Kenny Butterill

Americana Artist, Songwriter & Producer

Global Radio/Press Reactions


Giltterhouse, Germany – “…. 60 minutes of class material! The title ‘Just A Songwriter‘ should be understood only as total Understatement – this is laid back Americana at its very best!! Brilliant.”

Lee Williams, Music Choice, CMR/Pulse 202 (throughout Europe) – “Another great album from one of today’s most gifted songwriters. Americana will go from strength to strength with the likes of Kenny Butterill.”

Brian Ahern, Country Music & More, United Kingdom – “… bluesy feel is ideal for his intelligent story songs and sublime melodies that are presented with a ‘lived-in’ integrity that states ‘I have been there on the inside now I am looking to tell the clear story my way’. Kenny is one of those all too rare breeds of believable storytellers who makes you think, rather than pushing it in your face. I am a fan! (Included is) ‘The Townes You Left Behind, a splendid tribute to Townes Van Zandt. One of my songwriting heroes. Tell you what! Kenny Butterill is on my list especially after this.”  Click here for the full review.

Massimo Ferro, Radio Voce Spazio, Italy “Just A Songwriter – “is really a gem, and it is destined to become one of the best efforts released by a contemporary songwriter from North America in recent times. Kenny is a very impressive artist, an artist that proudly perpetuates the glorious school of the Canadian songwriting, he has in fact a beautiful and warm voice that suits perfectly his charming bluesy style; but in his music there are also some slight echoes of country, jazz and even reggae giving his work a fresh and highly individual mark! The arrangements then are always interesting and different, even thank to the always superb harp playing of that great man, Mr. Norton Buffalo; and please let me say it’s been a great pleasure to find the legendary Willie P. Bennett among the players contributing to this stunning album of Kenny!!!”

Manfred Vogel,, Germany – “….You have to be a certain type of character to want to devote yourself to the art of songwriting and to achieve an impact. (With this CD) Butterill succeeds in building an atmosphere of tension, that produces a feeling of well-being. Before we even have chance to look round, Butterill has “monopolized” his listeners. Sometimes he is more acoustically oriented, sometimes drifting more into jazz, but there is an unobtrusive acoustic scenario flowing over the listener, and new images are constantly appearing in our mind’s eye. It’s a far cry from the perfectly mass-produced uniformity of sound that has dominated the “big” charts for quite a long time now. What was a hobby in his youth has now long become a passion – namely to record his impressions and feelings in his songs. Over the years he has been able to refine his passion to such an extent that other singers have now become interested in his songs. Of course, he has nothing against seeing others being successful with his songs, but I like his own interpretations just as much. Butterill sings with a naturalness that takes you aback. Free from all constraints and commercial guidelines. He has already had some successes in Europe. Perhaps because it’s not so easy to categorize him and his music – and one shouldn’t really try.”

Benny Metten, Ctrl.Alt.Country, Belgium – “Kenny Butterill is, as he sings in the first track of his second cd, in the first place a songwriter. But he is blessed with a warm, what deep voice, a voice that can’t go unused of course. And he uses it with nice results. After the title track we are melted away with the lovely ballad about an old love ‘My Austin Angel’, and with ‘The E-mail Song’, in which by a brief email old feelings of passion flame up again. Also nicely laid back is ‘Felton’s Place’ with the beautiful harmonies of Larry Hosford. And wait till you hear ‘The Townes You Left Behind’ – Butterills tribute to late Townes Van Zandt. “Now it’s us that have the blues”, sings the man and he does that in such a convincing manner, you cannot disagree with him. A must for every music lover of folk, americana and quiet blues – this is a successful combination of the three.”

