With a career in music spanning almost 25 years, St. Petersburg, Fl, based Chris “Kid” Royal has a history in a genre where history is important and somewhat uncommon for his age. He began his career with the likes of Chicago Pete (Jr. Parker, Buddy Guy, Jr. Wells, Jimmy Dawkins, Albert Collins, Lazy Lester) and others such as Douglas Watson (the son of Muddy Waters’ piano player, Lovie Lee) at the remarkably young age of 15. Hailing from a musical family in London, ON, Canada, Chris’ mother, Linda, was a singer who had members of The Band and Janis Joplin's band sitting in at her gigs. Through her record collection, Chris was introduced to Lightnin' Hopkins, B.B. King, John Lee Hooker, Sonny Boy Williamson, and many others, inspiring him to begin a musical career of his own. He quickly became known locally as a guitar prodigy.
Chris ventured to Austin, TX, at the age of 16, where he met the great Clifford Antone. (Antone’s in Austin was the hang out for Stevie Ray Vaughan and Jimmie Vaughan and the T-Birds, the home to Texas blues, and a venue Albert King, B.B King, and countless other greats came through, revered, and appreciated). Antone was so impressed by Chris, he asked him to stay in Austin to learn more about the blues.
Chris has played in various countries and festivals around the globe including the Montreal Jazz Festival and Notodden Blues Festival in Norway. He has opened for such acts as Eric Burdon and Peter Frampton. He has also played alongside such luminaries as Jeff Healey, and recently, “Kid” has shared stages, trading licks with Eric Gales, Sue Foley, and his biggest musical hero, Ronnie Earl. Most recently, Ronnie Earl and “Kid” played together at a Hospice for the homeless during the Utah Blues Festival (2019), sharing the healing power of music with those most in need.
The current lineup of the band varies but includes the best of the best Tampa Bay has to offer and has become a fixture of the local music scene in St. Petersburg, FL.
The Kid Royal Band EP features exceptional long-time local, musicians Dennis McCarthy on drums, Vinnie Seplesky on bass and the talented, Michael Hepner on keys. The entire project was recorded live, mixed, and mastered at Big3 Studios in St. Petersburg by local phenom Jim 'Pinky’ Beeman. The Kid Royal Band EP boasts four all original tunes written by Chris “Kid” Royal, featuring his searing guitar and soulful vocals. The band is poised to make their mark on the blues scene in Tampa Bay and beyond. Stay tuned for more from this quickly emerging group.