Get this crazy baby off my head!


Kenny Traylor

Kenny Traylor - Somethin's Gotta Change - 1999 - TopCat Records

Not living in Dallas or Fort Worth, I find myself envious of those who have the opportunity to see the numerous great blues artists that make the DFW area home. For visitors to DFW, however, the number of blues acts playing in town on any particular night can present a bit of a problem. How do you decide which acts to see when you are in town. When I am visiting, I always try to catch Anson & The Rockets, Holland K. Smith and Hash Brown among others. People have told me for years that I needed to see Kenny Traylor perform, but each time the opportunity presented itself something came up and I did not make it to the show. Now Kenny has a new CD out on TopCat and judging from the performance on this CD, I will make it a point to catch his show the next time I am in town. Throughout this CD, which was produced by Anson Funderburgh, Traylor provides soulful vocals and mostly restrained and tasteful guitar while writing or co-writing 10 of the 12 songs on the album. The songs on this recording range from the "Crosscut Saw"-like mambo feel of "Sweet Little Mama" to the country blues vibe of "Leavin' in the Morning" to the Southern Soul stylings of "Don't Give Up On Me." Traylor's exceptional voice has the right mix of grit and smoothness and he avoids the overwrought histrionics displayed by many other singers. This voice is put to good use on the BB King classic "Sneakin' Around." Traylor peppers the rest of the recording with several midtempo shuffles that showcase his tasty guitar work and even throws in a cover tune, "Loud Mouth Lucy" by the great Roy Gaines. This newest release from Kenny Traylor proves once again that the DFW area is one of the hotbeds of blues talent in the United States. A triple threat singer, songwriter and guitarist, Traylor's star should be on the rise thanks to this fine recording. © Barry T. Gober, © Southwest Blues, December 1999

Produced by the great Dallas based guitarist, Anson Funderburgh, "Somethin's Gotta Change" is a great example of the famous smooth Texas blues guitar style. There's some great soul blues on this album, also. Buy Kenny Traylor's 2003 "Tribute" album. If anybody has any info on Kenny Traylor's "Born With the Blues" album, A.O.O.F.C would be interested in hearing from you. For music in a similar style, it is worthwhile listening to Anson Funderburgh's "Which Way Is Texas?" album


1. Sweet Little Momma
2. Third Time Wrong
3. Leavin' In The Mornin'
4. Short Shot
5. Sneakin' Around - B.B King, Jules Taub
6. Hear Me Callin'
7. Something's Gotta Change
8. Don't Give Up On Me
9. Loud Mouth Lucy - Roy Gaines
10. Sometimes I Think Too Much
11. Inside Out
12. Not Foolin' Around

All songs composed by Kenny Traylor, except where noted


Kenny Traylor - Guitar, Vocals
Guthrie Kennard - Bass
Shawn Ferris - Hammond Organ
Jimmy Pendleton - Drums


Performing on the Main Stage at 4:45 PM. Kenny Traylor is from Ft. Worth, Texas and for thirty five years he has shared his musical talent and love for the “Blues” throughout the United States and Europe. Inducted in 2002, Kenny Traylor was awarded as one of the elite “Texas Tornado” guitarists by Buddy Magazine. He has toured with such artists as Ben E. King, Sam and Dave, Johnny Taylor, and many other top soul singers. Kenny is currently one of the premier artists in the Dallas-Ft. Worth area and consistently appears at Blues festivals across the Southwest. He has performed lead vocals for such projects as the Coors Light ad campaign and has had a song featured off of his first CD in a movie. Currently he has three CD’s released. Kenny’s first CD, “Born with the Blues”, which was produced with long time friend, Jerry Hudson, features songs from artists such as Muddy Waters and Freddie King. This exceptional work contains fourteen songs, ten of which are his original songs. His second CD, “Something’s Gotta Change”, was produced by seven time Handy Award winner, Anson Funderburgh. It is comprised of twelve songs, ten of which are, once again, original compositions. Kenny’s currently released CD, “Tribute”, honors those artists whom he admired and greatly influenced his career as a blues artist. Six of the fifteen tracks on “Tribute” are original compositions. Kenny Traylor has opened shows for Anson Funderburgh and the Rockets, Buddy Guy, Doyle Bramhall and The Fabulous Thunderbirds. He has headlined several musical events including the first annual “Bricktown Blues Festival” and has also performed with Buddy Miles, Lucky Peterson and Sam Myers, to name a few. Do your ‘blues junkie’ self a favor and catch this band whenever you can! Not only will you will be glad you did, you’re guaranteed to want more! © 2008 Hip Pocket Theatre (All rights reserved worldwide)


