The Kenny George Band, located in Aiken, SC, is planning parties throughout the state for an album release in April. Check out what Kenny George has to say about the band, their plans, and where to find them as they deliver a smashing new set of tracks that will make you want them to visit your town. Get to know the Kenny George Band, and make sure to contact their team to schedule a date at a venue near you.
SCMG: We’ve heard that you’re going through a lot of positive changes these days. You’ve got a new publicist, booking agency, and a new album coming out in April! Want to tell us about what’s been happening?
KG: We started planning the record about two years ago, and started recording it this spring. This is our first studio effort and professional release. It’s also the first album I’ve written where I considered every song as a collaboration, and then wrote each song in mind with the next. We are currently trying to get proper radio support for our album and upcoming release parties. My manager knows Joe Swank, out of Chicago, who handles Blood Shot Records. He’s worked with a lot of country bands and has offered us advice over the years. He works a lot with radio and understands our genre. We are also now working with Team Clermont for publicity. They’re reaching out to get reviews of our album, get us in publications, as well as marketing our work to the public. We finally have a full team with a new booking agent too and are really excited to have full support behind the record.
SCMG: This all sounds very exciting for you! Are you having a release party?
KG: Yeah, we’re doing 4 release shows throughout the state. Our main event will be on April 28 in Aiken at The Alley, an area with a lot of restaurants and a nice outdoor setting. The venues are on board and are holding the dates. We’ll have a pre-party just for friends and family. Charleston, Greenville and Columbia will also have their own release parties.
SCMG: Are you currently touring? Do you have any new venues in the works?
KG: Yes, but we’re slowing down for a few weeks for the release. We were in Pawley’s Island and Summerville recently. Also, we’ve gone to Columbia, Hartsville, Aiken, Greenville and Augusta, GA. We are playing soon with Prettier than Matt and Sweet Sweet in Augusta. Last year, we did a lot of branching out to have new venues interested in our new record – Asheville, Chattanooga, all the way to NJ and PA, WV, VA, NC. We hit the road really hard and did about 180 shows last year. That’s just full band shows. I (Kenny George) also do acoustic shows on top of that. It’s interesting to go to a new market. Sometimes you might just have 8 people show up, but you play the same no matter what. We always put on a good show.
SCMG: How has your sound developed over the years?
KG: It’s moved more from a folk sound to including more rock and blues influences. It’s gotten tighter with more movement and more in your face.
SCMG: Are all of your band members from Aiken? How did you meet? How often do you guys get together to practice?
KG: We practice with rehearsals, especially with the record coming out. We did a batch of rehearsals before we went in to record, but we take time every few months to practice. We get together at least every few weeks to make sure we learn new material.
The band is all from the Aiken Country area. My drummer, Bucky Brown, was a friend of my dad’s, and I think my dad asked him if we could sit in with him. He was one of the first drummers I played with. My steel player, Center Ely, also knew him. Now, we’ve been playing together for a long time. Our 10 year anniversary is coming soon. We have had lots of good bass players, but we got Brooks Andrews 7 years ago. He was a great fit for us and matched our sound. Scott Rankin, our guitarist, grew up in Aiken and went to our church. He’s a little older than me, but we always went to his gigs in college. We later got together on a whim and played without rehearsing or anything and did great. He (Scott) was brought into the fold and has added great harmonies and energy, as well as business savvy, to the table.
SCMG: How is the music scene in Aiken compared to other areas of the state?
KG: There isn’t really one. We have a lot of great musicians, but not much of a scene. I started an open mic a few years ago, but not a lot of places to play. Just a few venues downtown. We do have a lot of great musicians though. You’d be surprised over the amount of musicians that can play and write. There just isn’t a lot of original music. Our release party will hopefully create more interest in independent music locally. Maybe some folks from around the area will drop by and check out our new sound!