True legends are forged in the fire, expect some that appear to have been born for one specific purpose. Aaron Keylock is one such artist that appears to have been delivered into the world to bring back the meaning of 'guitar legend'.
Daniel King met up with Aaron at Download 2015 to talk about his festival appearance, what is coming up in the rest of 2015 and how many pairs of jeans a person can get through during a Black Stone Cherry set.
Hi Aaron, firstly at 17 did you ever think you'd be playing as high up the Download Festival lineup as you are?
No, to be honest it's not even really been a thought.
You were 12 when you headlined the Charlotte Street Blues Club, how did that come about?
I guess it was a very natural thing. I started playing at 8 and I was jamming up there with different guys. They Blues Kitchen and Charlotte Street Blues got behind me and they had a spare slot on a Friday night and asked me if I wanted to come down and play.
So five years years later and you've got over 200 gigs under your belt.
Yeah I've been gigging a lot. That count was actually when I was about 15 so it's probably a lot more than that now.
Probably getting on for double then. Guess you're not bored of it yet.
No, I feel like it's the kind of thing I need to be doing. It's something that when I'm not doing it, I want to be doing it. You know?
So is this your first time ever at Download?
Yeah this is my very first time.
Is there anyone you looked forward to seeing this weekend?
Yeah, I was looking forward to Black Stone Cherry but the rain got quite bad so I had to leave half way through. I only had a few pairs of jeans and one of them was for stage.
I guess that the Sunday is really the day for you?
Yeah, it's the classic rock day so it's really good for me. There's people we've toured with like Blackberry Smoke so it's really good. The Cadillac Three on Friday were really good too. In the sun too.
So you're on today just before Butcher Babies, bit of a weird booking for you?
Yeah, I mean it's going to be good. It's really varied, there's different styles all over the place. Bloodstock was similar, but we weren't there that long. We literally walked in in the morning and went on stage. It was definitely as muddy as this, but we've had a great time. We were a bit worried at Bloodstock because we're blues at a metal festival and first on in the morning. But it went really well, it was packed out.
Yeah, we're a pretty accommodating bunch. So, you've now got about 30 tracks going.
I've got about 30 tracks that I'm happy with and we're currently demoing them to pick songs for albums and to decide what to do with them.
It's a lot of tracks to have lying around when there's, hopefully, money to be made. Do you have any more plans for 2015?
We've got Ramblin' Man Fair coming up which should be great. It's a great festival for me, Gregg Allman has been a huge influence on me and Scorpions are doing it. Then we've got a few festivals in Holland and a few shows lined up in London. Then hopefully after that we'll be recording the album.
Brilliant, well best of luck with those. One final question, if this was your last gig, how would you feel about your career?
Well I'd be really proud of what I've done. It's been really natural. I was worried when I was younger that I was going down well because of my age, but it seems to be a genuine response. I was worried about being a gimmick, but I think we've done it the right way. I just want to keep doing it though.
Of course and good with it and your set today.