“Afro-American jazz, soul and funk with Ghanaian highlife, enhanced by his signature Simigwa style and powered by polyrhythms.”
Pan African Music
“Gyedu-Blay Ambolley continues to explore the infinite possibilities of his afro-groove cocktail as militant as it is danceable.”
Gyedu-Blay Ambolley and Hi-Life Jazz is the new album from revered Ghanaian highlife and Simigwa Do exponent Gyedu-Blay Ambolley, known for his deep, soulful, and funky highlife sound and sometimes referred to as the “James Brown of Ghana.”
A 360-degree musical tour de force as evidenced by his impressive and eclectic back catalogue, Gyedu-Blay Ambolley and Hi-Life Jazz makes his 35th album release to date. His third release on the German Agogo label, the release sees him breathing new life into some jazz classics, revisiting works by John Coltrane (Love Supreme), Thelonius Monk (Round Midnite), Wayne Shorter (Footprints) and Miles Davis (All Blues) alongside some brand new compositions, powered by polyrhythms and his signature highlife style. The record coincides with multiple live dates through October visiting Paris, Amsterdam, Rotterdam, Lisbon, Copenhagen, Brussels, Gothenburg, Malmo, Saubriges & Mugron.
Since his breakthrough in the early 1970s with his own Simigwa style he has shared stages and studios with some of Ghana’s greats like Ebo Taylor and Sammy Larteh with whom he played In the Uhuru
Dance Band. Together they founded the Apagya Show Band in 1974. He has since continued to push back boundaries, embrace, explore, create and cultivate an impressive catalogue of work. In recent times, he has become a go-to example of Ghana’s rich traditional music form, so much so that he has performed tirelessly through Europe and US and most notably at Utrecht’s Le Guess Who Festival and the Montreux Jazz Festival.