Jelly Cleaver


Jelly composes for and leads several ensembles in the London jazz scene. Her spiritual jazz ensemble ‘The Forever Presence’ released their debut EP in 2021 on Gearbox Records. It led to praise on both sides of the Atlantic, becoming KEXP and KCRW track of the day, and interviews on NPR, Bandcamp, BBC 6 Music, BBC Radio London and Jazz FM. She also composes for seven-piece disco/jazz band ‘All Day Breakfast Cafe’ who have become festival favourites as well as cover stars for Spotify’s Jazz UK playlist. 

Her solo work takes influence from jazz, post-punk, electronic and experimental music, often with explicitly political, spiritual or philosophical themes. Her recent compositions have incorporated her work as an activist for antiracism and climate justice. She often combines electronic production and samples with scored arrangements and improvisation. The scope of her compositions was recognised in her receiving the Steve Reid Award and being nominated for an Ivors Composer Award for Large Jazz Ensemble for her self-released work ‘What Is Understanding’. 

She’s previously had several unusual commissions. She was commissioned by Global Justice Now to compose a chant for their G7 protest against vaccine aparteid. She also composed a three-part suite for piano and projector under the theme ‘People Power v Power People’ which premiered at Turner Sims. She’s a resident artist at St Georges’ Hospital, Tooting, where she uses music and song-writing to bring joy to patients, staff and outpatients. 

She's on Sound and Music's New Voices programme and was also on Serious' Take Five Development Scheme. 



United Kingdom