Kelly Richey

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Kelly Richey
Born (1962-11-30) November 30, 1962 (age 54)
Lexington, Kentucky, U.S.
Genres Blues
Instruments Guitar
Years active 1986–present
Labels Arista, Sweet Lucy
Notable instruments
Fender Stratocaster

Kelly Richey (born November 30, 1962) is an American blues rock guitarist, singer and composer based out of Cincinnati, Ohio.[1][2]

Early life[edit]

Kelly Richey was born and raised in Lexington, Kentucky, United States,[3] in a conservative Christian household that avoided rock music. Her first instrument was the piano.[4] Her second instrument was a drum kit that her neighbor let her take home. After a couple of months of playing drums in her bedroom, her father offered to buy her anything she wanted; she chose the guitar. She started learning guitar at age 15; she reached a point where she was practicing 12 hours a day.[5][6]


Kelly Richey joined the Arista Records group Stealin' Horses in 1986. In 1990, she formed The Kelly Richey Band (KRB). In 1997 she moved from Lexington to Mount Auburn, Cincinnati.[7] Writing of her 2001 album Sending Me Angels, Guitar Player praised her "fiery solos" and her "fast, powerful picking hand", which she credited to having played as a drummer.[8] She cites Roy Buchanan as an influence,[8] besides Stevie Ray Vaughan, Jimi Hendrix[1] and Lonnie Mack.[9] She released eleven albums between 1994 and 2008.[5] Her 2006 album Speechless consisted entirely of instrumentals.[10]


Richey plays a Fender Stratocaster, the same she has played since the 1980s. It has a 1963 body and a 1965 neck, with a traditional Fender tremolo; the pickups are Seymour Duncan and she uses SIT strings (.10-.046). She plays through a Fender Super Reverb with an Ibanez Tube Screamer.[8]


  • 1994: Sister's Gotta Problem
  • 1995: The Blues Don't Lie
  • 1996: Live at Tommy's On Main
  • 1997: Eyes of a Woman
  • 1998: Dig a Little Deeper
  • 1999: Kelly Richey Band Live
  • 2001: Sending Me Angels
  • 2003: Kelly Richey Live...As It Should Be
  • 2004: Kelly Richey Live
  • 2006: Speechless
  • 2007: The Kelly Richey Band Live at the Thirsty Ear
  • 2008: Carry the Light
  • 2013: "Sweet Spirit"


  1. ^ a b (November 20, 1998). "Energy and polish define blues-rockers", St. Petersburg Times, p. 10.
  2. ^ (December 2001). "Richey resonates in new CD", Kentucky Monthly 4 (12): 30.
  3. ^ Johnston, Katie (April 30, 1999). "Blues woman making it while remaining true to her roots", The Gazette, p. GO15.
  4. ^ Hughes, Andrew S (February 17, 2008). "Richey sees music as a light in the storm", South Bend Tribune, p. D7.
  5. ^ a b Hughes, Andrew S (October 2, 2011). "Richey changes her life, renews her music", South Bend Tribune, p. D2.
  6. ^ (January 29, 1999). "Kelly Richey Knows Stomping Grounds", Dayton Daily News, p. 18.
  7. ^ Bird, Rick (May 27, 1999). "Kelly Richey: She digs a little deeper", The Cincinnati Post, p. 5.
  8. ^ a b c Ellis, Andy (March 2002). "Buzz". Guitar Player. pp. 57–60. 
  9. ^ See, Kelley Richey Website, article entitled "Lonnie Mack RIP" @
  10. ^ Bird, Rick (June 22, 2006). "Kelly Richey's 'Speechless' is just that", The Cincinnati Post, p. T23.

External links[edit]