Kenny Brown (guitarist)

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For the English guitarist, see Ken Brown (musician).
Kenny Brown
Kenny Brown.jpg
Background information
Born (1953-07-05) July 5, 1953 (age 61)
Selma, Alabama, United states
Genres Blues
Instruments Guitar
Associated acts R. L. Burnside, Mississippi Fred McDowell

Kenny Brown (born July 5, 1953 on the Air Force base in Selma, Alabama) is an American blues slide guitarist from Nesbit, Mississippi, United States. Skilled in the North Mississippi Hill Country blues style popularized by his mentor R. L. Burnside, Brown began his career by apprenticing with Mississippi Joe Callicott, Johnny Woods, and Mississippi Fred McDowell.[1][2] He has also cited Muddy Waters,[3] George "Mojo" Buford,[2] Jessie Mae Hemphill,[3][4] Junior Kimbrough,[2] Johnny Winter,[2] and Johnny Shines[2] as influences. He has recorded one album for the Fat Possum Records label (Stingray), and his most recent double album, Can't Stay Long, was released in June 2011 on Devil Down Records.[5]

In 1971, Brown began performing with R. L. Burnside, who claimed Brown as his "adopted son."[6] and affectionately called him "white boy on guitar"[1] and "my white son."[7] Both Brown and Burnside have noted the singularity of Brown's being a white musician playing in the previously predominantly African American genre of North Mississippi Hill Country blues.[1][8]

Brown's guitar work was featured in the 2006 film Black Snake Moan, where he provided backing for star Samuel L. Jackson's vocals.[9] He can also be seen in the film's climax as a guitarist in a blues band, playing alongside Burnside's grandson Cedric.

He has also performed with rock bands Widespread Panic[1] and the Jon Spencer Blues Explosion.[2]

Brown currently lives in Potts Camp, Mississippi, in the North Mississippi Hill Country.


  • You See Me Laughin': The Last of the Hill Country Bluesmen (2003; released by Fat Possum Records in 2005). Produced and directed by Mandy Stein. Oxford, Mississippi: Plain Jane Productions, Inc; Fat Possum Records.


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