Monday, August 23, 2010

Musician Kenny Edwards R.I.P.

Kenny Edwards, a founding member of The Stone Poneys, passed on August 18, 2010 at age 64. The causes were cancer and a blood disorder.

Kenny Edwards was born on February 10, 1946 in Santa Monica, California. He grew up in Mar Vista and attended Venice High School. He took to guitar early, having all night guitar sessions with his father. In 1965 he and Bobby Kimmel formed The Stone Poneys. It was Mr. Kimmel, a native of Tuscon, who told Mr. Edwards of singer Linda Rondstadt, who became lead vocalist for the group. The Stone Poneys soon became big on the Los Angeles club circuit. They were signed to Capitol Records in 1966. In 1967 they had a hit with "Different Drum," a song written by Mike Nesmith before he became one of The Monkees and recorded by The Greenbriar Boys. Mike Nesmith performed a comedy version of the song in the Monkees episode "Too Many Girls," which aired about nine months before The Stone Poneys version.  The Stone Poneys' version went to #13 on the Billboard charts.

Unfortunately, having a hit record would create additional stress for the band, and The Stone Poneys went through various incarnations before breaking up in 1969. Kenny Edwards would then form the band Bryndle. Unfortunately Bryndle would see little success. Signed to A&M Records in 1970, the band released the single "Woke Up in the Morning, " but were never able to complete their debut album. The band eventually broke up.

Kenny Edwards would then go onto perform and write for several musicians. He worked frequently with Stone Poneys band mate Linda Rondstadt, appearing on eight of her albums. He also worked frequently with Bryndle band mate Karla Bonoff, appearing on four of her albums. Over the years he would work with Warren Zevon, Don Henley, Stevie Nicks, and Ringo Starr. Bryndle reunited in 1995 and toured the United States. They issued their debut album that year and released a second album in 2001. In 2000 Mr. Edwards launched a solo career. He released his self titled solo debut in 2002 and a follow up, Resurrection Road in 2009.

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