SAN DIEGO, CA -- As part of our focus on The Arts, TAPintoTV spoke to respected guitarist and producer, Mike Keneally via video conference from California. Keneally spoke with Brian Brodeur about the notable artists he’s worked with throughout his career, as well as his newest collaboration, MFTJ.
Keneally first rose to prominence as a member of Frank Zappa’s last touring band in 1988 and after Zappa’s death, continued to work with the Zappa family, including being a part of Dweezil and Ahmet Zappa’s band, Z.
In the mid-90s, Keneally joined Steve Vai’s band. Vai, like Keneally, got his start as a young guitarist in Frank Zappa’s band. From there, Keneally played with a band, Dethklok, based on a fictional death metal band featured on the Adult Swim TV show, Metalocalypse. For nine years, Keneally toured with another guitar virtuoso, Joe Satriani. “I’ve worked with a lot of different bands in the studio, a lot of different artists, so it’s pretty amazing to me that I’m now in this position, being able to do projects with people like this,” Keneally said.
More recently, Keneally has been collaborating and playing with Devin Townsend, whose album Empath, he co-produced. It’s one of the things Keneally is “most grateful for in terms of projects that I’ve been involved with in my life. I love that album, I love working with Dev,” he said.
Keneally’s newest project is a collaboration with musician Scott Schorr called MFTJ, and Keneally describes it as an “adventurous sonic experience that has a lot of vitality.”
“Modern pop music is not safe the way it used to be,” Keneally said. “If you compare what the modern sonic palette is compared to what it was 40 years ago, pop music is a lot more abstract and peculiar now.”