Roy resigned from Pee Wee King's Golden West Cowboys in Louisville to care for his terminally ill father in Mississippi. After his father passed away, Roy returned to Louisville and joined Boyd Bennett and his Rockets. Boyd, himself, was a country ballad singer, and on his songs Roy played steel guitar. At the outset, the band specialized in Dixieland Jazz, and on those songs Roy played trombone. Boyd had been recording ballads and Dixieland at the King Record Company in Cincinnati for some time, then after Roy joined the band, they began recording rock and roll songs -- on which Roy played lead guitar.
The first session Boyd recorded after Roy came along included an original written by John Young called "Seventeen." The song rapidly moved to the top of the rock and roll charts, and suddenly the band found itself playing some of the hottest rock and roll and pop venues in the country -- often being billed over such famous artists as Patti Page and Count Basie.
Listed below are twelve of the 58 rock and roll songs recorded by the band. Roy selected these to be made available for your listening because he was more intimately related to these songs for one reason or another -- either due to his solo choruses on lead guitar or because he had written some of the songs.
The musicians and instrumentation on most of these recordings were as follows: Ballads + Drums, Boyd Bennett; Rock-and-Roll vocals + trumpet, James (Big Mo) Mauzey; Upright bass, Kenny Cobb; Rhythm guitar + tenor banjo, Mickey Allen; Tenor Sax + clarinet, Bobby Jones; Alto Sax, Jimmy McDaniel; Baritone sax, John Young; Lead Guitar + steel guitar + trombone, Roy Ayres.
The last song listed below is "Harlem Nocturne" played by Jimmy McDaniel on alto sax. Roy only played rhythm guitar on this recording, but included it here just to demonstrate that the band was comprised of some great musicians who were not limited to simple rock and roll music.
To play any of the recordings, simply click on the title.