Grammy Award winning New Orleans’ Neville Brother, Cyril Neville has been called a philosopher, poet, and one of the last great southern soul singers. In 1970 he released his debut solo single, ‘Gossip’ backed with “Tell Me What’s On Your Mind,” which included backing music by brother Art’ new outfit, the Meters. It just so happened at this time that the Meters were looking to expand their lineup, and asked Cyril to join in on vocals and percussion contributing to the classic Meter’s albums such as 1972’s Cabbage Alley and 1975’s Fire on the Bayou. Later that year The Rolling Stones invited the Meters to support the bands World Tour and Cyril was included.
Cyril has co-written songs with Bono of U2, Taj Mahal, Tree Adams, Trombone Shorty, and Allen Toussaint to name a few and was the one that Lanois credits as the musical catalyst that led to the Neville’s Grammy Award winning record “YELLOW MOON.” Recently, he has written with South African artist Ernie Smith, and long time writing partner, Daryl “Dezo” Johnson. He continues to write with his Queen, Gaynielle Neville. Cyril is featured on recordings by Bob Dylan, Robbie Robertson, Dr. John, Tab Benoit, Edie Brickell plus many more. He has performed all over the world including the infamous Amnesty International tour with U2, the Police, Fela Kuti and has sung for Nelson Mandela.
There is no doubt that within the first few vocal notes it is easy to tell that musical royalty runs deep in Cyril’s blood and he remains a percussionist and a drummer to be reckoned with. In 2017 The Neville Brothers received the 2017 Austin City Limits Hall of fame Inductee award. On July 14, 2018 he received the Lifetime Achievement Award with The Meters from The Grammy’s. Which will be televised on October 5, 2018 on PBS. His career has longevity and he is not stopping any time soon!
Kermit Ruffinsis an American jazz trumpeter, singer, and composer from New Orleans, LA, United States. He has been influenced by Louis Armstrong and Louis Armstrong and says that the highest note he can hit on trumpet is a high C. He often accompanies his songs with his own vocals. Most of his bands perform New Orleans jazz standards, though he also composes many of his own pieces. Jon Pareles of The New York Times wrote, “Mr. Ruffins is an unabashed entertainer who plays trumpet with a bright, silvery tone, sings with off-the-cuff charm and never gets too abstruse in his material.”