Kelly Richey is one of the hardest-working independent musicians in the music business today. Kelly has been described as “Stevie Ray Vaughan trapped in a woman’s body.” The veteran guitar-slinger has covered the USA, Canada, Europe, and Australia in her 30-year career. Fronting her band, Kelly has played over 4,000 shows, logged a mind-boggling 1 million road miles and released 16 CDs on her private label, Sweet Lucy Records, earning her reputation as a master guitarist and singer/songwriter.
In addition to her reputation as a touring musician and recording artist, Kelly Richey has over 30 years of teaching experience. She is a dedicated guitar instructor who is passionate about inspiring students to learn. Kelly has her own on-line classroom, teaches one-on-one via Skype, and is an instructor for TrueFire.com.
In 2008, Kelly began expanding her focus towards health and wellness Powered by Intention Coaching and Consulting: As a Certified True Purpose Coach™ and True Purpose Coach™ Group Leader, Trained in Voice Dialogue, Dream Coach™ and Dream Coach™ Group Leader, Life Coach and Consultant, my mission is two-fold: 1) to create a safe space for people to heal themselves, and 2) to inspire those who seek deeper meaning in their lives.
Music for Change (M4C) is a Cincinnati-based 501 (c) 3 nonprofit organization focused on providing guitar instruction workshops, songwriting programs, and online guitar lessons to underserved and underfunded schools and communities nationwide. M4C also provides music programs nationwide to as many U.S. service veterans as possible, many of them suffering from physical, mental, or emotional disabilities including post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).
As an extension of her educational work with Music for Change, Richey became a writing facilitator through Women Writing for (a) Change and has created her unique writing program, A Piece of Paper Always Listens, where she presents writing workshops, school programs, and incorporates writing practices into her private coaching sessions.
As an inspirational speaker, Richey shares her own story, reads from her work, and performs original music on guitar.
Kelly is currently entering her second year of a three-year training to become a spiritual director through Wellstreams Spiritually Network in Columbus, OH. Kelly’s life-long committed as an artist, teacher, and life coach, she continues to follow her calling and deepen her growth as she trains to become a Spiritual Director.
To find out more, please visit www.kellyrichey.com.
To further spread the gospel of music, in 2005 Richey founded Music 4 Change, a Cincinnati-based nonprofit organization dedicated to bringing music education to underfunded schools and communities. Through its Guitars 4 Vets program, Kelly holds frequent guitar instruction workshops for veterans, an experience she finds both exciting and rewarding. The nonprofit’s second mission is to bring music and inspiration to students grades 6 through 12 (especially in low-performing schools), as well as colleges and universities across the USA. “I feel very passionate about keeping music, and the arts in general, be kept alive in our schools,” she explains. “So many art and music programs have been drastically cut in the past 15 years.” Through guitar instruction workshops, online guitar classes, and songwriting programs, Music 4 Change teaches students about the history of American music, helps them develop appreciation of all kinds of music, and informs them about career opportunities in the music industry.
In 2008, after years of constant touring, recording, and teaching, Kelly began to reevaluate her personal career goals. “I had spent years onstage and working one-on-one with students when not performing,” she recalls, “but I felt drawn to exploring the process of becoming a life coach.” In 2009, Richey became a certified Dream Coach and Dream Coach Group Leader – helping others to put a stake in the ground and accomplish their goals and dreams. Through this process, Richey realized that she needed some healing in her own life. She began to study the works of spiritual and mystical writers like Louise Hay, Wayne Dyer, Deepak Chopra, Eckhart Tolle, Allan Watts, Karen Armstrong, and Caroline Myss. In 2010, Kelly took a year-long break: “I got sober and healthy, and I was ready to rock.” With a fresh perspective on her life and career, Richey became a certified “dream coach” – helping others to accomplish their goals and dreams. That led to a three-year, intensive certification process to become a True Purpose Coach and Group Leader. Kelly is currently enrolled in a three-year Spiritual Director training program at Wellstream in Columbus. “I had mistaken my artistic talent for my purpose in life, and that left me wanting more,” she explains. “By defining my own true purpose, I am able to enjoy both a more fulfilling career and a richer personal life.”
Obviously, the energetic Ms. Richey practices what she preaches. Her three overriding passions – for the blues, teaching, and spiritual growth – are at the heart of everything she does. More than just another guitar-slinging hotshot, Kelly Richey is a genuine American original, a multi-talented woman deeply rooted in the blues, but constantly driven to explore new territory.
In her “spare time,” Richey is an avid journal writer and poet. “I have dyslexia, which always made school really difficult for me,” she explains, “but I started keeping journals as a teenager and I just kept going.” After 30-plus years of journaling, Kelly has amassed more than 5,000 entries on such deeply personal themes as self, relationships, love, and spirituality. She collected 89 of those musings in her first book, Whisperings: A Collection of Poems (2012), which comes with a spoken-word CD. True to form, Richey feels compelled to share her love affair with words with others. “I’m proof that there is no cookie-cutter mold for learning,” Kelly adds. “Having severe dyslexia has given me an insatiable appetite for learning and a passion for helping others learn.” With typical determination, she became a certified writing facilitator in 2015 and now leads writing workshops for the Cincinnati nonprofit group Women Writing for (a) Change. In response to her own struggles with writing and love for words, Richey developed and leads a series of programs she calls “A Piece of Paper Always Listens.” Using timed creative writing exercises called “fast writes,” she helps students learn how to express themselves through journaling and poetry. The workshops are fun, interactive, and include a mini-concert.