Jimmy O’Keefe – Interview

Interview with Pete Devine of Pete’s Rock News and Views (

PD: What type of artist are you?

JO’K: Vocal and lyrics driven, dark, brooding bedroom folk rock


PD: Tell us the brief history of yourself.

JO’K: Jimmy O’Keefe and Friends originated as a solo project I started in college. All the recordings were done in my bedroom. I was frustrated by the fact that I couldn’t find a place to practice, and that I couldn’t keep a group together. It’s that feeling you get when you think that I will never be recognized for the art I create, but I’m still driven to create it.  No one is there to stop you from going into your own deep end, and some beautiful things can come of that.

Fash forward 12 years. I felt that feeling again. Isolated from my band Hollywood Blanks during the pandemic, and with the time to record more DIY tracks, I revisited this solo project.


PD: Who are your musical and non-musical influences?

JO’K: Leonard Cohen, Neil Young, Tom Waits, Timbre Timbre, Bruce Sprinsteen, Amy Winehouse, Wilco, Flaming Lips, Phoebe Bridgers, Julien Baker, Bright Eyes


PD: What are your dreams and goals?

JO’K: I want more people to hear my music. I think it’s important they do, not just for me, but for themselves.


PD: Who writes your songs, what are they about?

JO’K: I write my songs. Sometimes they’re about me. Sometimes they’re about the world. Sometimes they’re wondering about God – but I’m not a Christian rock band. 


PD: How do you promote your band and shows?

JO’K: I’m still figuring out the best way to do this. I use social media. My favorite thing to do, however, is go old school and just hang flyers around the city I live in, which is Baltimore. My wife is an artist and she designs some pretty cool posters for me and for other bands around town.


PD: What do you think about downloading music online?

JO’K: Ugh…right now I feel like it’s the best way to access new music, but I really miss the times when going to the record store was how most people experienced new music. Sometimes, I think that streaming platforms make it too easy to disengage with an artist. When you buy a CD or Record, it’s almost like you have to figure out what you like about the artist because you can’t just turn it off as soon as you get bored. I wish that artists were paid more fairly for downloads. 


PD: What song do you wish you’d written and why?

JO’K: Hmm… That’s a tough one. I’m trying to think of the perfect love song or heartbreak song. I’m really bad at writing those. Maybe “Set Fire to the Rain” by Adele. That’s a really powerful and unique heartbreak song.


PD: What are some of your pet peeves?

JO’K: Unnecessarily Stressful Situations


PD: What is your proudest moment in music?

JO’K: I wrote this song in college called The Old Days. It sort of changed my whole perspective of myself as a songwriter. I’m still really happy to have written that song, and it subsequently led me to think that I could write other good songs.


PD: So what are you working on at the moment?

JO’K: Right now, I am working on developing my status as a solo artist. I have a song that I just released through The Animal Farm called Racing Against My Fate.


PD: What music have you available online and where can we buy it from?


Jimmy O’Keefe and Friends links:
Band/Artist location – Baltimore, Maryland
Facebook – You Tube – Soundcloud – Bandcamp – 
Instagram – Apple – Spotify – Amazon – Deezer – LinkTree –
Check our page for Jimmy O’Keefe and Friends