Kevin Ridel

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Kevin Ridel
Background information
Birth name Kevin Ridel
Born (1969-12-06) December 6, 1969 (age 45)
Vernon, Connecticut
Genres Alternative
Occupation(s) Musician, Singer-songwriter, Guitarist
Instruments Vocals, Bass, Guitar, Keyboard
Labels PPBaba Music
Associated acts Avant Garde
Ridel High
AM Radio
Website Official Site

Kevin Ridel is an American musician and songwriter most notable for being the lead singer and primary songwriter of 90s powerpop band Ridel High ( A&M Records ) and AM Radio ( Elektra Records ).

Early life and influences[edit]

A child of 80’s music, such as The Cure, The Psychedelic Furs, U2, and a slew of unmentionable heavy metal acts, Ridel has played in bands since age 14. In 1989 he moved from Connecticut to Los Angeles with his band Avant Garde (featuring Rivers Cuomo of Weezer) to pursue a career as a rock singer and songwriter. Over the past 15 years, he has created a name for himself in the Los Angeles music scene with his bands Ridel High[1] (A&M Records), Peel (Beyond Music) and AM Radio (Elektra Records).


Ridel's first band was with River Cuomo of Weezer, the 80s hair metal band Avant Garde in which Ridel was the lead singer, Avant Garde later renamed Zoom were active from 1985-1989.

After Avant Garde ended Ridel moved to Los Angeles where he started the band Lunchbox, many of songs wrote in Lunchbox would later go on to become well known favourites for his next band's (Ridel High album Emotional Rollercoaster

In 1995 Ridel formed Ridel High, released a 2 track vinyl single on Morpheus Records in 1995, the band signed to Lagwagon singer Joey Cape's label My Records and released the album Hi Scores. After this time were band playing shows around LA with such bands as That Dog, Size 14, Summercamp getting industry attention the band signed to A&M Records.

In 1998 the band recorded Hi Scores with producer Joey Cape and released the album Emotional Rollercoaster.[2][3] The album was not successful. In 1999 the band split up, after the split the band released the album Recycle Bin which featured songs that were recorded for their 3rd album.

After the split of Ridel High, Ridel went on to form Peel with Ridel High guitarist Steve LeRoy, Leroy was later replaced by current Ridel High guitarist Matt Fuller.

In 2001 Ridel formed AM Radio, it was here that Rivers Cuomo of Weezer helped AM Radio get off the ground in 2001.[4] Rivers was enlisted as AM Radio's manager, the band toured the USA and Japan with Weezer. In 2001 after signing to Elektra records AM Radio released the album Radioactive, the band had recorded tracks for a 3rd album for Elektra which was never released, these tracks would appear on the 2005 album "Reactive". Despite various lineup changes through the years AM Radio remain active until this very day.

Career and placement[edit]

Ridel’s band AM Radio have toured the US, Canada and Japan extensively, supporting the bands Weezer, Third Eye Blind, Eve 6, Rooney, Ben Kweller and The Psychedelic Furs. Their song "I Just Wanna Be Loved" was featured on the Smallville soundtrack - Talon Mix, and also placed on an episode. Another song "Taken for a Ride" was featured on EA Sports Madden NFL 2004, placed on an episode of One Tree Hill, and used on a television trailer for FOX feature film The Girl Next Door. Another song, "Pretty Stupid", was featured on the DVD for Wonderfalls. Members of AM Radio include Rowan Robertson of DC4 (formerly of Dio, and Vast).

More recently, Ridel's music career has been concentrated overseas in Japan, with the release of AM Radio's latest album Reactive on Fiveman Army (FAEC Inc.) and his signing with Sony Music Publishing (Japan). Ridel also lent his voice to two songs on Nintendo's US release of Elite Beat Agents and sang The Kinks' "You Really Got Me" for a national Japanese television ad for Soft Bank, featuring Brad Pitt.

Since the summer of 2006, Ridel has been playing bass and singing in the praise band at LA Grace Church in Los Angeles.


Ridel released a new album in 2013 with AM Radio[5] titled Shine. Ridel also reformed Ridel High in 2013 who performed live in 2013 and most recently at the 2014 Boozacarooza Cruise with Nerf Herder



Album information
Peel by Peel
  • Released: 1999
AM Radio by AM Radio
  • Released: 2001
Radioactive by AM Radio
  • Released: 2003
Reactive by AM Radio
  • Released: 2007
Bigger Better Bolder Brighter by AM Radio
  • Released: 2009
Shine by AM Radio
  • Released: 2013
Emotional Rollercoaster by Ridel High
  • Released: 1998
High Scores by Ridel High
  • Released: 1997
Recycle bin by Ridel High
  • Released: 1999

External links[edit]