Love Really Hurts Without You propelled Billy to stardom and he followed it up with a string of hit singles, including When The Going Gets Tough, The Tough Get Going. Whether he’s with his backing group or with the Ebony Steel Orchestra, Billy loves playing live and his cabaret set is a guaranteed floor-filling crowd pleaser.


Billy Ocean is one of the most successful British singer-songwriters of the past thirty years. His singles and albums, a distinctive blend of R&B, soul and pop have sold in excess of 30 million worldwide. Billy has had a British Singles Chart Number 1 (When The Going Gets Tough, The Tough Get Going) and three US Number 1’s.

Emigrating with his family from the Caribbean at the age of eight, Billy grew up in the East End of London. After a series of jobs, he trained as a bespoke tailor and found work in Savile Row. Performing with local bands and freelancing as a session singer, Billy started to record. After releasing two singles under his real name, he released his first as Billy Ocean, Whose Little Girl Are You? But it was the follow-up that was to propel him to stardom. Love Really Hurts Without You reached Number 2, selling 250,000 copies. It was only kept off the top spot by Save All Your Kisses For Me by Brotherhood of Man (those where the days when a Eurovision winner was guaranteed to go to Number 1).

The following years saw a string of hit singles and top-selling albums. Billy also wrote songs recorded by other artists, including La Toya Jackson, Randy Crawford and Boyzone.

Billy’s love of steel band music led him to perform with the Ebony Steel Orchestra. They perform all round Europe and at the Notting Hill Carnival. Billy continues to perform live and his cabaret set is a guaranteed floor-filling crowd pleaser.

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JLA Presents

Event - 30/04/2024 - 9:00 am

Speakers Breakfast

Understanding AI Now

Priya Lakhani and Anne-Marie Imafidon

Please join us in our JLab studio near Oxford Circus at 08:30am on Tuesday 30th April for our next speaker’s breakfast event. Following our sell-out event for IWD back in February, we will be joined by three fantastic speakers for an exploration of the uses, myths and concerns surrounding AI.


JLA, 14 Berners Street, London


Event - 06/02/2024 - 9:00 am

Speakers Breakfast

Looking Ahead to International Women’s Day

Samira Ahmed, Eniola Aluko, and Alex Mahon

We were joined by four fantastic speakers to look ahead at International Women’s Day. With the theme of this year’s event being #InspireInclusion, we were lucky enough to hear from four women who have each blazed a trail in their respective fields: CEO of Channel 4, Alex Mahon; the former Australian Prime Minister and Chair of Kings’ Global Institute of Women’s Leadership, Julia Gillard; one of the leading voices in football, Eniola Aluko MBE; and broadcaster and journalist, Samira Ahmed.


Bishopsgate Institute, 230 Bishopsgate, London, EC2M 4QH