Jim Keller & The Usual Mess feat. Tony Scherr, Yuval Lion, Ben Zwerin, Rich Hinman, Chris Bruce, Jon Cowherd, Shawn Pelton, Dan Mintseris and whomever walks in off the street…

February 9th, 2020 7pm   Stage 2

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Celebrating Rockwood Music Hall's 15-Year Anniversary!

Jim Keller & The Usual Mess feat. Tony Scherr, Yuval Lion, Ben Zwerin, Rich Hinman, Chris Bruce, Jon Cowherd, Shawn Pelton, Dan Mintseris and whomever walks in off the street…

Jim Keller & The Usual Mess

With an impressive resume that includes co-founding Tommy Tutone and co-writing the ubiquitous '80s pop sensation "867-5309/Jenny," Keller began recording solo in 2010. This album marks Keller's third collaboration with producer Hector Castillo (Beck, David Bowie, Brazilian Girls), who shared co-producing duties with Byron Isaacs (Levon Helm) this time around. But in some key respects, Heaven Can Wait is a departure from Jim's previous releases.

"For years, I had a consistent band," he explains. "I recorded and performed behind my last two CDs with them. Then Byron Isaacs got too busy with Levon Helm; Chris Masterson went off with Steve Earle and Glenn Patscha lit out with Sheryl Crow. "So for the next two years I gigged with some of the best players in town, stringing together a different combination of musicians for every show. In the process I've worked with some of the most wonderful players in New York, using my weekly jam sessions in a studio in the back of a quilting factory as a home base." The jam sessions have affectionately become known as Jim Keller's Revolving Door.

"There are so many brilliant players in this town and I am blessed whenever I am in the room with them," Jim enthuses. "They all bring something original and new to the mix. It's like a pickup basketball game: you got a three-point shooter, you hit him at the three-point line; you got a guy who can pass, you give him the ball. There is nothing more insane than five guys doing their thing in a way that works as a whole."