Preacher Keen's Biography

"Born in an oil-patch Texas town
Firecracker baby with a brimstone crown,
A Texas dandy and an Oklahoma queen,
Bear a blue-eyed child they never dreamed
Would be preachin the blues"
Preachin the Blues 1998

Charlie "Preacher" Keen burst into this world on July 4th and grew up in the giant oil patch of West Texas----home to such artists as Roy Orbison and Buddy Holly. His earliest musical influences came from the church----not the organist and choir kind but rather the all out, over-the-top, hellfire and brimstone, holly-roller kind served up in the churches attended by his family. His mother took him to a special service at a Black Baptist Church at the age of five where he was exposed to a soulful singing style that contrasted with the "hillbilly gospel" singing style of his parent's church. A short time later she took him to a concert with gospel quartets where smiles and energy filled the auditorium. The dye was cast! He played in rock bands in his early West-Texas playing days but after hearing a record by Junior Wells and Buddy Guy in college he quickly developed a passion for the blues. He and three of five bandmates decided to move to Ft. Worth, Texas for more musical opportunity. Blues standards and original material started making appearances on the band's set lists. In 1979 he moved to Austin, Texas and traded Charlie for "Preacher" to acknowledge his musical roots from the church. He began his recording career with his first record, "Twentieth Century Man" that set the tone for the future----records with mixed genres, varying tempos, and a range of subject matter----not the kind of records you can hear one track and know what the rest of the record will be like! See him live and you will know why he is hard to describe but easy to like!