Remo Ricaldone, AmericanWest, Italy – “…an album whose sound merges various influences that range from country music to folk, from rock to blues. The song that gives the album its title and the one that opens it is a {sapido} country veined with blues, very laid back, halfway between Waylon Jennings and J.J. Cale (from whom I recognize a certain vocal nature and the syncopated style of the guitar). The songs of Kenny Butterill have a timeless fascination with the music of the South even if they were conceived by a Canadian and recorded for the most part in California. The intense and nostalgic flavours of Texas music are alive and present in ‘My Austin Angel’, with the presence of Billy Don Burns. ‘Canadian Road Trip’ in which stand out the electric guitar, the harmonica, Ray Bonneville’s percussion and Willie P. Bennett, Canadian singer/songwriter who, in the seventies, was amid the ranks of such big names as Bruce Cockburn, Murray McLachlan and Dave Essig. Guest of honor on a good many of the songs is Norton Buffalo, harmonica virtuoso who was part of the band of Commander Cody in the seventies and in more recent times, a partner of the great bluesman Roy Rogers. ‘Gotta Find A Woman’ is a gospel song of great merit which would make Ry Cooder of a few years ago happy, whereas ‘The Email Song’ is ennobled by by the great guitar work of Steve Palazzo. ‘Felton’s Place’ is more Californian and striking for the extreme finesse of the arrangement and for the harmonica of Norton Buffalo. ‘Are You Surprised?’, ‘Making Love in L.A.’ and ‘Vegetarian Dead Cow Blues’ represent the more blues side of Kenny Butterill, whereas ‘Joanne’, ‘Is There More?’ and ‘The Townes You Left Behind’ move with great delicacy between country and folk, in a style that is typical of the seventies, with an eye towards the ‘old’ outlaws Billy Joe Shaver and Waylon Jennings. “Just A Songwriter is a noteworthy step forward as regards a purely good opening and puts Kenny Butterill on a plane of absolute quality on the present independent scene.”

Ray Swennen, Radio ATL, Belgium – “Singer/songwriter/producer Kenny Butterill’s second progressive music scene album “Just A Songwriter” includes beautifuly rootsy, folksy, bluesy, Americana, alt-country songs. Kenny has a warm beautiful voice and knows how to write a good song. We know this guy from his debuut release “No One You Know” a great timeless album. His new offering “Just A Songwriter” proofs his profesionality in music world. Hopefully now Kenny Butterill will be known as on of the so many good songwriters and artists. Everybody who likes good songwork will enjoy this one very much. When you listen to songs as ‘My Austin Angel’, ‘Just A Songwriter’, ‘The Email Song’, ‘Joanne’ (my favorite song), ‘Is There More?’, ‘The Townes You Left Behind’ and more……………….. Kenny is one of the guys I will give five stars because he’s damned good.”

Martin van der Laan, Country Gold/Radio Compagnie, Holland – “Before 2000 Kenny Butterill was like the title of his debut album No One You Know” fairly unknown to the crowd. Songs like ‘How Far Can We Go?’ (about his moving to America) and ‘Balsam Lake’ (about a very inspirational environment north of Toronto) changed that completely. The album got worldwide good critics and much airplay. More and more people have discovered Kenny’s music and appreciate it very much. They all were curious for he next album. They had to wait for three years. “Just A Songwriter“, the second album is easy listening, straight from and to the heart, withfull colour imagery, telling stories of today, that give you goose bumps.The songs, the music, the producing: a great job!! A piece of art carrying the artist’s signature;signed Kenny Butterill. There should also be a big hand for all the musicians. Great play you guys. Each song is a beauty and worth listening to.To me “Just A Songwriter” is late night music, breathtaking from the first until the last chord, Pure Relaxation in capital letters!!”

Sue McCarthy, Southern Country Magazine, UK – “I think the title Just A Songwriter sums up this album, not a showbiz person,Just A Songwriter wanting to be heard. Well, I’ve heard him, and I like what I hear. This is music on the borderlines of country, with story songs, very well performed by Kenny Butterill, who has a very nice voice, which is restful to listen to, and the most beautiful intertwingling of guitars as well as piano, bass and drums, with saxophone, not on every track, but drifting lazily through in ‘Making Love in LA’. My favourite track is ‘My Austin Angel’ with its lovely Tex Mex feel, and beautiful guitar work. The sleeve contains information and the song words, all written by Kenny Butterill. I very much enjoyed this album.”

