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RIP … Ex-Autograph Drummer Keni Richards Dead at 60

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RIP
Ex-Autograph Drummer Keni Richards Dead at 60

 

Ultimate Classic Rock — Keni Richards, a musician best known for his tenure as the original drummer for Autograph, has died at the age of 60.

Keni_Richards_Eddie_OldSKool_Jan_2014_1The band’s founding guitarist, Steve Lynch, confirmed the news via the band’s Twitter account, calling Richards “the mighty force that was our backbone from 1983-1988.” Guns N’ Roses bassist Duff McKagan also tweeted a tribute, saying Richards was “an amazing soul and funny as hell.”

Richards, who’d earlier played with Autograph frontman Steve Plunkett in a band called John Doe, proved instrumental in securing the fledgling group its big break. While Autograph were still getting their demo together, Richards — who’d become a jogging buddy of Van Halen singer David Lee Roth‘s — claimed he received a phone call from Eddie Van Halen offering to make them the “T-shirt band” for Van Halen’s upcoming tour.

Richards with Van Halen inset right.

“I’m like, ‘Well, what’s a T-shirt band?’ and Eddie Van Halen’s like, ‘It’s a band that goes out on the road with us and people boo you cuz they don’t like you, and they go buy one of our T-shirts,’” Richards laughed years later in conversation with Legendary Rock Interviews. “So we go out and get a Winnebago and take them up on their offer to open the 1984 tour. Funny thing happens, five months later we’re signing a multi-million dollar record deal with RCA after we play the gig at Madison Square Garden.”

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Read the fulll story at Ultimate Classic Rock

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