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3×3: Hot Buttered Rum on Doc Ellis, Béla Fleck, and the Perils of Hydration

Mar 2, 2016

3x3: Hot Buttered Rum on Doc Ellis, Béla Fleck, and the Perils of Hydration

Artist: Nat Keefe (of Hot Buttered Rum)
Hometown: Redwood City, CA  (currently lives in San Francisco)
Latest Album: The Kite & the Key  
Rejected Band Names: Shuttlecock, Christmas Is Ruined, Webalo … I think we’ll stick with Hot Buttered Rum.

If you had to live the life of a character in a song, which song would you choose?
If I could be a character for one day, I’d like to be Doc Ellis in Todd Snider’s “America’s Favorite Pastime.” That guy pitched a no-hitter for the Pittsburg Pirates high on acid! What’s a stranger thrill than that?!

Where would you most like to live or visit that you haven't yet?
I was driven by travel-lust for years. Now that I’ve been to five continents and all the states, all I want is to explore my home. That is, when I’m not enjoying the highways and motels of this great country with Hot Buttered Rum. 

What was the last thing that made you really mad?

What's the best concert you've ever attended?
The month I graduated high school, I saw Béla Fleck at the Fillmore. Something came together for me there, and I saw a life of music unfold in front of me. Seven years later, I was onstage with Béla in Bean Blossom, Indiana, for Peter Rowan’s all-star jam! I love that guy’s spirit of adventure and dedication to excellence. He makes me think, “What’s the next uncomfortable, scary situation I’m going to put myself into?"

What was your favorite grade in school?
A split between kindergarten, because I love finger-painting, and senior year, because that’s when my game with the ladies started coming together. 

What are you reading right now?
I just finished Ralph Stanley’s autobiography in preparation for this project. Highly recommended! He somehow got his voice onto the page, and I don’t think he blogs every week for practice. I’m also on a serious Philip Roth kick. I think part of me wishes I was Jewish and from Newark. 

Whiskey, water, or wine?
A little of each, please. I have aspirations to be well-hydrated, but I also have a small bladder. So I balance my water intake with our travel itinerary. I get made fun of for always having to pee. My skills with a culca have improved. What’s a culca, you ask? Well … 

North or South?
Wherever I’ve travelled in the world, there’s always a rivalry between the North and South, the East and West, the highlands and lowlands. People, myself included, thrive on rivalry and calling someone the “other.” I channel this urge into professional baseball. Go Giants! Beat L.A.! 

Pizza or tacos?
I live in the Mission in San Francisco. It’s all about the burrito. 

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3x3: Hot Buttered Rum on Doc Ellis, Béla Fleck, and the Perils of Hydration