Claude Vue,, France – “… his songs reflect his personality – that is of a calm, feet on the ground, artist of song. The title of his second CD Just A Songwriter” is indicative of his personality. It is difficult to affix a “label” to him. The voice and the feeling oft the CD bring to mind composers such as Gordon Lightfoot, JJ Cale and sometimes of Mark Knopfler or Neil Young – some rather high powered references!! The CD includes musical guest harmonica player Norton Buffalo who brings a bluesy side to the CD – a very pleasant touch. This CD above all proves that things are starting to move on the Nashville side and that maybe we will soon see an end to the glitzy, bubblegum side to return to a more down to earth country.”

Gerry Ford, CMD Magazine, Scotland – “…well crafted songs, all written by Kenny are one of the main features of the new CD. The other most distinctive feature is undoubtedly his voice, quality with a softness and sureness at times it’s almost a loud whisper and with the subtle backing of acoustic instruments his voice is never overshadowed. Norton Buffalo on harmonica is outstanding on his tracks, a perfect foil to Kenny’s voice. The acoustic guitars, harmonica, bass, occasional piano, mandolin, and electric guitars all have a laid back feel giving the overall album a late night, candlelight martini-time feel, and bound to be another winner for Kenny. The bluesy, folksy, rootsy sound gives this fine collection of Americana music the right to stand alongside the Guy Clarks/JJ Cales and Tony Joe Whites and others”

Dann Hansen, Roskilde Dampradio, Denmark – “…a great CD by Kenny Butterill, he is really something special. His relaxed way of singing puts the listener in the right mood and the recording quality is just top notch. I like Kenny’s “close up” vocals, he is never strangled by the music or drowned out by the equipment. I can only say this rhythmical music, whatever style it’s in, is just superb. Such a CD makes it worthwhile to be a DJ, and know each track is perfect. Now I don’t say all the tracks are in a style as I like, but it’s not for me to judge the tracks, but my listeners. My hat is off for a perfect recording that all can be proud of.”

Lars G Lindberg, MCWC Radio, Sweden – “…and I consider it to be a masterpiece. The variety of music is great and there is something for each and all on this album. Lots of improvements over the first album, but the same red “Kenny string” floats all through the CD. I recon there will be many European DJs who will give this new CD 5 stars – I sure do.”

John Brookfield, PathFinder Magazine, United Kingdom – “… must be on to a winner here. If not, there is no justice. From start to finish this is an outstanding album, just sit down and listen to the superb backing, this alone makes the CD worth having … that haunting sound of the harmonica played by Norton Buffalo is something to behold, helped along with some superb guitar picking. Then listen to the smooth rich vocals from Kenny laying down the lyrics to the music, you can hear and understand every word, no muffled words here, pure clear lyrics. This album would have no trouble living on any of the country, blues or folk scenes, and relished by the fans of any of them, that’s for sure. A must for any fan of good music, and may it not be too long before we get more of the same”.

Stuart Cameron, Radio Caroline (throughout Europe) – “Kenny Butterill has certainly kicked a few doors down on behalf of the Americana acts. His #1 hit has ensured that acts like Chip Taylor and Billy Don Burns get plenty of exposure on Country radio.”

George Peden Country Review, Australia – “Simply put, this album is a tempered and insightful delight. This is pure Americana with splashes of blues, jazzy riffs, and alt-country fusions for equal measure. There is no Nashville bravado here. No big hats and oversized belt buckles, no glamour shots holding the promise of a CMT special from a cowboy clothes horse. No. What is on offer is a tuneful palette of blended artistry.”

Christian Lamitschka, Western Store, Germany – “60 minutes of Country Music from Kenny Butterill is like attending a concert by Bach for classical music lovers. You just have to love his music. The 2003 (Just A Songwriter) album is both timeless and incomparable. One can say: This CD Offers a Great Bunch of Bluesy, Country Roots Music. In total there are 14 songs on the new CD and you add in the 2 Bonus tracks you actually have 16 tracks. The CD covers virtually all possible forms of Country-Music from Americana-Alt-Country, Electric Country Rock Folk Blues across to Canadian Roots Blues Shuffle Music, Contemporary Country and on to Alt-Country Jazz and Reggae. OK, Bluegrass songs are not covered. Those who know Kenny Butterill, will enjoy this CD knowing all songs on the CD are good.”

