Born in Brooklyn in 1980, Richie Castellano is a 5th generation musician. His grandfather was a big band era upright bassist, and his father was the guitar player in the famous early 70’s group, the Chambers Brothers. After starting to play the guitar at age 8, Richie received a Tascam 4 track recorder when he was 10 and found himself learning a variety of instruments in order to add accompaniment to his guitar tracks.
When he was 12, Richie inherited his uncle’s 16 track, analog multi-track recorder and used it to make one man band recordings including the composition and recording of his Junior High School graduation Theme Song at age 14.
A few years later when he was 17, Richie recorded his first full length album, “Alone In My Basement”, that he had printed on CD (which was extremely expensive at the time). The CD quickly sold out of its initial pressing and was featured in an EQ magazine article focusing on my home production techniques. One of the songs from that album went on to win songwriting awards from BMG and The Songwriter’s Hall of Fame.
In 1998, Richie took his talents to Purchase College in order to study studio production & composition. While there, he met Regina Spektor and produced and engineered her debut CD, “11:11”, an out of print cult hit sought by fans and collectors.
Before graduating from Purchase in 2003, with a Master of Music degree, Richie recorded 2 more original albums and produced music for various indie labels including a project that ended up being featured on the popular show, “The Osbournes.”
In 2004, Richie joined Blue Oyster Cult on bass and eventually switched to guitar and keyboards after the retirement of Allen Lanier. As a member of BOC he received endorsements from DiMarzio, Line 6, Ernie Ball, Engl, Peavey and Audio Technica. Richie has since performed with several high profile musicians from the groups including Yes, Black Sabbath, AC/DC, Queen, and many more.
Richie co-wrote and performed “Kiss My Axe”, a single that was released as part of a promotion for the game Warhammer Online in 2009.
In 2010 Richie became an active YouTube contributor and created one man band style, split-screen videos including a cover of “ABC” by the Jackson 5 and Queen’s Bohemian Rhapsody in 2011. The Bohemian Rhapsody video went viral with over a million views and was even posted by Queen guitarist Brian May, on his Blog. Richie was subsequently asked to talk about his work on several media outlets including Fox News.
In 2012 Richie released his 4th original CD entitled, “MorningStarlett”. It features a more metal sound and Richie’s wife on vocals. The album was very well received by the indie metal community and was featured on metal webzines and local radio stations across the country.
More Recently, Richie has been recording and producing the “Band Geek” podcast in his home studio for the east coast’s largest comedy podcast network, RiotCast. It features musical guests discussing their careers and jamming with the house band each week.
Since 2014, Richie can also be found on the AMS YouTube Channel and at AmericanMusical.com as our video product specialist. Richie uses his years of expertise with a variety of gear to provide informative video demos on some of the newest and hottest products available at AMS.