In 1999, during Kinchla's time playing in a band called Smit-Haus, Blues Traveler's original bassist Bobby Sheehan died. This left an opening in the band for a new bassist. Kinchla was one of five bassists to try out for the spot. He was the first to audition, with auditions being held live in concert at a New York bar called Bar Bat, and not in a studio. His audition was the first band performance after the death of Sheehan and came with no rehearsal.
On January 18, 2009, Kinchla married his girlfriend, entertainment journalist Carrie Hill. The couple lives in Austin, Texas with their Teacup Yorkshire Terrier Laverne. On February 7, 2011 they announced that they were expecting their first child. On February 9th, 2013, John Popper announced the arrival of the couple's twin boys, Jack and Dylan, by sharing their pictures on the Twitter page he operates with Kinchla.