Arise Music Festival is just around the corner, and we are so excited to see all of your beautiful faces! We have been in touch with many of the artists preforming for you all, and we have one very special headliner, Keller Williams, that took a moment to share some time chatting with us and we are happy to share this with you guys. Check it out below, and get your tickets to ARISE Music Festival!

First of all, thanks so much for taking the time to talk with us today. We want to know a little bit about your past. How did you first get interested in music?

I’ve always had a love for music as far back as I can remember. I started playing at a pretty young age and that carried into highschool when I started playing live, and in bands.

How did your parents feel about you pursuing music as a career?

They were always really supportive, they were just happy I didn’t have to ask them for money.

So you have two children of your own now, are any of them trying to follow in dad’s footsteps?

You know, they have a really great theater program here in the area, really great ones with big budgets, that my daughter absolutely loves. Both my son and daughter have great singing voices. There are instruments all over the house, I’m not pushing it on them but, it’d be really great to have a rhythm section around.

Oh yea, like a future Keller family band!

Haha probably not, but it’s definitely interesting to think about.

Were they a big inspiration behind your “Kids” album?

You know the idea for that was around for a while, even before my kids even came. The fact that they came around during the inspiration, really helped push me to make it happen.

What was it like doing a children’s concert for the “Kids” tour?

Well the Kids shows were matinee shows that we had before my regular shows at night, the first couple of shows were  a bit confusing for people because we’d have tripping hippies show up for the kids show thinking it was my regular one, then we’d have parents show up at night with their kids, thinking it was the “Kids” show. So that was odd at the begining. We went all out though, we had full video, a balloon drop. My good friend set up this interactive drum circle, in the entrance right when everyone comes in, and they get to play around on those, then I have the show and I do the songs from the album and explain the looping. It was a lot of fun, but you know what, I’m retired from that now, haha, but that is currently one of my best selling records.

Well you’ve definitely put out a lot of other really great albums. Is there one that you are most proud of?

Well I don’t really listen to my own music, but about once a year I’ll pull up a few and I guess “Dance” is one that gets pulled out most often. Also, “Dream” which took about 3 years to complete, you know just to get all the people on the different tracks.

How about when you’re on tour, are there any rituals or anything that you like to do to get you prepared to go out there and jam?

Yea, I stick two slices of bologna in a pair of my Crocs and I walk around backstage. It just make me feel gushy and gooey. It’s kind of my thing. I really freak out when bologna is not on the ryder  for my shows. I can’t go onstage without the bologna.

Is there a certain brand you go for?

Oh no no no, my feet don’t know the difference between an Oscar Myer or Jimmy Dean.

Well that’s a unique way to get prepared, maybe it’ll catch on with other artists.

Well the big news lately is that you just had a new album come out, can you tell me a little bit about that and who joined you on there?

Yea it’s the second Grateful Grass album called DOS. The players are Michael Kang (violin), Jeff Austin (mandolin), and Keith Moseley (bass), and myself (guitar). It was part of a benefit show for The Rex Foundation. It was a really fun night with a lot of great performers, and the Grateful Grass portion is what made it to the album, all Grateful Dead music on bluegrass.

Well speaking of all these great artists you did the album with, do you every have any moments out on the road, maybe now or earlier in your career, that have made you a bit star struck?

I didn’t approach Mike Doughty recently, I’m a huge fan of his and his song writing. I could have said hey but I chose to lurk in the shadows. Also, I’m on my best behavior when I’m around any of the Grateful Dead, I see Bob Weir a lot, that was tricky in the beginning. It was wild rehearsing with him in this tiny room at Red Rocks where I had the opportunity to play with him.

Speaking of Red Rocks, do you have a favorite venue you like playing in?

Well Red Rocks of course, but also the Telluride Bluegrass Fest is a great venue, Telluride is like its own little world there.

What’s on the horizon for future projects?

I have a studio record all planned out in my mind, I’m going to go into the studio in September, and I’ll be focusing on a lot of upright bass sound and focusing more on the beats. I’d like to incorporate some of my favorite electronica beats, mixed with my style. Kind of create my own brand of acoustic dance music, or as I lovingly call it “ADM”.

Well we are looking forward to having you at ARISE music festival this weekend, there is alot of excitement surrounding that!

Oh yea that one is going to stretch out into different lands. Bill Nershi, Allie Craw, and Reed Mathis are all going to be playing with me, it’s going to be a blast.

We’re just one day out from the 2014 Arise Music Festival, and we can’t wait to see all your lovely faces out at Sunshine Ranch!