Starfish and Coffee
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Starfish and Coffee


Band Rock Pop


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This band has not uploaded any videos




Ross Childress spent 10 years with the multiplatinum group Collective Soul as the band's lead guitarist, co-writer and backing vocalist before stepping away from the spotlight to pursue the quiet life. Childress began recording with local Atlanta artists and collaborating with friends for fun before the performance itch became too much to bear. Childress formed The Ross Childress Experience, now called Starfish and Coffee, in 2006. He is now returning to his club roots with a small Southeastern tour. - The Post and Courier Charleston, South Carolina


Starfish and Coffee - Self titled debut



Lead singer and guitarist Ross Childress once again teams up with raw musical talent from the Atlanta, Georgia area, this time with Andrew Carter on guitar, Bo Bentley on bass and Thomas Michael on drums.

Ross Childress, probably most widely known as the lead guitarist in the multi-platinum selling group Collective Soul from 1994 to 2001, has since been working on a number of projects that have culminated in Starfish and Coffee.

In the early 2000's, Ross worked with Trevor Hurst of Econoline Crush on his solo album "Wanderlust," together producing and writing over 40 songs. Four of those songs are included in this album, with the track "Not Broken" included in both projects.

More recently, after being casually asked by a member of a band he was then producing in Atlanta to be a part of a musical charity event, Ross found that his noncommittal reply had been taken as a definite "Yes." Ross recalls he was playing golf a few days later with friends Bo Bentley and Thomas Michael and they asking, "Did you know you're playing that charity show?" and he being like, "No." Yet between shots they were laughing, "Well, you're on all the posters." In true Ross fashion, he replied, "Oh My… Well, can you guys play with me?"

"We all grew up together," says Bo. "So, we already knew the friendship thing was there. But when Ross was accidentally booked to play that show, we figured, 'Heck let's give it a shot.' Ross didn't even know if he wanted to pursue that life anymore, but when we hit that stage, it was fun for all of us. It's what we knew a band was supposed to be: Fun!"

Ross adds, "I never wanted to put a solo album out. But I also didn't want to put a band together from a rolodex of people that had toured and professionally done this before. That would have been artificial and contrived to me."

With Bo and Thomas, the Ross Childress Experience was born, and ended up rocking that benefit plus several other shows throughout Georgia and Florida.

Andrew Carter, another lifelong friend, attended one of those early shows and noticed that they could really use a stronger second vocal. "I mentioned this to Ross later, thinking he would find someone from his book of people, yet one day to my surprise, he called and asked if I would care to practice with them and see if we could work some songs out. So I went to that practice and we sounded pretty good. Some time after that I found myself at Ross' house having photos taken. A few days later I asked if I was in the band and Ross said 'Well, you're in all the photos so I guess so!' The rest is history."

And the Ross Childress Experience morphed into Starfish and Coffee.

"How Starfish and Coffee came together as a band is about as natural and organic as it can happen and I'm very happy about it," says Ross. No auditions, and with egos in check, it just works.

Their debut album was recorded live in a small cabin in the middle of Chattahoochee National Forest.

However, it didn't start out that way. "We loaded up the van with the pro tools rig and all our instruments and a thousand other instruments we found along the way and set out to record in a cabin," laughs Andrew, thinking they were just going to finish the four or five remaining songs on the album.

Ross adds in, "Yeah, we had recorded eight songs in various studios and headed to a cabin on top of a mountain in Clayton, GA to finish the rest of the songs that was to be our debut cd. But once we started in Clayton, I realized the flow of the cd was going to be sonically all over the place, so we scrapped all the previous recordings and re-recorded every song in that cabin."

That original eight day recording session ended up stretching out across three months.

"Ahhh, Clayton. What can I say?" reminisces Bo. "Beautiful mountains, grassy fields, horses, no cell phone service, no tv, no land line phone — surrounded by 360 degrees of the Chattahoochee National Forest. Complete seclusion from the rest of the world. We took over the cabin in a big way. A control room was set up in one of the bedrooms. Drums, amps and guitars (and 2 more beds) in the other bedroom, the house was pure chaos. We were sleeping with guitars and living on frozen burritos."

"My favorite part of doing this album was the fact that it is as indie as it gets!! Everything that we did up there was done by the four of us. We had to turn a small cabin into a recording studio, which wasn't easy. We moved around beds, tables, couches, massive spiders you name it!! I had so much fun doing it that way, and now that it's done, I wouldn't have had it any other way," confides Thomas.

Continues Andrew, "Yeah, no one's cell phone received signal and that equaled no distractions! We set up shop that was set in the most beautiful scenery I have seen in years. It was far, far...........far away from the mechanized world and with all that time and space applied to all of our talents and drive, we recorded an album