Kurt Kerns

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Kurt Kerns
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Born (1969-03-02) March 2, 1969 (age 55)
Jefferson City, Missouri
CitizenshipUnited States of America
EducationBachelor of Architecture
Alma materKansas State University
  • Drummer
  • Architect
OrganizationV Three Studios LLC
Spouse(s)Bonnie Blume
Parent(s)Larry R. Kerns and Judith Ann Kerns

Kurt Kerns (born March 2, 1969) was the drummer for the American industrial rock band Gravity Kills from 1994 to 1999 and, since 2010, he has worked as an award-winning architect and owner of V Three Studios LLC operating out of St. Louis, Missouri.[1][2]

As the drummer for Gravity Kills, he toured with the band across the United States and other countries, playing over 700 shows between 1995 and 1999 as well as selling over 1 million records.[3][4][5] He co-wrote and produced their hit single, "Guilty", that rose to the 86th position on Billboard in 1996.[6] After leaving the band, he returned to his hometown of St. Louis to continue his work with architecture. He won multiple awards while working for The Lawrence Group in St. Louis until 2010.[7][4][8] Kerns then founded V Three Studios in 2010 and has received acclaim since then for his architecture firm's work in designing commercial, educational, multimedia, restaurant & brewery, and residential spaces.[9] His company has worked with CBS Broadcasting, Learfield Sports, and Thirsty Planet Brewing as well as Washington University in St. Louis, Webster University, St. Louis Art Museum, and the National Blues Museum, which was named as one of the top places to visit in St. Louis by the New York Times.[10][11][12][13]

Early life and background

Born in Jefferson City, Missouri to Dr. Larry R. Kerns and Judith Ann Kerns, Kurt Kerns attended East Elementary School and graduated from Jefferson City High School in 1987. He then received his Bachelor of Architecture from Kansas State University in 1992.[14]

During elementary school, Kerns met his future band mates in Gravity Kills, Matt Dudenhoeffer and Doug Firley. Along with his cousin, Jeff Scheel, the four friends played together from 1994 to 1999.[15]

Gravity kills

The band found commercial success from their single "Guilty" in 1996 which Kerns co-wrote and produced. Additionally, Kerns co-wrote and produced their self-titled album Gravity Kills in conjunction with producer John Fryer which came out in 1996. He also co-wrote and produced their album Perversion with producer Roli Mosimann in 1998. Both albums were released by TVT Records. [16]

Architecture career

2000-2010: The Lawrence Group

Kerns worked for The Lawrence Group from 2000 to 2010. He was nominated to be one of the 40 under 40 in 2007 from the St. Louis Business Journal.[4] Additionally in 2007, Kerns was selected for the "Who's Who in Technology" by the same journal for his architectural work on Martha Stewart's Omnimedia audio/video facility; CBS News and Broadcast facilities including KROQ, WCBS, WAFN, WBBM, and 1010WINS; Shock City Recording Studios; Jupiter Recording Studios; and more. [8]

2010-present: V Three Studios LLC

Started in 2010, Kurt Kerns currently employs twelve different architects and designers.[17] They have designed dozens of award-winning spaces for local and national companies.[18] He created the architectural design for the critically-acclaimed National Blues Museum which cost approximately $13 million facility and opened in 2015. [19][20] In addition, he worked closely with the Navajo Nation to create the "Voice of the Navajo Nation" broadcasting facility in 2017 that celebrates Navajo culture and helps to educate, inform, and entertain members of the Navajo Nation. [11] Working with the highly rated Thirsty Planet Brewing Company in 2017, Kerns designed a 60,000-square-foot facility to increase production for the brewery in Austin, Texas.[21][22]

Personal life

Kurt Kerns married his future architectural partner Bonnie Blume in 1997. They have three children together, Lily Anna, Ella Rose, and Isla Violet. They currently reside in St. Louis where Kurt and Bonnie work together to manage V Three Studios.

