Pedal steel player Ben Keith dies at 73
Wednesday, July 28, 2010
– Ben Keith, a longtime sideman to Neil Young on pedal steel, died at age 73.
Keith died of a heart attack while on Young's northern California ranch, according to the Los Angeles Times. Young mentioned Keith's death during a concert July 26 in Winnipeg, Canada.
Keith played on Patsy Cline's I Fall to Pieces.
He was born in Fort Riley, Kansas in 1937 and became a session player in Nashville for many years. Among those he played with live or in the studio were Emmylou Harris Willie Nelson, Linda Ronstadt, Waylon Jennings, Ringo Starr and Crosby, Stills & Nash. Keith produced Jewel's 1995 debut, "Pieces of You."
Keith met Young in 1971 during work on his "Harvest" recording because Young needed a pedal steel player. Keith played on more than a dozen albums and tours with Young.
Neil Young News, a blog dedicated to Young, said "Legend has it that Neil asked bassist Tim Drummond if he knew any pedal-steel players in town. Tim contacted Ben, who lived in town and off he went to the studio: "I didn't know who anyone was, so I asked, who's that guy over there?" and was told "that's Neil Young".
More news for Neil Young
CD reviews for Neil Young
It is understandable that fans might anticipate a stripped-down, acoustic guitar-driven affair with plenty of harmonica when they learn that Neil Young's new album is largely a collection of traditional American folk songs. But then you throw in the fact that Young is backed by the powerhouse rock trio Crazy Horse for the first time in nine years, and those expectations go straight out the window.
Young generally recruits the talents of Crazy Horse's three members - Ralph Molina, »»»
Editorial: Walking the talk
When names like Hank Williams, Johnny Cash, Waylon and the Hag are invoked, you're talking hard core country. These are the touchstones of country , the guys who made country music what it was and still is (or maybe can be). When these folks would sing about being down-and-out and the rough-and-tumble, they knew of what they were singing about. Fast forward a few years to the country singers of today. »»»
Concert Review: With or without band, Isbell satisfies
Usually, when an artist performs without his regular backing band, it becomes about mathematics of subtraction. That artist is armed with far fewer artistic weapons at his/her disposal, after all. In Jason Isbell's case, though, when he performed with just his wife and fiddler Amanda Shires, it was more about substitution than subtraction.... »»»
Concert Review: Grammy nominations aside, Yola, Kiah are the real deal
Grammy nominations do not make the artist, but Yola and opener Amythyst Kiah underscored time and again on this night that the honors were well deserved.
In fact, Yola and Kiah's other group, Our Native Daughters, are nominated in the same category - Best American Roots. Yola has three other nominations as well.
The clear winners... »»»
Follow Country Standard Time
Elsewhere in the news
Currently at the CST blogs
When recording its album "Play the Hits," The Mavericks approached this covers album in much the same way the band creates any of its other studio albums. "Above all, we're always trying to reach a certain musical bar that we... »»»
The release of "Onward," his eighth studio album, finds veteran Texas Music/Red Dirt artist Stoney Larue at a crossroads. After almost two decades on the road, playing 200 shows a year across America and abroad, he has had success... »»»
Eleven years ago, Kelly stepped away from music. She had just finished touring on 2007's exquisite "Translated From Love" and felt the angst of being a travelling musician with family at home. At that point, Willis and her husband, musician/producer Bruce Robison,... »»»
Hawktail features some of the finest players of a generation in traditional American acoustic music. The product of their collaboration, "Formations," is a testament to the musical milieu in which they create. »»»