I started writing this on the 1st day of spring 2019. Even if the weather’s not quite there yet, this song gives hints of renewal. That smooth bass sound and pleasant groove help us make the shift into a new season with a curious caution. But there’s no need to shy from brighter skies here; RAMP presents a much-needed warm welcome with “Everybody Loves the Sunshine.”
While working in a record store in Cincinnati from 2005–2008, we had a nice share of in-store performances and meet-and-greets. From the beloved, hometown Psychodots to local hero Bootsy Collins to the enchanting Over the Rhine and even… Stryper… many artists and groups stopped in or played there.
RAMP was a group I was not familiar with locally, as I grew up an hour away in a town that had many of its own claim-to-fame music greats. I heard whisperings of how iconic RAMP was and how the name stood for “Roy Ayers Music Productions.” Well-known jazz musician Roy Ayers did, in fact, write and produce for the group, but did not play or sing in the quintet. They released one album, “Come Into Knowledge,” in the 1970s that has since appeared in samples and been revered by hip-hop artists.
Meeting RAMP was like suddenly feeling surrounded by good energy. No-frills men and women who exude the same mellow, meditational feel inherent in their music. “Everybody Loves the Sunshine” is an underrated cover of a Roy Ayers Ubiquity track (on an album titled after the song) but born out of the Queen City.
I am now finally finishing this write-up as we get closer to summer. No matter the season, this song presents an easy and free soundtrack to anyone who longs to be surrounded by the light of life, the gentle warmth. This song has wide, open arms that invite you to bask in the repetition of sunshine.
(Song recommendation by K Weber)