The Death Whisperer Series

The Death Whisperer Series
The Death Whisperer Series available at

Sunday, November 4, 2012

Kenny Wayne Shepherd & Le Roc des Anges Les Vignes Metissees

Kenny Wayne Shepherd (born Kenny Wayne Brobst, June 12, 1977) is the fourth member of my 1970s-born blues guitar phenoms. He grew up in Shreveport Louisiana and is completely self-taught. Apparently he doesn’t read music. His first guitars were plastic, purchased by his grandmother with S&H Green Stamps. How many of you remember those? I can identify with his learning method. He picked up his licks a note at a time by listening to them on a cassette player and rewinding them over and over again, much the way I learned to play Jack Bruce’s improvisations note for note from the live Cream albums. His early influences were Muddy Waters, Albert Lee, and Stevie Ray Vaughn.

At the age of fifteen, Irving Azoff, the president of Giant Records signed him to a multi-album deal. He was one of those young guns who hit the blues scene hard at the age of seventeen and made old guys like me decide to hang up the guitar. Shepherd holds the record for the longest running album on the Billboard Blues Charts with “Trouble is.” He’s been nominated for five Grammy Awards and has received two Billboard Music Awards, Two Blues Music Awards, and two Orville H. Gibson Awards.

He’s grown into quite a musician and family man. In September of 2006, he married Mel Gibson’s eldest daughter, Hannah and they have three children, a daughter and two sons. Maybe the sons will grow up and form a power trio with Dad with daughter doing the vocals.

Born with a broken heart:

I have a truly unique wine for tonight, the third from Le Roc des Anges. Their Les Vignes Metissees is a blend of different grape varieties, principally Grenache Gris, Carignan Blanc, and Macabeu aged in oak barrels. It’s a delicate rosé color, almost like pale copper with a subtle floral bouquet accented by hints of pear. The taste is fresh with pear, lemon, and herbs that leads into a creamy, long finish. It’s not really a white or a rose, but quite unique.  A great wine and a great guitarist.