Kenny Wesley, The Real Thing


For someone just now releasing his full-length debut, Carolina native and DC resident Kenny Wesley has already tasted a good deal of success: his songs have appeared on such TV shows as So You Think You Can Dance, along with The View.

Proficient in five languages (as well as five octaves!), Wesley is one self-proclaimed nerd who can pimp-slap your ears with a nasty funk.

The track, “Real Thing,” starts out pretty bass-intensive to say the least. About 30 seconds in, the vocals and bass line really start to jibe. 50 seconds in, there’s this glorious pop explosion. Dang, I wish I could sing the word “thang” like Mr. Wesley. About 2:40 in, things get really funk-da-fied.  

“Feels Good” has a vicious funk guitar riff, something like John Frusciante would bang out in the glory days of the Chili Peppers.

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“The Window” has a chiller vibe. But that in no way prevents Wesley’s voice from launching trans-galactic. Best prepare yourself for the track’s ending.

“Closer” is, with the exception of a few lyrics, an uplifting piece. And the vocals can get soulful, especially when Wesley calls out the lyrics: “And one day!”

“Woman” has some bass riffs that flat out snap.

“Tangled” starts out pretty subdued and pleasant, with its mention of the sun “shining bright on a perfect day.” The speaker then announces: “It’s time that I share the news.” And then, at 00:48, from beyond one’s imagination comes this vocal burst:

“I wanna tangle wit’ you!” I also humbly recommend the medley of sound at precisely: 01:52. You’ll hear what I mean.

“Sophisticated” has something really strange and groovy occur at 00:31. I know I’m being ridiculously specific here, but that’s just the deal with this album: sounds just switch out of nowhere, like a Barry Sanders highlight run.  

“So Sublime” has a fine hyper-energetic instrumental score. Wesley sings “sublime” in a way that transcends any meaning to be found in a dictionary.

About 2 minutes into “Won’t Let It Go” there’s this engaging, tragic-sounding interlude.

I’m not exactly sure about the meaning behind Wesley’s album title, but, with his keen pop-funk sensibility and platinum-caliber voice, he could certainly apply “The Real Thing” to his own talents.

Wesley’s first single, “The Window,” was licensed to the Rock Band Network in December 2012:

Ray Cavanaugh –

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