Tommy Keenum

Tommy Keenum

 Nashville, Tennessee, USA
BandPopSinger/Songwriter

Eclectic songs with classic soul and jazz influences. about life, death, love and change. The band can range from a stripped down acoustic jazz quartet to a full blown band with horn section and strings depending on the occassion. The one constant is Tommy's emotional song delivery.

Biography

An accomplished visual artist and designer of everything from exquisite houses to burlesque costumes, Tommy Keenum is now bringing his distinctive style and eclectic vision to song writing. For the past decade Keenum has been a sought after side-man, lending vocals, sax, and percussion to a wide variety of rock and pop acts including David Mead, Bobby Bare Jr., Sara Beck, and the greatest '80's cover band of all time "Guilty Pleasures". His publishiing company "Other Boy Music" was established with BMI in 2009 and is home to over 50 songs.
For his first solo effort in 2005, Tommy meticulously selected gems from his favorite songwriters of the ’70’s, and with dreamy production from “Silver Seas” front man Daniel Tashian, the result is the perfect Sunday chill record.
In 2008, Tommy released his first self-penned record,”Details Within…”. He dipped into almost every genre and found a way to combine influences as disparate as Joni Mitchell and Marvin Gaye. Although eclectic, what ties it all together is the underlying theme of self-empowerment and Keenum’s “heart on sleeve” vocals. The backing band is a team of all stars that turn in some amazing performances.
With his 2009 release “All These Pretty Thoughts”, Tommy stripped everything down and enlisted retro-pop master Brad Jones to produce. The songs go from sparse to fully orchestrated; sometimes in the space of one phrase and Keenum’s soulful delivery and lush harmonies bring honest emotion to the stories.
His latest effort "Sometimes Never Always" (2011) is a tribute to his family. When his father's health began to fail Tommy decided to help him realize his dream of "being in the music business". Several of the songs are inspired by the poems his dad had written over the years. The result is a retro-country/soul lovefest not to be missed!

Lyrics

Abstract/Concrete

Written By: Tommy Keenum

ABSTRACT CONCRETE
Life has no meaning... but lives do
Thoughts are more important than voodoo
Feelings are the pathway to you

Sidewalks and building blocks and temples made of stone
Meaning and purpose, no one wants to feel alone
Each time I find myself feeling small and incomplete...

Get outta my head and I use my feet
I take my dreams and I hit the street
Moving out of the abstract and onto the concrete

The judge and the critic that live inside my head
Ranking and rating what I should have done instead
Whenever I find myself afraid to risk defeat

I face my fear and I hit the street
Say my peace then I press repeat
Grab the wheel of my life and get out of the back seat

All these pretty thoughts... all this important talk...
What are you doing? What are you doing? What are you doing?

-inst-

Get outta my head and I use my feet
I take my dreams and I hit the street
Moving out of the abstract and onto the concrete

Life has no meaning... but Lives do

Tommy Keenum 6/08

There He Goes

Written By: Tommy Keenum

There He Goes

"In six weeks I'll be dead"...that's what her old man said
And she thought,he's just being dramatic...
He sometimes used that tactic when the feelings start
When someone bypassed his head and got next to his heart
Oh... oh... no one sets out to be a bad father
Oh... oh...all men want to protect their daughters at the start...

"In six years I'll be free...Please say you'll wait for me"
And she thought, what if your killed in there...
Please say that you won't dare when the craving starts
When you get into your head and you fall apart
Oh...oh...
No one sets out to be addicted
Oh... oh... but a man's got to deal with all that's inflicted on him
So fill it up to the rim

Now she's standing in a field of stone looking down at wings of silver
And someone beside her whispers "there he goes"
Gone from my sight she thinks...only from my eyes
Oh... oh... that is all Oh... oh... that is all

They've been leaving since she was a child
All the men in her life are gorgeous and wild
And they leave her with a bigger space inside
The roller coaster is the only ride she knows
Oh oh... she knows... oh she knows
-Inst-
"In six months I'll be back" the young man said as she helped him pack
And she thought he's just being kind...
So she lied and said that she'd be fine before her tears could start
Before he bypassed her head and got next to her heart...
Next to her heart... ooh ... ooh... ooh...

Now she's standing in a field of air looking up at wings of silver
and a voice inside her whispers "there he goes"
Gone from my sight she thinks... only from my eyes
Oh oh... that is all Oh... oh... that is all

Tommy Keenum 07/08

Hey Harry Hay

Written By: Tommy Keenum

Hey Harry Hay

Hay! you better tuck those flowers underneath
If you want to get through school with a full set of teeth
You can't walk that way... you can't talk that way

Hey Harry Hay Hay Hay
Hey Harry..............

Hay! you better keep your colors to yourself
Deviation can be tough on your health
You might as well be dead if they think your red, cause

We the people of society...
Have a plan about the way a man's supposed to be
Something queer in between the rigid lines
Can erode the future progress of mankind
And bring the end of time Hey!

-inst-

Hey Harry Hay Hay Hay
Hey Harry Hay Hay Hay
Hey Harry Hay Hay Hay
Hey Harry..............

Hey! How did the girlie man strong
When all the experts said you're wired wrong
You had the will to say... I'm just fine this way

Hey Harry Hay Hay Hay
Hey Harry...

