There are some who go to extraordinary lengths to show that they are original and different – kinda like “forcing” rhubarb to make it extra succulent.
A few are just born that way. It’s in their genes and as natural as breathing.
When one reviewer described Mikey Kenney as “unselfconsciously weird” it was clear they placed him in the latter category. Unconventional is good but there’s nothing really “weird” at all, and too often the “outsider” artist is viewed that way, when all we have in reality is someone incredibly talented carving out a niche all of his own.
Elsewhere, he’s been tagged “a thoughtful soul” and described as making music that is “from the heart for the heart”
A traditional fiddler held in high regard by his peers, Mikey has a reputation for making quality music and producing wondrous flourishes of superb creativity. A multi-talented and in-demand collaborator, he enjoys the company of others who are well established on the circuit, turning out for instance with The Band of Burns.
When he isn’t playing fiddle, you might find him with banjo, mandolin or concertina in his hands. He has two feet expertly planted in the folky side of percussion too.
But it has been his song-writing and vocal style that has possibly made the biggest impression in recent times, so incredibly distinctive and appealing. Once heard, never forgotten.
Liverpool-based, his playing is redolent in both English and Irish traditions. He also tours with renowned Italian singer-songwriter, Vinicio Capossela, whom he admires.
Listen to his superb album, The Reverie Road, and you’ll hear a rich diversity of influences. You may be transported to a different time or place.
Reviewing the CD for Folk Radio UK, David Kidman praised his musical inventiveness and added: “Anyone new to Mikey’s work, having made the initial effort to tune into his individual wavelength, will find much to savour.”
Awarding a 5-star rating, fRoots magazine said: “Mikey Kenney is an artist for whom music is a calling…an authentic free spirit.”