Gerald Rydel Simpson, better known by his deadpan moniker A Guy Called Gerald, is ubiquitous in modern dance music. With a career that spans over 30 years, he’s not only a pioneer of British acid house but a continually evolving artist who always seems to be pushing the envelope.
Growing up in inner-city Manchester, Gerald was richly inspired by his Jamaican roots. Popular Jamaican sound system parties introduced him to ska and reggae music, and at the club, he was absorbing everything from jazz fusion to electro-funk. The early 80s was a hotbed of electro, dance music, and b-boy culture. Gerald was immediately hooked and immersed himself in electronic music.
After a brief stint in the trio 808 State, Gerald left to concentrate on his solo work. From his bedroom in the attic, he began to experiment with drum machines. In 1988, he had his first solo hit with the single “Voodoo Ray”. Often cited as the first acid house track produced in the UK, “Voodoo Ray” became a touchstone of Manchester's scene and reached No. 12 in the UK charts.
In 1991 Gerald started his own label, Juice Box Records. The label’s subsequent string of 12” singles would later be heralded as the blueprint for jungle and drum and bass. His 1992 classic "28 Gun Bad Boy" would later be recognized as the first full-length drum and bass album. In 2000, he would again break barriers with his fifth album Essence, this time for his use of melody and vocals.
Presently, Gerald is touring worldwide with his own production, Live in Session. Always the innovator, at these sessions he likes to put himself in the center of the dancefloor and at eye level with his crowd, creating a space that mimics a studio environment and allows him full control of the atmosphere.