Richard Peter Davis

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Richard "Richie" Peter Davis
Richard Peter Davis.jpg
circa 2010
Background information
Birth name Richard Peter Davis
Born (1957-12-30) December 30, 1957 (age 59)
Chicago, Illinois, United States
Origin Chicago, Illinois
Genres R&B, pop, funk, soul
Occupation(s) Musician, bandleader, composer
Instruments Guitar
Years active 1969 onwards
Associated acts Chicago Catz, "Downtown" Tony Brown, Kevin Smith, Mark Ohlsen, Wayne Stewart, David Gross, Josie Aiello, Devin Thompson, James A. Perkins, Jr., Tony "Toca" Carpenter

Richard Peter Davis (born December 30, 1957 in Chicago, Illinois, United States) is an American guitarist and bandleader who is Chicago-based. He is the son of the late Nathan Davis of feature film and television fame and a co-founder/current member of the rhythm and blues band known as the Chicago Catz.


Musical education and influences[edit]

The performing arts are in Richie's blood, being born to parents that met while they were both members of The Chicago Repertory Group during the New Deal years of the 1930s performing in politically oriented "lefty shows", a precursor to the Federal Theatre Project. Richie grew up in Chicago in the Jeffrey Manor neighborhood located on the southeast side of the city near the old steel mills along with an older brother (Andrew Davis) and sister.

As a pre-teen Richie constantly listened to music on his transistor radio to the local Chicago radio stations WVON, WCFL, WLS, and WGRT listening to a large variety of pop music that would influence his later musical life. He couldn't get enough of the music-variety television shows of the time, his favorites being the early Sunday morning Jubilee Showcase and Hee-Haw. A musical revelation occurred when he borrowed from the local library a copy of the latest album release by B. B. King "Live in Cook County Jail". In 1969, while attending sixth grade, Richie encountered a classmate that brought an old beat-up guitar to school (Sears Silvertone with in-case amp). Richie started to play the guitar picking out notes on the strings to a popular tune of the time and got a tremendous response from an audience of on-looking students. His musical career had started.

Around this same time his older brother Andrew returned from a trip to Europe and gave Richie a copy of the album "Are You Experienced" by a new guitar artist very popular in England at the time, Jimi Hendrix. Also during this time period, the neighborhood that Richie and his family had been living in went through a major change for about two years, from a population of about 99% white to about 99% black, due to a real estate practice going on at the time in Chicago known as Redlining. His politically oriented parents chose to make a statement by deciding to remain living in the changing neighborhood. Regarding this change, Richie was interviewed years later by Studs Terkel for his book on race.[1][2] This occurrence added to his musical experience as he acquired skill at playing the guitar and as a result he began jamming with local area musical talent which was a mix of black and white music including pop music, funk and R&B. Specific musicians that have influenced his musical world are rhythm guitarists Eric Gale, Cornell Dupree, Nile Rodgers, Tony Maiden, Al McKay. Other musical influences are James Brown, Prince, Johnny Winter, John McLaughlin, Frank Zappa, and Wes Montgomery. Up until this time Richie had not really had any formal training on the guitar or music.

Early career[edit]

1975–1978 After attending some college intent on being a biology major, Richie's brother, Andrew Davis a budding cinematographer-turned-movie director at the time, asked Richie to star in a film he was making called Stony Island about a musician living and working in the Chicago inner city.[3][4][5] Richie cut a single with Patrice Rushen entitled "Stony Island Band" for the movie soundtrack.[6] He then moved to Los Angeles and began formal education in music and guitar with Ted Greene, Jimmy Wyble, and attending the Dick Grove Music Workshop which later became known as The Grove School of Music.

Later career[edit]

Richie formed the Chicago Catz in 1986.

Current musical associations[edit]

Richie has worked with many "world class" musicians and session recording artists including the Chicago Catz, "Downtown" Tony Brown, Kevin Smith (musician), Mark Ohlsen, Wayne Stewart (musician), David Gross (musician), Josie Aiello, Devin Thompson (musician), James A. Perkins, Jr., and Tony "Toca" Carpenter.





