Richard Rangel Morava - Raised On Radio



1988, in addition to music photography, Richard became involved in club booking at the Mardi Gras Concert Club in Lakeland, FL. "It was great, we would deal with promoters and get the opening acts for some major tours between shows. Being located between Tampa and Orlando gave us a draw from both cities." . National acts: Van Zandt, Pat Travers, Bobby Friss and Stranger were among many booked at the club. "I remember we were offered Joan Jett for $1,000 and we provide production. Paul Martel and I tried to talk the club owner into doing it and he wouldn't go for it. The week she was to play her single Little Liar hit the Top 20."

During the early 90's Richard saw a group he knew would one day make a huge impact in music. "It was the Florida Jammy Awards and I was just blown away by this south Florida group called Marilyn Manson and the Spooky Kids." Two years later they were signed to Trent Reznor's label and became a


household name.

In the mid nineties, a magazine publisher's son invited Rich to a show at the Hard Rock Cafe featuring a unknown local group. After the groups set the publisher asked Rich "What do you think about Sam's group?" Rich replied "They are great, this is where music is going..." In June of 1995, Seven Mary Three signed with Mammoth Records and in 1997 they hit #1 in the US. 

Gen, Marilyn & Rich

Matchbox Twenty It was around this same time that Rich did a photo shoot with an Orlando group that just changed their name from Tabitha's Secret. With the addition of Adam Gaynor and Kyle Cook they became Matchbox 20. A year after their CD was released they sold 4 million in the US.

It was also around this time that Rich stumbled upon five guys singing in a local mall called the Backstreet Boys and their management team. "I had met Johnny Wright back on the New Kids tour in the

80s and then ran into him again with the group Snap at a radio show, his involvement made me take notice. The Backstreet Boys  had potential and at the time there was no other groups like them in the US." The boys went to Europe, worked on their debut CD and became huge over there. Once they released here in the US there was no stopping them. It was at the US release party that Richard met Lou Pearlman of Trans Continental Companies. "It wasn't until the Orlando Bands Together benefit concert
 that I truly understood what Lou was doing. It was all bright as day and I realized that if done properly, it could be the biggest thing in music since Motown.

Richard watched as *N Sync was the next to take off but there were other groups that didn't fare as well in the US such as: Trey D, Take5, Solid HarmoniE, Innosense, Phoenix Stone and C Note. "Solid HarmoniE was never given a chance in the US and

Sam, Lou and Richard

 that was a shame because they could have been as big as Britney." Says Richard "I would have done things differently with the other groups. Maybe my ideas would have worked maybe not..." Other groups like LFO and O-Town eventually took off and did very well in the US. It was during Making the Band with O-Town, Richard got to see what goes into developing a group. "I had the general idea of what went on as it was happening but the TV show helped place some of the missing pieces."


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