Heal Yourself or Die with the Blues
Raised in oil country in West-Texas, Preacher Keen's earliest musical influences came from the church----not the traditional organist and choir kind but the all out, over-the-top, hellfire and brimstone, emotionally charged hillbilly gospel kind served up in the fundamentalist churches attended by Keen's family. A trip with his mother to a black Baptist church for an inter-denominational service when he was five years old exposed him to the soulful singing style of another branch of the gospel tree, and it made an indelible impression. As a teenager he was bombarded with the ubiquitous country and top forty that was played on the local radio stations in Odessa, his hometown. A college friend in Lubbock turned him onto a record by Buddy Guy and Junior Wells and he quickly developed a passion for the blues. The rock songs of his earlier playing days quickly made way for more blues on the set list. Keen moved from Lubbock to Ft.Worth and on to Austin searching for experience and musical opportunity. In 1987 he began using Preacher as his performing name as a way of acknowledging his musical heritage from the church, but clubs, not churches were his primary venues. His new band, the Prodigal Sons fulfilled his dream of having a band that emphasized classic blues and original material. His first recording, "20th Century Man", recorded in Dallas, was a roots rock record. The song "All Good Criminals" became a video and received international exposure (especially the R rated version shown on the Playboy Channel!). The next record, recorded in Austin was "Preachin the Blues". It was primarily a blues record and it generated more interest in the Texas born, blues-rockin, singer-songwriter. Now, with the new record "Heal Yourself (Or Die with the Blues)", Keen's first three records have covered the musical territory listed on his business card----blues, rhythm, and rock. Preacher Keen is busy stirring the pot of musical influences with a new band and winning converts at every show----just what you would expect of a soul man!
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