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NJBS Interviews Dave Keyes

NJBS President, Cristy Benvenutti, interviews Dave Keyes on April 6, 2024. Native New Yorker, keyboardist, singer, and songwriter, Dave is a 30-year veteran of the Blues and American Roots music scenes. For much of the last 10 years, in addition to his own band and solo gigs, Dave worked with bluesman Popa Chubby, and R&R queen Ronnie Spector until her recent passing. Previously Dave had lengthy stints with such iconic and varied artists as Odetta, David Johansen, Bo Diddley, rockabilly legend Sleepy LaBeef, and gospel great Marie Knight.  Dave’s music finds its roots in deep blues, soul, and rock and roll. These roots are the foundation of his recent albums and vibrant live shows. His well-received previous albums are rambunctious sets of mostly original material that range from New Orleans second-line funk to slow sensual blues, swaggering shuffles, and boisterous rocking boogie-woogie. Dave’s live work with his own band has earned him many kudos including winning the Blues Foundation’s International Blues Challenge. He has made numerous festival appearances both in the US and abroad including 3 appearances at France’s prestigious Cognac Blues Festival and annual appearances at Lugano, Switzerland’s Blues to Bop festival among many others. He also worked as a sideman for a who’s who of roots, soul, and Rock and Roll music masters such as Eddy Clearwater, Big Jay McNeely, Tracy Nelson, Gladys Knight, Pam Tillis, Darlene Love, and the late great Ruth Brown, Lou Rawls and Levon Helm. Dave’s extensive Broadway and TV music credits include being the conductor for the 6-year Broadway run of the Grammy-winning show “Smokey Joe’s Cafe”. Other credits include most recently music directing “Rock and Roll Man” a show based on the life of trailblazing DJ Alan Freed. Watch the interview below:

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