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  • Writer's pictureMary Ann

Meet the Clay Hess Band

The Clay Hess Band is led by Grammy award-winner Clay Hess, who played with Ricky Skaggs and Kentucky Thunder for several years. They released their fantastic single, "Cold and Lonely" earlier this year a brand new album, Just Another Story, back on July 20. A lot of the album is inspired from Clay’s life as a musician, and the many years he played with Ricky's Kentucky Thunder band. Check out our chat with him!

Congrats on your latest album, Just Another Story. How does it reflect where you are in your life?

I was blessed to grow up in a family of extremely talented musicians and singers. They also had friends that were extremely talented musicians and singers. The basics came from just being around that environment and listening to people talk about what was important to know when playing and singing. Timing, being tasteful, how to phrase etc... this was invaluable to me as an aspiring musician.

How long have you wanted to do an album like this?

This is the beginning for me. I love this album, but I expect to love each one more than the last going forward.

How did Ricky Skaggs and Kentucky Thunder for several years influence your own music and this new album?

He had a huge impact on me. I learned so much by watching Ricky, and Paul Brewster sing together... how Skaggs approached a song, phrasing, note choice, etc.

Are there any songs that didn’t make the album that you now wish you included?

There was a song that Tim O'Brien suggested I record. We are going to cut it on the next project.

As we recommend Just Another Story to our readers which song would you suggest they listen to first?

Depending on the listener, one of these three: "Someplace In France," "Heat Of The Morning," or "Restless."

Having toured for so long, do you have any interesting stories about how fans have been affected by your music?

My favorite comes from a gospel song I wrote called “I Know Why.” About six months after I released the song, I went to see "The Passion of the Christ" at a theater in Parkersburg WV. As I was walking into the theater, a lady stopped me as she was coming out. She said, "you are Clay Hess." I said, "I know." Then she said that the song I had written, which states that I know why Christ died for me, had caused her to come to THAT movie on THAT night. The reason was because she didn’t know why but wanted to know. I was floored.

Now Let’s have a bit of fun. What's your favorite place to eat in Nashville?


Do you prefer home cooking or going out for dinner?

Home cooking

One food everyone tells you to try, but you just can’t get up the nerve.


When out on the road, what's your fast food of choice?

Zaxby’s or Penn Station

Finally, if you could be sponsored by one food/drink brand who would it be and why?

Zaxby’s or Dr Pepper

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