Why is Kenny G so hated?

While working as an intern for KWJZ last year, I noticed that a great deal of the general public feels the need to express just how much they dislike the recording artist known as Kenny G.

Why is this? I’m not much of a G-fan (1982’s G-Force was a solid album, but I’ve never gotten into his best selling material), but I can’t see any reason he deserves the sheer amount of venom given him. I’ve met the man, and he seems nice enough. He really appears to be trying his best.

From talking to established musicians I’ve discerned that there’s some level of jealousy regarding Mr. G’s phenomenal sales, but why would that make regular people dislike him so intensely?

(Side note: Why is Yanni so hated, for that matter?)

It’s elevator music. Music with all trace of originality and soul removed. Music to have a root canal by. Ditto Yanni and John Tesh.

But then again, some people even like Celine Dion. Go figure.

Dude. Come on.

Becuase it’s depressing for those of us who like jazz to see that the only “jazz” many people like/own are the toodling-doodlings of Mr. G (G presumably standing for Goose-Torture-Emulator).

DeVena has it right. The music is bland to the extreme. Forgettable and boring. It makes Muzak look exciting.

The entire “smooth jazz” genre is an insult to those who developed jazz as an art form. Kenny G. should personally apologize to Miles Davis and Louis Armstrong every time he plays a note.

I don’t hate him. It’s impossible to work up much hate for such bland mediocrity.

Pat Metheny, on the other hand, despises Kenny G:

(Yes I’ve quoted these passages before, but damn, they’re hilarious).

That’s funny. Metheny rates juust a step below Kenny G for me on the Bland-O-Meter.

IMHO, if an artist is seen to be widely popular with the ‘great unwashed’ many people will turn their noses up at that artist so as not to be thought of as one of the herd.

Personally I find Kenny G., Yanni. Tesh, etc. music pleasant enough but unremarkable. I’d certainly prefer it to the drek they were playing over the loudspeakers in the grocery store last night.


My grocery store plays the oddest stuff. One day it’s 80s music, the next it’s classic soul (which lets me practice doing that one-step-and-clap thing the backup singers do), the next it’s country.

And Kenny G sucks.

How could this thread have gotten this far without any mention of…(say it with me)


Having to choose between listening to Michael Bolton and Kenny G. is like choosing between getting the electric chair and hanging.

Because his music is so boring it makes you want to go to sleep, but so annoying you can’t. It kind of feels like taking a handful of dramamine and then being forced to stay awake via a speaker right next to your pillow that makes announcements about a shoelace sale and repeats them in 10 different languages every 3 minutes. Actually, his music is not quite that pleasant . . .

I think these people are disliked because they are very popular and successful, and folks think that those levels of success are unwarranted unless the artist is a genius. Of course, success is much more a function of wide appeal than genius or even skill.

Plus, he’s got a sweet mullet.

Wait, that could be a reason to like him instead of hate him…

feeling conflicted…

I’m reminded of an item Norm MacDonald read on the Weekend Update segment of Saturday Night Live years ago:

Item: "The new Kenny G Christmas album appears in stores today. Happy birthday, Jesus. Hope you like CRAP!!

They’re ‘popular and successful’ because they mirror the large majority of Americans’ tastes for the bland and obvious. A large portion of America is tone deaf and has no idea what creativity really consists of. They equate ‘original’ with Classic Coke.

There’s no denying that Michael Bolton and Kenny G have some skill, but they choose to expend their efforts on doing bad covers and unsuccessfully trying to imitate Ray Charles and Branford Marsalis.

I really don’t care what people listen to and enjoy. What I object to is characterizing these weiners as jazz artists and blues singers, when they’re nothing more than hacks.

You are entitled to your opinion but I wonder how much Metheny you have actually heard. He has had his share of “jazz for the masses” in recent years, but that doesn’t really encompass what Metheny is about. Some of his oler stuff might surprise you. “Bland” isn’t the first word that comes to mind. To each his own though.

And I don’t really enjoy Kenny G. either. Yeah, he has chops, but I found most of his stuff pretty boring. It is a shame that some people when asked if they like jazz, say “Oh yes! I love Kenny G.”, not having a clue who Charlie Parker, Miles Davis, John Coltrane, Dizzie Gillespie, Art Tatum, or Oscar Peterson are.

Bland, and for some reason full of sharps.

Maybe the question I’m looking for is “Why is his music considered bland/boring/screechy/dreck?”

I do not dislike him, however, I’m deaf…

Sometimes just for kicks I mention him or John Tesh to my hearing friends just to see their eyes roll.

I didn’t think it was physically possible, but Kenny G both sucks and blows.