Dave Keller on the Taz Michaels Show
Words by John Howland. Photo by Lily Chau.
Montpelier’s own soulful bluesman Dave Keller stopped in this week for the second hour of a heavy-hitting Tazday Twilight Blues. Fresh off his big win for the Best Self-Produced Blues Album of 2012 at the International Blues Challenge, Memphis, TN, sponsored by The Blues Foundation, Keller is pumped and ready to keep pushing his music. Armed with a solid lineup of upcoming shows, Keller is looking to keep the fire underneath 'Where I’m Coming From' lit while preparing to head back to Memphis to take part in some co-writing, with some of the industries best. It won't be the first time Keller gets to work with the greats; as it was an unforeseen encounter with his idol, Ronnie Earl, at a Stevie Wonder show that lit the match underneath his carrier.
After meeting Earl in 2009, Keller appeared on Earl’s 2010 album, 'Living in the Light.' The album received a BMA nomination and Keller has been steadily gaining recognition since—the Mighty Sam McClain said, “He's for REAL. Y'all check him out!" Dave is definitely for real and its about time people started tuning in to what the twenty-year blues veteran has to say. Besides the thrilling success of 'Where I’m Coming From,' Keller is also still promoting his first, self-produced album, 'Play for Love,' released in 2007.
It couldn’t be clearer that the love is what it’s all about for Keller as we talked about the long road to where he stands today. “I tried to play anywhere that would have me,” he commented, when talking about his early pursuits in the Burlington scene. Keller didn’t start playing the guitar or listening to the blues until he got hooked on Hendrix and was half way through his English degree at Wesleyan University in Connecticut. “I was allowed to not be good enough and still play live,” he said as he talked about his love for Burlington’s supportive scene and his disappointment in society's notion that you have to be talented to play on stage. Doing what you love is what drives Keller as he said, “If you keep doing things that you love, how can you not be successful at it.” Keller’s tenfold dedication to his passion is inspiring and should be a model for how we all go about our days.
Despite being a busy father of two, Keller has got a lot on his plate in the next month as he and good friend Johnny Rawls will be touring the Green Mountain State with shows at The Black Door, in Montpelier on Thursday, May 3rd at 8:00; The River Arts Center, in Morrisville on Friday, May 4th at 6:00; Stone Church Arts in Bellows Falls on Saturday, May 5th at 6:30 and Club Metronome in Burlington on Sunday, May 6th at 6:30. After his four-show stint with Johnny, you can look for Keller at the Rum Boogie Café in Memphis, Tennessee on Wednesday, May 9th at 5:00 and at the North Atlantic Blues Fest on the 14th and 15th of July in Rockland, Maine. I know I say it all the time, but I’ve been blessed to meet some truly inspirational and highly talented musicians. So, if you’re into the blues, you're not going to want to miss out on what Keller’s got in store. For more information on Dave Keller and his growing career as well as live tracks check out: