Leslie Kujo’s multicultural musical influence can be traced back to his Ghanian/French-Canadian parents’ record collection – everything from Fela Kuti to Sly & The Family Stone to Fleetwood Mac to Willie Nelson. With such a diverse palette of sound and rhythm, Leslie uses his world travels, diverse upbringing and life experiences in his cosmic compositions.
Staring out as a drummer in a two-piece LA band, he eventually moved to New York and formed a nine-piece band, King Holiday. With a strong emphasis on Soul, Psychedelic Rock, Jazz and Funk, the band took all of their distinctive sounds together to create King Holiday’s “Astro-Soul” sound. Heavily inspired by James Brown, Jimi Hendrix and Talking Heads, King Holiday’s live show is an immersive theatrical experience incorporating dance, visual art and film.
Leslie made his curatorial debut at The Whitney Museum in 2013 for the exhibition, Blues for Smoke, titled Bloo Voyage which incorporated a performance from his band King Holiday, kinetic sculptures, soundscapes, set design, spoken word and a specially-created short film series. This event led to him supporting Santigold, touring Europe with UK superstar (and massive King Holiday fan) Paloma Faith and becoming involved with the David Lynch Foundation. He has also supported Thundercat, Das Racist, Le1f, The Stepkids and Ben Lovett (Mumford & Sons).
King Holiday is planning to release his first major release, ‘Concrete and Bricks’ ,on the legendary Tommy Boy Records in Spring 2016. He is also working on solo material with Ludwig Persik (guitarist/keyboardist for Jamie Lidell’s band). Leslie is also due to appear as Bob Marley in HBO’s Vinyl, directed by Martin Scorcese and produced by Mick Jagger, in early 2016.