Taking Time For No. 1

Taking Time For No. 1

Musician Kory Montgomery releases self-titled EP


A critic once described Kory Montgomery’s music as ““a backwoods orgy of blues, funk [and] jazz fusion that leaves the listener drunk, horny and looking for a fight” — which is funny because Montgomery is modest, soft-spoken and always seems happy just to be working as a musician.

“I was inspired to make music by bands my dad was playing around the house — Jimi Hendrix, BB King, The Band, Bob Dylan,” says Montgomery, a 2006 graduate of Rogers High School. “I remember as a kid watching a video of Jimi Hendrix thinking, ‘that looks fun,’ and here I am! I had a few teachers, but Larry Hight really helped me turn a corner musically. I attended Grammy Camp Los Angeles and realized I had a lot of learning to do, so I packed up and moved to LA to attend Musicians Institute.”

Apparently, it worked. Over the past decade, he has played numerous festivals and events throughout the country including opening for BB King, Kenny Wayne Shepard, Earth Wind & Fire, JJ Grey & Mofro, Buddy Guy, Robert Randolph, Hubert Sumlin, The North Mississippi All Stars and many others. He also continues to perform with the Blues Brothers Revue under the musical direction of Paul Schaffer.

Kory Montgomery sounds nothing like a kid from Rogers, Ark., when he sings. You’d guess he’s from somewhere in the Deep South where the blues and jazz must surely have forged his music.
(Courtesy Photo/John-Ryan Lockman)

“I have always played my own gigs as The Kory Montgomery Band, but it was never the primary concern in my career,” he admits. But that changed in March, when Montgomery put together a self-titled EP with songs titled “Ache,” “Lovin Lies,” “Black Goes With Everything,” “Sometimes Love” and “From a Movie.” He says he was “swinging for the fences.”

“These are a collection of songs I have written through the years that show the influence from friends and my experience in the music business,” he explains. “Some are true stories that I have been through, and some [just] stories. I was inspired by my friends to get back in the studio and organize the ideas, and I am so happy I finally did. The band backing me is full of amazing talent,” including Mark Levy on drums (Phil Lesh, Circle Around the Sun), Shawn Eckels on guitar (Speakeasy, Andy Frasco & The UN), Kramer Kelling on bass, Scott Rednor on guitar (Deen Ween, John Oates, Brothers Keeper), Bill McKay on keyboards (Derek Trucks, Leftover Salmon) and Ben Alleman on keyboards (Dr. John, Ryan Adams).

In some ways, the timing of the coronavirus slowdown was good for Montgomery.

“The amazing thing about art and artists is the ability to shapeshift as times change,” he muses. “I plan on developing my presence with these new songs, and continuing to write and produce more music. It is a crazy time for every industry in the world. I feel people could use positivity in a world full of terror. As an artist, what an amazing thing to be able to offer! We are all in this together.

“I hope to give people a break from the constant discussion revolving around the current situation,” he adds. “I hope to bestow a sense of movement forward and onward. The world might have incredibly slowed for all of us, but it hasn’t stopped. We can still do active things to better each other, and I can only hope a song or two can make people feel something other than fear!”


Go Online!

Buy Kory Montgomery’s five-song EP at his website, korymontgomery.com.

Watch that space for streaming concerts during the covid-19 shutdown.

Categories: Music