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Reggae, Electric Dance &... Country?
By Mamie Nash & Raeanne Rubenstein
Photography by Raeanne Rubenstein

The duo best known as Big & Rich has been huge in the country music scene since they got together in 2003, their success due to their skill at combining catchy lyrics with incredible musicality, and topping it all off with lots of personality. Now one-half of the band has started a movement in his own right; William Kenneth Alphin, commonly known as Big Kenny, has created a new sound.

Big Kenny with drumsBorn in Culpeper, VA, rock-and-roll farm boy Alphin is a singer, humanitarian, and producer, who along with John Rich, is a  Muzik Mafia Godfather. Having written top 10 hits for himself as well as Tim McGraw (Last Dollar, Fly Away), Gretchen Wilson (Here For The Party), and Jason Aldean (Hicktown and Amarillo Sky), Alphin is also a much-in-demand songsmith.

Electro Shine, a new venture for Alphin, is similar in nature to Muzik Mafia, in that it is a collaboration of several well known musicians, with some of them, like Alphin himself, being former members of the Muzik Mafia. The main difference is that John Rich is not involved (rumor has long had it that the pair did not get along) and the sound is brand new. Mixing the sounds of Country, Reggae, and Electric Dance Music, is a concept that was created by Alphin and the Last Dollar Studios in 2011. Alphin also has several very talented artists working with him on the project, including collaborator “The Maestro of Electro” Chebacca, fiddle virtuoso Megan Mullins, instrumental strings duo ChessBoxer, country music rapper Cowboy Troy plus Ky-Mani and KJ Marley, son and grandson of the famous (and beloved) Bob Marley and The Eurythmics’ Dave Stewart. Still want more? The Vegas-style show at Anthem also included singers, musicians, rappers, dancers, badass beats, aerialists, a painter (Rachel Kice, per chance?, lazer lights, psychedelic visuals, and a flying little man (Two-Foot Fred, anybody?)!

Electro Shine posterBefore the band’s debut concert early this June, Alphin declared, “Today is another exciting and blessed day. We've been working hard over the past year to put together a new sound we call ‘Electro Shine’. It’s ‘Muzika Without Prejudice’ that just makes us feel good and want to dance. I know I sure need more of that in my life. It Reminds me how precious every day is and how precious all of you fans have been to the careers of many.”

Electro Shine's first single, “Dance Upon The Solid Ground”, was released April 16, 2013, followed by the first Electro Shine album Electro Shine- The Hits Vol 1, released May 28. Songs on the album include the afore-mentioned Dance Upon The Solid Ground, Electro Country Shine, Hope Chant, and STAR!, with Glotown Records as the label. This album is also available for download from iTunes, Amazon, and Google Play.
Cowboy and girl
The group debuted their lively show in Nashville on June 7 at Anthem, a venue that holds about 1,000 music lovers and that night Electro Shine fanatics. The show featured everything from singers and dancers, which might be expected, to aerialists, laser lights, and even an on-stage painter! The doors opened at 9pm, with the audience being entertained by Mindub, a local DJ, until Electro Shine took the stage at 11:30 p.m.

For anyone with a passion for the laid back feel of reggae, the pop of dance, and the hometown style of country music, this sound is for you!! Tour dates for the show have yet to be released, so stay tuned!
Big Kenny and Girl
For more information, check out the following links:
Information on Electroshine:
Upcoming dates:
Join the team:
 / Issue 148 - June 2018
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