Tom Keifer is best-known because of his membership in Cinderella. He holds not one, not two, but three roles in it, which would be singer, songwriter, and guitarist. As such, it should come as no surprise to learn that Keifer is one of the most important members out of Cinderella’s huge line-up.
1. Born in Springfield, PA
Keifer was born in the township of Springfield in the state of Pennsylvania. It is situated about 10 miles to the west of Philadelphia, with the result that it is now considered to be one of the latter’s suburbs. However, there was a time when the township of Springfield was focused on farming, which makes sense considering that it was founded by Quakers who had arrived with William Penn in 1682.
2. Big Fan of the Blues
Interested individuals might be aware of Keifer’s association with blues rock, which is a fusion of the two music genres that has been around since the early 1950s. Said association makes a lot of sense when one learns that he became a fan of the blues when he was still a child.
3. Got Addicted to Drugs and Alcohol
There are numerous examples of successful musicians becoming addicted to drugs and alcohol. In part, this is because they get targeted by drug dealers because of their success. However, successful musicians are also capable of continuing to perform for quite some time in spite of their addictions to drugs and alcohol, which has contributed to an environment in which such issues are often overlooked without external intervention. Keifer stands out in this regard in that he became addicted to drugs and alcohol when he was still in high school before proceeding to beat said addiction before he managed to become a successful musician. Suffice to say that is rather impressive for more than one reason.
4. Considered Dropping Out of High School
In any case, Keifer was extremely passionate about music, so much so that he considered dropping out of high school for the purpose of pursuing a music career. However, he was convinced by his mother to stay in school with the promise that he would be given a Gibson Les Paul guitar upon his graduation. As a result, Keifer finished high school. After which, he did indeed receive the promised instrument.
5. Did Odd Jobs While Pursuing a Music Career
Like a lot of would-be entertainers, Keifer did odd jobs to make money while pursuing a music career. For example, he delivered film to developing outlets. Similarly, he walked race horses at the race tracks. In the meantime, Keifer played the guitar, started writing original material, and started making contact among other musicians. All of which would prove to be important for the successful launch of his music career.
6. Formed Cinderella with a Good Friend
For proof, consider the fact that Keifer formed Cinderella with Eric Brittingham, who was already his good friend at the time. As the story goes, the two met in a bathroom on the Halloween night of 1980. After which, Keifer and Brittingham went on to play in the band Saints in Hell before making the fateful choice to form Cinderella.
7. Has a Shy Personality
As strange as it sounds, Keifer has a shy personality. In fact, he and Brittingham started out wanting to find someone else to be Cinderella’s lead singer. However, their efforts were unsuccessful, with the result that Keifer winded up with the position instead. Even though he has long since become a successful musician, he has mentioned feeling uncomfortable when he is singing without playing his guitar at the same time. Something that speaks volumes about his respective comfort level with the two activities.
8. Some Notable Individuals Saw Promise in Him Early On
It is interesting to mention that some notable individuals saw promise in Keifer and his band from a very early point in time. For example, Kiss member Gene Simmons recognized their potential, with the result that he made an unsuccessful attempt to sign them. Similarly, Jon Bon Jovi saw them performing at the Empire Rock Club in 1985. After which, he managed to convince his manager Derek Schulman to sign them, having been convinced of Cinderella’s potential by both Keifer’s vocals and Keifer’s guitar-playing.
9. Went Through Some Tough Times in the 1990s
People who are familiar with Cinderella might know that the band broke up for a time in the 1990s. In part, this was because Keifer went through some very tough times in that particular decade. For starters, he suffered paresis of the vocal cords, with the result that he lost his voice because his left vocal cord had become paralyzed. Due to that, Kiefer had to undergo multiple surgeries, which had a very negative effect on the band’s ability to put out new music. Simultaneously, he was also suffering from depression. On top of that, Keifer went through a couple of other tough moments as well. One, his mother died from cancer. Two, he and his wife at the time got divorced.
10. There Is No Hope of a Cinderella Reunion
Cinderella managed to reunite in 1996. After which, it spent quite a few years touring, though it never managed to release any new material after Still Climbing in 1994. Unfortunately, there is now no hope of a Cinderella reunion. Keifer stated in 2017 that issues had built up between the band members over the course of decades, with the result that things were beyond repair. Before that, Cinderella member Jeff LaBar had accepted the blame for the band’s inactivity, speculating that Kiefer didn’t want to watch him kill himself because of his drug and alcohol abuse. Sadly, his self-knowledge seems to have been quite accurate because LaBar passed away just a short while ago in 2021.