Kenny Wayne Shepherd Unveils “Best Of Times,” a Powerful Socio-Political Single From ‘Dirt On My Diamonds Vol. 1’

Kenny Wayne Shepherd Unveils “Best Of Times,” a Powerful Socio-Political Single From ‘Dirt On My Diamonds Vol. 1’

22nd September 2023 0 By John Deaux

Having just kicked off his Fall 2023 US Tour, which is hitting renowned venues throughout the Midwest and east coast, the five-time Grammy-nominated guitarist Kenny Wayne Shepherd is sharing “Best Of Times,” the powerful new single from upcoming album ‘Dirt On My Diamonds Vol. 1, out November 17th via Provogue Records/Mascot Label Group. Known for consistently redefining the essence of blues in the modern era, this new single showcases the essence of the album, amalgamating urban undertones with poignant socio-political observations, without losing sight of the soulful depth that is quintessential to Shepherd’s work. Fans will recognize the signature touch of producer Marshall Altman, whose work on ‘Dirt On My Diamonds Vol. 1’ marks his first collaboration with Shepherd.
 
Birthed from the legendary FAME Studios in Muscle Shoals, Alabama, ‘Dirt On My Diamonds, Vol. 1’ chronicles Shepherd’s journey of musical evolution, touching on stories of loss, redemption, and memorable melodies, all crafted by an elite team of songwriters. As Shepherd himself describes it, “Every record I make is a moment in time. And this is a really special moment.”
 
Since the release of his debut album, 1995’s ‘Ledbetter Heights,’ this multi-platinum bandleader still sounds like the future of the blues. Approach ‘Dirt On My Diamonds Volume 1’ expecting autopilot twelve-bars and you’ll instead be thrown a volley of curveballs, from the modern urban edge of “Sweet & Low” to the speaker-tearing production from Shepherd and Altman. “Working with Marshall, it’s like any productive relationship,” considers the guitarist. “We put our strengths together and push each other.”
 
Throughout, as the album title suggests, the grit and emotional honesty of these new songs is prized above guitar pyrotechnics (even for one of the modern scene’s most valuable players). Of the ‘Dirt On My Diamonds’ guiding philosophy, “Life has imperfections, and I actually prefer it that way. The imperfections are what make it interesting.”
 
With material this strong, no polish was needed. As on any KWS album, songs are the currency, and the seven originals from ‘Dirt On My Diamonds Volume 1’ demand to be heard, lifting listeners above their circumstances at a time when life often feels bleak and bone-raw. “I didn’t want this record to be dark or dreary,” considers Shepherd. “There’s not a lot of incredibly heart-wrenching or difficult subject matter…My goal is always to make music that makes people feel good, regardless of what it’s about.”
 
Shepherd has just announced a series of live performances for Winter 2024, which will follow the release ‘Dirt On My Diamonds, Vol. 1’ and his fall tour currently underway. These newly revealed dates kick off on February 6th at the Hard Rock Live in Orlando, FL and will then head west for a Texas run, beginning in Tyler at the UT Cowan Center on February 14th, before wrapping up at the famed ACL Moody Theater in Austin on February 17th. The tour will also include standout performances at the Ryman Auditorium in Nashville, TN on February 24th and the iconic Beacon Theatre in New York City on March 15th.
 
For more information and to purchase tickets, visit
https://www.kennywayneshepherd.net/
 

Fall 2023 Tour Dates
Thursday, September 21st – Uptown Theater – Kansas City, MO
Friday, September 22nd – McCain Auditorium – Manhattan, KS
Saturday, September 23rd – Orpheum Theatre – Wichita, KS
Tuesday, September 26th – Hoyt Sherman Place – Des Moines, IA
Thurs, Sept 28th – Capital Region MU Health Care Amphitheater – Jefferson City, MO
Friday, September 29th – The Lerner – Elkhart, IN
Sat, Sept 30th – Caesars Event Center at Caesars Southern Indiana – Elizabeth, IN
Sunday, October 1st – Victory Theatre – Evansville, IN
Tues, October 3rd – Paramount Theater – Charlottesville, VA
Thurs, October 5th – Paramount Hudson Valley Theater – Peekskill, NY
Friday, October 6th – Capital One Hall – Tysons, VA
Sunday, October 8th – Grand Opera House – Wilmington, DE
Tuesday, October 10th – Sandler Center for the Performing Arts – Virginia Beach, VA
Wednesday, October 11th – Paramount Arts Center – Ashland, KY
Thursday, October 12th – Soldiers and Sailors Memorial Auditorium – Chattanooga, TN
Friday, October 13th – Capital City Amphitheater – Tallahassee, FL
Saturday, October 14th – Florence Center – Florence, SC
Sunday, October 22nd – Clearwater Jazz Holiday 2023 – Clearwater, FL
 
Winter 2024 Tour Dates

Sunday, January 28th – Legendary Rhythm & Blues Cruise 2024 – Fort Lauderdale, FL^
Tuesday, February 6th – Hard Rock Live – Orlando, FL
Wednesday, February 7th – Barbara Mann Performing Hall – Ft. Myers, FL
Thursday, February 8th – Van Wezel PAC – Sarasota, FL
Friday, February 9th – Sunrise Theatre – Ft. Pierce, FL
Wednesday, February 14th – UT Cowan Center – Tyler, TX
Thursday, February 15th – River Spirit/Margaritaville – Tulsa, OK
Friday, February 16th – Majestic Theater – Dallas, TX
Saturday, February 17th – ACL Moody Theater – Austin, TX*
Thursday, February 22nd – Mark C Smith Concert Hall – Huntsville, AL
Saturday, February 24th – Ryman Auditorium – Nashville, TN
Thursday, March 7th – Mountain Arts Center – Prestonburg, KY
Friday, March 8th – Four Winds Casino – New Buffalo, MI
Saturday, March 9th – Hollywood Casino – Lawrenceburg, IN
Sunday, March 10th – Palace Theatre – Greensburg, PA
Tuesday, March 12th – Kirby Center – Wilkes Barre, PA
Wednesday, March 13th – Santander PAC – Reading, PA
Friday, March 15th – Beacon Theatre – New York, NY*
Saturday, March 16th – Hollywood Casino – Charles Town, WV
Sunday, March 17th – Chubb Theatre – Concord, NH
Tuesday, March 19th – State Theatre – Portland, ME
Wednesday, March 20th – Paramount Theatre – Rutland, VT
Thursday, March 21st – Warner Theatre – Erie, PA

* with Samantha Fish
^ previously announced

Dirt On My Diamonds Vol 1.
1. Dirt On My Diamonds
2. Sweet & Low
3. Best Of Times
4. You Can’t Love Me
5. Man On A Mission
6. Saturday Night’s Alright For Fighting
7. Bad Intentions
8. Ease On My Mind

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