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Richard Riegel

Richard Riegel

Richard Riegel decided he wanted to be a rock critic too, after reading Lester Bangs's manifesto "James Taylor Marked for Death" in 1972. Two years later, Riegel was writing for the great Bangs himself, at CREEM Magazine. A terminal Midwesterner, Riegel continued to do most of his rockwriting in the pages of CREEM, for years after Lester had departed for the green fields of Gotham. Along the way Riegel has also had his music pieces published in the Village Voice, Harp, Launch, Real Groove, the Washington Post, New York, Phonograph Record Magazine, Who Put the Bomp?, and his own Loose Palace fanzine, among other periodicals. As none of those gigs ever quite kept the wolf from the family door, Riegel also put in 30 years as a caseworker and quality control reviewer for the public welfare department, from which he was finally sprung by the Clinton/Gingrich "reform" in 1998. Riegel continues to reside with his wife, Teresa, in Cincinnati, Ohio, though he considers Columbus and Cleveland cooler cities on the whole.


True-story trivia note: In several incidents in recent years, strangers on the street have told Mr. Riegel that he looks "just like Andy Warhol!" Riegel is not bothered by the supposition that his naturally-achieved platinum locks evidently resemble Andy's funky wig, as he's gratified that if he has to resemble a celebrity, at least it's Warhol, someone whose artistry he's always admired. Riegel feels that if random passersby instead told him he resembled certain other celebs – e.g., Bruce Willis, Carol Channing – then an extreme makeover would be the only honourable way out.

List of articles in the library by artist

Lester Bangs at Home

Memoir by Richard Riegel, unpublished, May 2009

NOTE: I wrote this mini-memoir for one of the neo-Creem projects of recent years, but it wasn't used. ...

The Beatles: 1962-1966, 1967-1970 (Apple)

Review by Richard Riegel, Phonograph Record, July 1973

Author's Note, 2009: This review of "the red and blue albums" generated the first-ever hate mail from a reader in my rock-critical career. He wasn't ...

The Beatles: We Can Work It Out: The Ten Most Over- & Underrated Beatles Songs

Comment by Richard Riegel, Real Groove (New Zealand), December 1996

The Ten Most Underrated Beatles Cuts (Arranged Chronologically) ...

Pat Benatar: Crimes of Passion (Chrysalis)



Review by Richard Riegel, Creem, December 1980

YOU'VE PROBABLY heard much of this album on the radio already, maybe you've gone ahead and bought it (I see that the album's now #5 ...

Pat Benatar: Hot L Baltimore's (Not Just) For Children: Nice Girl Finishes First & Demands Recount

Report by Richard Riegel, Creem, November 1981

COLUMBIA, MARYLAND, is a "planned community" nestled among scads of functional greenery, midway between Baltimore and Washington D.C. Columbia was laid out according to the ...

Chuck Berry, Elvis Presley: Hey Conductor You Must: Rock'n'Roll Iconoclasm In America

Essay by Richard Riegel, Loose Palace, Spring 2000

2006 Author's note: I wrote the following piece in the summer of 1993 on assignment for Rob O'Connor's Throat Culture magazine, after I had suggested ...

Blondie: Eat To The Beat (Chrysalis)

Review by Richard Riegel, Creem, January 1980

TOUCHED BY YOUR PRESENTS, DEARS ...

Bow Wow Wow: When the Going Gets Tough The Tough Get Going (RCA)

Review by Richard Riegel, Creem, July 1983

PERSONALLY, I never lost a minute's sleep over 15 1/2-years-old-and-semi-nude Annabella's supposed exploitation at the hot little hands of Malcolm McLaren when he was pushing ...

Jim Carroll: The Jim Carroll Band: Catholic Boy (Atco)

Review by Richard Riegel, Creem, February 1981

JIM CARROLL'S the latest word pusher (as in prose, poetry, you know, the pen-meets-paper thing) to cross the art-will-be-convulsive-or-not-at-all line, into the authentically electric seizures ...

Cheap Tricksters Deny Plans For Global Conquest

Report and Interview by Richard Riegel, Creem, December 1979

Term Mass Invasion A "Dream Police Action" ...

Cheap Trick: An Afternoon Of Reality Therapy With Rick Nielsen & Cheap Trick

Report and Interview by Richard Riegel, Creem, July 1979

"IT'S LIKE I always tell people," says Rick Nielsen, "'I'm not a conservative, I'm a realist'." ...

The Clash: Give 'Em Enough Rope (Epic)

Review by Richard Riegel, Creem, March 1979

FUTURE SHOCK NOW (If You Want It) ...

