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Frequently Bought Together
Customers Who Bought This Item Also Bought
|1. Down on My Knees|
|2. Without You|
|3. Letter by Letter|
|4. How Many Times?|
|5. And It's Supposed to Be Love|
|6. Watching You|
|7. Only You|
|8. Help Is Coming|
|9. These Days|
|10. Life Is Real|
|11. What Is Love?|
|12. Neva Been|
Debut album from the German-born vocalist. Ayo's father was Nigerian and her mother was a gipsy. This album, recorded in just five days, features tracks that are both a tribute to her mixed upbringing but also a look at her life, most of which she has spent moving from country to country. Produced by Jay Newland, Joyful features exceptional musicians who effortlessly translate Ayo's musical ideas to flawless performances. Influenced by '60s Pop and R&B as well as Reggae and world music, Ayo brings passion and authority to the bittersweet songs on Joyful. 12 tracks including 'Down On My Knees', 'How Many Times' and 'Without You'. Universal. 2007.
Ayo (her name means "joy" in Nigerian Yoruba) has been on a careening music biz fast track ever since 2006, when her debut release, Joyful, achieved platinum sales in France and several other European countries. The lovely singer-composer-guitarist-pianist was born in Germany to a Nigerian father and a Romanian Roma (Gypsy) mother and, with her husband and son, now divides her time between Paris and New York. Joyful was produced by Grammy award-winner Jay Newland and recorded in New York City in five days flat, under studio-live conditions. This created a relaxed yet urgently charged ambience that underpins the ebb and flow of all 12 tracks. Musically, the tunes incorporate diverse quotes from a polyglot life, such as accordion-laced French bal musette, slouchy Afro-Euro reggae, quietly down-and-dirty R & B-influenced organ riffs, Beatles-eque piano chords, plus subtle strings and over all, a moodily suave acoustic guitar. Ayo's girlishly light but spot-on vocals are sung primarily in English with occasional touches of Nigerian pigeon. She speaks of sexual passion hopeless and fulfilled, family, friendships, and philosophical observations both grim and optimistic; these are young songs from an old soul. The massive success of the present album has led to a television special, Ayo Live in Monte Carlo, which will be aired in the USA on PBS. During it, the young chanteuse performs tunes from Joyful and hobnobs with Princess Stephanie of Monaco, with whom she shares a commitment to children's causes. --Christina Roden
Top Customer Reviews
She ended up in foster homes when her parents divorced; once she was even kidnapped by her father.
Which is perhaps why her music is so calm and smooth - after that kind of upbringing you're unlikely to want to rock hard.
This album was recorded in New York and produced by Jay Newland (who produced Norah Jones), and it tells stories of gypsy life and heart break.
After gaining huge success in France and having already won over the hearts and charts of Europe (Top Twenty in Germany; Platinum in France, big sales in U.K.) Ayo is now set to take over the US and Canada.
Her roots define her and threads of soul, folk, afro beat and reggae weave through her songs.It is no wonder she calls herself an African Gypsy.
Ayo is an artist with a magnetic character and a stunning vocal, which has echoes of both Lauryn Hill and Tracy Chapman in it.
She's been compared also to Sade and Corinne Bailey Rae, although she probably needs to find a few more tunes and hooks to rise above the creamy surface. Still, there's enough here (including the delicate power of her voice) to suggest Ayo could be that rare thing - a German R&B star.
Musically she covers everything from African folk, reggae and of course oodles of soul.Read more ›
Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
I can't compare her vocally to any other singers because she had a unique style but if you're an ecclectic listener who has given artists like Rhian Benson, Lamya, Aya or Corrine Bailey Rae a chance then you'd definitely enjoy hearing Ayo.
I'm sure that as I listen to this album over time, my list of favorite tracks will grow but right now the ones that stand out to me are:
WITHOUT YOU - an open letter to her father, it's beautifully spare
AND IT'S SUPPOSED TO BE LOVE - nice cover with sambaesque elements
LIFE IS REAL - beautiful lyrics & one of the few uptempo arrangements
NEVA BEEN - beautiful love song