JUNO Award winner Kenny ‘Blues Boss’ Wayne releases 10th album Inspired By The Blues
Inspiration and perspiration. That’s what it takes to be a genius. And a blues boss.
Kenny ‘Blues Boss’ Wayne is living proof. With decades of playing, countless globetrotting tours and a slate of acclaimed, award-winning albums under the belt of his flamboyant zoot suit, the 74-year-old piano master might be the hardest-working bluesman in show business. And this true original isn’t changing his tune on his topnotch 10th album Inspired By The Blues.
“I’m not looking for a different path,” says the Kelowna-based performer. “I love that jump blues and boogie-woogie. That’s where my heart is at. I’m just trying to keep that style alive. That’s classic stuff. And I’m at that classic age, so it all works out.”
Indeed, it does. Inspired By The Blues, out Sept. 28 on Stony Plain Records, finds the Boogie Woogie Hall of Famer applying his deft touch and tremendous talents to another slate of top-notch originals, with the help of special guests like harmonica player Billy Branch, guitarist Duke Robillard and B.B. King’s long-time bassist Russell Jackson. With 11 originals — including a tribute to Fats Domino — plus a bonus track of Georgia on My Mind cut live in Mexico, the self-produced set serves as a throwback to ‘50s rhythm and blues while putting a fresh spin on the genre.
It’s an approach he’s honed over the course of six decades in music. Born in Spokane but raised in Los Angeles, San Francisco and New Orleans, and now based in Kelowna, BC, Wayne was a child prodigy in his minister father’s youth choir. Eventually turning from the Lord’s work to the nDevil’s music, he took up the blues, borrowed his nickname from legendary influencer Amos Milburn, got a few fashion tips from Jim Carrey in The Mask, and the ‘Blues Boss’ was born.
He’s been large and in charge ever since. Wayne released his first album Alive & Loose in 1995. It was followed by Blues Boss Boogie in 1998 and four albums for Canadian label Electro-Fi Records: 88th & Jump Street, the Juno-winning Let It Loose, Can’t Stop Now and the live Piano-Rama. Since joining Stony Plain Records in 2011, Wayne has released An Old Rock On A Roll, 2014’s Rollin’ With The Blues Boss and Jumpin’ and Boppin’ in 2016. In keeping with those energetic titles, Wayne is a man in constant motion. He’s built a stellar reputation within Canada and abroad for his colourfully energetic shows, and regularly performs everywhere from Europe and Israel to Russia and South America, selling out 800 to 1,000-seat venues and headlining international festivals.
Kenny “Blues Boss” Wayne – Sept 28, Stony Plain ADA USA/WEA CAN
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December 13, 2018 School of Blues, Kelowna Rotary Centre for the Arts Kelowna BC