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Yoka & The SugarBeats bring their own brand of Soul & Blues – with a rhythm section begging your body to move, just the right amount of sweetness from the keyboards and guitar licks that make you want to grab your air guitar, it won't take long before you’ll find yourself on the dancefloor singing along to the powerful vocals of the sweet but demanding temptress that is Yoka.

 

GET TO KNOW THE  MEMBERS OF THE BAND: 

 

Yoka

This Dutch Diva has experience in theatre, jazz, opera and blues, Yoka was the face of successful British Indie Blues Band "Little Devils" (2010-2016). Yoka is a charismatic performer with a big voice that easily adapts to different genres.  A true story teller, she is known to take her audience on a journey full of laughter and the occasional tear. Yoka also adds occasional flute and sax to the overall sound and has been nominated in 2014, 15 & 16 for instrumentalist of the year in the British Blues Awards.

 

Yoka's special skill is that she can play two recorders at the same time with her nose, which is a real and useful skill; she has seen a clown in Cirque du Soleil at the Albert Hall do it too..Yoka cries easily and can make herself cry just thinking about the fact she cries so easily.  

 

For the geeks: Yoka plays a Conn-Selmer PTS380 Premier Bb Tenor Saxophone and a Yamaha YFL311 Flute

Big Ray

Big Ray cut his musical teeth on the Belgian and Dutch Blues scenes, playing with a plethora of musicians both on bass as well as guitar.

Upon his return to London, he joined Little Devils  on guitar and went on to co-write their critically acclaimed album, The Storm Inside.

 

Ray's favourite band is Pink Floyd.  David Gilmour never wastes a note, every single one counts, he is the reason Ray started playing the guitar. If Big Ray could have a superpower he would like to be invisible for 'obvious reasons'. 

 

 

For the geeks: Big Ray plays his own hand crafted guitar with mahogany back and neck. Lacewood top and fingerboard. Bog Oak headstock veneer, Sperzel locking tuners, Tonerider Hot 90 pickups, CTS pots and Switchcraft selector with a Wilkinson trem. With as back- up guitars: Fender Strats (with Fender Custom Shop pickups in one and a set of John Benson's hand-wound-in-NY in the other) and a custom made, hard pine Telecaster (60s Tiesco Gold Foil in the neck, Seymour Duncan in the bridge) through a Fender Hotrod DeVille 2x12. His tone is only lightly coloured via a handful of modulation pedals. When unplugging, he'll either use his Guild or his Faith acoustic. To find out more about Ray's custom made guitars please visit www.qureshiguitars.co.uk

Spencer Blackledge

Is a full time self-taught 'leftie' with 25 years of gigging and recording experience playing up and down the UK and across Europe. Spencer is no longer allowed to come near any mic, his favourite joke: "Doctor, it really hurst when I lift my arm up?" Doc: "Don't do it then!" When asked what he'll do when he grows up he'll puts his fingers in his ears. In his spare time Spencer would like to be in a band. 

 

For the geeks: Spencer plays Gretsch and Pearl drums with Sabian And Zildjian Cymbals.

Picture: Angel Images

Andrew Papas

Papas played guitar and keyboards in his school band, and has played pretty much continually with a variety of original and cover bands for the past thirty years - from prog to punk to funk to blues to rock.
Now entirely focussed on keys, his influences are drawn from all musicians, across a broad spectrum of genres and eras, from Miles Davis to Ray Davies, from Chick Corea to Brian Eno, from Stevie Ray Vaughan to Walter Becker, From BB King to Carole King.
 
Papas is also into all the technical stuff such as sound engineering, recording and programming.
Papas can juggle and would like to have X-ray vision as a super power, bad manners and ignorance annoy him. The best decision he ever made was to pull the brake lever. 
 
For the geeks: Andrew has a collection of keyboards of various vintages, as well as a proper piano (of course), and currently uses a Korg SV-1, Korg M3 and a MicroKORG as well as a newly acquired Nord Electro 5 (which almost collapses the other three into a single instrument), all played through a Dynacord and Electrovoice backline. 
 
Picture: Angel Images

 

Andy Pullin

Andy is a tight, rock-solid groover with a fluid technique that never stray's from the pocket. A full time musician, Andy uses chops and experience gained from playing in a multitude of blues, rock and cover bands, creating a style that is at home with a hard driven rhythm as well as a delicate soul mover. Andy would love to be able to fly and do gigs hovering above the stage to annoy Spencer. When he is not out gigging or teaching Andy likes to stay in with a good book and a beer. 
 
 
Picture: Angel Images

Talk to me Baby!

We are happy to talk to you - you can contact us via email, text or phone call  

info@yoka.london


+44 (0)7815519788 -  Big Ray

 

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