Jan Janssen, Real Roots Cafe, The Netherlands – ” … the new “Just A Songwriter” album from Kenny Butterill is a passionate listening album, not heavy or pushy but one that tells it’s own story. I said about his debut CD, No One You Know, that it was folky blues music. With his new album I want to add: Americana! It all just fits on Just A Songwriter“. Butterill is a master in making laidback music …”

Gianluca Sitta, Lone Star Time, Italy – “Just A Songwriter, one whose songs touch your heart. This CD is difficult to catagorize precisely – it could be defined as folk music with influences blues and country, but that would be too restrictive since the music of Kenny Butterill touches all fields of what is known as Americana. Kenny Butterill is a poet, who like Guy Clark or Chuck Pyle, is able to effectively communicate true emotions across the musical spectrum with songs about the small delights and the large pains of real life that we can all relate to. Just A Songwriter, but with a capital ‘S’.”

Kenneth Lundstrom, Sodra Dalarnes Tidning Hedemora, Sweden – “… Kenny Butterill is the guy with a low profile, and a warm and relaxed voice whose music makes the cold winter easier. His “Just A Songwriter” title track is about how he believes he doesn’t belong in showbiz … but artists like Butterill are exactly what Nashville needs as a counterbalance against all the mediocre pop country …”

Alain Mangenot, – “Kenny Butterill is a key part of the new talents of what is called Americana Music and Alternative Country Music. The world of Kenny, this Canadian born songwriter now living to the USA, is a quiet, calm world. A world that blends the blues, deep themes, folk, rock, and also the Jazz Country. To listen, try flying along in a beautiful car, on a long straight highway … ”

Paul Jonker, Border Affairs Magazine, Holland – “… Kenny Butterill makes very approachable, cool music … that moves in many directions like jazz, blues, country, rock and even reggae. At the end of the album there is further a beautiful song about Townes Van Zandt entitled ‘The Townes You Left Behind’.”

Mauro Eufrosini, JAM Magazine, Italy – “… Contrary to all the rules of the music business, a business that does not consider those nearing the middle years, but well grounded with common sense, Butterill is not an inexperienced novice. A songwriter/composer molded in the groove of the country/blues genre, with guitar production and soft, soulful singing like his eminent predecessors J.J. Cale and Mark Knopfler (whose influences affect the mood of the album with pleasant persistence), Butterill is a capable craftsman of songs that succeed by combining alternative and contemporary country at the same time. Comprehensive, solid and balanced, “Just A Songwriter” hides inside no small quality that will please a large cross section of country fans.”

Reviews from Kenny’s first CD “No One You Know

Gerd Stassen, Radio EVW, Insurgent Country, Germany – “Kenny Butterill’s “No One You Know” CD offers a great bunch of bluesy roots music, ranging stylistically from Tony Joe White, J.J. Cale to Mark Knopfler. The first time I listened to these laid-back songs, I felt like hanging loose or cruising my car through the rural countryside of the Emsland. The sound of the CD can be described as “great driving music for the open road”…. it just makes me feel good. Additionally, Kenny recently released an impressive tribute single to Townes van Zandt, the acoustic ‘The Townes You Left Behind’.”

Dino Della Casa, Country Store Magazine, Italy – “Canada has always been a very generous state in giving us important talent that, in some cases (such as Neil Young, Joni Mitchell, Gordon Lightfoot, Leonard Cohen, Bruce Cockburn, etc.) are at the head of the class that determines trends for songwriters. Now comes Canadian Kenny Butterill with his debut No One You Know CD, a recording of fresh surprising character, no doubt the best of the products that have been represented by so much MOORE media (the organization of Martha Moore, former representative of the Amazing Rhythm Aces).

(Songwriter/Producer) Butterill is a straight ahead flat picker who holds the scepter of a swamp type sound comparable in style to the great Tony Joe White from the late 60’s. The line up of accompaniment on this CD of the unknown Kenny (rhythm acoustic guitar and vocals) is comprised of Peter Morrison (lead acoustic and electric guitar and bass) a true virtuoso, and Daoud Show (drums and various percussion), formerly with the Jerry Garcia Band, who has also played with and produced for Van Morrison. As mentioned, the sound is definitely swamp from the guitars and bass, and Butterill has a low vocal style that is softer than Tony Joe White, but let’s go in order.