  • (1989) The Package (composer: "I Don't Know")
  • (1992) Under Siege (composer: "RAP MAMA GOOSE", "LOVE YOU TO DEATH", "SEA OF BLUES")
  • (1998) A Perfect Murder (composer: songs "Velver Night", "Black Alley Rap" and "Park Jam")
  • (2003) Holes (composer: "I'm Gonna Run", "Stranger", "Clear the Air", "Happy Dayz")[23]
  • (2006) The Guardian (composer: "Once Again", "So Lovely", "Hold Tight",[24] "No More You", "Shake Up the World", "Friday Night") (performer: "Once Again")[25]




  1. ^ Race: What Blacks and Whites Think and Feel About the American Obsession (1992). ISBN 978-1-56584-000-3
  2. ^ [1][dead link]
  3. ^ Chicago Sun-Times 2003 newspaper article: "Before making his directorial debut with 1978's "Stony Island," which he co-wrote and produced, Davis acted as cameraman on 15 features and television productions. "Stony" a locally shot street musical featuring Davis' younger brother Richie, a musician who still lives in the city, and, in a much smaller role, their father Nathan Davis, a part-time thespian and World War II vet, marked the first of many times Davis would use his native city as a cinematic backdrop. "It's funny," Davis muses. "[Sun-Times film critic Roger] Ebert, in one of his earliest reviews of my work, talked about how the city became a character in the movies I make here. And that's how I feel about it. The environment comments on the people and vice versa." After the death of Mayor Richard J. Daley, who ran a notoriously tight ship when it came to allowing his city (and it was his city) to appear in films as anything but squeaky clean (i.e., no gangsters, no corruption), doors opened. Little by little, movie production burgeoned. Eventually, Davis took full advantage. Though nowadays he enjoys international renown as an A-list crafter of action flicks (he prefers to call them "political action" flicks) set in locales the country and world over, Chicagoans most appreciate him for his unflagging hometown loyalty. If he can shoot here, he does. Over the past quarter century, he has set six films in Chicago, including "Stony," "Code of Silence," "Above the Law," "The Package," "The Fugitive" and, most recently, "Chain Reaction," starring Keanu Reeves and Morgan Freeman. Each of them, to varying degrees, makes the place sparkle. Or at least subtly shimmer, particularly if you live or walk or work amid the urban grit that Davis so deftly manipulates onscreen. "[Davis] does Chicago locations better than anyone alive," assesses Sun-Times film critic Roger Ebert, citing "Code of Silence" as a prime example. In his most glowing critique of Davis' work to date, Ebert hailed "The Fugitive" as "pure filmmaking on a master scale," doling out four stars in print and, on television, a presumably enthusiastic Thumbs-Up".
  4. ^ The Fugitive on Internet Movie Database
  5. ^ [2]
  6. ^ "Soundtracks: Stony Island, David Matthews, 1978". Retrieved 2014-05-29. 
  7. ^ Archived from the original on November 19, 2009. Retrieved June 11, 2010.  Missing or empty |title= (help)
  8. ^ "Maxx Traxx-Maxx Traxx (Pulse)". Retrieved 2014-05-29. 
  9. ^ "Keith Washington – Make Time for Love CD Album". April 16, 1991. Retrieved 2014-05-29. 
  10. ^ "Tad Robinson – One to Infinity CD Album". November 14, 1994. Retrieved 2014-05-29. 
  11. ^ "Bonnie Lee – Sweetheart of the Blues CD Album". June 27, 1995. Retrieved 2014-05-29. 
  12. ^ "Brian Culbertson – Secrets CD Album". September 16, 1997. Retrieved 2014-05-29. 
  13. ^ "Big DooWopper – All in the Joy CD Album". April 28, 2000. Retrieved 2014-05-29. 
  14. ^ "Glen Washington – Free Up the Vibes CD Album". December 17, 2002. Retrieved 2014-05-29. 
  15. ^ "Big Time Sarah – Million of You CD Album". June 1, 2001. Retrieved 2014-05-29. 
  16. ^ "You Have Reached Mike Phillips CD Album". May 14, 2002. Retrieved 2014-05-29. 
  17. ^ "Dave Gordon – Faux Real CD Album". April 22, 2003. Retrieved 2014-05-29. 
  18. ^ "Do Or Die – Pimpin' Ain't Dead CD Album". Retrieved 2014-05-29. 
  19. ^ "Do Or Die – D.O.D. CD Album". February 1, 2005. Retrieved 2014-05-29. 
  20. ^ "Howard Hewett – If Only CD Album". May 15, 2007. Retrieved 2014-05-29. 
  21. ^ "B-Cow – Squur Dance CD Album". January 30, 2007. Retrieved 2014-05-29. 
  22. ^ "Lisa Mcclowry – Time Signatures CD Album". July 13, 2010. Retrieved 2014-05-29. 
  23. ^ "Holes (2003) : Soundtracks". Retrieved 2014-05-29. 
  24. ^ Archived from the original on February 14, 2009. Retrieved June 25, 2010.  Missing or empty |title= (help)
  25. ^ a b Richard Davis on Internet Movie Database

External links[edit]