Y & T

BiografieIn the 1970?s when Y&T chose its name, it was prophetic. The band couldn?t have predicted its future better than by using the abbreviation of the Beatles? LP Yesterday & Today. Their legions of fans are as captivated by Y&T?s melodic heavy rock and roll today as they were yesterday. In other words, their music is timeless.

And this day, unable to ignore the barrage of fan mail, Y&T are returning to the stage?with original members Dave Meniketti on searing lead guitar & vocals, powerhouse drummer Leonard Haze behind the skins, Phil Kennemore on bass, and John Nymann joining on guitar. While some may dispute that John was not Y&T?s first guitarist [Joey Alves mastered the position as the band´s original rhythm guitarist], the band considers him part of the Y&T family [John Nymann has been a co-songwriter and background vocalist with the band since the 1980s]. With Leonard?s return, the band considers Y&T reunited ? making a dream come true for the fans.

For years Y&T was the most requested supporting act on the hard rock road, touring with rock icons including, Ozzy Osbourne, AC/DC and Motley Crüe. They were sure-fired to whip the crowd into a frenzy with their high energy set. On both coasts at home, in Japan, Europe and England, they headlined to overflow houses of 15 to 30 thousand.

Y&T has sold over 4 million albums and has recorded 16 LPs and three greatest hits collections since their 1974 inception. These rock and roll pioneers survived disco fever, rode the crest of the 80?s hard rock insurgence, and remained faithful to melodic power ballads throughout the age of grunge. At any concert you can hear fans calling out their requests from albums including, ?I Believe in You? from Earthshaker, ?Barroom Boogie? from Black Tiger and ?Mean Streak? from Mean Streak. With a reenergized demand, in 2001 the band was asked to release another collection and compile the selections for The Ultimate Y&T. But Y&T?s concerts are not filled with their golden oldies; the years have added maturity to the band?s passions without compromising the power and blistering energy Y&T has always been known for.

In 1995, tired of being musically misunderstood by the U.S. majors, the band signed a record deal with a Japanese label. They recorded Musically Incorrect?a title whose tongue is firmly planted in cheek?for the Japanese market, then released in the U.S. and European markets. ?It felt right to record for the Japanese company. We have a huge following there.? As for the title, ?Well,? Meniketti says with a laugh, ?it relates to the music we had been raised on, which wasn?t considered in fashion at the time.?

But, the call of Y&T?s fans has never been silenced. In 1997, after Dave finished a sold out Bay Area gig, a fan asked him if the original Y&T would get together. Though at the time, he thought it would be a long shot, he said, ?I?ll never say never to anything. It could be fun.? That day is here. The glory of the Y&T sound will be heard live again. And their thousands of fans worldwide will rock to the music they love.

Joan Tarshis, Men?s Health contributor

Top Photo credit: Bill Frates
Bottom Photo credit: Jill Meniketti

Current Lineup

Dave Meniketti ~ Lead Guitar/Lead Vocals
Born and raised in Oakland, California, Dave has been an icon for guitar players worldwide and a Bay Area guitar and vocal hero for three decades. Through his childhood, Dave was influenced by some of the great varied rock, R&B and Jazz artists of the 60s and 70s such as Hendrix, James Brown, Led Zeppelin, Marvin Gaye, Stevie Wonder, Allman Brothers, Coltrane, and so many others. Dave?s love for many types of musical expression is one of his great strengths & is evident in his soulful approach to playing & singing.

At sixteen, Dave was blown away by the guitar mastery of Jimi Hendrix, and he was inspired to pick up the guitar?he never looked back. Even though he started playing guitar late by most standards, Dave?s fire and passion for music allowed him to learn at an accelerated pace. Self taught, Dave quickly developed his unique style and found himself in a national recording band, developing a guitar hero fan base?all within only a few short years of picking up a guitar.

After being so impressed with Y&T and Dave?s playing at a live performance, bay area manager Herbie Herbert (Journey), a guitar player fanatic himself, signed the band to a management contract in 1974. Dave released his first record with Y&T (Yesterday & Today) on London Records in 1976 and started on his way to a long career of making records and touring the world. Early on, Dave?s bluesy style of rock guitar playing came to the forefront. When at a show in a Hollywood club in 1979, John Mayall was so impressed with Dave?s performance in Y&T that he grabbed the club owner and demanded to go backstage to meet Dave and asked him to collaborate on a record. By 1983, as Y&T had achieved worldwide respect & was continuing to gain popularity, Dave won a Bammy Award for ?Best Bay Area Guitarist?, beating out other great players such as Neil Schon (Journey), Craig Chaquico (Starship), and several other guitar heroes. Dave has been listed in Guitar Player Magazine?s ?Best of? polls numerous times over the past several decades.

