Ruby Turner is a British Jamaican R&B and soul singer and songwriter. In a career spanning 40 years, Ruby is best known today for her work with Jools Holland R&B Orchestra and tours extensively with his big band as one of its main singers. She was awarded the MBE in 2016 for her contribution to music.
Ruby’s music has always been firmly rooted in her Caribbean heritage, with a strong influence of gospel underpinning her treatment of soul and R&B. Her grandfather sang the lead in one of the island’s gospel groups and those gospel-inspired roots are still evident through her involvement as a guest judge on BBC ‘Songs of Praise Gospel Choirs Competition”.
She had a major break in the mid 1980’s when she joined ‘Culture Club’ at the height of their fame and toured with them performing to vast sell-out audiences. An offer of a solo record deal closely followed and she soon signed to Jive Records, recording four albums to critical acclaim, making Ruby a household name.
It was during this period that she achieved the rare feat, for a British singer, of reaching no 1 in the US R&B chart, with “It’s Gonna Be Alright” in February 1990. Between 1986 and 1995, eight of her singles appeared in the UK Singles Chart with “I’d Rather Go Blind” being the most successful. She also released her hit album ‘The Motown Songbook’ on which she performed with some of the truly great stars of that era – The Four Tops, The Temptations, Jimmy Ruffin – and Motown material still figures in her repertoire.
She has worked alongside Bryan Ferry, UB40, Steel Pulse, Steve Winwood, and Mick Jagger and written songs covered by artists including Lulu, Yazz and Maxi Priest.
“Ruby Turner is a vocal powerhouse. There isn’t anything she can’t sing – whether she’s belting out gospel or sweet soul music – she is the queen of British R&B. You’re in for a real treat – you must see her”.
WHAT OTHERS SAY:
“Soul, Gospel, and R&B : Ruby Turner is truly the genuine article. Blessed with a voice that can breathe life and meaning into any song, whether it be a passionate ballad or a fast groove” – The Guardian
“She has to completely believe in a song to sing it. With a lot of singers it’s a bit like they’re acting on stage, but she’s not” – Jools Holland
“Soulful, passionate and incredibly powerful, Ruby Turner’s unique vocal style has been likened to Aretha Franklin and Janis Joplin” – Reviews Hub