keith foti
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keith foti


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Keith Foti released his debut album "all that still remains" in December of 2004. The song "Out of This Town" is featured in the Alan Chan indie short film "Ring Road." The songs "Out of This Town", "Gloria" and other song samples can be heard at


Feeling a bit camera shy



Singer, songwriter and guitarist Keith Foti was driving along Santa Monica Boulevard when he noticed yet another consumer monument under construction, all in the name of progress.

“I started to think about all the things that aren’t here anymore, all the changes that have been made and all the people who’ve moved on,” he says. It was in that moment Keith found not only the title, but the heart of the matter of his solo debut album, All That Still Remains (Powerline Records).

The eleven songs (Keith calls them his “midnight ramblings, mood swings and roof top visions of hot tar barbecues...”) evoke the sounds and feelings of everyday life, with its mixed bag of emotions and its one constant: Change. The collection packs an emotional punch, its jagged-edged songs delivered with a passion that’s undeniable.

Recorded with engineer Jon Rustad at the Famous Bakery studios in Hollywood in late 2003 and early 2004, All That Still Remains features Nick Snow (bass) and Cary Kane(drums) plus Scott Shriner (Weezer bassist) and Chuck Kentis (Rod Stewart organ/keyboardist), both sitting in for the sessions (Raymond Horwitz has since been added to the core line-up on keyboards).

The evocative lead-off track, "Return to Gray," sets the tone. Shot through with Keith’s reflections on life's bittersweet realities, broken bonds and promises, “the gray” is what’s in between, as we seek and find the hope and love that inspires us to get up and do it all over again.

“It’s an intangible thing and hard to articulate, but even as I write them, the songs change shape. But then I started to realize it’s not really the songs that are changing, it’s me,” explains Keith.

"The Distance Between Us" is a downbeat meditation on the sometimes temporal nature of the most treasured relationships.

“I first realized that relationships are at the heart of everything when my uncle died,” explains Keith, citing his relative as a major source of inspiration. “He had nothing, so-to-speak, but knowing how much he changed my life, I realized he had everything.”

He’s also been inspired at different times by beat poet, Allen Ginsberg. Keith’s song “America” is “me after reading Howl,” he says. “I was doing a lot of writing when I read it this time. I sat down one day, and out came this long-winded poem, my own rant. I let it form itself.”

Keith began writing his songs with their dark but redemptive vision as a teenager in Fairview, New Jersey. Encouraged by a singer-songwriter friend to start playing the clubs, he worked open mic nights around Manhattan’s Lower East Side and by 1997, he’d formed a band with a bunch of Jersey kids he called The Dope Fiends. Beginning to color his heart-aching street songs with the lush shadings of strings, keyboards and thunderous drums, “I wanted to create a wave of emotion that traveled in sound,” he says.

Around that time, thinking that the pair would hit it off, a mutual friend arranged a meeting between Keith and singer-songwriter Jeff Buckley in Memphis Tennessee. For the most part, he’s quiet on the subject of Buckley, but Keith makes an appearance in Amazing Grace, the critically acclaimed documentary on the singer-songwriter who died in 1997.

Keith’s own "Out of This Town" from All That Still Remains also makes its screen debut this year in Alan Chan's independent short film, Ring Road. And Keith takes to the road himself for a season of touring with his band (as well as some solo dates) this spring.

All that will remain after this latest installment in the adventures of Keith Foti is a tale that’s yet to unfold. But rest assured it will include a good dose of change and will remain anything but static.

“Society tells us to live our life a certain way and I don’t want to do that,” he says. “The whole record was a process of changing, growing and finding the ability and courage to challenge those all that other stuff that was in my head.”