Destroy All Monsters: Bogart's, Cincinnati OH

Live Review by Richard Riegel, Creem, July 1980

We Almost Lost Detroit – Part 2
 ...

Devo: Actual Size

Report and Interview by Richard Riegel, Creem, March 1979

(Investigative Reporter Dances The Poot) ...

Bob Dylan: More Of An Outlaw Than You Ever Were? (Hold The Mayo On The Golden Globe Awards)

Essay by Richard Riegel, Creem, March 1982

During the '70s, Dylan got swept up into those overblown, superstarred ships of fools which claimed so many promising prophets from the '60s. ...

Electric Light Orchestra: Discovery (Jet)

Review by Richard Riegel, Creem, September 1979

THE ELECTRIC Light Orchestra was a shaky proposition from the beginning, as far as this hard-boiled Yank observer was concerned. Roy Wood's announced intention of ...

Girlschool: Staying After Girlschool

Report and Interview by Richard Riegel, Creem, May 1984

GIRLSCHOOL MEMBERS Kim McAuliffe and Gil Weston flash me quick smiles as we're introduced in their road manager's hotel room, and I'm relieved to note ...

Hall & Oates: Daryl Hall & John Oates: Private Eyes (RCA)

Review by Richard Riegel, Creem, December 1981

I GOTTA HAND it to these guys. Just a few years back, if the merest snatch of any of their biggies – 'She's Gone' was ...

Human Switchboard: Deft Mutants in a Telephone Booth: Human Switchboard at Walnut Hills, Dayton

Live Review by Richard Riegel, Creem, August 1981

DAYTON, OH -- "Maximum Occupancy: 110" says the sign high up on the wall of the Walnut Hills Bar, and by a conservative estimate, I'd ...

Husker Du: Hüsker Dü: Not Bohemia, But Estonia!

Interview by Richard Riegel, Creem, June 1986

"HÜSKER DÜ" is Danish for "Do you remember?," and I do, I recall very clearly my meeting with the guys from the rock band of ...

Billy Idol: Rebel Yell (Chrysalis)

Review by Richard Riegel, Creem, March 1984

BILLY IDOL has designated the respective sides of the single-pocket Rebel Yell as "3" and "4," in the same big numerals he used for "1" ...

James Chance, James White and The Blacks: The Contortions: Buy The Contortions (Ze); James White And The Blacks: Off White (Ze)

Review by Richard Riegel, Creem, February 1980

SOME DAYS it's fun being a real Midwesterner trying to make it in the art rackets; the powers on the good-taste-is-timely Coasts already have you ...

The Kinks: Thank You for the 1/288th of the Day, Ray!

Memoir by Richard Riegel, Real Groove (New Zealand), April 1997

BACK IN OUR mid-1960s adolescence, my friend B. entertained a magnificently huge crush on Dave Davies of the Kinks. We were young Yanks in thrall ...

The Knack: Knuking The Knack Inside Their Own Reactor

Report and Interview by Richard Riegel, Creem, April 1980

Connubial Alliance Invades the Heart Of the Beast ...

The Knack: Max Knack Attack

Report by Richard Riegel, Creem, January 1980

PACKS FEW FACTS, JACK (BUT STACKS OF TRACKS PUT THE PAX ON FLACKS' YAKS) ...

John Lennon: Shaved Fish (Apple)

Review by Richard Riegel, Creem, March 1976

DID Y'EVER notice how each of the former Beatles has enjoyed a successive season in the sun as the rock critics' fave Fab Four survivor? ...

Love: Forever Changes(Elektra/Rhino)

Review by Richard Riegel, Village Voice, April 2001

LOVE'S THIRD ALBUM mystified both the band's ardent fans and the scene's founding rockwriters almost from the day it appeared in November 1967. ...

Lynyrd Skynyrd: One More From the Road (MCA)

Review by Richard Riegel, Creem, December 1976

LYNYRD SKYNYRD: Does Their Conscience Bother THEM? ...

John Mellencamp: John Cougar: XR-7's Entire Midwest Metropolis

Report by Richard Riegel, Creem, December 1980

Renegade Stories Down Thru the Years: ...

John Mellencamp: Cuttin' Heads (Columbia)

Review by Richard Riegel, Village Voice, December 2001

ROBERT ZIMMERMAN wanted to emulate Woody Guthrie, while John Mellencamp aspired to be the next-to-last David Bowie, and here they are at fateful birthdays 60 ...

Motorhead: Motörhead: Loving Them Like Reptiles

Report and Interview by Richard Riegel, Creem, June 1985

MOTÖRHEAD ARE so fucking LOUD my ears are already bolting for the door so they can hop a bus and flee home to the security ...

