Kenny Wayne Shepherd to headline Blues From The Top
Winter Park’s annual Blues from the Top festival kicks off this weekend with a dozen performers taking to the stage in Hideaway Park, including Saturday evening headlining act the Kenny Wayne Shepherd Band.
The Kenny Wayne Shepherd Band is an internationally renowned blues and rock group led by the eponymous guitarist, sometimes singer and songwriter Kenny Wayne Shepherd. For over two decades, Shepherd and the Kenny Wayne Shepherd Band have been touring and performing, playing their particular style of the blues while racking up three platinum albums and one gold along the way. Shepherd is often known for his popular track from the late 90s “Blue on Black”.
Shepherd said he is looking forward to performing at the Blues from the Top Festival during the weekend and noted he has previously performed in the Winter Park area seven times in his career.
“There’s always a good turnout,” Shepherd said. “We have a great fan base in Colorado. Any time we have a show booked anywhere in the state we are looking at a great time.”
Shepherd said performing at high altitudes, like Winter Park, brings its own unique set of requirements. According to Shepherd, dressing rooms and the stages themselves often have oxygen tanks ready and waiting for performers.
He added he has not struggled with performing at high elevations and noted the Kenny Wayne Shepherd Band singer would be the person most challenged by the thinner air.
Shepherd’s many years of touring and performing at venues throughout the world have helped him develop his own style of stage management.
“You just learn over the years, you cultivate your craft,” Shepherd said. “I have learned a lot about what I believe it takes to put on a good show and keep momentum going over a two hour concert.”
Shepherd said he believes great shows are all about “moments on stage.”
“Whether that moment is taking a breath and allowing a song to breathe, letting other instruments come to the forefront or letting a solo come out, it is something you learn as you perform, and hopefully you get better.”
While performing at Blues from the Top, Shepherd and the Band will be offering up some tracks from their most recent album, Lay it on down, which came out last year in August.
The music men are also working toward completion of a new album and have been busy in the recording studio since March. That album’s expected release date is sometime early next year.
When Shepherd writes music he says he tries to focus on life in general.
“That is something we can all relate to,” he said. “It is something we are all experiencing on a daily basis. If you just look around there is no shortage of inspiration, whether that is a woman you love, an experience like having a child, or something that went wrong.
“Life’s experiences are something everyone can identify with.”
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