Kenny Wayne Shepherd
With a career that began at age 16, Kenny Wayne Shepherd has a storied decade in music’s big-leagues. His first three albums mixed blues and blues-rock; his 1995 debut Ledbetter Heights has sold over a million copies, making it a platinum record. Trouble Is...was released in 1998 selling over a million copies and received a Grammy nomination. Live On followed a year later, and also got the Grammy nod. On 2004’s The Place You’re In, Shepherd took most of the albums’ lead vocals for the first time.
With the release of TEN DAYS OUT: Blues from the Backroads, Shepherd embarked on a ten-day trek into the heart of America. Traveling highways and byways with a roving documentary film crew, a portable recording studio, portable house band – the esteemed Double Trouble, and producer Jerry Harrison, Shepherd visited blues veterans in their homes, backyards and local clubs, creating as intimate and intense a blues film as has been seen in many a year.
Most musicians are either bandleaders or band members, and few have proven capable of being both the stars and the accompanists. Kenny Wayne Shepherd, however, has proven himself a true devotee to the music as both a star soloist and a star accompanist.
Aspiring musicians in the trucking business are common, but the ones that actually make it are lucky and few. Bill “Watermelon Slim” Homans is one of those lucky few. He’s been a farmer, a teacher, a truck driver, and who knows what else. But when Slim picks up a guitar, he incarnates the deepest and truest roots of American music. Combine Jimmy Rodgers, the Carter family & Bob Willis with Blind Lemon, Sonny Boy Williamson and Wilson Picket – and you have Slim – a one-of-a-kind pickin’n’singin Okie dynamo!
Here’s a new recipe for you Fort Smith! Shake up equal parts of searing electric slide guitar, tight blues grooved, and a soulful feminine voice. Now add a taste of jazz, pout it in a funky glass over some gritty rock and look out because this tall cool drink is Europe’s newest blues diva, Ana Popovic. In a flash, this Belgrade beauty can bridge smooth chill jazz with explosive psychedelic rock only to coast effortlessly into a mean Elmore James inspired slide guitar riff. Prepare to feel a fresh breeze of blues to blow in when Ana Popovic takes the Harry E. Kelly stage!