Kenny Laguna has been in the music industry as a musician, songwriter, singer, and producer, for nearly five decades. His resume is as diverse as his talents, including Bubblegum, Punk Rock, Indie Rock, Blue Eyed Soul, and more. He has produced Darlene Love, Bill Medley, Edwin Star, The Steve Gibbons Band (for Bill Curbishley and The Who), Bow Wow Wow, including the bands biggest hit, "I Want Candy", I the soundtrack to the Andy Warhol movie Lonesome Cowboys, and wrote and produced for Beserkley Records with Jonathan Richman and Greg Kihn. He is Joan Jett’s longtime producer, songwriting partner and partner in their label, Blackheart Records (with his wife/high school sweetheart, Meryl Laguna, and their daughter, Carianne Brinkman).
He has produced many of the artists on Blackheart Records including Girl in a Coma, Cherie Currie, and The Vacancies.
Starting at the tender age of 12 years old, Kenny was playing keyboards for New York radio high school hops, for twenty dollars a day, when he was recognized by an industry bigwig. This led to other doors that Kenny kicked open, and eventually he found himself producing and playing in Bubblegum bands like Tommy James and the Shondells, The Archies, Shadows of Night, 1910 Fruitgum Co., and the Ohio Express.
By 1972, Kenny had played and sung on over 50 Billboard Top 40 hits. After the demise of Bubblegum, he was given the opportunity to produce for The Who’s label in London, which would prime him for the next phase, Punk Rock.
Kenny was asked to help write and produce six songs in 8 days with a young singer named Joan Jett. Her former band, The Runaways had broken up, but were still contracted to do a project that was yet unfinished. Kenny and Joan immediately found they were kindred spirits and have collaborated on every Joan Jett album and hit ever since. Kenny wanted to help Joan get a record deal, so they submitted "I Love Rock N’ Roll", "Crimson and Clover", "Do You Want To Touch Me (Oh Yeah)", and "Bad Reputation" to 23 major and minor record labels at the time. They were turned down by every one. Despite this, they didn’t give up; Kenny, Meryl and Joan manufactured the record, Bad Reputation, and sold them from the trunk of Kenny’s Cadillac. This was the beginning of Blackheart Records. Thirty-five years later, Blackheart is still the home to Joan Jett and the Blackhearts as well as many other up and coming artists, such as all-girl Texas trio, FEA, Girl in a Coma and LA’s The Dollyrots. Kenny served as Executive Producer helping to 2010's The Runaways, bringing the story of the band to life on screen. After reading Neon Angel, Cherie Currie's (original lead singer of The Runaways) autobiography, Kenny felt the book could be adapted to film. The film, starring Kristen Stewart as Joan Jett and Dakota Fanning as Cherie Currie, was released to critical acclaim. The DVD was top five in sales for three months.
In 2015, Kenny, along side Jett, was inducted into the Hall of Fame. He "Felt honored to be standing next to his best friend", accepting the coveted award. After 35 years of creating music together, he and Jett are still touring the world, writing and recording new music. Joan says, “To me, Kenny seems to be able to do it all. The longer I live, and the more people I meet, the more I know how lucky we are to have met. We are very different people on many levels, but the same person on others, and he reinforced my belief and dream that I could play rock n roll, and succeed at it, as well, on our own terms. Kenny is definitely my soulmate. I know the meaning of that word now. He is a powerful person to have on your side. An indefatigable advocate.”