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Kenny White Kenny White
Album: Long list Of Priors
Label: Continental Song City
Tracks: 13
Website: http://www.kennywhite.net

With four decades in the business, raised in New Jersey, White's priors include 70s keyboard stints with Jonathan Edwards and Livingston Taylor, a lengthy career writing music or commercials, touring sideman to the likes of Mark Cohn and Judy Collins as well as a producer. This is his first album in six years, often reflecting on the changes wrought by time's passing ('Che Guevera', for example, not show the once iconic rebel's no longer fashionable), the T-shirts consigned to the discount bin) with well-crafted songs and sophisticated arrangements that draw equally on blues, rock, jazz and country.

White sings from behind the piano, abetted by a solid rhythm section of bassist Marty Ballou and drummer Shawn Pelton alongside guitarist Duke Levine, while celebrated guest vocalists include David Crosby (the dust-throat sung 'The Road Less Travelled' and the classic Laurel Canyon feel of 'Another Bell Unanswered') and Peter Wolf ('Glad-Handed' with its cynical perspective on growing old and running out of time to make a mark), along with Levon Helm's daughter Amy and jazz singer Catherine Russell on harmonies. The near seven-minute 'Cyberspace' is a wry commentary on the online world, 'The Other Shore' a reflective chamber ensemble ballad on passing years that has hints an almost Cat Stevens timbre while 'Lights Over Broadway', '4000 Reasons To Run' and 'West L.A' nod to Broadway musicals by way of Randy Newman. Lyrically, the most powerful number has to be 'Charleston', an organ-backed blues streaked duet with Ada Dyer about the shooting of nine African-Americans at the Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church in 2015, but this exudes class throughout.

Mike Davies