THE STORY BEHIND KENTUCKY AVENUE...
Fifteen years ago, KENTUCKY AVENUE’s Stella Schindler had to move out of the room she had been renting in the DC-metro area when the house was sold to a new owner. Little did Dave Ries, the other founding member of the band, know that when he bought that house on Kentucky Avenue, he was kicking out his future music partner! This funny, fate-filled discovery not only sealed the deal on their band name, but also gave the final nod to their new music project.
Stella and Dave crossed paths when Stella was invited to sit in at a music event in the Fall of 2016 at the high school where she teaches English. A few rehearsals in her classroom soon gave way to writing originals, a process that began with sharing their back catalogs of songs they each had written, but never formally recorded. Spontaneously trying out harmonies, adding a guitar part, quickening up the pace, and moving capos around, they soon found they were not just tweaking old tunes, but sketching and ultimately creating new ones. Practices became sessions of storytelling as well as a time for fine tuning the lyrics, harmonies, and arrangements. Before they knew it, a full-length album, "Nothing Here Is Mine" was ready for the studio!
WHO ARE WE?
Taking the cues from the likes of Lucinda Williams, Gillian Welch, Bruce Springsteen, Hank Williams, Loretta Lynn and Jack White, June Carter and Johnny Cash, KENTUCKY AVENUE wrangles the best that precedent can offer while weaving their own tapestry of Americana and alt-country threads. Although they have been writing and performing together less than a year, Dave Ries and Stella Schindler are no strangers to the music world.
Dave Ries (Lead Guitar, Vocals) - After playing in a litany of college-town hard rock, punk, and metal bands, Dave began his music career in the Film and TV world, writing and recording an ungodly amount of original music for indie films, commercials, and broadcast TV. Dave then ran the music business at Discovery channel where he collaborated with the top-talent in the industry and oversaw the musical direction for more shows than one person could ever possibly watch.
Stella Schindler (Lead Vocals, Guitar) – After singing lead in a couple of blues and rock bands in college, Stella—one hot, summer August day along the Mississippi River—was given a guitar by a friend who taught her to play her first chords. In the two years that followed, she immersed herself in the local music scene, learning from listening and then venturing into the world of song-smithery herself. She’s been writing and performing songs since the 90s now, having recorded New Horizon in 2001, a folksy, bluegrass-tinged folk album. Then, in 2008, she recorded a more haunting set of alternative country and folk rock songs with Distant Hum. The album earned DIY Top 12 Picks in Performing Songwriter Magazine and gained songwriting attention in the Washington Post and DC’s City Paper.