||This biographical article needs additional citations for verification. (July 2011)|
August 25, 1956 |
|Associated acts||Pat Travers|
Jerry Riggs is an American rock guitarist and vocalist, born on August 25, 1956, in Knoxville, Tennessee.
Jerry Riggs began his musical career as lead guitarist for the Knoxville, Tennessee group, Lynx, a popular staple on the local bar circuit in the mid-1970s. The band, featuring Michael Byassee on vocals, soon relocated to Atlanta, Georgia. There, musician Don Train ("Stormtrooper") recruited Riggs and fellow guitarist Jeremy Graf to join his group "Raggedy Ann". The band recorded a series of demos at Last Stand Studios in 1978. By 1979, the band was being courted by major producers and new demo tapes were cut in Lookout Mountain, Tennessee, resulting in new management and recording deals. When Don Train elected to leave the group and return to Philadelphia in 1980, Jerry Riggs replaced him as frontman and the band became known as Riggs. Two of the band's songs "Radar Rider" and "Heartbeat" were featured prominently in the 1981 animated feature film Heavy Metal. The songs were also included on the movie's soundtrack release. Riggs' debut album on the Full Moon label was released shortly after, but failed to make much of an impact on the music scene. One song, "Ready Or Not", was a minor hit, but the album otherwise went unnoticed.
Riggs began working with Canadian rocker Pat Travers in 1983 and joined the Pat Travers Band band as co-lead guitarist. At the time Riggs joined, Travers was at the end of his most successful period. The band became a staple on the North American nightclub circuits during the latter half of the 1980s and toured constantly. At headlining shows, Riggs performed at least one of his original songs, and "Ready Or Not" was always a crowd favorite. He also showcased his skills with a very memorable guitar solo. A few of Riggs' original compositions made it onto Travers' 1990 release School Of Hard Knocks. One Riggs-penned track was an instrumental entitled Guitars From Hell, which featured fretwork from both he and Travers. Riggs is also featured in the 1991 video release Boom Boom-Live At The Diamond Club, a full-length concert filmed in Toronto which features Travers' greatest hits, as well as "Ready Or Not" by Riggs. Although one of his songs was included in this video release, Jerry Riggs' guitar solo was not.
Riggs left Travers' group in 1993 and now lives in Florida. He performs regularly with Bobby Friss, whose Bobby Friss Band has a large and loyal following in Florida, as well as Michigan and Wisconsin. He also performs with "Rock and Pop Masters", a self-described group of musicians / business professionals who deliver "authentic, high quality, custom-tailored “Classic Rock” events".
The band Riggs has reunited for occasional one night engagements, most recently on November 28, 2009, playing at The Loft in Atlanta.