Tom Keifer Steps Away From Cinderella... Down to Concert Pub North

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Tom Keifer plays his first non-Cinderella show ever in Houston this Friday, tomorrow, at Concert Pub North on F.M. 1960. Mostly he'll play songs from his first-ever solo album, The Way Life Goes, but he'll let it get loud too, playing Cinderella songs and even a segment of what he calls "storyteller stuff."

Cinderella shows are so high-energy, it could be amazing to see him possibly sitting, possibly with an acoustic guitar, discussing the meanings or the origins of his songs.

When Cinderella's activity slowed in the mid-'90s, Keifer moved to Nashville, intending to pursue a songwriting career and record a solo record. You'll remember that at the time, '80s bands tended to get all lumped together and although Cinderella had little in common with the worst of the overblown "hair bands," their career seemed to be at a low ebb.

But Keifer evenutally met and married Music Row staff songwriter Savannah Snow, and together they started writing the songs that would become The Way Life Goes. Cinderella returned to active duty not long after Keifer relocated, and has toured the world nine times since then.

The band has not recorded an original album since 1994's Still Climbing, though, so Keifer's solo career became this album he'd set aside and work on in between tours. (He and Snow now have a nine-year-old son.)

Keifer recorded The Way Life Goes with an assortment of Nashville pros, and friends from elsewhere who'd stop by. Keifer can't even remember all the names himself, but the one that sticks out is Bobby Keys, best-known for his hitches with the Rolling Stones and Joe Ely Band. Cinderella fans will remember that Keifer plays saxophone himself at every show, so to see Keys' name on the album is a shock, but it shows just what a special record he's has put together.

Keifer is also bringing some heavy players on the road with him, especially to see in such an intimate venue as Concert Pub North. Keifer humbly refers to them as "some of my friends from Nashville," but this is the band he's traveling with: Paul Simmons (Th' Legendary Shack Shakers, Reverend Horton Heat, Petra) on drums; bassist Billy Mercer (Ryan Adams); Caprice guitarist Tony Higbee and keyboardist Paul Taylor (Alice Cooper, Winger).

Perhaps Keifer will even play some sax. The Way Life Goes is streaming, for free, now at tomkeifer.com and available at Amazon.

Tom Keifer and his solo band play tomorrow night at Concert Pub North. 2470 FM 1960 W. Tickets are available at the door or through Ticketmaster.

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