When Y&T decided to break from recording and performing, Dave knew it was time to move on to other musical avenues. Though he?s been primarily a rock guitarist for most of his career, Dave felt his passion for ?blues? drawing him toward his first solo recording On The Blue Side?made up of a passionate blend of blues/rock material, knowing in his gut that it was a natural thing to do. Coupled with a band of all-star players including bassist Myron Dove (Santana, Robben Ford), this first solo effort outsold previous Y&T records in Japan & Europe and met with critical acclaim worldwide.

With newfound solo inspiration and a great live band behind him, when Dave went back in the studio to come up with new tunes, he felt a pull back to his rock roots for his second solo effort. More rock-oriented, yet still a hint of blues in the mix, Dave?s sophomore solo CD Meniketti was released in summer 2002.

Currently, Dave manages to find the time to further develop his solo band while continuing to tour the world with Y&T.

Photo: Bill Frates

Photo: Bill Frates
Phil Kennemore ~ Bass
Phil Kennemore?s first band consisted of five guys; the only problem was that nobody could play. Phil says he didn?t even know what a bass was?he just knew he wanted to play. Since everyone in that first band played guitar, Phil took two strings off his guitar and decided to be a bass player.

At around age thirteen, Phil bought a St. George guitar at a pawn shop for $35 and a sparkly carrying case for $45. The first song he ever learned to play was Gloria by Them. The very first bass he bought was a no-name bass (Winston?); it was as warped as a Jai Alai racket and cost a mere $5. Phil continued playing (yet he still wasn?t sure what a bass player?s role was). ?I would just follow the guitar players. If they were on the third dot, I went to the third dot.? The first song Phil learned that really had bass lines in it was Monterey by Eric Burdon and the Animals. Next, he learned Crossroads by Cream?Jack Bruce?s bass lines (all bass players at that time had to do that). Like so many musicians, after Phil saw the Beatles on The Ed Sullivan Show, he knew?come hell or high water, he was determined to be in a rock band, and so he carried on. He was then smitten by the velvet-clad, mod look and sound of Rod Stewart and the Faces and that vibe furthered his desire to be in a band.

Prior to Y&T, Phil played in many other bands (his first band was Crystal Sunshine?the name explains the era); they started off like everyone else playing anywhere they could (Elk?s Lodge, Job?s daughters, parties).

While in junior high school, instead of listening to the teachers, Phil would draw a guitar neck on his arm and practice fingering chords. At that time, mentally, he had already decided that he wanted to play in a band; he only did enough schoolwork to keep authority from coming down on him. If he wasn?t practicing guitar on his arm in class, he was doodling?drawing musical equipment instead of paying full attention to the teacher. At home, Phil created his own world?he took the mattress off his bed, put plywood on his bed frame, and made his very own stage where he?d place his amp and perform on ?his? stage.

When Phil was in high school, he started a band with his brother Jeff. The band used to perform after school at Jeff?s junior high school on the basketball courts. Phil had already known Leonard Haze (since he was eleven years old), but on one particular day while performing on the basketball courts, along came this frizzy headed dude?Dave Meniketti. That?s the first time Phil remembers meeting Dave. The guys jammed a song together that afternoon. Another tidbit: once Phil?s brother Jeff auditioned for a band of Leonard?s called The Mustangs.

Phil didn?t own a real instrument until he was 18. He rode the bus thirteen miles to a music store and paid $55 as a down payment for a used black Fender Jazz. The next month he paid another $50, and then he paid $5 a week until his bass was paid off ($250 total). He rode the bus every week just to smell that bass; besides the smell of excitement, that bass had a certain smell to it that he loved (the wax, the wood). That bass is the same black Fender Jazz that Phil still uses today.

In the early months of Yesterday & Today, the bass player at the time wanted to move on to rhythm guitar in the band instead of bass, so Leonard and Dave called Phil to join on bass. Soon thereafter, they kicked out the old bass player (who was the new guitar player) and they started writing original material. In 1974, Yesterday & Today won first place at the Hayward Battle of the Bands. The band that took second place had a rhythm guitar player named Joey Alves. A week later, Phil, Leonard and Dave asked Joey to join the band?and the rest is Y&T history.

The bass players Phil used as models for the style he felt Y&T needed were Leo Lyons (Ten Years After) and Gary Thain (Uriah Heap), along with many others. Today, Phil?s diverse musical interests would be shocking to Y&T fans. He likes every style of music and he says he cannot condemn any particular genre (only people with narrow minds should be condemned). He finds validity in all music?from the corniest mellow stuff to the most avant garde. Phil has always fancied himself more as a songwriter/creative person than a ?musician.?

