Stephen Kern
      

                                                                                                                                                                                             Picture taken by Faith Haley Dinges

I've been drumming for roughly 25 years and like being a solo artist (I know exactly the kind of sound I like)! John Lamattina was my drum teacher back in 4th/5th grade and got me learning the basics. After taking private lessons from him, I would naturally just know when I could add in fills and just went from there! I've always had that natural rhythm in me, which is 100% put there by The Lord (as is with every gift in everyone). Still have the same Ludwig Rocker set as I did back then, just added on over the years (double bass, added two more tom toms etc). One thing you might not know about me is that I play guitar with my thumb. I pick like normal, but I hit the notes down with my thumb. I've played that way ever since I started in early High school (just automatically found it really comfortable)! Still can't play the "normal" way (looks like I'm a beginner when I've tried lol), find it very unnatural feeling! I picked up the hammered dulcimer in 2012. I figured since it's wrist related (like drums), I'd learn that fast. 

My favorite band is Blind Guardian. I was a huge fan of old Metallica from Middle school through most of High school. I remember looking up random music and came across Guardian. First song I heard was "Time stands still."  I loved it! I checked more out of them and clicked immediately! They're the ones who introduced me to Medieval/Celtic. Speaking of which, I also like Ritchie Blackmore's band Blackmore's Night. Iced Earth came after Blind Guardian. I love the galloping! It's truly an honor to be friends with two former Iced members! Tommy Lee Thompson and John Greely!