Guitarist and music arranger, Jay Lou Ava is regularly described as “the Wes Montgomery of Africa” by the French Media. His music signature is a fusion of jazz and African music, drawing from both contemporary and traditional African rhythms and melodies. Born in Cameroon, Africa, Israël Jean-Louis Ava first emerged with a spiritual, gospel-influenced sound that was partially inspired by his upbringing. His father often wrote religious songs when he was a child, and the presence of an organ in his house led to an early exposure to music. When his oldest brother, a brilliant jazz guitarist, turned him onto Duke Ellington and Wes Montgomery, he took a step into his destiny. He began jamming with local jazz musicians, picking up the guitar along the way. He began playing with bands and traveling across the USA. To fulfill his father’s requirement, he graduated as a Computer Science Engineer in Paris before ongoing with his musical career. Jay Lou Ava most notably collaborated with Donny Elwood in the 90’s, played with Manu Dibango and began releasing his own material. Starting with 1997’s “Prelude”, his independent albums have included 1998’s “Remember J.L. Ava”, an African gospel album, 2002’s “Spellings”, 2006’s “Ebotan”,” 2008’s “Unforgettable Soweto” and 2011’s “Ethno Skies”. Jay Lou Ava is member of The ARK Jammers Connection, a mission-driven organization gathering artists and music lovers from different cultures and from all walks of life, who are dedicated to spreading kindness and promoting intercultural dialogue through the unifying power of music. GrIndie Award winner with his album « Unforgettable Soweto » in 2008, Jay Lou Ava won three Grammy Awards from the AFRIFRIMO AWARDS in 2014 (including Best Jazz Artist et Lifetime Achievement) and collaborated in organizing benefit concerts with the IMF, the World Bank and AFRICARE He lives in Paris, near Montmartre.