Along with Leonard Haze, Phil performed and recorded Marty Balin?s rock opera Rock Justice.

Phil currently tours the world with Y&T.

Leonard Haze ~ Drums & Mayhem
Leonard Haze has been playing drums since he was a kid. As the drummer and cofounder of Y&T, Leonard gets the credit for naming the band Yesterday & Today. As the story goes, one day a promoter called to book the band for a gig?only problem was that the band had no name. While on the phone with the promoter, Leonard looked around his room and saw the Beatles Yesterday & Today album?and so, in the heat of the moment, the band was named.

In 1986, Leonard Haze was named the World?s Fastest Foot in Circus Magazine by Carmine Appice.

In addition to touring the world and recording on nine different Y&T albums, Leonard also spent several years touring the world and recording two albums with the legendary Ian Gillian (Deep Purple).

Along with Phil Kennemore, Leonard played the lead in the stage production of Marty Balin?s Rock Justice and played drums on the soundtrack album.

Leonard continues to tour the world with Y&T. He uses Ludwig drums (since 1979), Paiste cymbals (since 1980), Vic Firth drum sticks, and Axis Percussion.

Photo: Bill Frates

Photo: Bill Frates
John Nymann ~ Guitar
John Nymann played his brother?s guitar as a kid. Finally, at age 11, he got his very own guitar. At 15, with a Les Paul in hand, John got serious about guitar. A family friend gave him the Johnny Winters Progressive Blues Experiment album and showed him a few licks. John?s friend told him this record would get him going on guitar. John says that record taught him a lot.

Back in the 1970s, John was very influenced by two guys whose cover band played at his high school?Leonard Haze and Dave Meniketti. Yesterday & Today was the first band of guys that John knew who were "really good." They were a huge influence on John to want to play guitar.

John?s band Mile Hi began in 1974?the same year Y&T started playing original material. He refers to Mile Hi as a ?junior Y&T? and says they modeled themselves after Y&T with two guitars, bass and drums. They intentionally used the same style of songwriting, they watched Y&T rehearse, and they opened shows for Y&T.

Mile Hi eventually developed into 415, which later changed its name to the Eric Martin Band (Eric was the lead singer for Mr. Big). With the Eric Martin Band, John?s accomplishments included two videos on MTV, a performance on American Bandstand, and the band played every coliseum in the Bay Area. In 1984, they lost their record deal and disbanded. Two weeks later John was asked to join Y&T as a background singer for the In Rock We Trust tour. After touring with his good friends in Y&T for four years, John joined the Greg Kihn Band for a year. He also spent several years performing solo. In 1998, John joined back up with Eric Martin for two more years. He also played with Troy Luccketta (Tesla) in the band Big Blue Frog until Troy rejoined with Tesla.

When John got the call to join with his pals again in Y&T, he didn?t have to think twice about it. He had a history of friendship, singing background vocals, playing keyboards, touring, and co-writing songs with the band, but he had always dreamed of playing guitar in Y&T. John is living proof that dreams really can come true.

John currently tours the world with Y&T.

Previous Band Members

Joey Alves ~ Rhythm Guitar
Joey Alves was born in Oakland, CA and grew up in a small town just south of Oakland called San Lorenzo. He started playing guitar after high school and he was only in one local band before joining up with Dave, Leonard, and Phil in Yesterday & Today. There, Joey set his sights on mastering a new and more aggressive approach to the traditional style of rhythm guitar. He feels fortunate to have always been given the freedom to experiment from his band mates. Today, as a result of Joey?s efforts, he receives countless praise from musicians he has influenced.

Photo: Bill Frates

Photo credit:
Stef Burns ~ Guitar
Born in Oakland, California, Stef Burns grew up in Walnut Creek, California. He started playing his dad´s guitar around age six. At seven, he got his first electric guitar?a Winston and later upgraded to a Fender Mustang. Stef formed his first band at the age of nine?The Yellow Brick Road. They played songs like Wild Thing and Louie Louie and weren´t bad for a bunch of fourth graders. In high school, Stef had a band called Legend and he played a Gibson L6-S. They played 70s material such as Allman Bros, Lynyrd Skynyrd, Montrose, Led Zeppelin, Deep Purple, and the Marshall Tucker Band. The next band was called New Legend and they played jazz/rock fusion, writing their own songs and covering tunes by Jeff Beck, Return to Forever, George Duke, Herbie Hancock and other 70s fusion material. New Legend used to blow people´s minds because they were so young and they played such intricate material.

