Saturday, October 7, 2017
Born in New Orleans and raised in Baton Rouge, multi-instrumentalist Kenny Neal and his band deliver swamp-infused blues with a Louisiana sizzle! Kenny is one of the current blues greats.
Kenny Neal is an acclaimed multi-instrumentalist and is widely renowned as a modern swamp-blues master. He began playing music at a young age, learning the basics from his father, singer, harpist and Blues harmonica master, Raful Neal. Slim Harpo gave Kenny his first harp, trying to pacify the crying three-year-old boy. It worked. Kenny mastered harmonica, and quickly moved on to bass, trumpet, piano and guitar. He first performed at age six, playing piano at one of his father's gigs. By the time he was 13, he officially joined his father's band as a bass player, before being recruited as Buddy Guy's bassist at 17.
Teaming with producer/bassist/horn arranger Bob Greenlee in 1987, Kenny cut a series of albums featuring not only his laid-back, Baton Rouge blues, but also funky contemporary gems with a taste of rock and R&B. Kenny joined Alligator in 1988, and his albums became blues hits, with the critics hailing him as one of the best of the younger blues generation. With his popularity growing, Neal expanded his horizons beyond the blues world. In 1991, he starred in a Broadway musical, "Mule Bone," with music by Taj Mahal, and won a Theatre World Award for his performance. In 1993, he toured Africa for the U.S. government, performing in seven countries. During the late 1990s and early 2000s, Neal recorded and released three albums for Telarc. He continues to tour the country and bring new fans not only to his music but also to the blues in all shades and hues.
Down Beat declared, "Neal has a contemporary style unto himself, his phrases flare with pointed feeling and fervid imagination, his singing is randy and exuberant."
His 2010 CD, Hooked On Your Love, followed his multi-award winning 2008 comeback album, Let Life Flow. An outstanding success, the CD raked in the accolades: three prestigious Album Of The Year awards, two Song of The Year awards for the title track, and Kenny himself garnered two Artist of the Year honors.
"One of a mere handful of truly inventive young contemporary guitarists," announced the Chicago Tribune, "Neal has something fresh to say and the chops with which to say it."
For more info, check his website: http://www.kennyneal.net/.