Pepper Keenan

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Pepper Keenan
W0828-Hellfest2013 Down PepperKeenan 69263.JPG
Pepper Keenan with Down live Hellfest, 2013
Background information
Born (1967-05-08) May 8, 1967 (age 52)
Origin Oxford, Mississippi, USA
Genres Heavy metal, sludge metal, crossover thrash, hardcore punk
Occupation(s)Musician, songwriter
InstrumentsGuitar, vocals, bass
Years active1989–present
Labels Sanctuary
Associated acts Corrosion of Conformity, Down, Metallica

Pepper J. Keenan (born May 8, 1967), is an American guitarist and vocalist, best known for his work with heavy metal bands Corrosion of Conformity and Down. He joined Corrosion of Conformity in 1989, [1] but did not become the lead singer until the recording of Deliverance in 1994. In 1991 he formed Down with Phil Anselmo of Pantera, Jimmy Bower of Eyehategod, and Kirk Windstein and Todd Strange of Crowbar.

Heavy metal is a genre of rock music that developed in the late 1960s and early 1970s, largely in the United Kingdom. With roots in blues rock, psychedelic rock, and acid rock, the bands that created heavy metal developed a thick, massive sound, characterized by highly amplified distortion, extended guitar solos, emphatic beats, and overall loudness. The genre's lyrics and performance styles are sometimes associated with aggression and machismo.

Corrosion of Conformity American heavy metal band from Raleigh, North Carolina formed in 1982

Corrosion of Conformity is an American heavy metal band from Raleigh, North Carolina, formed in 1982. This band has undergone multiple line-up changes throughout its existence with guitarist Woody Weatherman as the sole constant member. Weatherman, founding bassist Mike Dean, founding drummer Reed Mullin, and vocalist and rhythm guitarist Pepper Keenan are widely regarded as its classic line-up. After a hiatus in 2006, Corrosion of Conformity returned in 2010 without Keenan, who had been busy touring and recording with Down, but announced their reunion with him in December 2014.

Down (band) American heavy metal supergroup that formed in 1991 in New Orleans, Louisiana

Down is an American heavy metal supergroup that formed in 1991 in New Orleans, Louisiana. The band's current lineup consists of vocalist Phil Anselmo (Pantera), guitarist Pepper Keenan, guitarist Bobby Landgraf (Honky), bassist Pat Bruders (Goatwhore), and drummer Jimmy Bower. Since their formation, Down has gone on hiatus twice and they have released five studio albums. The first three were LPs entitled NOLA (1995), Down II: A Bustle in Your Hedgerow (2002), and Over the Under (2007). In 2008, the band began working on additional material, which resulted in two EPs entitled Down IV – Part I, released in September 2012 and Down IV – Part II, released in May 2014.


Personal life

Keenan was born in Oxford, Mississippi but now lives in New Orleans, where he owns a bar named "Le Bon Temps Roule." His father, a former musician, is a local real estate appraiser in New Orleans. While developing his playing style in New Orleans, Pepper served as a member of local band Graveyard Rodeo, and met and became friends with Corrosion of Conformity during their frequent shows at the infamous Franklin Avenue VFW Hall in New Orleans. Keenan became the father of a daughter named Flannery Rose Keenan, with his longtime girlfriend Anna Hrnjak on January 5, 2010. In an interview with, Keenan was asked about his thoughts on politics in which he responded "I mean, the Bible means a lot more to me than the Constitution and any fuckin' politics involved in this country or any other country." [2]

Oxford, Mississippi City in Mississippi, United States

Oxford is a city in, and the county seat of, Lafayette County, Mississippi, United States. Founded in 1837, it was named after the British university city of Oxford in hopes of having the state university located there, which it did successfully attract.

New Orleans Largest city in Louisiana

New Orleans is a consolidated city-parish located along the Mississippi River in the southeastern region of the U.S. state of Louisiana. With an estimated population of 391,006 in 2018, it is the most populous city in Louisiana. A major port, New Orleans is considered an economic and commercial hub for the broader Gulf Coast region of the United States.

