Kenan Boyle was eleven when he stumbled upon his future.
It was 1987, ten years after Elvis died, when a picture of the legend caught the fifth-grader’s eye.
But musical tastes evolve, and boys eventually come of age with their own, internal compass. Plinking on the baby-grand piano at home and then picking up a guitar, soon music by the likes of Rodney Crowell, George Ducas, Dwight Yoakam, Waylon Jennings and Chris Isaak were guiding, if not pulling, Boyle to his personal magnetic north.
Since then, home for Boyle has been Nashville, where he knew he had to scuffle and take his lumps and triumphs if he were to fully mature as an artist. He left home with one more piece of advice -- no, consider it marching orders. It came from none other than one of his earliest inspirations, Rodney Crowell, whom Boyle met backstage after Crowell performed at the Lobero Theater.
“I told Rodney I was getting ready to move to Nashville and I asked if he had any advice for me,” Boyle recalls.
Crowell’s response: “Be honest to the music and give 'em hell.”
And that Boyle is doing, gaining a following among audiences and kingmakers alike.
Songwriter, artist and friend Davis Raines describes Boyle’s music as “apocalyptic." It’s a word that to Boyle means a “foreboding of imminent disaster” as well as being “wildly unrestrained.”
Raines just says this:
“Kenan Boyle, just a lad but already writing like he was 80 and busting with stage presence. A real heartbreaker and musicmaker, this guy, and he's got that look in his eye.”