Norway’s Øyafestivalen adds four new names to the 2022 line up!

Today organisers fill in with three British and a Norwegian name that all, in their own way, have at least one foot in jazz. SONS OF KEMET, NUBYA GARCIA and KAMAAL WILLIAM all come from the new wave of English musicians who mix jazz with various other styles. SKARBØ SKULEKORPS is a large group of musicians with experience from a huge number of bands and projects. All four stand for musical surprises organisers think will spice up Øyafestivalen in 2022 in a fantastic way!

SONS OF KEMET (UK) is a London band that has been around for about ten years, and which received a lot of attention outside jazz circles with the album Your Queen Is a Reptile in 2018. They have become one of the key names in the wonderful boom of modern British jazz. in recent years, and their music is full of distinctly African and Caribbean inspiration. In 2021 came the fourth album Black to the Future, which was an even more varied and had several guest artists.

Sons of Kemet’s fourth album is his most outgoing and evangelical yet, but it carries no trace of compromise. There are tenor sax melodies here that could be chanted on terraces, Seven Nation Army-style; motifs that milkmen could whistle. Although committed to extemporization, Sons of Kemet’s music is as rooted in the brass-laden carnivals of the Caribbean and London garage raves as it is in the more established American traditions.

The Guardian

NUBYA GARCIA (UK) is a talented artist from the young, modern jazz community in London. Composer, saxophonist, DJ and a sought-after collaborator for other artists. She has a strong connection to various club music environments. Garcia studied jazz at the Royal Academy of Music, Britain’s oldest conservatory. In 2018, she won the newcomer award during the Jazz FM Awards, and then became the British artist of the year at the same award the following year. In addition, she has won several other prestigious jazz awards.

There has been a lot of interest around her solo releases Nubya 5ive (2017) and When We Are EP (2018). In 2020 came the album Source, which was praised for its inclusion of elements from hip hop, calypso, dubstep and more. Garcia has shown on clubs and festival stages that she is a fantastic and uncompromising live artist. This spring, she will warm up for Khruangbin on tour in the USA.

Dub overtones dominate the record, but Garcia leaves equal space for Calypso rhythms, floating two-step, bluesy hard bop, improvisational jazz and splashes of electronica. Previously, Garcia’s playing could cling to the walls, only stepping into the spotlight with blistering sax when prompted. But on ‘Source’, she boldly uses her fiery use of her instrument underpins the entire album; a cohesive glue amongst the ceiling-threatening jazz.


SKARBØ SKULEKORPS marched into people’s awareness in 2019, and received unique reviews for their debut album on Hubro. In March 2021 came the sequel Dugnad, which has surpassed the first in positive reviews, both internationally and here at home. Under the direction of drummer and composer Øyvind Skarbø, the corps somehow manages to seamlessly combine the catchy and the abstract, completely naturally. Here are all traces of Sousa marches and sour woodwind cleared away. Afrobeat with techno bass? Contemporary music for steel guitar and banjo? 60s jazz with 80s synth? This is corps music like you’ve never heard it before.

The multi-talented KAMAAL WILLIAMS (UK) is a musician, DJ and producer. He mixes elements from modern hip hop and club music, with a look back to 70’s jazz and funk. He previously played in Katy B’s band, before moving on to other musical projects, including releases under his original name Henry Wu. As half of the duo Yussuf Kamaal received a lot of attention for the album Black Focus (2016).

Organisers have been looking forward for a long time to being able to present KAMAAL WILLIAMS to the Øya audience!