Kenny Wayne Shepherd (June 12, 1977-) is an American Blues musician. Shepherd was born in Shreveport, Louisiana. Self-taught, he began playing guitar at age 7, figuring out Muddy Waters licks from his father’s record collection.Using his own contacts in the record business, Shepherd’s father and manager, Ken Shepherd, helped his son land a major-label record deal with Giant Records. In 1995, his debut album was entitled Ledbetter Heights and featured original material and a few covers.He recently converted to Catholicism and overcame an addiction problem, and that’s become a theme of his current work. He is married to Hannah Gibson, daughter of Actor Mel Gibson.
Five years separate Live On and its successor, The Place You're In, and the time allowed Kenny Wayne Shepherd to grow as both an artist and as an individual. He's not only writing the majority of his material, he's singing most of it as well. His guitar playing has become more nuanced, and he's moved squarely into the world of album rock from his blues-rock background. Even the cover and publicity photos reflect the difference, showing a darker, decidedly grown-up Kenny Wayne Shepherd. In addition, the producer/mixing team of Jerry Harrison and Tom Lord-Alge (who did both Live On and Trouble Is) has been replaced by Marti Frederiksen and Andy Wallace, who give the album a more muscular sound. This album is tailor-made for rock radio with its big guitar sounds and recycled classic rock riffs, and Shepherd sounds very comfortable in this setting.
GOIN’ HOME is an exploration into the music of Shepherd’s biggest influences, and features guest performances by some of his closest friends (who also happen to be some of the greatest musicians performing today), including Ringo Starr, Joe Walsh, Warren Haynes, Keb’ Mo’, Robert Randolph, Kim Wilson (Fabulous Thunderbirds), Pastor Brady Blade, Sr. and the Rebirth Brass Band.
Kenny Wayne Shepherd's How I Go not only serves as a strong reminder of the chops that caused Guitar World to place him right behind B.B. King and Eric Clapton on their list of blues guitarists, but it's the strongest indication yet of his gifted songwriting talent. The album pairs Kenny's deeply soulful and impassioned takes on classic material like Bessie Smith's "Blackwater Blues," Albert King's "Oh, Pretty Woman" and The Beatles "Yer Blues" alongside the strongest writing and co-writing of his career thus far.
The hard-rocking, blues-based, guitar-driven album sounds young, it sounds fresh. Yet it has that distinctive energy and vibe drawn from the deep heritage of the genre. Kenny Wayne Shepherd is growing as a songwriter, musician and producer.
Kenny Wayne Shepherd's reverence for his musical roots are center-stage on Ten Days Out…Blues From The Backroads. The guitar-slinger is featured with the Double Trouble rhythm section of bassist Tommy Shannon and drummer Chris Layton performing with some of the greatest blues players of our time as well as lesser-known but historically significant bluesmen. Traveling to their hometowns to record everywhere from juke joints to front porches, from New Orleans to Kansas, Shepherd celebrates and becomes part of blues history with Ten Days Out…Blues From The Backroads.