Roy Ayers rushed to hospital in Portland

(April 21, 2019) Oregon Public Broadcasting has reported that legendary musician and SoulTracks Lifetime Achievement Award winner Roy Ayers was rushed to the hospital after arriving at Portland International Airport yesterday (Saturday) afternoon.

Ayers had been scheduled to play last night at the Soul’d Out Music festival in Portland. His band, Roy Ayers Ubiquity, performed without him.

Ayers issued a statement, “To all of my fans and supporters it is with my deepest sorrow that I was not able to come to Portland to perform for you this evening. I took a wrong turn and wound up at the hospital, ha ha I’m always one that can laugh at themselves. I’m still a little out of sorts, but with the help and care that my family provides me I should be back to my 78 years young self sooner than later and back on the road.”

(April 21, 2019) Oregon Public Broadcasting has reported that legendary musician and SoulTracks Lifetime Achievement Award winner Roy Ayers was rushed to the hospital after arriving at Portland International Airport yesterday (Saturday) afternoon.

Ayers had been scheduled to play last night at the Soul’d Out Music festival in Portland. His band, Roy Ayers Ubiquity, performed without him.

Ayers issued a statement, “To all of my fans and supporters it is with my deepest sorrow that I was not able to come to Portland to perform for you this evening. I took a wrong turn and wound up at the hospital, ha ha I’m always one that can laugh at themselves. I’m still a little out of sorts, but with the help and care that my family provides me I should be back to my 78 years young self sooner than later and back on the road.”

Ayers is, without doubt, one of the seminal artists of the past century who has helped define both R&B and jazz, The Los Angeles born vibraphonist began his love of music as a child, likely inspired by his parents: his mother was a local piano instructor and his father a trombonist. He was playing piano as a young child and naturally picked up multiple instruments such as flute, trumpet and drums. Ultimately, he gravitated to the vibraphone, and developed into a legend on that instrument.

Ayers started recording as a sideman in the early 60s, landing a spot working with legendary jazz flutist Herbie Mann. By the end of that decade, he stepped out on his own, forming Roy Ayers Ubiquity and becoming a true pioneer in the merging of R&B and jazz. His broad vision took shape throughout the early 70s, coming to fruition on his smash 1976 album, Everybody Loves The Sunshine.

During the late 70s and early 80s, Ayers continued to perform with his band – scoring hits on the soul and dance charts such as the top ten “Don’t Stop The Feeling” - while also producing a number of other artists. He also toured the world repeatedly, finding inspiration in the sounds of Africa that shaped his own music.

Ayers’ music became influential to the hip-hop and house communities, but nowhere was it revered more than in the generation of neo-soul artists that emerged in the 1990s, leading Ayers to be dubbed the “Godfather of Neo-soul.” He worked with many of that decade’s greats, including Mary J. Blige, A Tribe Called Quest and Erykah Badu.

Ayers has continued to tour regularly to large audiences, even as he approaches his 80th year. We will be praying that he is soon back on his feet and pleasing his fans around the world.

 
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