PHS Alumni Spotlight: Keith Pink

Laura Plata, Features Editor

A graduate of Palatine High School, Keith Pink is a professional pianist and member of the band Adora.

Pink didn’t really start taking music seriously until he was 16 years old. As a sophomore in high school, he had trouble staying focused and never felt like he fit into the typical social norms.

Pink wasn’t involved in many afterschool activities. The only “activities” he really took part in, he recalls, involved attending Saturday school for disciplinary action.

“Looking back a lot of the stuff I got in trouble for was me just trying to be funny to fit in…I constantly felt out of the loop a lot because I was never really interested in whatever was popular at the time” said Pink.

The turning point came when he started hanging out with a new group of people towards the end of his sophomore year who happened to be musicians.

“They were fun to be around, and completely drug free. We started a band and used to rehearse for 8 hours a day sometimes” said Pink.

From there, things took off. While Pink had originally planned on studying architecture after high school because he was oddly good at math, he instead starting playing in the Archie Star. Considered a national act, the group was pretty well know and had major label attention.

“Being 18 and young, and really just inexperienced you just kind of go with the flow and listen to whoever is in charge” said Pink.

Pink eventually ended up leaving the band with one of his best friends, a drummer. He credits his friend, Chris, for being a huge reason he is musician he is today.

After Chris and Pink left the Archie Star, the two started their own band that they helped build from the ground up. The band rehearsed three times a week in an old chocolate factory building in the west loop of Chicago.

During a recording session in Detroit, the group decided to name themselves “Adora” which means “a gift” or “a gift of love”.

“At the time, we had no clue what ‘Adora’ meant but it just sounded cool and started with an ‘A’ so we knew it would be in the beginning of music websites” said Pink on their decision.

The band played their first show as a sold out performance at the House of Blues in September 2011.

“From then on the momentum just kept going, and the band began getting show offers/magazine interview inquiries like crazy. It really was a fast paced thing that none of the band was really used to. We just played it cool and tried to take the opportunities wisely” said Pink.

To name only a few of their accomplishments, the group wrote and recorded 3 EP albums and sold over 20,000 copies of their first single: “Save Yourself” which has made appearances on: MTV, MTVu, MTVJapan, FUSEtv, Music Choice, Delta Airline Radio, Q101, and various other mainstream radio stations in New York, England, Australia, Germany, Philippines, Mexico and Brazil.

In Chicago, Adora has played in such places like the Hard Rock Cafe, Hard Rock Hotel, House Of Blues, Metro, Bottom Lounge, Subterranean, Beat Kitchen and Cornerstone Festival among others.

The band has created a network of over 50,000 fans and also  made appearances on WGN news. Their second single “Skeleton” is even a playable song in video game by Rockstar called “Rockband”.

Through Adora, Pink gained attention as a professional pianist after being scouted by a talent agency who he now works for 20 hours a week doing both studio and live performances.

Pink now makes more than half of his living through playing his own music. At age 24 he was able to buy his own home, and now owns a six foot grand piano–a dream of his since he began playing.

“From the past couple years, ages 20-25, so much has changed. It is almost unreal how much your mind, way of thinking, and body changes just from that short amount of time” said Pink.

For future musicians or anyone currently involved with the arts,Pink has a few pieces of advice. He urges others to consistently practice and be open to new ideas in order to grow.

“Everyday is a new day to practice your craft. You will only be as good as until the day you stop playing….You will never be a perfect musician and no one really is. Mistakes will always happen and it is the mistakes that keep us human” said Pink.

Even while being discouraged many times throughout his current musical career, Pink just remembers “the feeling I get when performing is really like no other. What would I be without that?…Music gives me purpose in this world.”