A Cinderella Story: Tom Keifer is back & solo
Cinderella enjoyed major success during the late ’80s through the early ’90s, with front man Tom Keifer at the creative helm. Singles like “Nobody’s Fool,” “Somebody Save Me,” “Gypsy Rose”, Heartbreak Station,” and “Don’t Know What You’ve Got (Till It’s Gone),” helped propel the band past the platinum mark almost a dozen times over. Decades after the band’s success, Keifer released his first solo album, The Way Life Goes, in April of 2013.
Cinderella initially broke up after they were dropped from their record label in the mid-’90s due to the drastic changing of the musical climate at the time. “I had these songs that kept piling up because I was just writing and writing,” Keifer explains, “and when the band starting touring again a few years later, I would put them away for a while and go back to it on my down time.”
In the middle of touring and writing, Keifer relocated to Nashville, where he and his wife and album co-producer, Savannah, built a home studio. This is where The Way Life Goes was ultimately recorded and produced. There were upwards of twenty recording engineers that were hired and fired during the creation of the project.
After all of the recording, production, and mastering were complete, The Way Life Goes was finally released on Merovee Records. “Merovee was excited about the project from the beginning,” Keifer continues, “I knew after the first meeting that Merovee was the way for me to go with this.” Being a smaller boutique label, Merovee Records had the resources to pay appropriate attention to the release and give it the treatment that it deserves.
Billboard’s 200 has The Way Life Goes ultimately charted at number 78. At a time when almost anyone with a computer can whip an album worth of “music” together in no time, this proved to be a step in the right direction for a real songwriter, especially for one as modest and humble as Keifer. “It’s cool that it charted, because that means that people are hearing it. But I don’t really pay too much attention to things like that because that’s not why I’m doing this,” Keifer says.
During the summer of 2013, Keifer began touring to support The Way Life Goes all over the U.S. It was in the turnout for the concerts that he realized there was an audience for him as a solo artist. “The crowds were so supportive and seemed genuinely happy to hear the music, both new and old,” he says. “The live show consists of about 50 percent new material and 50 percent of the old. I want to give the fans what I know they’ll be into, as well as letting them know where I’m at now.”
Unlike a lot of artists that found fame during the same time and actually cringe at rehashing all of the old songs over and over again, Keifer realizes that the fans have connected to him through those classic songs. “Those songs are a part of my history,” he continues, “The music I play is all a part of who I am. It wouldn’t make any sense to exclude that part of me. The fans are the reason that I can keep doing this.”
Keifer toured all summer, into the fall in support of The Way Life Goes. He suffers from a paralyzed vocal cord on the left side of his larynx, which prohibits him from playing as long as he would like much of the time. Regarding his condition, he explains, “The shows are about an hour and 15 minutes or so. If I push it, that could take away of the quality of the performance, which I don’t want to do.” He’s taken a bit of a needed break over the past winter, but plans to resume the live support in the coming spring of 2014. Cinderella will also begin touring again sometime in the future, as he assures fans that there’s more to come from them as well.
Tom Keifer will appear in Charleston on April 12 as a part of WKLC Rock 105’s Rockstock celebration at the Charleston Civic Center. Also appearing are We As Human, Charm City Devils, and Great White. Tickets are available through Ticketmaster and all Ticketmaster outlets.