Songwriting for me is a way to express the tragedies and triumphs of my life. It's a free form of therapy that let’s me work through my subconscious thoughts as I continuously see new layers in the songs I write.
I’ve been writing songs all my life in my head. Never really finishing them, always afraid to sing them in front of other people. Afraid to say what I was really thinking. I put those fears behind me, and here I am.
After my divorce I realized I wasn’t going to be afraid of living any more, and expressing how I truly feel became imperative. It is amazing how going through a dramatic event in your life can change you, or more likely allow who you really are to come out. I realize now that I was trying to be someone I wasn’t, to make the women I was with happy, but you can’t make someone happy, they have to be happy on their own, and you can’t truly live without being yourself.
I had peeled back all the layers of person I had picked up and carried with me for so long, what I thought society wanted for me. I was left with a raw humbled bare bones self… and i began to rebuild with the vision of who I wanted to be, not what i thought anyone else wanted me to be. I’ve had to make compromises, rethink my steps, fall down and pick myself up a few times but I wouldn’t go back, I did not like myself then.
So I reached that point, with the help of a few good friends, swallowed my fears and stepped onto a stage with my guitar and since then music has been my savior, my spirituality. Its connected me to people in ways I didn’t think possible, its kept me going and always promises more.
I write from personal experience on the whole, and even when I’m telling a tale, its grounded in something that’s happened to me… a sliver of time in the crazy ride that has been my life. Hopefully that honesty comes through.
I write about everything, often about love or emotions surrounding relationships, those seem to be the songs that people respond to the most. I have had the pleasure of knowing a few amazing women in my life and hopefully when I’ve written a song about them they can hear and know that I genuinely loved them. I may not have always been the best man I could have been, but if I said it, I meant it…
I mostly write by just picking up the guitar strumming a C chord and blurting out the first thing i think of, and then reflect on why I had that thought, then add some context to it… maybe pull away from the literal meaning so it is more free to evolve.
Sometimes an idea comes to me and I purposely push to get at a complete picture, that’s the beauty of music though, it can become whatever you want it to be, its not burdened by boundaries and the next time you play it can be whatever you like, something completely new.
I have goals of writing albums and touring, I really can’t imagine a happier life then being able to play music and see the world.
Thanks for reading, I hope to meet you and sing for you in person. John
by John L Keck
by John L Keck
1: What artist would you most love to work with?
I don't really think about that, I guess Willie Nelson
2: What instrument brings you the most joy?
Hearing the Cello, playing the guitar.
3: What was the worst advice?
"Write something poppy." - an ex
4: What was your first concert?
5: What/where is the best road food?
An apple, I know i'm boring, but I love apples.
6: What’s the best music advice you ever got?
"When your friends go out drinking, stay home and practice. And use a metronome." - Eric Lambert
7: Who is your most surprising inspiration?