The fact that Kenny Traylor is a fifth generation Texan comes as no surprise after you've heard the loping shuffles and smooth vocals from one of Fort Worth's premiere unsigned blues acts. The surprising thing is that he didn't get it all from here. "I was born in Teague but my dad was in the Air Force so we traveled all around" remembered Traylor. "He was transferred to Carswell in Fort Worth and that's where I was basically brought up, here and east Texas. My dad got transferred to Germany about 1967 and I ended up staying there for 12 years and got my real start in music while in Europe." In Europe that meant playing in R&B cover bands, rock bands, and backing bands that supported touring U.S. R&B artists like Sam and Dave and Ben E. King. Repetitive work and a stifling rock record contract led Kenny to return home to Fort Worth in August of 1979. "There wasn't much of a blues scene here at that time" Kenny said. "You couldn't get arrested playing blues in 1979. I started playing bass with a country/rock band around town, just trying to make a living. I got sick of that about 1982 and got a day gig and started racing motorcycles. I even sold all my equipment." It was eight years before the music bug bit again, but when it did, it bit hard. "I would find myself on the freeway in the morning on my way to work and it was like someone slapped me," remembered Traylor. "What the hell am I doing here? It's 7 am, I'm on a jam packed freeway, sitting in traffic. This is not how I want to live. I told my wife, 'I just have to play again.' About September 1990, I went up to a jam at J&J Blues Bar and the first person I met was James Hinkle. We sat down and talked and since then I've been back in music full time. About six months later I met guitarist Danny Hubbard and drummer Matt Williams at a jam at Fatso's and we've been together ever since." That musical marriage first led to a band called Soul Kitchen that was popular around Fort Worth and the Mid Cities area for several years. The band's mix of covers and original tunes garnered interest at KNON but Kenny wasn't entirely happy with the direction the band was taking. "You're just not going to get anywhere career-wise covering other people's material", opined Traylor. "I started trying to put my song ideas to music but I didn't want it to be like I was just rehashing old songs with new lyrics. I wanted to take it a little farther than that, but I wanted to stay in the traditional blues foundation. Danny and I started working on songs together. He doesn't have an extensive blues background, but he's got a great feel for blues and for arranging tunes that are simple, but have a different twist to them." Together, Kenny and Danny, worked up a 14 track album with 11 original songs. With the help of Jerry Hudson at Pantego Sound, it was pressed in 1995 as a self released CD. Titled "Born With the Blues", it remains one of the strongest self-released DFW blues albums of the 90's. The original material is particularly strong and the interplay of Hubbard's tough blues/rock guitar with Traylor's smooth B.B. King style guitar makes for a surprisingly tasty combination. Two years later finds the band nearly finished with their second CD effort and DFW blues fans chomping at the bit. Veteran blues guitarist Anson Funderburgh joined them in the studio as producer and advisor. The album was cut live in the studio with only two overdubs on the entire project. This time, it's all original material."I think everyone that liked the last one will like the next one even better," said Kenny. "The true blues guys and people that get into the traditional stuff will really like this second album." Chances are this unsigned Fort Worth blues band will be signed in 1997. The addition of bassist Roy Robbins has completed the package. While they shop the new project around, get out to your favorite blues watering hole and check out their fine original songs. © Don O. Spotlight on Performers, The Kenny Traylor band © Buddy Magazine [ This article on Kenny Traylor appeared in Buddy Magazine in the Summer of 1997. Since this writing he has joined forces with guitarist Bobby Gilmore and is currently adding Gilmore to tracks of the album discussed in this article. ]