Rich Webster

2014 - Individual Artist

In 1976, Rich Webster had his first professional gig with the band Zigfield Common at Ming Garden Restaurant in Coralville, IA. He played with Zigfield Common through 1983 at different venues in Cedar Rapids and at high school dances and proms.

In 1981, Webster began playing solo at the Vine Tavern in Iowa City. Becoming a permanent fixture playing solo opposite Pete Raine, Joe Kennedy and Rob Schulz for the rest of the 1980s. Their shows were packed and solo out nearly every weekend. During that time the group recorded three albums of original material on cassette and sold hundreds at gigs. The three albums, “Brick Streets,” “Radio,” and “Secret Things” were produced by Webster.

During the 80s, Webster also played with “Legacy,” “Foolish Pleasure,” and started the band “Dogs on Skis.” The Dogs played at wedding receptions, and countless street dances including an audience of over 15,000 in Cedar Rapids at the Chech Village Freedom Festival. They also opened for Paul Revere and the Raiders at the Williamsburg Beach Party in the late 80s. He left the Dogs in 1991 to continue with his solo work.

In August 1992, after playing a solo gig in Arnold Park, Webster returned to Iowa City and suffered a burn injury and nearly died.

After recovering, he continued a writing and recordinh effort with Mark Vos of KRNA radio, and Jim Clancy, former Dog. They recorded with amazing musicians from the Cedar Rapids/Iowa City area at School House Studios in Cedar Rapids. John Reasoner produced the album, “Postcards from the 70s.” The band was called “Snakes in the Hay.”

Webster’s next adventure was law school in 1995 in Iowa City. There he met and began playing with Paul Quin. Quin, from Manchester, England, and Webster’s group played the law school venues around Iowa City and morphed into what became the Rich Webster Band, that still plays in various incarnations.

After law school, the Rich Webster Band included Risto Rautianinen (a well-known Finnish bass player), and Aaron Adam. This trio played around the Iowa City area and into other parts of eastern Iowa.

Webster has had the honor of playing for Governor Tom Vilsack and the first lady.

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