Gary Richrath

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Gary Richrath
Birth name Gary Richrath
Born (1949-10-18) October 18, 1949 (age 65)
Genres Hard rock, Rock, Pop rock
Occupation(s) Musician
Instruments Guitar, Vocals, Slide Guitar
Years active 1970–present
Associated acts REO Speedwagon, Richrath
Notable instruments
Gibson Les Paul Sunburst, Gibson US-1, Charvel Guitars, Fender Stratocaster

Gary Dean Richrath (born October 18, 1949 in Peoria, Illinois) is an American guitarist, best known as lead guitarist and a songwriter for the band REO Speedwagon from 1970 until 1989.


Richrath wrote many of the band's songs including "Golden Country" from 1972, "Ridin' the Storm Out" (1973), "Only the Strong Survive" (1979) and "Take It On the Run" from 1981.[1] In 1977, he and other members of the band took over their own production, which resulted in the band's first platinum album.

Richrath sang several REO Speedwagon songs including "Find My Fortune" (1973) and "(Only A) Summer Love" (1976). He left REO Speedwagon in 1989,[2] and released a solo album titled Only the Strong Survive in 1992 under the name "Richrath."

On November 22, 2013, REO and Styx announced a benefit concert titled "Rock to the Rescue" to raise money for the affected families of the tornado in central Illinois. The concert was held on December 4, 2013 in Bloomington, Illinois. Gary Richrath reunited with REO for a performance of "Ridin' the Storm Out" to end REO's set at the sold-out concert. Gary stayed on stage to help with the encore of "With a Little Help From My Friends" along with REO, Styx, Richard Marx, and others. Gary is originally from the town of East Peoria which was damaged during the storm. Families affected by the storm and first-responders sat near the stage for this special concert and REO reunion.


REO Speedwagon[edit]


  • 1992 Only the Strong Survive


  1. ^ Steve Turner (January 28, 1983). "REO Speedwagon climbing back to No. 1". The Ledger. Retrieved 2010-07-21. 
  2. ^ Shane Harrison (June 13, 2006). "Where are they now?". The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. Retrieved 2010-07-21. 

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