The Prince of Sophisticated Soul Will Downing is set to perform two rare dates in London this summer, and is joined by two special guests.

For the first time in years Will Downing, the Prince of Sophisticated Soul, is set to perform for his UK fans at two very special London shows this summer. Downing will return to the stage in the UK at the Islington Assembly Hall on Friday 22 and Saturday 23 June.

Will Downing began his career in the eighties, working as a backing singer for the likes of Jennifer Holliday, Nona Hendryx and Rose Royce. He released his self-titled debut album in 1988, and spent the next three decades perfecting his unique brand of smooth and sophisticated sound, selling 4 million albums as a result. Downing has been remarkably consistent in his ability to release top quality records, combining original material with a mix of covers. Similar to the late great Luther Vandross, Downing has the knack of being able to re-imagine classic soul songs and make them his own (check out his version of Whitney Houston’s ‘Saving All My Love For You‘).

In the UK, Downing had a smash hit with Mica Paris on their version of ‘Where Is The Love‘, originally recorded by Roberta Flack and Donny Hathaway. His ‘A Love Supreme‘ is another UK favourite, taken from his debut album. In recent years Downing has released several great albums, including the stunning Lust, Love & Lies (An Audio Novel), Chocolate Drops, Black Pearls and most recently Soul Survivor. His return to the UK is a very much welcome treat.

Joining Downing on stage will be renowned saxophonist and flautist Najee, and singer Meli’sa Morgan. Najee, who has featured on several of Downing’s recordings, is a Grammy nominated musician who has worked with the likes of Prince, Quincy Jones, Stevie Wonder and Herbie Hancock. Last year he released the album Poetry in Motion featuring not only Will Downing, but Brit-funk outfit Incognito, the gifted Maysa and Eric Roberson.

Meli’sa Morgan is best known for her eighties smash hits ‘Fools Paradise’ and a stunning cover of Prince’s ‘Do Me Baby’. She released three more albums before taking an extended hiatus from the industry, before returning in 2005 with the album I Remember, which featured a cover of ‘Back Together Again’ with R&B icon Freddie Jackson. Morgan appeared as part of “The Great Voices of Soul” UK tour back in 2015, and makes a welcome return to London.

Tickets for these two performances can be bought on the Islington Assembly Hall’s website.