Kenny Brown (guitarist)

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
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 skilled in the North Mississippi Hill Country blues style.

Brown began apprenticing with Mississippi Joe Callicott when he was twelve,[1][2] and then with Johnny Woods and Mississippi Fred McDowell.[3][4] He has also cited George "Mojo" Buford, Junior Kimbrough, Johnny Winter, and Johnny Shines as influences.[4]

In 1971, Brown began learning with R. L. Burnside, who claimed Brown as his "adopted son."[5] and affectionately called him "white boy on guitar"[3] and "my white son." 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.[3][6] They toured together, first in their region, and then internationally as Burnside's reputation surged. In the 1990s Brown participated in the Burnside-Jon Spencer Blues Explosion tours and recordings,[4] and on Burnside's Wish I Was in Heaven Sitting Down.

Brown's own debut album was Goin' Back to Mississippi (1996), produced by Dale Hawkins. He has recorded one album for Fat Possum Records, Stingray (2003). He released Cheap, Fast, and Dirty (2006) with Danish guitarist Troels Jensen, at Olufsen Records. Meet Ya In The Bottom (2008) is a CD Baby release. His most recent double album, Can't Stay Long (2011), was released on Devil Down Records.

Brown's guitar work was featured in the 2006 film Black Snake Moan, where he provided backing for star Samuel L. Jackson's vocals.[7] He can be seen in the film's climax as a guitarist in a blues band, playing alongside Burnside's grandson Cedric. In their 2003 tour he has opened for Widespread Panic.[8]

His family came to Nesbit, Mississippi, when he was a child. Brown has lived 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.


  1. ^ Rick Reger (2003-06-27). "Kenny Brown is the real deal in blues land". Chicago Tribune. Retrieved 2015-05-02. 
  2. ^ Amy Evans. "Kenny Brown". Mississippi Arts Commission. 
  3. ^ a b c Kenny Brown page, at Fat Possum
  4. ^ a b c Thirsty Ear Magazine On-Line: Interviews
  5. ^ Blues on the Edge Kenny Brown
  6. ^ Interview with Kenny Brown and R. L. Burnside
  7. ^ Kenny Brown on IMDb
  8. ^ "Widespread Panic To Grip U.S.". Billboard. August 29, 2003. Retrieved May 5, 2015. 

External links[edit]