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A Dirty Dozen with KENNY DUBMAN – March 2022

| 16 March 2022 | Reply

According to a recent press release: “New Jersey based heavy rock artist KENNY DUBMAN has released the official music video for “Modern Day Jesus.” The second single off of his upcoming album, Conflicted, “Modern Day Jesus” reflects on the overwhelming pain and suffering that plague our society. In 2013, Kenny found himself at an all-time low, having gone through quite a few years of real trauma in his personal life. He had finally shed all his baggage, and was slowly regaining himself and learning to stand again… gradually finding his footing. It was during this period that he stumbled on to an album that would set the course for a whole new musical re-birth for him… The Whippoorwill by Blackberry Smoke. Just happened to click on it by chance one day while looking for an album to play while at work. A year later, he was still listening to the whole record every day. A few months after that, song ideas that he thought were worth capturing started to appear for the first time in years. And on July 4th, 2016, Kenny released Reckless Abandon, his very first 100% solo record. And THAT is where this awesome journey started for the second time and he’ll never look back again.” We get Kenny himself to discuss new music, influences, and more…

1. Tell us a little about your latest release.  What might a fan or listener not grab the first or second time they listen through?  Are there any hidden nuggets you put in the material or that only diehard fans might find?

Hmmmm OK….yes. I wouldn’t say the nuggets are necessarily hidden, but just not blatant. There are several tracks where a listener would have to really listen between the lines to the lyrics and really think to figure out the message. For example, the message in “Wool Over Your Eyes” is that maybe people should really think hard about getting the Covid vaccine…. that the agenda of the people pushing it so hard may not be the actual health of the folks they are selling it to. The others you’ll have to figure out, lol.

2. What got you into music, and can you tell us about the moment you realized you wanted to be a musician?

That’s an easy answer… hearing my mom’s Hendrix and Santana albums cranking in my house when I was a kid. The sound of a wailing electric guitar was seductive and magical… irresistible power. I didn’t necessarily know I wanted to be a musician, just that I needed to be able to make that sound.

3. Building on that, is there a specific song, album, performer, or live show that guided your musical taste?

No, not a specific show or performer… just anything with ripping lead guitar on it. Even the stuff I’d hear on WABC AM radio out of New York…. Elton John, Doobie Brothers, Isley Brothers, Alice Cooper… even a ballad like “Fooled Around And Fell In Love” by Elvin Bishop… a flat-out ballad, but a killer lead guitar tone! Though my first live show, Johnny Winter in 1975, definitely made me a huge JW fan for life.

4. If you could call in any one collaborator to do a song with, who would it be, and why?

Charlie Starr, from Blackberry Smoke, who actually plays lead guitar on “Old Dog” from my Conflicted album. He’s an insanely good songwriter, IMHO the best out there today. The discovery of BBS’ The Whippoorwill album started me writing songs again after 23 years away from the creative process. The result was my first solo album, 2016’s Reckless Abandon. True story!

5. What is your favorite activity when out of the studio and/or not on tour?  What do you like to do to unwind?

My number one pursuit outside of music is saltwater fishing; I’m obsessed and have been my whole life. I actually spent 11 years as a full-time charter captain here in New Jersey, up until 2008. I also love skiing, hiking, NHL hockey, and shooting at the range.

6. How would you describe your music to someone who’d never listened to you before? What is the one comparison a reviewer or fan has made that made you cringe or you disagreed with?

I’d describe it as guitar driven hard rock… with southern/Americana leanings. I don’t think anyone’s made a comparison that made me cringe… though someone said that “Modern Day Jesus” reminded them of Bon Jovi; I was like “uhhhhhhh….” hahahaha I’ll take it though if I could sell 1/1000th of the records they’ve sold based on it.

7. When your band is hanging out together, who cooks, who gets the drinks in, and who is first to crack out the acoustic guitars for a singalong?

I’m a solo artist… so the band exists for live shows and recording; they all do their own things otherwise with other projects. So the answer would be that I’m cooking, drinking, and busting out the acoustic for the four walls, the cats and occasionally my daughter if she happens to be unlucky enough to be home at the time haha!

8. When was the last time you were starstruck and who was it?

It was seeing Bill Murray unloading his bags from a car at Newark Airport… my favorite movie ever is Rushmore… so I said “Bill, I absolutely love your performance in Rush Hour… my ex-wife will never let me forget that moment.

9. What is the best part of being a musician? If you could no longer be a musician for whatever reason, what would be your dream job?

Music doesn’t pay the bills for me; I have to work a regular gig like so many of us. But if I were living a different life outside of NJ, it would be something outdoors like working on a commercial fishing boat. I’d still write and record music though… always!

10. What is one question you have always wanted an interviewer to ask – and what is the answer? Conversely, what question are you tired of answering?

If she were cute, it would be “hey, you wanna meet for a drink?” Hahahaha!!! There really isn’t a question I hope to be asked, I’m happy answering anything having to do with music, be it my own, or just in general.  As far as one I get tired of… probably “what got you started playing guitar”, as it’s always on the menu.

11. Looking back over your career, is there a single moment or situation you feel was a misstep or you would like to have a “do over,” even if it didn’t change your current situation?

Yes… it was when I walked away from the creative side of music, writing and recording, in the early 90’s. But I just lost the passion for trying to “make it” in music, and what’s the point of a passion-less pursuit when it involves art? I had become passionate about being at sea at that point, and that’s when the spark lit for my future involvement in charter fishing. But it did cost me dearly in terms of time.

12. If you could magically go back in time and be a part of the recording sessions for any one record in history, which would you choose – and what does that record mean to you?

Without question, Wish You Were Here by Pink Floyd, my all-time fave. The songs, the guitar playing and tone… just absolute magic. Possibly the best natural Strat tones ever captured on tape. That album represents my stoner high school years, some great times, and great memories! Still to this day, I’m in awe when I hear it.





Category: Interviews

About the Author ()

ToddStar - that's me... just a rocking accountant who had dreams of being a rock star. I get to do the next best thing to rocking the globe - I get to take pictures of the lucky ones that do. I love to shoot all genres of music and different types of performers. If it is related to music, I love to photograph it. I get to shoot and hang with not only some of my friends and idols, but some of the coolest people around today.

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