Into the Black
My name is Richie Kotzen and i am a guitarist/singer/songwriter. I started learning the electric guitar when i was seven years old in my home town of reading pennnsylvania. At the age of 12 i formed my first band and performed live consistantly in the Pennsylvania, Delaware, newjersey area until i graduated from high school. When i turned 18 i went west to San Francisco and recorded my first album for a company known as shrapnel records. That same year i was featured on several magazine covers including guitar world magazine and was voted one of the top 3 best new guitarists that year by the readers of guitar world magazine. I recorded three records for the shrapnel label group and then moved to Los Angeles California. It was then that i was invited to join the multi platinum glam metal band known as poison. I recorded one CD with the band and did a world tour in support of the CD. My song stand reached #4 on mtv's most wanted and was in the top 20 in billboard magazine. Our record eventually reached the platinum sales status. After finishing my obligations with the group i went back to being a solo artist and released several records on various labels including shrapnel, geffen, and jvc until i was invited by jazz legend stanley clarke to form the band vertu. We recorded our self-titled CD for sony and spent the summer in europe playing jazz festivals. It was an honor and a great experience to be in a band with mr clarke and the rest of the members of the band. That same year i joined the rock band mr big which is known for their number one song "to be with you". we played the Osaka dome with aerosmith in 1999 for the millenium count down. I recorded and wrote 2 studio records with mr big and had my first number one single in Japan with a song i wrote called shine. When mr big disbanded i went back to making my solo records. Since then i have been touring all over the world as a solo artist playing clubs, outdoor festivals, and most recently stadiums in Japan as the opening act for the rolling stones a bigger bang tour 2006. ^#^touring and making music is my life. It is all i have ever done. I am very grateful to all of the people around the world who have made that possible. Sincerely, Richie Kotzen.