Sin City Presents Magazine May 2016 Volume 3 Issue 5 - Page 20

SIN CITY PRESENTS/JANUARY 2016

Born into a family of musicians and surrounded by classics, Richard showed an interest and affinity towards music at an early age. Studying music under the tutelage of some world-class instructors, Richard started with flute (inspired by Jethro Tull), transitioned to trumpet and finally was bitten by the Rock & Roll bug while watching his older brother play drums. All the while, Richard would play on the family

piano, playing classical and whatever peaked his interest. While his brother was out of the house playing with his friends, Richard would sneak into the room, put on his favorite records (which included KISS, Pink Floyd, Cheap Trick, Led Zeppelin, Black Sabbath, Pink Floyd, etc.) Serious exposure to Rock & Roll was all that Richard had as his older brother broke Richard’s Motown records saying,”No brother of mine is going to listen to that whimpy sh_t!” So, he replaced Rich’s collection with the heavy material of the day.

It wasn’t until Richard was in his teens that he took up bass. It followed a serious car accident in which his legs were broken. Bed-ridden, Richard asked his older brother to go to the local music store and bring back a guitar so that he could pass the seemingly endless hours cloistered at home. Going out the door, his brother asked, ”Will that be six string or bass?” After contemplating, Richard concluded the bass afforded the driving bottom end of drums and mobility of guitar; So, his answer was, “BASS!”

Richard played from morning till night for days, weeks and months on end. After one year, he decided to attend a music camp attended by Department Heads from the Berkeley School Of Music.

It was while attending this concentrated music training course that Richard learned of his natural and unusual abilities. Richard was then offered a scholarship to attend Berkeley under the guidance of Mark Henry. But, the opportunity was dashed as his father didn’t share the enthusiasm and rejected the idea. But that didn’t slow Richard’s excitement with the instrument. Richard began playing with bands. His first real experience was in S.S. Steel founded and guided by his older brother Ference, who by that time was a highly recognized frontman and vocalist, the likes of Rob Halford (Judas Priest), Jeff Tate (Queensryche), and Bruce Dickenson (Iron Maiden). In no time, they had booked the largest venues in the State of Alaska, which caught the attention of investors and management. They were given a regular showcase to perform and further were on a statewide television station where their unusual antics now came into the living rooms of thousands.

Over the years, Richard played in some very successful bands. Richard relocated from New York to California to help his brother rewrite some material for his current band, Delirium. It was during this that California received a shock from exposure resulting from the aggressive and dexterous style Richard refined while in NY. By that time, Richard had developed a signature style that was a fusion of the picking style of Steve Harris (Iron Maiden), the hammer-on style of Eddie Van Halen and Billy Sheehan and the arpeggios and dark melodies and moving basslines of Yngwie Malmsteen. Most notable is TANTRUM, a neo-classical metal band, which took Richard 4 years to put together. After playing many large venues in California, and recording original material, the band was offered the opportunity to be signed with Capitol Records. Unfortunately for the band, however, Richard learned that he was going to become a father. Deciding that the two lifestyles were not compatible at that time in his life, Richard made the choice to become a father and also going back to college to complete his undergraduate degree in Electrical Engineering

Since music was in his blood, Richard continued to play and perform. While attending university, Richard studied music and performance and played occasional gigs with his professors, who constantly enticed Richard to forget about engineering and work with them to realize his potential as a jazz bassist. Torn between the two, Richard realized that although he loved music, it was quite difficult to make a living, So, over the years, Richard continued to work and play music in his spare time. While further perfecting his unusual technique and signature style, Richard also realized he wanted and needed a signature sound to express his personality and interpretation of the instrument. After some 24 years, Richard has fully achieved that objective. Previously, Richard was the bassist for BAND Company, a group of Las Vegas based musicians. Although the music was a divergence from his roots, Richard enjoyed the company and collaboration with his bandmates as well as the opportunity to play a genre that affords the occasion to expand his musical horizons. Richard’s latest project was a Deep Purple Tribute called PURPLESQUE, a group was comprised of members which took 2-1/2 years to finalize. This project was iintended to afford Richard the occasion to unleash his fingers, technique, signature style and sound through a 5,000 watt bi-amped system, giving his tonal character a sound and texture unlike any other. (Richard refers to his setup as, ”Attitude in a trunk.”) In his rack system, Richard has separated the high and low frequencies, modified his basses to also be bi-amp ready, thereby achieving a sound that is very full and thunderous, yet responsive to the articulation of blistering runs achieved through his vicious four-finger picking. The spectacle of the concept as well as the unique sound is something that audiences, musicians and aficionados will not want to miss. Richard has always prided himself on taking the bass guitar from the shadows of the backline, into the spotlight and front of stage. Richard explains, “It is all about the song; Whatever you do has to add value to the music

about that bass

Claudia Elez

You're not a fan of the band if you don't know the Bass players name

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