Corrosion of Conformity

Keenan joined Corrosion of Conformity in 1989. Corrosion of Conformity released their third album called Blind with Keenan on rhythm guitar. After Karl Agell and Phil Swisher left the band (Swisher being replaced by original bassist Mike Dean), Keenan took over on vocals and guitar. Corrosion of Conformity have since released the albums Deliverance , Wiseblood , America's Volume Dealer , and In the Arms of God , as well as the live release, Live Volume . From 2006 to 2010, Corrosion of Conformity had been on hiatus. The band has since reunited and recorded an album without Keenan. [3] However, a possibility of Keenan re-joining C.O.C. remains, according to a message dated May 15, 2010, on the official C.O.C. website. According to drummer Reed Mullin, Corrosion of Conformity plans to reunite with Keenan in 2015 for a new album and tour. [4] Corrosion of Conformity performed their first show with the re-united Deliverance era line-up of Pepper Keenan, Woody Weatherman, Mike Dean, and Reed Mullin on March 7, 2015 in Manchester, England. [5] Their first U.S. tour with the re-united line-up, supporting Clutch, was announced on July 28, 2015. [6]

<i>Blind</i> (Corrosion of Conformity album) 1991 studio album by Corrosion of Conformity

Blind is the third studio album by American heavy metal band Corrosion of Conformity, released on November 5, 1991 by Relativity Records. This was Corrosion of Conformity's first album in six years since the release of Animosity, and their first release with rhythm guitarist Pepper Keenan as well as their only recording with Karl Agell on vocals, and the only one on which original bassist Mike Dean does not appear; Phil Swisher instead takes his place, his sole appearance on a COC album. The album saw Corrosion of Conformity change their crossover thrash sound of the 1980s to a more straightforward metal sound.

Mike Dean (musician) American heavy metal bass guitarist

Thomas Michael Dean is the bassist for American metal band Corrosion of Conformity. He sang on the band's early recordings from their crossover thrash era before leaving the band in 1987. In 1989 Dean, along with C.O.C. guitarist Woody Weatherman and artist Brian Walsby on drums, released the Snake Nation album on Caroline Records. Dean rejoined C.O.C. as the bass player and occasional vocalist in 1993 and has remained with the band since. Along with several production and engineering credits he also collaborated with Dave Grohl on the Probot song "Access Babylon", a return to the punk/metal fusion of old.

<i>Deliverance</i> (Corrosion of Conformity album) 1994 studio album by Corrosion of Conformity

Deliverance is the fourth album by Corrosion of Conformity, and the first on which Pepper Keenan was lead singer. It was also their first recording on Columbia Records. Kerrang! described Deliverance as a "true 90s classic". The song "Mano de Mono" is heard in the movie The Fan. The song "Albatross" is playable in the video game Guitar Hero: Metallica.


Keenan was a founding member of Down in 1991 along with Pantera's Phil Anselmo, Eyehategod's Jimmy Bower, and Crowbar's Kirk Windstein and Todd Strange. In 1995, Down released their debut album, NOLA . The band went on indefinite hiatus in 1996 but returned three years later with Pantera bassist Rex Brown replacing Strange. In 2002, Down released their second album Down II: A Bustle in Your Hedgerow . Following a second hiatus, Down released their third album entitled Down III: Over the Under in 2007. Down released their fourth album Down IV Part I – The Purple EP in September 2012 and Down IV – Part II of a four-part series of EPs.

Pantera American heavy metal band

Pantera was an American heavy metal band from Arlington, Texas. The group was formed in 1981 by the Abbott brothers – drummer Vinnie Paul and guitarist Dimebag Darrell – along with lead vocalist Terry Glaze. Bassist Rex Brown joined the band the following year, replacing Tommy D. Bradford, who was the unofficial original. Having started as a glam metal band, Pantera released four albums during the 1980s. Looking for a new and heavier sound, Pantera replaced Glaze with Phil Anselmo in late 1986 and released Power Metal in 1988. With its fifth album, 1990's Cowboys from Hell, Pantera introduced the groove metal genre, while its 1992 follow-up Vulgar Display of Power exhibited an even heavier sound. Far Beyond Driven (1994) debuted at number one on the Billboard 200. In addition to their contribution to the groove metal genre, Pantera is credited for being part of the second wave of thrash metal scene in the early-to-mid 1990s.

Phil Anselmo American musician

Philip Hansen Anselmo is an American heavy metal musician who is best known as the lead vocalist for Pantera, Down, and Superjoint Ritual. He is also the owner of Housecore Records and has been involved with several other bands.

Eyehategod American sludge metal band

Eyehategod is an American sludge metal band from New Orleans who formed in 1988. They have become one of the better known bands to emerge from the NOLA metal scene. Throughout the years, their core line-up has remained, with the exceptions of the bassist, a slot in which several musicians have played, and the death of drummer Joey LaCaze in 2013.