Stef?s first real club band was Omega with Mickey Thomas who later had many hits with Starship. At this point, Stef played a Les Paul Standard. Omega was a large funk band that worked a lot; they were very funky had horns like Tower of Power.

In 1989 Stef joined Y&T, toured and recorded four albums. Prior to joining Y&T and during and after, Stef recorded with and toured with many artists including Jesse Colin Young (Youngbloods), Pablo Cruise, Sheila E, Berlin, The VU, jazz saxophonist Sadao Watanabe, and Alice Cooper (and he had a part in the hit film Waynes World). In addition, Stef does albums, TV and radio commercials, film score work and live shows for various artists and producers including Narada Michael Walden, Quincy Jones, Marc Russo (Yellowjackets), Stevie Wonder, Steve Winwood, James Taylor, Sheryl Crowe, Nile Rodgers, and Narada. Another was in Japan for the "Super Producers Tour 1995" with Narada Michael Walden featuring Patti Austin, Sheila E., Mickey Thomas, Shanice Wilson, Tevin Campell, T.M. Stevens, and Weather Report members Joe Zawinul and Alfonso Johnson.

In 2003, Stef was in three bands at once and, unfortunately, experienced scheduling conflicts with Y&T?s touring schedule. Currently, Stef divides his time between touring with Huey Lewis & The News and Italian rock star Vasco Rossi.

Jimmy DeGrasso ~ Drums
Jimmy DeGrasso played drums with Y&T during the mid 1980s and throughout the 1990s before moving on to Alice Cooper, White Lion, Suicidal Tendencies and later Megadeth. Born and raised in Bethlehem, PA, Jimmy learned drums at an early age, studying jazz and rock styles. Jimmy first broke into the business doing session for Ozzy Osbourne. He also garnered a Grammy nomination while with Suicidal Tendencies and performed at the illustrious Woodstock ´´99 concert with Megadeth. Jimmy has toured with Alice in Chains and most recently with Stone Sour and Marty Friedman.

He has also performed at the prestigious Ultimate Drummers Weekend in Australia and Modern Drummer Festival here at home.

Quelle: and Today
London Records 1976

Struck Down
London Records 1978

A&M Records 1981

Black Tiger
A&M Records 1982

Mean Streak
A&M Records 1983

In Rock We Trust
A&M Records 1984

Open Fire
Recorded live in London, San Francisco
& The Keystone Palo Alto April 5 & 6, 1985

Down For The Count
A&M Records 1985

Geffen Records 1987

A&M Records Japan 1987

Castle Records UK 1989

Geffen Records 1990

Best of ´81 to ´85
A&M Records 1990

Yesterday & Today - LIVE
Recorded live at the
San Jose Cabaret on
December 29 & 31, 1990
Metal Blade Records 1991

Musically Incorrect
Music For Nations 1995

Endangered Species
Music For Nations 1997

BBC In Concert:
Live On The Friday Rock Show
Reading Festival August 29, 1982 & Monsters
Of Rock/Donnington September 14, 1984
BBC Music 1998

Ultimate Collection
Hip-O Records/
Universal Music Group 2001

UnEarthed, Vol. 1
Wood Bell/Dream Catcher/
Meanstreak Music Co. 2003

UnEarthed, Vol. 2
Meanstreak Music Co. 2004/
Experience/Demolition Records 2005

Live - One Hot Night (2-DVD + CD)


Down For The Count  - Cover
Aus dem Jahr 85 stammt dieses Album, gehört sicherlich zu den kommerzielleren Alben von Y & T und ist zudem nicht zu den stärksten der Band zu zählen.
Facemelter - Cover
YESTERDAY AND TODAY, dem einschlägig bewandelten Rockfan auch unter dem griffigeren und offiziellen Bandkürzel Y & T ein Begriff melden sich nach über 13 Jahren Funkstille in Sachen „new stuff
In Rock We Trust - Cover
Y & T, Re-Release die zweite. Anno 1984 klang Hard Rock so und nicht anders, gegen solche Alben stanken Bands wie Whitesnake in ihrer kommerziell erfolgreichen Phase gnadenlos ab.
Live At The Mystic - Cover
Für mich zählen Y&T neben KISS und VAN HALEN zu den stärksten Hardrock - Bands aus Amerika.
One Hot Night - Live - Cover
Y & T aus San Fransisco, 1974 als YESTERDAY & TODAY gegründet, gehören wohl zu den unterbewertesten Bands der amerikanischen Westcoast. Und das bei Klassescheiben wie "Earthshaker" und "Ten".