The CD opens with ‘How Far Can We Go?’, a perfect example of a crossover between Johnny Cash with his classic boom-chica-boom sound and the classic groove of Tony Joe White, mixed with the harmonica of Don Jones. Kind of like a country swamp sound. The CD continues with a lot of similarity (almost too much in some cases), until we reach a song that seems to come from an album of Dire Straits, ‘Breaking The Glass Ceiling’, where the sound is a fascinating collaboration more amalgamated than the previous pieces and definitely above the line.

We continue with ‘Was It Love In Your Eyes?’ beautiful ballad in duet form with Nulita Fries followed by another pleasing, almost Caribbean sounding tune with a very happy guitar solo that plays throughout the piece: remarkable and effective. The final song simply entitled ‘Princess Diana’ is a decided return to the swamp sound and dedicated to Princess Diana Spencer, who tragically died in the notorious Paris road incident with her well-known companion Dodi Al Fayed.

Although the CD does not shine for its country content, it is a fine medley of American roots songs that well represents the USA Americana music tradition. We open our eyes and welcome Kenny Butterill.”


Dominique Costanoga – Radio Marseillette, France – “Kenny is a great artist, a great singer and great songwriter who delivers fine nostalgic storytelling. With Kenny’s gravel voice, bare bones intensity and haunting melodies, No One You Knowis a great country folk classic, and ‘How Far Can We Go’ is a real Masterpiece!!!”

Hans van Dam, Country Gazette CG, Netherlands – “Men with a special voice, songs with character and gentle and smooth music to escort it. That’s exactly the thing I enjoy. Many times this is called “singer/songwriter music to put it in a category or style. That’s the way you can describe Kenny Butterill, just like James Keelaghan (also mentioned in this magazine) and Townes van Zandt. Kenny Butterill has a soft voice that reminds sometimes of Mark Knopfler. Also the guitar-solo’s are in that direction. Despite his gentle voice you can hear and understand Butterill well. Two words sum up this album — easy flowing and smooth. His life just as his songs is full with ups and downs. Things that take a hold of him, like the death of Princess Diana or his longing for going “Back to Canada”. “Don’t Worry Now My Son” is the sad story of a son in search of his father. He finds him in another country, but the happiness doesn’t last long. There are memories and meditations, a different one in every song. A genuine “listening-album”, which has a little lack of variation because many of the songs are in mid-tempo. Special on this cd is the duet ” Was it Love in Your Eyes”, sung by Nulita Fries and Kenny Butterill together. Not on this album (but a pre-release from his upcoming CD) is “The Townes You Left Behind”, about being touched by the passing of Townes Van Zandt.”

Di Giovanni Pietro Scazzola, L’Ovadese, Italy – “It is not so important if we know him or not. After a few moments all is already familiar to us: and the Americana songwriting reveals its matrix and its roots through an original and personal style, pure and resolute sounds, with a handful of musical colleagues, precise playing and a fistful of songs well thought out and sincere. All this we find in the album of songwriter Kenny Butterill entitled No One You Know” and published by the self-produced label NO BULL SONGS; the fruit of simple inspiration and magic at the same time, that is able to stop time between the past and the present. His songs show we can’t choose between remaining ever young or getting old, but we can benefit from what experience teaches to us.”

Lluis Sala, Jambalaya Magazine, Spain – “Originally from Canada and now settled in California, Kenny Butterill has a style in the composition and interpretation of his songs that powerfully remembers the legendary J.J. Cale. His “No One You Know” CD (2000, No Bull Songs) included 12 smooth tunes by Butterill interpreted by his whispering voice and accompanied by the excellent Peter Morrison on lead guitar. Throughout the album Butterill recites on romances on the road, the pride of having been born and raised in Canada, the advice of a father to his son, the love by his dog and, prophetically, the loss of liberties and freedoms in the USA, constructing stories which are more than remarkable although somewhat diminished by some repetition in the sound. In summary Butterill is a songwriter whose tunes will please fans of J.J. Cale and who, with a bit more diversity in his music will reach a much larger public.”

