16 August 1944, Herne Bay, Kent, England. Ayers spent much of his childhood in Malaysia where his stepfather was a District Officer, before returning to England and becoming a central figure in the Canterbury scene. A founder member of the Wilde Flowers and the Soft Machine, this talented singer and songwriter abandoned the latter outfit in 1968 following an arduous US tour. Ayers 1969 debut, Joy Of A Toy, nonetheless bore a debt to his former colleagues, all of whom contributed to this innovative collection. Its charm and eccentricity set a pattern for much of the artists later work, while the haunting, languid ballads, including The Lady Rachel and Girl On A Swing, stand among his finest compositions.
In 1970 Ayers formed the Whole World, a unit that featured saxophonist Lol Coxhill, guitarist Mike Oldfield and pianist/arranger David Bedford. This impressive band was featured on the same...
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