Fortus with Guns N' Roses in 2012
November 17, 1966 |
St. Louis, Missouri
|Genres||Hard rock, alternative rock, post-punk, heavy metal, new wave|
|Occupation(s)||Musician, guitarist, songwriter, producer|
|Instruments||Guitar, violin, vocals, bass, drums|
|Associated acts||Guns N' Roses, The Dead Daisies, Love Spit Love, The Psychedelic Furs, Nena, X Japan, Thin Lizzy, Gravity Kills|
|Website||The Official Website of Richard Fortus|
Richard Fortus (born November 17, 1966) is an American guitarist. He is best known as a member of the hard rock band Guns N' Roses, with whom he has been a member since 2002, and with whom he has recorded one studio album. Fortus has also collaborated extensively with The Psychedelic Furs frontman Richard Butler and fellow Guns N' Roses bandmate Frank Ferrer.
Early life and beginning career
Fortus studied at the Conservatory of the Arts in St. Louis and Southern Illinois University and also played in several youth symphonies in the St. Louis area.
The Eyes/Pale Divine (1984-1991)
Fortus founded the band The Eyes in 1984. The four-piece alternative band independently released "Freedom in a Cage", which was produced by David Probst. After signing with Atlantic Records, they changed their name to Pale Divine. They subsequently toured the U.S. in support of their only album, Straight to Goodbye, opening for The Psychedelic Furs.
Love Spit Love and the Psychedelic Furs (1992-2000)
After the Psychedelic Furs split up, Fortus formed Love Spit Love with Richard and Frank Ferrer in 1992. When the Furs reformed in 2000, Fortus joined the group as second guitarist and played on the live album Beautiful Chaos: Greatest Hits Live. Love Spit Love went on an indefinite hiatus soon after.
Guns N' Roses (2002-Present)
In 1999, Fortus was contacted by Guns N' Roses to audition as a potential replacement for the departing Robin Finck. However, the spot was ultimately filled by Buckethead. In 2002, guitarist Paul Tobias left Guns N' Roses, citing stress with touring. Fortus was touring Europe as guitarist for Enrique Iglesias in May 2002 when he got a call from his friend (and Guns N' Roses bassist) Tommy Stinson asking him to fly out to audition for the band. Fortus joined Guns N' Roses officially in July 2002.
In Guns N' Roses, Fortus plays both rhythm and occasional lead guitar. Lead singer Axl Rose is very pleased with Fortus's work and has said, "He's an amazing lead player and very technically skilled. He really likes the pocket that Brain sets and the two of them click with Tommy so we finally have the real deal rhythm section, as Richard is a proven professional. Basically, Richard's the guy that we always were looking for."
The Dead Daisies (2013-2016)
In 2013, Fortus joined the Dead Daisies with the likes of Jon Stevens and Dave Lowy as well as Guns N' Roses bandmates Frank Ferrer and Dizzy Reed. Their eponymous debut album was released on August 9, 2013. A second album "Revolucion" was released in 2015. Fortus left the Dead Daisies in 2016 to focus on Guns N' Roses.
Fortus was in a group called Honky Toast with Frank Ferrer, singer Eric J. Toast and bassist E.Z. Bake. The group released one album, 1999's Watcha Gonna Do Honky?.
In 2008 he joined the Danish rock/pop band, the Storm, on their tour. Fortus played guitar on their first record, "Where the Storm Meets the Ground," and is a personal friend of leadsinger Pernille Rosendahl and lead guitarist Johan Wohlert.
Fortus provided guitar for former The Replacements and Guns N' Roses bassist Tommy Stinson's two solo albums. Fortus also recorded a cover of the James Bond theme for Guitar Hero World Tour and later played the song live as a solo spot during Guns N' Roses's 2012 tour.
Fortus is a member (alongside Ferrer) of New York-based band The Compulsions.
Guitars: Gibson '73 Les Paul Signature Effects: Hiwatt tape echo, Lexicon PCM80 Pedals: Klon Centaur, Hermida Mosferatu Amps: 2 channel Cornford, '73 Jose-modded Marshall 100, Plexi Marshalls (modified), Diezel
On November 5, 2005, Fortus' partner gave birth to a daughter, Paisley Piper Fortus. She gave birth to a second child, Clover Blue Fortus, on January 6, 2008.
In September 2015, he seriously injured in a motorcycle crash, causing him to miss dates with the Dead Daisies. Fortus suffered a broken shoulder blade, a broken collar bone, six broken ribs, a broken toe, a bruised lung, a lacerated liver and a concussion.
On December 10, 2016, Fortus married Stephanie Howlett, a St. Louis-based attorney.
with The Eyes/ Pale Divine
- Freedom in a Cage (1990)
- Straight to Goodbye (1991)
With Love Spit Love
With Tommy Stinson
- Village Gorilla Head (2004)
- One Man Mutiny (2011)
With Guns N' Roses:
With The Dead Daisies:
- The Dead Daisies (2013)
- Revolución (2015)
With The Compulsions:
- Dirty Fun (2015)
- "Biography". Official website. Richard Fortus. 2012. Retrieved July 16, 2012.
- Chinese Whispers - The Secret History of the New Studio Album
- Saidman, Sorelle (July 17, 2002). "Guns N' Roses Trade Paul Huge For Psychedelic Furs' Guitarist". cdnow.com. Retrieved April 24, 2015.
- GN'R press release with Axl interview
- "Richard Fortus + Dizzy Reed Exit Dead Daisies". loudwire.com. Retrieved December 15, 2016.
- "Honky Toast - Biography & History - AllMusic". allmusic.com. Retrieved December 15, 2016.
- "BT To Tour North America With Full Live Band". mtv.com. Retrieved December 15, 2016.
- "on tour". Richardfortusonline.com. Retrieved 2011-04-04.
- "The Storm med Guns N' Roses-guitarist". ekstrabladet.dk. Retrieved December 15, 2016.
- "The Compulsions - New York City Rock 'N' Roll Band". thecompulsionsnyc.com. Retrieved December 15, 2016.
- "THIN LIZZY With GUNS N' ROSES Guitarist RICHARD FORTUS: First Band Photo Released". blabbermouth.net. April 14, 2011. Retrieved December 15, 2016.
- "Here Today... Gone To Hell! - Richard Fortus Facts". heretodaygonetohell.com. Retrieved December 15, 2016.
- "Guns N' Roses' Richard Fortus Injured in Motorcycle Accident". loudwire.com. Retrieved December 15, 2016.
- Holleman, Joe. "STL lawyer weds Guns N' Roses axeman". stltoday.com. Retrieved December 15, 2016.