Warren Kennison Jr.
Variety: Bluegrass, Instrumental
Warren Kennison Jr. is well known around the country for his playing and singing. Born in Seattle, and raised in Denver CO and Detroit, after mastering folk style banjo in his early teens, he began learning Scruggs style at Earl Gormaine's Pick and Strum Shop in Royal Oak, Michigan. Soon he was asked to teach at Herb Davids Guitar Studio in Ann Arbor. Then in 1965 Earl Scruggs asked him to help produce the all-time best selling instruction book and record, Earl Scruggs and the 5-String Banjo. After fulfilling his government service in 1967-68 as a computer technician and VISTA volunteer in WV, he moved west and has become known as one of Colorado's favorite banjo players. When bluegrass greats including Bill Monroe, Hylo Brown, Josh Graves and Kenny Baker asked who could back them during local appearances, one name came to mind. His ability to naturally fill in on banjo and guitar/vocals led to job offers to join both Monroes Bluegrass Boys and Browns Timber Liners. He has helped launch the careers of a number of aspiring bands, including Colorado's own, Hot Rize. And just recently his greatest thrill was being invited to perform with Earl Scruggs and Friends at the Oklahoma International Bluegrass Festival.
Warren is a banjo, mandolin, finger-style guitar player, fiddler, and tenor vocalist, and teaches music. He currently plays with several bands, including Quickdraw Homegrown Music.
Warren and his wife Jelene promoted concerts. They played together under the name True Blue starting in 1981. Highlights of their careers include: opening for Ralph Stanley and the Clinch Mountain Boys, opening for Jim & Jesse McReynolds & the Virginia Boys, opening for Alan Munde & Joe Carr, an appearance in Nashville at the Gibson Bluegrass Showcase, and concert/recording in Prague with Czech bluegrass band, Country Cocktail.
Warren can be found performing at some Colorado Bluegrass Music Society Bluegrass Education Outreach Programs, along with Suzie and Gary Solomon of GospelGrass and Greg Blake. These four musicians perform on "Old Time Gospel Radio," a live radio show on KLVZ, Saturdays, from 2-3 pm.