He has been featured in Scott Steinberg's 2015 novel, Make Change Work for You: 10 Ways to Future-Proof Yourself, Fearlessly Innovate, and Succeed Despite Uncertainty, where he explains that from all his years with Gravity Kills and then transitioning to becoming a successful architect with The Lawrence Group and his own firm, V Three Studios, his practicality and improvisational skills helped him to navigate difficult times and failure.[23] Kurt Kerns is a self-described "Rock stArchitect" that bridges the gap between the vastly different worlds of rock music and architecture.[24]


  1. Zaleski, Annie, "Defying Gravity". River Front Times, October 26, 2005. Retrieved July 1, 2020.
  2. Kelly, Robert, "Ex-rock drummer builds successful architectural business in Maplewood". St. Louis Post-Dispatch, August 14, 2015. Retrieved July 1, 2020.
  3. "Gravity Kills's Concert History". Concert Archives. Retrieved July 1, 2020.
  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 Mauriello, Maria J., "40 Under 40 Class of 2007". St. Louis Business Journal, January 14, 2007. Retrieved July 1, 2020.
  5. Williams, Kevin M., "Gravity Kills still floating". The Chicago Tribune, December 21, 2001. Retrieved July 1, 2020.
  6. "Gravity Kills Billboard" Prometheus Media Company. Retrieved July 1, 2020.
  7. By Mix Editors, "The Class of 2009: MIX PRESENTS THIS YEAR'S COOLEST NEW STUDIOS". Mix, June 1, 2009. Retrieved July 1, 2020.
  8. 8.0 8.1 Editors, "Who's Who in Technology". St. Louis Business Journal, July 22, 2007. Retrieved July 1, 2020.
  9. Tillman, Bonita, "Best Places to Work 2020: V Three Studios (WINNER | Small category)". St. Louis Business Journal, March 12, 2020. Retrieved July 1, 2020.
  10. Glusac, Elaine, "36 Hours in St. Louis". The New York Times, April 4, 2019. Retrieved July 1, 2020.
  11. 11.0 11.1 Editors, "V Three Studios Designs New Facility for The Voice of the Navajo Nation". St. Louis Construction News and Review, June 28, 2017. Retrieved July 1, 2020.
  12. Kerns, Kurt, "Renovations Introduce Sports Theme and Vibrant Workflow to Collegiate Marketer’s Headquarters". Retrofit Magazine, July 16, 2018. Retrieved July 1, 2020.
  13. Editors, "What Rock and Roll Taught Me". St. Louis Small Business Monthly, March 30, 2013. Retrieved July 1, 2020.
  14. Gibson, Suzanne, "Where are they now: Kurt Kerns". Jefferson City Magazine, February 24, 2016. Retrieved July 1, 2020.
  15. Greg Prato, "Gravity Kills Biography". AllMusic. Retrieved July 1, 2020.
  16. Editors, "Gravity Kills". Discogs. Retrieved July 1, 2020.
  17. Editors, "V Three Studios About". V Three Studios. Retrieved July 1, 2020.
  18. "Kurt Kerns, V Three Studios". NewscastStudio. Retrieved July 1, 2020.
  19. Forbes, J. B., "National Blues Museum nearing completion in St. Louis". St. Louis Post-Dispatch, December 2, 2015. Retrieved July 1, 2020.
  20. Johnson, Kevin C., "National Blues Museum downtown announces new opening date". St. Louis Post-Dispatch, December 11, 2014. Retrieved July 1, 2020.
  21. Editors, "Thirsty Planet Brewing Company". CultureMap Austin. Retrieved July 1, 2020
  22. Editors, "Thirsty Planet Brewing Company Triples Operations with Opening of New Facility". Aspire Design and Home, October 9, 2017. Retrieved July 1, 2020
  23. Steinberg, Scott (2015). Make Change Work for You: 10 Ways to Future-Proof Yourself, Fearlessly Innovate, and Succeed Despite Uncertainty. Penguin Publishing Company. ISBN 9780698136861. Pages 157-158.
  24. Kerns, Kurt. LinkedIn Profile. Retrieved July 1, 2020.

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