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Yahoo! Starz are back! One the most underated US bands in the 70's yet they played some classic rock tunes. They are back & coming over to the UK/Europe later this year. Thanks to Batttttty for getting the questions to Richie.

1. What are you currently up to?

I currently have a band playing every Sunday night in Paramus, NJ, a suburb of NYC. I've been writing songs, including one that I co- wrote with Danny Peyronel (X-UFO) for his new reunion CD with Heavy Metal Kids!

2. What has been the highlight(s) and lowpoints(s) of your career to date?

The highpoint was touring with Starz through the '70's. Lowpoint? I don't let my mind go there!

3. Which song(s) are you most proud of and why?

Well, Pull the Plug and Coliseum Rock/It's A Riot, I guess. Pull the Plug totally captured the feeling of the lyrics. The music was meant to be eerie and it really came out that way. Coliseum Rock/Riot was just high-energy, heavy rock. It's a style of music I have always been into and that was my/our best effort in that direction.

4. Starz are getting back together for a reunion tour. Who will be involved and how did the reunion come about?

It's the original lineup, Michael, Dube, Brendan & myself. Our bassist, Pete Sweval, passed away in 1990. George DiAna will be replacing him. It's something we have all been talking about for a few years. I was contacted by Joe Bouchard (X-BOC) who came over to England recently and said he had a great time and was asked by the promoter if he knew anyone in Starz. He was nice enough to give me the info and it just went from there.

5. Which countries are you planning to tour on this reunion tour? Which countries/venues did Starz enjoy playing most? Any rock'n'roll tales from the road?

Just England and maybe Germany & Sweden. Hopefully, we'll do some US dates. We played so many coliseums and theaters that it's hard to remember. Some cities were better to play than others. R & R tales? I don't want to get myself in trouble!

6. Starz have been quoted as a big influence on many bands including Cinderella & Bon Jovi. How does this feel as a musician and who influenced the members of Starz when they were starting out?

Well, it's nice to hear that you've been an influence on others, of course. As for our influences? I would have to say that each member had their own influences.

I was heavily influenced by Hendrix and Page (early Zep).

7. You did some solo work after Starz broke-up. How did this go and what was it like playing live without the Starz guys? Any more plans for more solo work in the future?

My favorite band to play with has always been Starz. There was always something magical between us. Solo stuff is fine, but playing with the band is the best!

8. What would you like Starz to be remembered for in rock 'n' roll history?

I guess, really, it's all about the songs. I just hope people will continue to remember our songs.

9. What do you do in your spare time outside of music?

I play lots of racquetball & I'm a big baseball (YANKEES) fan.

10. Message for your fans...

Well, actually, I have to thank all the Starz fanz who have kept the torch alive for so long. They have written, e-mailed and called me over the years telling me how much they miss the band. And, because of that, really, we're are able to play together again....after all this time.

Thank you!! Richie

Interview © 2003 Jason Ritchie/
Format and edit: The Music Index.

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