Hey! who knew a faerie could be radical?...
Who knew a pervert could be practical?...
It took guts to state in 1948 that

We the Androgynes of the world
Aren't quite so consumed with what is boy and girl
Something queer in between the rigid lines
Can fuel the future social progress of mankind
And a real good time... Hey!

-inst-

Hey Harry Hay Hay Hay
Hey Harry Hay Hay Hay
Hey Harry Hay Hay Hay
Hey Harry.............. Hay!

Tommy Keenum 10/08

Come On Now

Written By: Tommy Keenum

Come on Now
It is said that all we really need we have deep down inside
All while reaching out for the wrong thing
I've been waking up from dreams in which the two of us collide
Alarm...a light... a longing

Well I could just lay here a while
Confrontation's never been my style

Come on now boy! get it together
Come on now world! give me a sign
Come on now universe! make all your shining stars align
To put that smile back on his face... things fall into place
Come... on... now

When you wake up in a city it's like a caravan
The cars... the music... the laughter
When you break up in a city there's nothing sadder than
The cars... the music... the laughter

Well I could just stay here in bed
Play the rest out in my head
-REPEAT CHORUS-

This is just one moment in time
But it's the best one to shine
So come now is all that exists
So why resist....I tell you this... it can be bliss

Well I could just lay here a while
Confrontation's never been my style...
-Repeat chorus-

When The Void Looms

Written By: Tommy Keenum

When the Void Looms

When the void looms... whirl is king
When desire blooms the road's the thing
Gears need to shift... wheels gotta turn...miles have to fly

In your dark room... images sing
When the void looms... eveything rings
You need a lift... you want to burn... you have to try

Stand in the void and cry out loud
Pretty soon you'll draw a crowd
All the help you need will find you
Stand in the void and cry out loud
You'll... be... found...

When the crowds crush...escape is the thing
As the floods rush...denial is king
Tears want to flow... mouth wants to scream ...feet want to fly

In your bounty you feel ashamed
As the crowds crush give it a name
You want to go... but you've got a dream... so you have to try

Stand in the crowd and cry out loud
Pretty soon you will be proud
Everything you need will find you
Stand in the crowd and cry out loud
You'll... be... found...
You'll... be... found...

Better Man

Written By: Tommy Keenum

Better Man
I'm gonna call everyone that I love tonight,
Tell them all how they fit just right in my master plan...
to be a better man

I'm gonna smile at everybody I see today,
Beam a little beam of pure joy their way cause love, man...
Is a better plan

Oh Oh... I confess that I'm dedicated
Oh Oh... to makin' my days less complicated
Oh Oh... it's gonna be okay....

I'm gonna take my time drivin' round today
Not get mad at people in my way cause a patient man...
Is a better man

I'm gonna turn down the man on the radio
Whose tryin' to turn people from friend to foe
Cause love man... is a better plan

Oh Oh... I confess that I'm dedicated
Oh Oh... to makin' my days less complicated
Oh Oh... it's gonna be okay....

-inst-

Oh Oh... I confess that I'm dedicated
Oh Oh... to makin' my life less complicated
Oh Oh... it's gonna be okay....

I'm gonna call everyone that I love tonight,
Tell them all how they fit just right in my master plan...
to be a better man

Sometimes, Never, Always

Written By: Tommy Keenum

Sometimes,Never, Always

Always is sometimes too long...Never is always too strong
Sometimes it's better to let this old life roll along

If we always want more... and we're never for sure...
We might miss it when everything turns out just right

So let time unwind... take the path you find...
Sometimes quirky...Never cruel...Always kind...

-inst

So Let down your guard... and just play your cards
Sometimes Happy... always human... never hard

Always is never enough...Never is always too tough
Sometimes it's better to let this old life roll along

If we're always for sure... and we never want more...
We might miss it when everything turns out just right

So sing this song... or just hum along....
Sometimes wayward... always worthy... never wrong

Make Me The One

Written By: Tommy Keenum


Make me the one...
Make me the one...

You just click and connect in this brave new world
With so many hi-tech ways for a boy and girl
But when you grow old in a crowd it gets lonely, it gets loud
I will be the kind of man who makes you proud

So make me the one...you think about when something goes your way
Make me the one you want to tell about your crazy day
I wanna be the first one you look for when you walk into a room
You can have all the friends you want
But make me the one

Don't get me wrong I love my life I'm a happy man
I don't need somebody else to complete my plan
But we can help each other grow and keep our feet on the solid ground
Cause when a tree falls alone no one hears a sound

So make me the one...you think about when something goes your way
Make me the one...You want to tell about your crazy day
I wanna be the one you look for first when you walk into a room
You can have all the friends you want
But make me the one

Baby, baby it's big,big world out there and you can lose yourself
I wanna be the one to remind you when there's no one left
Baby! we... belong together, a little child could see
You can just be natural with me

So when your fears and your dreams collide...
You got all that you need inside...
And if your looking to share the ride...
Make me the one.

Discography

"Sometimes Never Always" (2/2011)
"All These Pretty Thoughts" (8/09)
"Details Within..." (1/08)
"Sentimental Jamboree" (10/06)

Set List

I am fortunate to have a group of world class musicians to play with. They can do anything and I really try to show that off. Although well rehearsed, I like for the shows to have a spontaneous feel and I tailor my set list to each gig depending on the audience and what I want to say.