Sundy Best was once the hottest music act in the state, rising to fame and playing sold out shows across the south. The duo’s split was hard to swallow for fans, many of whom call Knox County home. That’s why it was a welcome surprise when Kris Bentley, the group’s drummer and co-founder, came to play the Grateful Ed’s stage recently.
The venue was packed out for the 8 p.m. show. Bentley played a wide array of songs from Sundy Best, Elvis, and some originals few had yet heard. He encouraged the audience to let loose, inviting some on stage to play with him.
Bentley spoke about the artistic freedom he’s enjoyed since going solo. “I’m open to playing different styles, playing with different people, experimenting,” he said. “My creativity seems to flow better when I can share my gift with others who are sharing theirs.” Bentley believes it’s an exciting time for music fans in Southeastern Kentucky. “There’s talent right in our own back yard,” he added.
Bentley first got into music through the drums, though he displayed his guitar skills on this night. He listened to the likes of Lynyrd Skynyrd, AC/DC, CCR, on his headphones.
In high school he became familiar with bluegrass and country music. He started listening to rap in college. Ultimately Bentley described his music influences as an “eclectic array.”
When asked which artist he could play with, alive or dead, he chose the father of rock and roll, Chuck Berry