Primary Instrument: Guitar, electric
Biography ‘Born in Jamaica, Ciyo arrived in England at the age of six months old. Though a high academic achiever qualifying as a Fellow of the Institute of Legal Executives and specialising in the area of housing law, music has always been a dedicated and professionally nurtured constant in Ciyo’s journey through life.
From early beginnings having first been taught to play the guitar at the age of nine by his father, Ciyo has participated musically in theatrical, studio recordings and live performances alongside a parade of internationally acclaimed artists. These have included Caron Wheeler, Ann Nesby, Ruby Turner, Annie Lennox, Suggs, YolanDa Brown, Jason Rebello, soca queen Alison Hinds, Jean Carne, Jazz Warriors, Tomorrow’s Warriors, Talvin Singh, LCGC, East London Gospel Choir, Chevelle Franklin, Andy Hamilton, Eastwood and Saint, Reggae Philharmonic Orchestra, Urban Soul Orchestra, Alex Wilson, Sonny Okusons, internationally acclaimed jazz guitarists Jim Mullen and Dave Cliff, Pee Wee Ellis, Sly and Robbie, Freddie McGregor, Adele, Steel Pulse (where he shared lead guitar duties with Jimmy ‘Senyah’ Haynes on the 1991 album, Victims) and Carleen Anderson. Ciyo has also been appointed as Musical Director for a range or coveted artists to include the likes of Ronnie Laws, Billy Paul, Ann Nesby, Horace Andy, Sylvia Tella and Johnny Clarke.
An in-demand musicians’ musician, Ciyo’s ongoing collaborative works cover a range of genres. His talent has enhanced iconic popular music alongside artists such as Roachford, Linda Lewis, Raghav, Shara Nelson, through progressive Jazz with Soweto Kinch, to the ‘new psychedelia’ Brit-pop/folk influenced music of Bishi. Ciyo’s jazzy guitar contributions are also present in the genres of reggae and lover’s rock and can be found in his live and recorded work with many artists including JC Lodge, Sugar Minott, Bob Andy, Earl ‘Chinna Smith’, Barry Biggs, Dennis Bovell, Pam Hall, Jimmy Lindsay, Earl 16, Lukie D, Paulette Tajah, Susan Cadogan, Lorna Bennett, Kofi, Winston Reedy, Janet Kay and Carroll Thompson.
Ciyo has toured with Courtney Pine, Byron Wallen, Ronnie Laws, Billy Paul, Jean Toussaint, Maxi Priest, Beres Hammond, Horace Andy, Cleveland Watkiss, Steel Pulse and a host of others. He counts quality time spent with George Benson as amongst his most inspiring experiences to date. Ciyo has five album releases to date with two compilations and a new studio album consisting of acoustic guitar-led soulful jazz due for release in October 2012.
Current projects also include a focus on his World Music Acoustic Trio featuring Colin McNeish (double bass) and Lenny Edwards (percussion). This project delivers an eclectic mix of musical themes from around the world featuring dynamic arrangements and interpretation underpinned by instinctive and sublime musicianship from a stellar trio of outstanding musicians.