David Stefanelli. Drummer, percussionist, guitarist, and music producer.



Johnnie Wright and The Queen Of Country Music - Miss Kitty Wells

Back in the 1990’s while on tour with the band RTZ, we were staying at The Roosevelt in Los Angeles for a few days. It was kind of ground zero for us when we were on the west coast. One afternoon that we had off we ended up at the hotel pool. There besides us were Hall & Oates band members including drummer Mickey Curry who I have always thought was such a great musician. It was really great to meet, chat and hang with these guys. Stories were flyin'! They always do.

Anyway as we were all sharing stories by the pool an older gent came up to us and started chatting. A real nice guy. A true southerner. He said his name was Johnnie Wright and told us he was a country singer. I am sort of an old school, country music fan of the original, early artists and I recognized his name immediately. He told us that he was here with his wife visiting their son who was one of the character actors on McHale’s Navy. My mind was reeling because I recognized his name and I was racking my pre-internet brain to remember some facts about this guy. He then said "You may have heard of my wife. Kitty Wells?" WOW! Kitty Wells. The Queen Of Country Music. I was very impressed to say the least.

After a bit of chatting with Johnnie the discussions amongst everyone there went back to the usual band stories. I got up and decided to engage Johnnie on my own about his music, his actor son, and of course his Country Music Legend wife. After a bit of chatting, Johnnie asked me if I wanted to meet Kitty. Of course I said yes. He lead me to one of the small rooms that faced the pool, opened the door and in we both went.

There was Kitty Wells sitting on the edge of the bed fixing her hair. Johnny said “Hey Kitty, I have someone here who wants to meet you!” She looked at me and said “Well hello darlin’ I’m Kitty Wells.” I felt like I was a special fan that won a contest to meet this country legend. This was awesome!

Kitty Wells invited me to sit and chat a bit with her. I told her I was on a tour and she was really inquisitive about it all. She asked me this and that about who I was touring with and what instrument I played. Turns out that Kitty Wells was indeed a sweet and kind person.

She and Johnnie had a whole bunch of 8 x 10 promo shots which they graciously signed two of and gave to me. They were both the nicest folks. Both Kitty and Johnnie had many hits during their music careers. They made me feel important taking the time to chat with me. Some real legends they were and are! A very lucky day for me indeed.

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David Stefanelli, Zildjian endorsed.

David Stefanelli uses TOCA percussion instruments.

David Stefanelli uses Zager guitars.