The Real Reason Behind Maynard James Keenan Joining The US Army

Tool, Puscifer, and A Perfect Circle frontman, Maynard James Keenan’s musical talent has always been appreciated by his fans since he first started his professional musical career. Before joining Tool, Keenan played bass guitar and sing for different groups. In the 1980s, Keenan became the bass guitarist of TexA.N.S. and vocalist of Children of the Anachronistic Dynasty. Later, he also joined Green Jellö with his future bandmate, Danny Carey.

Maynard James Keenan achieved his greatest popularity and success when he was asked to join Tool by Adam Jones. Keenan accepted his offer and Tool was formed which finally consisted of Danny Carey as the drummer, Adam Jones as the guitarist, Maynard James Keenan as the vocalist, and Justin Chancellor as the bassist. Tool released five studio albums and its members’ talents and life stories drew the great attention of their fans.

Why Did Maynard James Keenan Join The Army?

Keenan’s story of becoming an artist was quite different from many people who interested in art. He told his story in both his interviews and his autobiography entitled ‘A Perfect Union of Contrary Things.’ After he had watched Bill Murray in ‘Stripes,’ Keenan enlisted in the U.S Army in 1982. Also, to be able to pay the fees of the art school that he always dreamed of, he wanted to use the G.I. Bill fund also known as The Servicemen’s Readjustment Act of 1944.

During his basic training in the military, with his shooting, being a strong team leader, and excellent talent using guns, he was rewarded with trophies. After his advanced training, he was asked to join a military school named West Point which would help Keenan to be a higher-ranked soldier in the army after he had graduated. However, he declined that offer to achieve his life purpose.

Here’s what he said about that moment:

“At that moment, when you’re staring at this thing going, is this what I want to do? Is there something else? I had an overwhelming feeling that this wasn’t what I was supposed to do. I’m pretty in touch with my intuition, and at that moment, I had to listen to it and decline the appointment.

As it can be understood from his statement, Keenan deeply knew that what he wanted to do with his life. After three years of service in the military, he attended the art school that he always wanted. He studied at Kendall College of Art and Design in Grand Rapids. After graduation, he started to be a part of the different bands and finally became the frontman of the legendary rock bands, Tool, Puscifer, and A Perfect Circle. Keenan also stated that he never regretted his decision about choosing a musical career over a military one.