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Professional drummer, Brian “Damage” Keats, whose extensive resume includes playing with Verbal Abuse, Raging Slab, Genocide and more recently recorded with the band Rayon, died Tuesday, Jan. 12 from complications of colon cancer. He was 46.
Brian briefly served in the Misfits lineup and performed with founding member Glenn Danzig for one show in Detroit on Halloween night in 1983. This proved to be Danzig’s final performance with the band as he announced to the audience mid-performance, before launching Samhain.
Born in Brooklyn, N.Y., Brian remained a constant figure in the thriving punk scene. He played with an impressive array of bands, most notably Raging Slab and Vancouver’s The Skulls – whose members would later go on to form D.O.A. and The Subhumans. Tiring of the punk scene and perceived attitudes, Brian threw himself into another musical direction boning up on old country blues, early jazz, Indian music, and reggae before finding himself in the 80s rock band, Princess Pang.
It was the implosion of Princess Pang in 1989, coupled with an invitation to join a friend’s band, which provided the impetus to move to Los Angeles. However, before the flight reached its gate, the band had broken up. Keats found success as a session musician collaborating with Sylvain Sylvain of the New York Dolls, Jason Falkner and Low Pop Suicide.
Brian just completed recording the Rayon album, Shouting Voice.
He is survived by his wife Tomoko and son Tristan.