The Proper Authorities

The Proper Authorities


Rock and roll with a dash of soul, a pinch of thought, and some tech control.


A few decades ago, a baby boy's parents made a critical child-rearing error: they bought their infant son a toy drum. This error would be compounded by several other errors: playing Motown albums; providing piano lessons; not hiding their old acoustic guitar well enough; singing unabashedly out loud, in key, and with harmony to their kids; etc.

(So as far as "errors" go, they did just fine. Could've been much worse.)

And now that son, tainted by a creative drive so chronic that his day job even involves music, must search for a way to stop the raging beast that dwells inside him. (Yeah, that last bit got changed up so as not to invite getting sued by that 70's TV show with the big green dude.)

The Proper Authorities is the solo musical project of singer, songwriter, and multi-instrumentalist Keith Adams. Known primarily for his drum work with the bands Sound Mind, 1000 Watt Revival, and most recently Giant Wow, Adams created the Proper Authorities to branch out and work on his lifelong compositional and performance skills.

As in past groups, Adams continues to experiment strongly in the modern pop rock genre with sounds and grooves that aren't usually found there. His appreciation for over-the-top arrangements is tempered nicely by his love for good hooks. His lyrics touch on a variety of subjects: matters of self; emotional snapshots in time; tragic and comic figures; and the things that we all want... or at least think that we want.

The Proper Authorities released its first full-length recording through the imprint Talon First Records in January 2006. The LP CD, entitled "Public Service Announcement," features 13 tracks and over 50 minutes worth of high-impact material for listeners and lovers of heavy guitar, electro textures, lush vocal harmonies, and booty-shaking grooves.

Drawing on his professional skills as a multimedia developer, Adams released a sci-fi music video for the song “Devastate” in April 2006. This self-produced hybrid of CGI animation and live action features five holographic versions of himself performing on each instrument in the song, an Earth-threatening group of incoming asteroids, and a spaceship fitted with an enormous sound system of doom.

For more information, please contact The Proper Authorities at You have just been properly authorized.


The Ninth Life Jitters

Written By: Keith Adams

You used to be invincible
You used to be unkillable
I want to tell you about a big surprise
Bittersweet and kinda small in size
A mix of freedom and compromise
Right between the eyes

Eight down and one to go
The fact you've made it this long is a miracle
With eight down and one to go
You'd better get your trouble under control
You finally realized they're out to get you?
You've got the ninth life jitters

You used to seem unstoppable
And I used to think you were undroppable, yeah
You had a good run of crazy luck
But you were reckless and you got torn up
Too proud to fold, so they called your bluff
And now you know you're stuck here with the rest of us

Come on and get yourself together, man
You must adapt; make yourself a new plan
Come on and get yourself together, man
You must adapt, you must adapt, you must adapt
Come on

And you used to be invincible
You used to be unkillable
You used to be collisional
I think you used to be a little mental
You used to be invincible...
Unkillable... collisional... precisional...
Intentional... unconventional... unmentionable...
Detentional... torrential...
And it seems you're right here with the rest of us
Like all good things, your end is eventual

© 2005 Keith D. Adams, Authoritative Music (ASCAP)

Losing The Now

Written By: The Proper Authorities

The willow tree leans into water
Its calm reflection off the shore
It reaches out, beset by gravity
But is it also trying to get a little taste
Of something more

You've got me sitting on the corner
You've got me waiting at the door
My expectations have been brutalized
(I'm not so wise)
I’ve got to come to terms that I might never know
That something more

Though some bright lights shine up ahead
And there's joy in the words you’ve said
I'm not sure just how, but I'm losing the now
To allow for what might be
So the future cannot be foreseen
But the signs all around me have got to mean
It's my turn

It's tough to balance self-perception
Too strong or weak will bar your way
From understanding anybody else
(A soul to tell)
And in that empathy we'd simplify the bonds we complicate

Do I discount the things I’ve been through
Since most everyone’s been through them too?
I'm not sure just how, but I'm losing the now
To allow for what might be

© 2005 Keith D. Adams, Authoritative Music (ASCAP)


Written By: The Proper Authorities

I want you to understand me
That I don’t need a reprimanding
Or a talking-to
When I want to talk to you
There shouldn’t be a penalty

I want you to understand this
‘Cuz pretty soon I’m gonna get pissed
When you play this game
I can play it just the same
And there shouldn’t be a penalty
Not for me

And all this time
You know this time is all for you
It’s all for you
Until the end -- yeah

I want you to understand me
That I’m not part of what you’re planning
It’s like you’ll win a prize
If you try to cut me down to size
So I shouldn’t get a penalty

I want you to understand this
‘Cuz pretty soon I’m gonna get pissed
When you play this game
I can give it back the same
And I shouldn’t get a penalty
No, sirree

(There shouldn’t be a penalty)
I want you to understand
I need you to understand
That I don’t need a penalty

© 2004 Keith D. Adams, Authoritative Music (ASCAP)


Written By: Keith D. Adams

Listen up, it’s about to go awry
Squint your eyes at the lightning in the sky
Sets the tone when it cuts into the night
Only to fade

But then a rumble comes to take its place
A loud crack, and the calm is soon erased
And you find that was only just a taste
It’s not OK

And you know (there’s no way out)
And we know (there’s no way out)
And we’ve come (to take you out of this place)

CHORUS: We’ve got the arsenal
To intercept and devastate
We’re making this personal
No way we’ll ever let you get away

So you’re here like you’ve come to save us all
Spreading rumors of writing on the wall
But the problems are mostly all your fault
You are to blame

So bring your best when it’s time to take your shot
Make sure enough is the least of what you got
Cuz it’ll hurt if ready’s what you’re not
This ain’t no game

This can’t wait for another day
The burn will go in deep and penetrate


Written By: Keith D. Adams

It wasn't me
I'm telling you it wasn't me
I had nothing to do with it
Nothing whatsoever, absolutely nothing, never

Unless you count the idea
Behind the entire thing
Lightbulb gleaming
Like an obscene diamond ring

And it hurts sometimes to know
I was the one who made you cry
So I'll just shrug off my involvement
And cast that pesky guilt aside
I'm rethinking what it means
To feel clean


Unless I discount my need
To step up and make a change
The fabric of our lives is
Out of fashion, and it's stained

It wasn't me
I know it’s a big mystery
But my name’s not a clue in it
Nothing whatsoever, absolutely nothing, never

I see you bait that hook with your “I’m gonna get you” look
When you bite your smiling lips
You shoot from the hip (and oh, those hips)
And you twirl and caress your hair
It’s not fair, and you just don’t care
‘Cuz you’re going to get me back
And frankly my dear, I’m OK with that
But let’s see… could you be trying to get a confession from me?
And if that’s your plan, please understand that all I can say here is

It wasn't me
I know that it’s hard to believe
I just couldn’t go through with that
Nothing whatsoever, absolutely nothing, never
It wasn't me


"Public Service Announcement" (LP CD) featuring the tracks "The Ninth Life Jitters" and "Losing The Now"

NOW ON SALE at and iTunes