Kevin Haynes Biography
Saxophonist Percussionist ,Singer of Yoruba Folklore music African Caribbean, Nigerian Yoruba Bata drummer Founder of Egbe oduniyi Productions, Bandleader of Grupo Elegua Band Leader of Egbe oduniyi Ilu Bata drummers Haynes, is an established African jazz musician on the world stage, Producer of Cultural Events, music teacher community Mentor Kevin Began his musical careers first as a percussionist performing Afro Brazilian styles of music and dance with a group named A Rosea de Londres, a Afro Brazilian drumming and dance company Kevin studied the fundamentals of playing of Afro Caribbean Afro/Latin with Baba Sher an Afro Brazilian master drummer, singer and dancer of the Brazilian version of Orisha, Ambanda Maracatu, and Samba styles. Baba Sher was based in the UK in the late 80s. The group collaborated with other afro Caribbean dance companies from Brazil and Cuba, this is where, Kevin was first introduced to bata drums when one of the group come with some Bata drums. In the 90s and beyond Kevin went to Cuba and the US and studied the fundamentals of playing Afro Cuban percussion & Bata drumming with Amando Abaui, Regino jimenes, Angelo Bolanos, Octabiyo, Rodrigues, Filipe Garcia Villamil, Haynes was a Dancer before becoming a full time musician Haynes performed as a dancer form1986-90:with Oshumare Brazilian Folkloric theatre company,Afro International a Dance company performing music & dance from Ghana and Nigeria In the start of the 90s Kevin Haynes started performing with jazz artist like flautist Phil Bent and saxophonist Steve Williamson, Kevin would be hired as a percussionist with these bands.Haynes worked with Phil Bents band form19871989 and Williamson band from 1987 to 1993.During those 5 years Kevin started to meet and perform with other young and older jazz musicians in London. Those include: Clifford Jarvis, Ed Jones, The Jazz Warriors, Ed Bently, Jean Toussaint, Alan Weeks, Dick Heckstall-Smith, Courtney Pine, Clade Deppa, Orphy Robinson, Alex Wilson, David Jean-Baptist, Roger Boujale, David Puttman,William Cumberbache 1994. Performed with saxophonist Dick Heckstall-Smith’s band as a saxophonist and percussionist.
Later that year Haynes formed his band Grupo Elegua and first performed at the Battersea Arts Centre and the Jazz Cafe.In 1995 Haynes went to New York and spent some time studying and playing with Felipe Villamil and his group Emikeke.This legendary ensemble had been founded in the 1950s in the town of Matanza, which is considered the cradle of Afro-Cuban traditions during this time in the Big Apple, Haynes further developed his musicianship by participating in jam sessions in Manhattan and Brooklyn, as well as performing Quartet gigs around New York City.1996-2003 Groupo Elegua record two albums and gigs around the UK.
1998 Haynes tours Nigeria with British R&B star Caron Wheeler.
2004-2005 Haynes tours Europe repeatedly with Nigerian musician
Keziah Jones as percussionist and saxophone player
2004 –2005 Haynes tours Europe with his Grupo Elegua.
2006/-2007haynes performs in London jazz with Grupo elegua and performs in the Cuban Jazz Festival in Havana with Grupo Elegua 2007/8 Haynes tours Europe with Grupo Elegua
2009 and 2011 Kevin Haynes runs Nu jazz event called Nubian Expression in central London in the west London area of Notting hill the event has been running a monthly event and
2011-12 Kevin Hayne Grupo Elegua performs in the Havana Jazz festival and the band performs in many of the London Jazz festivals and local jazz clubs
The music of Kevin Haynes Grupo Elegua
is a fuse of contemporary Jazz, its influence are with in modern Jazz harmonies with afro Cuban Yoruba folkloric Bata drumming styles fused with native Nigerian Yoruba Bata drumming style and praise songs with Mandiga folk songs a hard bop modal concept with flowing Kora lines creating a unique vibe in African jazz based music
Alto saxophonist and percussionist Kevin Haynes specializes in playing Bata drums conga drums from Cuba and Bata drums from Nigeria, haynes is the writer and producer of all the Grupo Elegua’ s music Kevin has been working with Grupo Elegua for10 years and the band has toured the UK & Europe. Kevin has three Albums out under Kevin Haynes Grupo Elegua. Tomorrows path, Ori Ire, Ajo se po (Unity) Haynes has been performing all forms jazz and African Caribbean music for 19 years
Ajo se po (‘Unity) is the third album by Kevin Haynes and his Grupo Eleguá, following Tomorrow’s path (1997) and Ori ire (2002). One sense of the title Unity’ is the way Haynes brings together strands of different musical traditions from Africa and the New World..The Music of Kevin Haynes Group Elegua
Ajo se po continues Kevin’s exploration of traditional Afro-Cuban,
Saxophone is the main focus of Grupo Eleguá.
There is a Yoruba spirituality at the heart of Kevin’s musical thinking which has both Nigerian and Cuban dimensions. This is especially reflected in the use of recitation and in the Batá drumming. Cuban Batá drums are employed on all the Nigerian and jazz musical idioms, but it is the first Grupo Eleguá album to feature a koraplayer (Diabel Cissokho). Ajo se po reveals Haynes’s mature musical vision and his integration of musical elements with reference to a deepening spiritual Understanding Haynes has created a modal harmonic language sufficiently flexible to incorporate Afro-Cuban melodies and classical Kora-playing. All tracks on this album are original compositions by Haynes, and the personal voice of his alto tracks, and each piece grows out of a particular batá rhythm (dedicated to a particular Orisha or divinity) After my first trip to Cuba 1995 I started writing again but now wanted to create something fresh, as most of the music I was writing was mostly modern swing numbers with rumba, samba ganganco, rhythms. So I wanted to create something that summed up what I was learning and experiencing in my life. So I started looking for a way to create within the modern Jazz harmony and traditional African music themes.As my interest in African culture grows, so did my ideas on how I could express them in music. In 1996 I performed my first jazz show at the London Jazz cafe under the band name Kevin Haynes Groupo Elegua. The name comes from the Nigerian Yoruba deity of the crossroads and the messenger of god. He’s the Guardian of the Crossroads of Life. Whenever there are decisions to be made, he provides opportunities and second chances. If you’re lucky, as a Trickster God, the childlike Elegua can sometimes make things even more complicated. At a whim he can turn a simple choice into a vast conundrum of paradox. I loved the idea of the messenger and that this deity controlled the roads and paths of life – which doors were opened and which were closed in ones destiny Nigerian Yoruba culture has played an important part in how I am thinking when it comes to traditional African Ancient ways, of thinking and spiritually, which is reflected in the music of Groupo Elegua, ancient stories and prises of the Yoruba people are a strong part of the themes. Over the last five years I have written some Yoruba stories which has been narrated by some poets and singers that have toured with the band over the years, later it would be recorded and are now included on some
tracks on the last two albums, Ori Ire 2002 and A jo se po. Unity, Niles Hailstones Yawanda Osun Lanre Ola Ifa have all contributed to the albums bringing a fresh dimension to the music The Narration is translated in English or Yoruba.don Jazz events and venues