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Kenny Olson's homeward bound, with big plans
Kenny Olson has been living in Nashville for awhile now.
But Detroit is definitely in the near-future plans for the former guitarist in Kid Rock's Twisted Brown Trucker Band.
Among those plans is recording a new album, mostly in the metro area, as well as filming a documentary. And Olson's upcoming Motown Showdown at the Token Lounge in Westland -- which will feature a cadre of all-star friends such as Jimmie Bone, Huck Johns, Shannon Boone and more -- is a bit of a model for some of other creative endeavors he hopes to launch as well.
"There are some legendary people I'm going to be bringing into Detroit to record, and we're going to get them out to play shows like this, too," Olson, ??, says by phone from Nashville, where he leads regular jams at clubs in Music Row and also in the suburb of Cool Springs, Tenn. "In Detroit there are so many great players doing it. It'll be really fun to put people together and do some really special shows."
And, Olson adds, this week's gathering will be more than just an ad hoc jam session.
"It's not like an all-star jam," he explains. "It's going to be for the most part an all-original (songs) show. There'll be some old covers that we'll do our own way, with people sitting in. But it'll mostly be a lot of cool material we haven't had a chance to play live in a long time."
The Traverse City native and onetime Birmingham resident and father of three has kept himself busy since leaving Twisted Brown Trucker, including an association with the Experience Hendrix organization that's included touring with its Jimi Hendrix tribute show. But Olson, who's already started recording the new album, admits there's a little bit of homesickness for Detroit, especially on the musical tip.
"Detroit is who I am and where I come from," says Olson, 48. "There's something about the musicians and people I work with up there that takes things to a whole other level, and I miss that. Nashville has got a lot of great, talented people who have moved her from all over, but the majority of it still has that music factory mentality. It's lacking people telling their own story and having an original sound about them.
"There's something about the musicians and people I work with (in Detroit) that takes things to a whole other level, and I miss that. I was honored to be part of the whole comeback, me and (Kid Rock) and the rest of Twisted Brown Trucker, Eminem and the White Stripes and all that. A lot of great music is coming out of there now, and in the future, and I want to be part of it."
Kenny Olson & the Motown Showdown with Beggars and Eva Under Fire
Thursday, Sept. 19. Doors open at 7 p.m.
The Token Lounge, 28949 Joy Road, Westland.
Tickets are $10 in advance, $15 at the door.
Call 734-513-5030 or visit thetokenlounge.com.
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