Lance Keltner began playing guitar at age 10. By the age of 12 he was rocking the bar scene in Oklahoma and Texas to packed houses fronting his own band.
There was never any doubt that Lance would pursue a career in Rock-n-Roll. At age 19 Keltner moved to Austin Texas where he quickly became an important part of the then burgeoning hard rock scene. Keltner had grown up on the blues, but was now transmitting those blues riffs he had learned as a young boy through several 100 watt Marshall Stacks, opening shows for everyone from Joe Satriani, to Eric Johnson, and the Allman Brothers.
In 1991 Keltner signed a recording contract with East/West Atlantic records. Lance released one critically acclaimed disk on East West.
Lance spent the better part of the 1990s touring with his own band around the southwest United States, as well as serving as a hired gun for several other young rock artists. Most of the 90s were spent on a bus, or on the stage.
Keltner worked as guitarist and musical director with Tim Karr EMI, Phil Lewis of LA Guns, and Mike Tramp to name a few.
Keltner signed with Provogue records in 1999 and released "Empty V" a collection of blues rock influenced gems produced by legend Andy Johns. Andy, as you all probably know, worked with everyone from Led Zeppelin, to Bad Company, and Van Halen. Ian "Mac" McClagan of Faces fame added keyboards to the record.
Keltner toured Europe twice in 2000 to enthusiastic crowds. Lance was told that he would probably not be asked to perform at any festival shows in Europe in 2000, as he was a newcomer. Much to everyone's surprise Keltner was asked to perform at festivals in Germany as well as the Tegelen Blues Rock Festival in the Netherlands during the summer of 2000.
Keltner and band put on a show that was nothing short of devastating. On touring in Europe, Lance says, "The audiences that we played for were for the most part nothing short of amazing. I think the fact that we are not a straight up blues band surprised them at first, but usually by the second or third song of the set the folks would be up and Rocking".
2001 brought a new release from Lance Keltner called "Last of the Cowboy Vampires". Lance chose Andy Johns to produce again with incredible results. The record includes several straight up rockers "House of Blue Light", and "Pocket full of Money", as well as the obviously radio friendly "Love like Abilene" and the dark, ambient tones of "The Ledge" and "Chain Gang". Keltner revisits his roots with the story of a young Comanche man living in Oklahoma in modern times in "Anadarko" and takes us to church in the gospel flavored "I'm Ready". Guests on the record include Eric Johnson, Grammy award winner, and five-time winner of Guitar Player magazine's best overall guitarist award. Eric added the chilling, Clapton, Cream era inspired lead work on "Chain Gang". David Grissom (former John Mellancamp/Joe Ely guitarist) co-wrote and added guitar work to "Pocket full of money." Keltner finished work on "Last Of the Cowboy Vampires" in late November of 2000 and then headed out to Los Angeles where he performed in the new Rod Stewart video scheduled for international release in February of 2001.
Lance and band toured extensively in Europe beginning in mid March of 2001, and returned for festivals in the summer. Lance Keltner and Cowboy Vampires headlined a festival show in Berlin attended by 60,000 enthusiastic Rock fans, played to 9,000 people in Luxembourg, and performed in the world famous Leverkusen festival televised to 20 million music fans in Europe. Regarding the year's tour plans Keltner says "We brought an arena style rock show to clubs. We carried our own lighting rig, and sound, and the shows were absolutely rocking".
2002 brought a new record and new tours for Lance Keltner and Cowboy Vampires. The new album was simply titled "Lance Keltner and Cowboy Vampires" was released in April 2002 by Ulftone records in Germany and the Benelux territories in Europe. The Album was produced and engineered by band mate and ex-Billy Idol guitarist Mark Younger-Smith, some of the tracks were mixed by Brian Reaves of Jungle Room studios in Los Angeles, with help from renowned dance re-mixer Jullian Beaston.
The record ventured into new territory with the hard rocking sounds of songs "Welcome Back the Monkey", "Ride the White Horse" and "Devil and the Deal". The album also contained radio friendly cuts in the tunes "The Way of my People", and "Voodoo Doll", and takes you on a journey to Louisiana with the tunes "Crescent City", and "Streets of New Orleans". Keltner attended the Pop Com Festival in 2002 and subsequently signed a one record recording contract with Berlin based Ulftone. The resulting work spawned the self-titled, Alligator skin covered record "Lance Keltner". The band toured Europe again and again to enthusiastic audiences.
Keltner's next project SIMRANKING included band mates Carmine Rojas (David Bowie and Rod Stewart) on bass, and Tal Bergman who has worked with Tower Of Power, Billy Idol, and many more. The new musical direction took Delta resonator guitar music and melded it with world music rhythms and melodies.
Keltner and Rojas have been friends for the past 20 years, and Rojas had worked with Bergman and felt that Tal was the obvious choice as the drummer and co-producer for the band. The new music was described as a soundscape, and music that allows the listener to become lost in the story, and the melody of the songs.
Lance worked with What the Hale productions writing and recording all of the guitar tracks for the Big Buck Hunter video game and has also played guitar on several National TV commercials.
Lance produced and engineered David Holt’s critically acclaimed solo album.
2010 to Present:
Lance has recently broken new ground in the world of product demos of high-end musical equipment. Throughout the past few years Keltner, and now Keltner and band have been demonstrating some of the top gear of the guitar World on YouTube.
Band mates for this project include Tommy Taylor on drums (Christopher Cross, Eric Johnson), Mark Epstein on Bass (Johnny Winter, Joe Bonamassa) and Patterson Barrett on Keys (Austin All Stars, Chuck Berry and many others).
Keltner’s YouTube channel has over 1 million viewers.
Lance took time out last year to play on the Memphis Blues Album of the Year with Johnny Rawls, and continues to write new material for the upcoming record.
Lance also founded and is co-developing products for Retro Channel. The RR1 amp was the first offering. Lance has taken his years of guitar tone experience and has helped to craft an amazing sounding amp that is light weight, flexible and produces tones of much more expensive boutique amps at a fraction of the cost.