The Aching Hearts    

The Aching Hearts is a new collaboration between two of St. Louis, Missouri’s leading figures in  folk and roots music. The duo features a mix of guitar, banjo, fiddle, mandolin, washboard, and old time vocal harmonies. Utilizing songs of the past and the present, An Aching Hearts performance will take you on a moving journey through the sounds and stories of the American experience. Their hard driving fiddle tunes will get you out of your seat. Their mournful country vocal duets will bring a tear to your eye, and their original songs and stories focus on life, death, love, and marriage are sure to inspire, entertain, and delight.    

Kelly Wells (guitar, mandolin, washboard, vocals)    

Kelly Wells, who now makes her home in St. Louis, MO, is a folk musician, Dj, music promoter, and organizer.  A native of Memphis, TN, she brings southern charm to her playing, a southern accent to her vocals, and southern sass to her songwriting.


Kelly hosts Steam-Powered Radio on 88.1 KDHX St. Louis and brings gritty old-time, hard-driving bluegrass, deep-south blues, heartbreak country, and relevant folk to the airwaves.


Kelly also serves as Director of the Folk School of KDHX, coordinating folk music education in St. Louis and beyond.  Wells regularly hosts workshops and consults on folk music education in the modern age.



Ryan Spearman    (guitar, banjo, fiddle, mandolin, vocals)            

Ryan Spearman is a folk musician, educator, and music promoter from St. Louis, MO. He’s a nationally known figure in the old time and acoustic music scenes.


A multi-instrumentalist, songwriter, and vocalist, Spearman has been performing folk and roots music professionally for the last twenty years.


Spearman is the creator of AcousticLiving, a blog dedicated to helping musicians get better gigs, make more money, and find more satisfaction in their musical pursuits.


Aside from his performance career and his blogging, Spearman is an instructor and educational programming consultant at The Folk School of St. Louis where he teaches a variety of classes covering all sorts of folk-related musical subjects including: clawhammer banjo, old time & bluegrass fiddle, country blues, guitar, jug band, improvisation, music theory for the folk musician, & all things twangy.


Spearman and Wells are the co-founders of the Green Strum Project and the St. Louis Folk & Roots Festival.