LONDON EartH, Hackney Arts Centre
11-17 Stoke Newington Road
Following the widespread success of 26-year-old Ashley Henry’s Easter EP, the genre-blurring UK pianist returns in full force with his debut studio album Beautiful Vinyl Hunter, set for release in September on Sony Music. Offering a journey into the visionary mind of one of the UK’s most creative young talents, the highly anticipated 15-track album draws on a heady brew of influences from jazz, beats, hip-hop, punk and grime and features collaborations with an impressive collective of innovators including Makaya McCraven, Keyon Harrold, Ben Marc, Luke Flowers, MC Sparkz, Jaimie Branch, Binker Golding and Joshua Idehen.
Having recently embarked on an extensive world tours with both Loyle Carner and Christine And The Queens, Henry is a young pianist with a rapidly growing international profile.
'My music is a straight up reflection of who I am; London in all its mixed up glory. The immigrant in me has musical roots that are traced back to the 1940’s, so it’s important my music today reflects that jazz alpha narrative across different genres and generations'.
Beautiful Vinyl Hunter is a provocative 15-track collection that effortlessly guides the listener through a variety of genres, ranging from contemporary jazz in 'Dark Honey (4 The Storm)', featuring acclaimed drummer and producer Makaya McCraven, to hip-hop in 'Between The Lines', featuring rapper MC Sparkz and Grammy winning trumpeter Keyon Harrold, to the soulful lyricism of Judi Jackson’s vocals on the opening track 'Star Child' and the grime infused 'COLORS' with spoken-word artist Joshua Idehen. The album is bold in its energy and rhythmic drive, and showcases Henry’s ability to knit all of his influences into a seamless tapestry - transporting jazz music to new realms of beauty. 'Like everyone, I'm hunting for something' explains Henry. ''Beautiful Vinyl Hunter' takes you to some crazy places to meet some beautiful and crazy people, all you need to do is listen.'
As an artist who can trace his music genes back two generations, Henry was born and raised in South London and his sound is driven and shaped by alpha jazz pioneers like Maya Angelou; Common; MC Lyte and Leslie Thompson to Steve McQueen; Abbey Lincoln and Herbie Hancock.