Keith Dion has had an astounding career as a musician, songwriter, producer, and filmmaker.
But the story of what made this musician great goes much deeper. What made this musician great is an incredible story of tenacity. Severely abused and then abandoned by his parents, he determined he would succeed. He was inspired to become a musician by Jimi Hendrix. Many years later he hooked up with Jimi Hendrix's bass player, Noel Redding.
Most well-known as being the producer, manager and bandleader for the late Noel Redding of The Jimi Hendrix Experience, he also has produced records for Arthur Lee and Love, and has played in New Zealand’s classic cult band The Ponsonby DC’s, as well as San Francisco alternative groups The Ophelias, 3:05 AM, and Corsica, producing records for all of them along the way.
Over the years he also recorded or performed with members of The Kinks, Thin Lizzy, Santana, The Counting Crows, Weather Report, Herbie Hancock’s Headhunters, and The Mahavishnu Orchestra. Most recently he’s released the very critically acclaimed collaboration with Jefferson Starship members Diana Mangano and Prairie Prince - Reno Nevada and Other Songs of Gambling, Vice and Betrayal as The Great American Robber Barons.
After both of his parents died in Reno, Nevada, the San Francisco-based artist discovered a whole new dimension to his musicality. “Their deaths made me face a lot of stuff, and I keep peeling back the layers and finding these dark aspects inside of me,” Keith says. “Every song on the album is about gambling, vice and betrayal, and we really mean it.”
In this interview he shares his experiences of 30 years, playing with famous people and his record deals. But, it took the death of his parents for him to start writing lyrics.
In Snapshots of Heaven and Hell, he shares how he survived filicide and extreme childhood abuse at the hands of his Vietnam Era PTSD damaged father.