Nine Questions 

Brooks Keenan plays keyboards, guitar and harmonica. His 1960s band, Garfield Smelter, opened concerts for the Doors, the Animals, Buffalo Springfield and the Yardbirds with Jimmy Page and Jeff Beck. He played 25 years with the Statesboro Blues Band, which backed up Otis Rush, Albert Collins, Bo Diddley and Charlie Musselwhite. He currently works as a bridge engineer.

What was the first concert you ever saw?

The Champs playing their hit "Tequila" at Sunset Rollerama in 1960.

What CDs are in your changer right now?

Brian Bromberg, Downright Upright; Vince Gill, These Days.

How many total albums do you own (CDs, vinyl, cassettes, 8-tracks)?

I lost my early vinyl collection in a fire. Maybe 400 CDs, 250 vinyl LPs and 200 cassettes.

Do you download music, and if so, legally or illegally?

No. I'm a fidelity fanatic. I listen to CDs on studio monitor speakers, so I can hear how every instrument was recorded.

What was the first album you owned?

Booker T. and the MG's, Green Onions.

What song would you like to have played at your funeral?

I agree with John Cusack that Jimmy Cliff's "Many Rivers to Cross" would be an inspired choice. My ghost would also like to hear my own "One Foot in the Blues."

Musically speaking, what do you love that your friends don't know about? What's your favorite guilty pleasure?

The Nylons, Weird Al Yankovic, Run C&W.

What band or artist changed your life, and how?

Chuck Berry's music got me started buying Chess Records in the early 1960s, and Chess opened me up to the blues. They had Muddy Waters, Howlin' Wolf, Willie Dixon, Otis Spann and Little Walter Jacobs. That changed my life.

Figurative gun to your head, what is your favorite album of all time?

By genre. Jazz: The Phil Woods Six, Live From the Showboat. Blues: T-Bone Walker, The Complete Imperial Recordings. Rock: greatest hits of Chuck Berry and Little Richard; The Rolling Stones, Exile on Main St. Bluegrass: Jerry Douglas, Russ Barenberg and Edgar Meyer, Skip, Hop and Wobble. Contemporary country: Sara Evans, Born to Fly; Mark O'Connor, The New Nashville Cats. Singer/songwriter: Bob Dylan, John Wesley Harding. Pop/world: Paul Simon, Graceland.

More by Kristine Peashock


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