Christian Lamitschka, Western Store, Germany – “OK, Kenny Butterill’s first CD “No One You Know” has been out on the market for over a year, but for those who have been able to get a hold of it, they will surely enjoy it for several years to come. This is country music in its simplest and most beautiful art. No experiments with Techno or Pop, although if one really listens one can hear some rock and even some soft Spanish influences. Kenny Butterill is no longer an unknown quantity in Country Music and he shows us that great country artists come not only from the USA, but also from Canada. His songs are played from Alaska to Australia and praised in the highest tones. One cannot write much more about this CD. One must simply hear it.”

Jan Janssen – Real Roots Cafe, WFM 107.1, The Netherlands – “Don’t cry sister is a title track that roots freaks cherish when they think on JJ Cale. Well we can tell you that there is some news on frond. Listen to Kenny Butterrill’s debut album called No One You Know and good old times will reveal again but with one difference — Butterill does it his own way. The alligator is alive and kicking!”

Lucien Knapen – Radio V W R, Belgium – “Sometimes while listening to this CD I think of J.J. Cale, and there are moments it reminds me of Tony Joe White, but most of all it’s the great sound of Kenny Butterill I’m hearing, ’cause he’s got his own sound,which I’m hoping to hear more in the future.”

Chris “Lone Wolf” Poort – Country Club West, The Netherlands – “True, sincere and a bit melancholy, Kenny can bring a smile and a tear to your face. “No One You Know” is a MUST, not only for country fans, but for music lovers all over the world.”

Jos van de Boom, Crossroads Show, BRTO Radio, Holland – “… for people who love laidback music, Kenny Butterill’s album “No One You Know” is a great collection of fine radio songs that evokes memories of the best days of JJ Cale and Tony Joe White, while you can also enjoy some Dire Straits-like sound too.”

Remo Ricaldone, Susa Onda Radio Italy – “a great piece of art”

David Barnes, British Country Music Archive – “… Easy listening, nicely produced, good songs and very enjoyable.”

Radio Milo, Belgium – “… a great piece of work! He’s got a very beautiful, low storytelling voice and a nice laidback sound, Great!!”

City FM 97.7, Sweden – “This is a perfect CD for those who like the country-folk-alternative music, like Steve Earle and Kim Richey”

BNS Radio, Norway – “Very promising debut from Kenny”

Northsound Radio, Scotland – Great voice and we’re playing ‘How Far Can We Go’ and ‘Liberty’!!”

National Radio of Slovenia – “I must say I do like his voice, a bit like Chris Rea, and his songs are absolutely fine and so fresh.”

JRR International, Ireland – ” ‘Princess Diana’ is playlisted here in Ireland – nice song from Kenny”

Susa Onda Radio, Italy – “Great story songs for a musician whose strength is presenting them”

Carinzia Radio, Austria & Italy – “Great CD and I’m spinning all the songs”

Sindal Radio, Denmark – “Playing ‘How Far Can We Go’ by Kenny – good song and feel”

Omroep Rijswijk Radio, Netherlands – “Nice album by Kenny … we’re featuring a lot of good cuts from it”

Lidingo Radio, Sweden – “Kenny is being played on my regular shows..”

Nieuwegein Radio, Netherlands – “Kenny’s album was a nice surprise and a country feeling to our tastes”

Country Jukebox Radio, Germany – “Kenny’s voice is really unique – like it very much”

Roskilde Dampradio, Denmark – “Kenny is good at telling songs, especially like ‘Don’t Worry Now My Son’ “

SCAWC Radio Shows – “Excellent debut album from Kenny, really like ‘How Far Can We Go’ “

Micron Radio, Belgium – “Kenny’s album swings well”

Coastal Radio Shows, England – “Great Album, love the voice”

Centre-FM Radio, England – “Wow – I like this album – Kenny does a fine job”

HR 1 Radio, Germany – “Fine new production from a new name – Fresh stuff and playing here”

Family Radio, Belgium – “Not too Country but good smooth folk sound of America”

Flakkee Radio, Netherlands – “A great artist and all the cuts are strong”