Interviews > King Belvedere
King Belvedere
Interview by Athena Schaffer

Baltimore has unleashed a kick-ass force of nature onto the musical world. King Belvedere recently released their fist-pumping, head-banging sophomore release, My Kinda Rock And Roll! They definitely put the pedal to the Metal and deliver a high powered dose of Power Metal fun!

Check out the video for the title track!

The maelstrom that is King Belvedere gathered its members from California, Washington, DC, Pennsylvania, West Virginia, and Upstate New York and thrust them into the whirlpool’s Baltimore eye. The band is: vocalist/rhythm guitarist Jeff McKenny, guitarists Josh Ott and Jonny B, bassist Chip Michael, and drummer Johnny Sexx. (One of the band’s merch offerings are t-shirts Johnny makes from his drum head designs). The band is understandably gaining quite the following from all over the East Coast, and the storm is spreading out from there! This is definitely a band to watch – there is a very promising future ahead for them.

King Belvedere’s music has been compared to Guns N Roses and The Ramones – and surely those influences are evident. (I’m a huge Ramones fan, so those were strong claims to live up to, and fortunately King Belvedere delivers).

The Crowgrrl caught up with the band – all members collectively participated in the interview – by e-mail.

Who does most of the songwriting for the band?

Actually we all have a hand in the writing process. Someone might come in with an idea and then we all just run with it.

Do the lyrics come first? Does the music come first? What is the songwriting process like for you?

Music comes first almost every time, then Jeff will take it home and put lyrics to it.

I love the positive message behind “We’re Alright”. Can you tell us more about this song?

The song is about Jeff's girlfriend and her son and everything they have been through as a family.

"Snakebite" has a distinct Bayou flavor. Can you tell us more about that one?

Our drummer is a very bluesy drummer and he started playing around on the drums and we started playing to it. We ran through some blues scales and put it together.

What are some of the inspirations behind "On My Own"?

That’s a song Jeff calls a "PERIOD PIECE "; he wrote it a while ago and we revisited it and it worked.

"On The Run" has a deliciously dangerous edge – can we talk more about that one?

That’s a true story about our adventures in Baltimore. We would tell you more but cases are pending.

What’s your personal favorite song on the new album?

I think unanimously we all agree "MY KINDA ROCK & ROLL" is our favorite. And it’s the title of the album.

Any stories behind the cover art?

Dynamite Graphics is the graphic design company we work with. Jonny B and those guys worked it out together.

Any fun stories behind the filming of the title track’s video?

Yeah a whole bunch! But none we can talk about. "wink wink"

How did the album release party go?

It was a blast! We had a huge turn out and every one had a great time. Also, we would love to thank all of our fans for supporting us and we love you guys very much.

Will “My Kinda Rock And Roll” be available on Amazon? Where can readers get a copy of this album?

You can pretty much find us on any digital download platform. If you have google you can find King Belvedere.We have cd's for sale at cd baby or aka music in Philadelphia.

Are you already working on songs for your next album?

You bet your sweet ass we are. We have a few done with more ideas coming together. We play a couple live right now.

The band’s members come from all over the US. How did you get together, and make Baltimore your base?

How much time ya got lady.

Tour plans?

Yes in the summer when the album is done.

What is your live show like?

I hate to pat ourselves on the back but we do pride ourselves on our live show. To us that’s the most important part to being in a band - interacting with all the fans. A lot of energy, lots of fun, and if you see us in your area you will not be disappointed.

Are you filming any shows for a possible DVD in the future?

Yes we are, and also check some fan videos of ours on Youtube and Facebook.

You have t-shirts of Johnny’s drum set designs?

Yes we do, and they are awesome.

What other kinds of merch do you have available?

We have cds and shirts at every show. Also if you want any shirts or cd's, email us at

How Hands-On are you with your Website and Myspace pages?

Very hands on. Usually the band handles all the Facebook and Myspace, and Johnnie Vranna handles are website.

Is there anything that I didn’t ask that you want to tell our readers?

Whenever you can, support live music as much as possible. Go to the clubs check out all your local bands. The more people that show up the more we can keep this crazy thing called Rock & Roll alive.