Sumudu Jayatilaka is a singer-songwriter from the UK. She was born in Barnsley, grew up in Scunthorpe and now lives in London. Her Sri Lankan parents noticed she was a natural performer and composer from a young age and she soon learned to play many instruments including the piano, violin, guitar, flute and accordion.
At fifteen she made her television debut singing one of her own songs for the BBC.
Whilst studying medicine at Sheffield University she went on to become the singer for the UK’s National Youth Jazz Orchestra and toured the country; during which time she earned her reputation as a formidable singer.
Sumudu was chosen to sing live in front of the Queen and millions of TV viewers worldwide for the Millennium countdown celebrations at the Dome in London. She sang the classic song ‘Alfie’ for Burt Bacharach & Hal David at a special Tribute Concert held at London’s Royal Albert Hall where she shared the bill with Dionne Warwick, Elvis Costello and Sir Bob Geldof.
Other performances have seen Sumudu singing for Disney at the BBC Proms in Hyde Park and residencies at Ronnie Scott’s Jazz Club in London.
Sumudu’s self-written debut album ‘Waiting For You’ (2011) was made with Grammy Award winning producer Kipper (Sting/James Taylor). Sumudu plays most of the instruments on this folk and roots influenced album which received high praise from the acoustic music press with comparisons to Eva Cassidy, Karen Carpenter and Alison Krauss.
Sumudu is a featured artist on the soundtrack for the forthcoming film written by Fabrizio Ferri called ‘Anima’ in which she is also due to appear. The soundtrack was recorded at Abbey Road with the London Symphony Orchestra and features Fabrizio Ferri’s own compositions as well as songs co-written with producer Kipper and Sting, who appears on the soundtrack.
She has opened for Mica Paris, Curtis Stigers, Ron Sexsmith and Mark King on UK tour.
Other artists she has performed with as a backing singer include Sir Rod Stewart, John Newman, Shaun Escoffery, The Lee Thompson Ska Orchestra, Jamie Cullum and Chris Difford (Squeeze).
Sumudu is a featured artist on the new album by jazz pianist Jason Rebello (Sting /Jeff Beck) and also featured on arranger and trombonist John Aram (Phil Collins) new tribute to Stevie Wonder album. She appears on Mike Lindup‘s (Level 42) latest release ‘On the One’.
Sumudu is currently on world tour as backing vocalist, guitarist and keyboard player for Sir Van Morrison.