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Summer Concert Series: Kenn Kweder
Mon, August 24, 2015 6:30 P.M.
Philadelphia City Institute
Kenn Kweder — a native of Southwest Philadelphia— just may be the creator of Philadelphia’s original rock music scene. He took the stage by storm at a time when clubs turned original musicians away. While he “goes back as far as vinyl,” Kenn now attracts a new generation of local fans. Kenn turned to music after realizing that his “pipe dream” of making it big in the NBA was “toast and smoked.” He learned to play the guitar by watching a PBS show and bought his first guitar with a coupon. Previously a solo acoustic performer, Kenn took a leap of faith and put together a rock band — Kenn Kweder & His Secret Kidds — a “gigantic attempt at becoming world-wide famous.” In the late 1970s, Kenn was red hot in his hometown. He was the first to release his own 45 RPM singles, “Man on the Moon” and “Susie Said So.” He lived for a time outside of London and played guitars at gigs “equivalent to Smokey Joe’s,” where local students flock to see him today. Upon returning to the U.S., Kenn started several other bands, including Kenn Kweder and the Men from P.O.V.I.C.H., Kenn Kweder and the Radio Church of God, Kenn Kweder and the Couch Dancers, Kenn Kweder and the Enablers Featuring the Co-dependents, and Kenn Kweder and the Men From WaWa. Writer’s block just may be a foreign concept to Kenn, as his unique music seems to come effortlessly. In 1992, he received a Lifetime Achievement Award from the Delaware Valley Music Poll Awards.