Vertigo Artist Profile: Rick Nielsen

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Richard A. "Rick" Nielsen (born December 22, 1948) is the lead guitarist, backing vocalist, and primary songwriter of the classic rock band CHEAP TRICK, formed in Rockford, IL in 1973. The appearance of Rick on stage was influenced by Huntz Hall of The Bowery Boys; wearing his signature flipped up old style ball cap. His use of the black and white checkerboard motif on his clothing was in line with the use in other parts of pop culture, including Checkerboard Vans sneakers, that feature in the 1982 movie Fast Times at Ridgemont High.

Rick picked up a Vertigo for the first time in Japan in 1996 and was immediately hooked to it's unique shape and tone, adding it to his guitar collection.

On August 11, 2012, Rick Nielsen and the Board of the Burpee Museum of Natural History in Rockford, Illinois, unveiled Rick's Picks, an exhibit that tells the story of Rick's passions for guitars, music and rock & roll. Visitors are able to see a collection of Rick's guitars, personal items, stage clothing and Cheap Trick memorabilia.

Stay tuned for more Vertigo artist profiles coming next week!