledge and Hugh Hopper (Soft Machine) and Daevid Allen (Gong) Kevin came to prominence in the late 60's with Soft Machine who toured the US with The Jimi Hendrix Experience. The self titled debut album contained two classic Kevin songs: "Joy Of A Toy" and "Why Are We Sleeping". The former was to become the title of his debut solo album on Harvest records, and contained the classic "Eleanor's Cake Which Ate Her".

1970 saw Kevin form the all star Whole World with Lol Coxhill, Mike Oldfield and David Bedford, which in turn led to the impressive release of "Shooting At The Moon", and a lovely single, the B side of which became an Ayres classic "May-I?". Oldfield and chums went on to make "Tubular Bells", borrowing Ayers tape machine in the process, and Kevin meanwhile joined Gong with Daevid Allen for an extensive Euro tour in 1972

A third solo album "Whatevershebringswesing" brought Kevin back to the public attention as a solo artist in his own right and the following "Bananamour" which featured the near hit, "Caribbean Moon". Superb guitarist Ollie Halsall joined Kevin and producer Rupert Hine for the impressive 1974 "Confessions of Doctor Dream" and in the same year Kevin achieved a lifetime's ambition when he recorded the still sought after "June 1st 1974" album in island records with his heroes Nico, Eno and John Cale.

The following "Sweet Deceiver" which included contributions from Elton John, included the title track, a wonderful laid back, affair that featured Kevin's wistful vocals, but it was to be his last work for 2 years before a surprising cover of Marlene Dietrich's "Falling in Love Again". Ironically by the time of Kevin re-signed for Harvest for the excellent "Yes, We Have No Mananas" with Andy Summers on guitar, and the following critically acclaimed "Rainbow Takeaway", Punk was the order of the day.

The 1980's saw "That's What You Get Babe" and "Diamond Jack & The Queen of Pain" both straight ahead rock efforts. A further album "As Close As You Think" sunk without trace before Kevin re emerged with a Mike Oldfield written "Flying Start", which appeared on the Oldfield chart album "Islands"

The 90's saw the acoustic "Still Life With Guitar", which included Danny Thompson on bass. In a final unexpected twist Kevin found success if not fame with the Ambient stars Ultramarine, and he toured with the impressive Wizards of Twiddly (featuring members of The Muffin Men and later The Coral). The current live album "Turn the Lights Down" is a timely summary of a talented career.