Keenan plays guitar and sings a part of the second verse on Metallica's cover of the Lynyrd Skynyrd song "Tuesday's Gone". He also recorded a number of other songs in the same session, but this was the only one given a general release (on the album Garage Inc. ), the others only being available as bootlegs. Keenan is good friends with lead singer and guitarist James Hetfield. Hetfield provided backing vocals on "Man or Ash" from Corrosion of Conformity's Wiseblood . Keenan auditioned for Metallica's vacant bass player position following Jason Newsted's departure from the band but lost out to former Suicidal Tendencies/Ozzy Osbourne bassist Robert Trujillo. Keenan's audition is shown in the Metallica documentary Some Kind of Monster . In addition to his contribution to the song "Tuesday's Gone" Pepper also appeared with Metallica onstage at the Download Festival in Donington, England in 2006 along with Matt Heafy of Trivium to provide additional vocals on the song "Die, Die My Darling" (a Misfits cover). This song was played at the end of Metallica's headlining set.

Metallica American heavy metal band

Metallica is an American heavy metal band. The band was formed in 1981 in Los Angeles, California, by drummer Lars Ulrich and vocalist/guitarist James Hetfield, and has been based in San Francisco, California for most of its career. The group's fast tempos, instrumentals and aggressive musicianship made them one of the founding "big four" bands of thrash metal, alongside Megadeth, Anthrax and Slayer. Metallica's current lineup comprises founding members Hetfield and Ulrich, longtime lead guitarist Kirk Hammett and bassist Robert Trujillo. Guitarist Dave Mustaine and bassists Ron McGovney, Cliff Burton and Jason Newsted are former members of the band.

Lynyrd Skynyrd American rock band

Lynyrd Skynyrd is an American rock band best known for popularizing the Southern rock genre during the 1970s with songs such as "Sweet Home Alabama" and "Free Bird". It formed in Jacksonville, Florida, in 1964 under the name My Backyard with original members Ronnie Van Zant (vocals), Gary Rossington (guitar), Allen Collins (guitar), Larry Junstrom and Bob Burns (drums). The band spent five years touring small venues under a variety of different names and with several lineup changes before finally deciding on "Lynyrd Skynyrd" in 1969. The band released their first album in 1973, having settled on a lineup that included bassist Leon Wilkeson and former Strawberry Alarm Clock guitarist Ed King. Burns would later be replaced by Artimus Pyle and King by Steve Gaines. Ronnie Van Zant, Steve Gaines and backup singer Cassie Gaines were killed in an airplane crash on October 20, 1977, putting an abrupt end to the 1970s era of the band.

"Tuesday's Gone" is the second track on Lynyrd Skynyrd's first album, (Pronounced 'lĕh-'nérd 'skin-'nérd). It also appears on the band's first live LP, One More From the Road.






Corrosion of Conformity albums

Date of releaseTitleLabelChart positions
November 5, 1991 Blind Relativity Records
November 27, 1994 Deliverance Columbia Records 155
October 12, 1996 Wiseblood 104
October 10, 2000 America's Volume Dealer (Available as Dualdisc) Sanctuary Records
August 7, 2001 Live Volume CD, DVD and DVDA
April 5, 2005 In the Arms of God 108
January 12, 2018 No Cross No Crown Nuclear Blast 67

Down albums

Date of releaseTitleLabelUS Billboard peak
September 19, 1995 NOLA Elektra 57
March 26, 2002 Down II: A Bustle in Your Hedgerow 44
September 25, 2007 Down III: Over the Under Warner Bros. Records 26
September 18, 2012 Down IV Part I - The Purple EP 35
May 13, 2014 Down IV – Part II 23

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  2. "Archived copy". Archived from the original on November 29, 2014. Retrieved November 19, 2014.CS1 maint: Archived copy as title (link)
  3. "Confirmed: CORROSION OF CONFORMITY's 'Animosity' Lineup Reunited". Archived from the original on June 6, 2011. Retrieved November 5, 2011.
  4. "Corrosion of Conformity Featuring Pepper Keenan To Begin Work on New Album in January". December 17, 2014. Retrieved December 17, 2014.
  5. "Pepper Keenan Plays First Full Show With Corrosion of Conformity". March 8, 2015. Retrieved March 8, 2015.
  6. "Clutch to Tour with Corrosion of Conformity featuring Pepper Keenan". July 28, 2015. Retrieved July 28, 2015.