Papa Roy Foundation dance into the light with new single

Formed during lockdown, Eastbourne/Brighton band Papa Roy Foundation are promising to bring us out of the darkness and dancing into the light with their debut single Say.

Papa Roy Foundation - Rouge
Papa Roy Foundation - Rouge

The bright and vibrant dance single comes ahead of their debut album Out of the Darkness which they hope to release later this year.

“For fans of Coldplay and Faithless, Say features riveting riffs, funky grooves and a rhythm that drives the track forward and will have you pulling out your dancing shoes,” promises band founder Papa Roy, the pseudonym he has adopted for the four-piece alongside fellow members Rouge, Skxllzy and Marc.

Drawing their name and inspiration from Polynesian mythology, Papa Roy Foundation is fulfilling the ancient myth, Papa Roy says, offering music that “transcends genre.” Out of the Darkness will be the first in a trilogy of album releases.

“The band is the four of us and we are based in Brighton and Eastbourne. It all started last year. I have always had a passion for music and I used to be in bands a few years back, and then I got back to writing again. I started writing in January last year. I was just tinkering with my laptop and then lockdown happened. I wrote one song and then another and suddenly I almost had a whole album. I knew Marc who introduced Rouge and we advertised and got Skxllzy.

“The four of us are the main structure of the band, but we have managed to get some guest musicians, a couple of other artists to come and join us as part-time members. I would say that the music is really a cross between dance and pop with hints of Coldplay in there. With the songs I come up with a little riff, a guitar sample or a vocal melody in my head. It just happens and then there is just one big blur and I have got a song. It’s just a process that seems to take over me. One minute I am just sitting there and then a bit later I have got a song, and then Marc adds his bits. Lyrically it is about whatever comes into our heads. Say, the new single, is about a girl that just wants a boy to say... She wants him to say that he wants a commitment. It’s a situation many girls fall into, Rouge says, wanting their man to commit himself!

“But the song itself is very much a fun upbeat song. People will hear it once and think ‘Alright’ and then by the third time, they are really hooked.

“For me, it was just good that we got together during lockdown. I was furloughed and I was able to go back to what I used to call my sanity check. Everybody has mundane jobs, and furlough gave me an opportunity to write.”

Online the music has been getting a great response – and the band are certainly keen to get out there and play live as soon as they can. Not that you will get to find out what Papa Roy looks like. He wears a mask. Not because of Covid. It’s more a bit of a protest against ageism in music.

“Now music is so manufactured and people are so obsessed with how people look and how people are that they tend to forget about the music. I wear a mask because I think people should not be categorised by age or colour or whatever. It should all be about the music.

“I am the oldest in the band, but we have got quite a diverse range of ages. Our ambition is just that people should be able to work together regardless of age. I wear the mask. It is just a slight protest against the system.”