Nena: 99 Luftballons (Epic)

Review by Richard Riegel, Creem, June 1984

IF YOU DON'T already have a crush on Nena Kerner for the sweetly tumbling gutturals of her vocals, and the sexiness of her hands-in-pockets stride, ...

Nico: Bogart's, Cincinnati

Live Review by Richard Riegel, Creem, September 1980

Be Real Kraut For Me, Baby! ...

Ozzy Osbourne: Blizzard Of Ozz (Jet)

Review by Richard Riegel, Creem, July 1981

THIS MAY be a little hard for Cliff Richard to take, but his fellow Xian, Ozzy Osbourne, has by now become the English Elvis Presley. ...

Iggy Pop: The Idiot (RCA)

Review by Richard Riegel, Creem, June 1977

LET'S SEE, 1977 minus 1973 is four; it's been four whole years since Iggy and the Stooges' milestone Raw Power was released. Four years can ...

Iggy Pop: Metallic J.C.'s Consciousness-Raising Wrap Session

Report by Richard Riegel, Creem, May 1979

TURIN, ITALY – In a surprise announcement this week, it was revealed that the so-called "Shroud of Turin," long believed to be the cloth in ...

Iggy Pop: World's Most Forgotten Boyo Discovered Performing Alternative Service For The Bourgeoisie

Comment by Richard Riegel, Creem, March 1981

COMING, ON your own TV, sometime around 1986: A loud, but dry, staccato male voice opens the commercial: "Do you remember those thrilling days when ...

Prince: 1999 (Warner Bros.)

Review by Richard Riegel, Creem, February 1983

DRESSED TO FUNK 

 ...

The Ramones: Leave Home (Sire)

Review by Richard Riegel, Creem, May 1977

ROCK CRITIC or not, your reviewer resides in the Midwest, and doesn't make it up to Noo Yawk any too often (last such trek occurring ...

REO Speedwagon: Good Trouble (Epic)

Review by Richard Riegel, Creem, October 1982

FROM OUT OF THE STEREOS OF BABES ...

Paul Revere & The Raiders: Paul Revere & the Raiders: Punks Just Keep Getting Harder to Find

Report and Interview by Richard Riegel, Creem, November 1979

MIDDLETOWN, OHIO – As the car clanks over the first peak of the Screaming Eagle rollercoaster, poised to begin its exhilarating hurtle downward, I have ...

Romeo Void: Benefactor

Review by Richard Riegel, Creem, December 1982

ROMEO VOID'S Debora Iyall has said that her band's name "means there are not romantic notions here — and there shouldn't be; we are about ...

The Smiths: Meat Is Murder (Sire)

Book Excerpt by Richard Riegel, Creem, June 1985

EVEN THOUGH I happen to think that this group's debut disc was one of the best albums of 1984, I'm afraid that they may be ...

Sting: The Dream Of The Blue Turtles (A&M)

Review by Richard Riegel, Creem, October 1985

O SOLO STINGO ...

Supertramp: ...Famous Last Words... (A&M)

Review by Richard Riegel, Creem, April 1983

MANY' FINE nouns come to me whenever I think of Supertramp, and most of the printable ones can be found in the section of my ...

Sweet: Give Us A Wink (Capitol)

Review by Richard Riegel, Creem, May 1977

I SEE HERE in this clipping that Sweet lead singer Brian Connolly got his throat kicked in during a pub brawl in London in 1974. ...

Thin Lizzy: Tramping the Celt Belt with Thin Lizzy

Report by Richard Riegel, Creem, October 1978

LONDON, ENGLAND – So I've journeyed 4000 miles across the sea, made my pilgrimage to the cradle of the modern rock 'n' roll era, just ...

U2: War (Island)

Review by Richard Riegel, Creem, May 1983

JERRY MATHERS' days as TV's beloved Beaver were numbered the second his voice began to crack and change, and U2's new War may force similar ...

Wall of Voodoo's Off Sound Track Betting

Profile and Interview by Richard Riegel, Creem, August 1983

Caricatures Shown Not Intended To Depict Artemia Salina ...

X Spots the Mark: Raw Chemicals With a Spoon

Interview by Richard Riegel, Creem, February 1984

AS I ENTER Billy Zoom's Cincinnati motel room, I glance at the usual rockband-on-tour pile of black leather jackets, but I also take note of ...

Yazoo: Yaz: Upstairs At Eric's (Mute/Sire)

Review by Richard Riegel, Creem, March 1983

"YAZ," ARE really "Yazoo," and still go by that name in the U.K. and Europe, but for North American consumption they had to drop the ...

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