Pepper Keenan on FATE

“I got my first guitar at age 14, when a friend of mine was killed in a motorcycle accident trying to outrun the New Orleans police,” says Keenan.
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“I broke into his house and stole the guitar from his room, because I figured he would want me to have it. The guitar was a cheap Sears Les Paul wannabe with like 20 switches—including one that made a fuzz tone. I immediately spraypainted it black, and then, a few weeks later, I won a gift certificate to a record store, where I bought Road to Ruin by the Ramones. I’d never heard the Ramones before, but I bought it because the cartoon album cover looked cool. When the stoner kids in my neighborhood turned me onto Robin Trower, my style became a weird combination of Trower and Johnny Ramone. My father was a folk-guitar player, but he was not an influence because my parents were divorced, and I didn’t even know he played guitar at the time. So I guess I never would have picked up a guitar if it weren’t for my friend’s accident.”