Yussef Dayes is one of the UK’s most exciting, innovative young drummers and producers. Though largely considered a “jazz” drummer, his sound melds everything from 70s funk to Senegalese percussion to recent UK grime. The unifying factor is a fluid, vital energy.
Growing up in South East London, Yussef began his musician journey listening to his dad’s jazz records, and performing with his brothers from age 4. He’s gone on to study with the legendary Billy Cobham, and began regular gigging with his brothers in afrobeat and rock-influenced jazz outfit United Vibrations. He is also known for his collaboration with Kamaal Williams, creating the duet Yussef Kamaal in 2015. Following 2018’s ‘Love Is The Message’ - Yussef’s first solo release, with a debut solo album in the pipeline as well as collaborative projects across the board.
In 2020, Yussef and fellow South East London musician Tom Misch have released their joint album entitled What Kinda Music, distributed on legendary jazz label, Blue Note. The album curated by drummer and singer-songwriter expresses music’s ability to tick the boxes of all-genres and to appeal to an incredibly vast audience. The album has gained much global success including reaching #4 in the UK Official Charts, #1 Current Contemporary Jazz Album in the US Billboard Charts and #52 Album in the US Billboard Charts.
With a solo album in the pipeline, Yussef says working solo allows him to be free: uncompromising in choices of sounds and collaborators. He’s running with that freedom, working on multiple projects as a producer and player with some of the key names in the UK jazz scene and beyond.