Akouo is an audient visionary who interprets past, present and future events through a collage of musical genres, including jazz, R&B, funk, gospel, country western and rock.
Born Kenneth P. Garnier of Los Angeles, CA in 1960, Akouo discovered his gift of music at the early age of 4 when he began creating songs while going ‘round an avocado tree in his parents' backyard. When asked by others, “When did you begin playing?”, his response is, "My first instrument was a tree."
While growing up, studying music was a discipline of the household. So, like his siblings, Akouo began taking piano lessons at the age of 8. A few years later, his oldest brother who played trumpet formed a band. Fascinated by the band's drummer, Akouo started taking drum lessons. At age 14, he followed his twin brother by turning his attention toward learning to play electric guitar. Interestingly, because Akouo is left-handed and his twin brother is right-handed, he was only allowed to play on the condition that he would do so right-handedly. Although initially reluctant, Akouo complied, and has had a right-handed playing approach ever since.
In the mid 1970's, when the electric bass became a foreground instrument, Akouo switched from guitar to bass. He was a member of various L.A. bands until early 1978, when he gave up playing altogether in pursuit of a spiritual journey. It wasn't until 1993, 15 years later, that Akouo returned to the bass. However, it was at that stage in his life when his personal and musical identity began to take on real purpose and meaning.
His formal bass training includes: Eubanks Conservatory of Music and Arts of Los Angeles, CA; McNally Smith College of Music (previously, Music Tech) of St. Paul, MN; and, MacPhail Center for Music of Minneapolis, MN. Aligned with a large number of loosely configured artists who, at will, write, arrange, record and/or perform with him, Akouo’s primary emphasis is on musical conceptualizations, which reveal unique introspections about life, nature, relationships and Spirit.