Riff West Biography

 

Place of Birth:   Corpus Christi, Texas.

Dave Hlubek on Riff:  The best. Just an all-around great guy.  When I grow up I wanna be just like him.

Danny Joe on Riff: The guys did a great job on that (Jammin' for DJB).  I want to thank Riff (West), especially, for the work he did on it.  He was a trooper on that whole thing, and I don't think it was a monetary thing.  I think Riff did it out of the goodness of his heart.

Musical inspiration:  Riff was inspired to be a bass player by Paul McCartney.  He was also heavily influenced by Buffalo Springfield, Poco, The Rolling Stones, The Kinks, and Steely Dan.  The first record he bought was "Meet The Beatles."

Before Molly Hatchet:  Riff played at various times with The Chessmen, Angel, White Witch, and then Molly Hatchet.

Career with Molly Hatchet:  Riff was a member of Molly Hatchet from 1982 (when he played on the Take No Prisoners tour, but not the album) up until 1990.  He provided bass on the albums "No Guts, No Glory", (1983), "The Deed is Done" (1984), "Double Trouble Live" (1985), and "Lightning Strikes Twice" (1989).

Riff West had the unenviable task of filling Banner Thomas's shoes when he joined Molly Hatchet, but was soon accepted by fans.

Riff played his last concert (and the original Hatchet's final concert) in 1990 in Ohio with Meatloaf.

Since Molly Hatchet:  Riff has been a busy guy.  First things first: he was the one Hatchet man who stayed in touch with everyone else.

He provided bass and vocals for Foghat from 1991 - 1993.  Again, he stays in touch with his Foghat colleagues.

He has performed benefits for the Orlando Humane Society for the last 15 years. 

He was the driving force behind the "Animal Magnetism" benefit CD which included Riff, Linda McCartney, Linda Ronstadt, Chrissie Hynde, Leon Russell, and Edgar Winter.  It was released on Kingsnake Records- catalogue number KS2024.

He now has a band called "Riff West and Friends", and he also runs his own business in the Central Florida area.

The most publicized event he has been involved with was Jammin' for DJB.

Riff was the driving force behind Jammin' for DJB, having jointly come up with the idea with Jimmy Farrar.  Riff arranged an all-star bill to play the benefit for Danny Joe.  It comprised: the newly-reformed Captain Beyond, the Southern Rock Allstars, the Artimus Pyle Band (All Points Bulletin), the Lizard Band.  Individuals who took part were ex-members of Blackfoot, Marshall Tucker Band, Foghat, Pat Travers Band, Outlaws, Lynyrd Skynyrd, Charlie Daniels Band, Rossington Band and Doc Holiday.

The high point of the night was when all of the former members of Molly Hatchet (apart from Duane Roland who couldn't play for legal reasons), performed as the Dixie Jam Band .The absolute peak was when Danny walked to the stage (bearing in mind his stroke seriously impaired him) to perform the vocal on "Flirtin' with Disaster).

Riff was able to arrange the benefit via his contacts with the Orlando Humane Society, and with the Children's Make-A-Wish campaign.

Riff seems to be a great guy - help support him by buying "Animal Magnetism" (click here for more information).

Riff now is in partnership with a company that does rental of backline equipment for music events.

Latest news is that Riff has signed on for a project involving classic members of Hatchet; himself, Jimmy Farrar, Steve Holland, Duane Roland, Bruce Crump and Bruce's bandmate from Daddy-Oh, guitarist Linne Disse (who replaces Dave Hlubek in the band's plans). They have named themselves after their classic song..."Gator Country Band" and kick off their career in style opening for Lynyrd Skynyrd on March 12, 2005 in Orlando, FL. (Editor's note:  This show was a huge success. Click here to read a thorough review of the debut show written by Scott Shields.)

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