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Rick Strickland: Bio

Rick Strickland received a Cammy Award for Solo Album of the Year for "Something Smooth" at the 2007 Carolina Beach Music Awards and a Cammy Award for Songwriter of the Year at the 2005 Carolina Beach Music Awards for the song Something Smooth which was #1 on the Beach Music charts the entire year of 2005. It was voted the #1 Beach Song of 2005 on a chart compiled by 30 different DJs' top 100 Songs. It also ranked #8 on the top 50 Rhythm and Blues Dance Songs of 2005.

Four original songs by Rick Strickland are now in the 94.9 Surf Hall of Fame including: Something Smooth, I Miss You, One Step Closer, and Party 'Til The Break of Dawn. Other songs which have received heavy airplay include: Bubba White’s, Love the Night Away, Winner, Nice While It Lasted, The Devil Made Me Do It, We’ve Got It Made, My Heart Belongs to You, and Counting the Days. His songs have charted in the top ten Mississippi, Arkansas, Arizona, Florida, North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia, Alabama, and California.

Strickland is also known for the doo-wap sound and acapella harmonies of his hit, She Cain’t Fix Grits. It became the most requested hit in many different radio markets, heard on “The John Boy and Billy Big Show” (as the most requested song on the show for two years), “The Wyndham Brothers’ Good Morning Show”, and Columbia, SC’s Kicks 96 FM. It, along with Something Smooth, has been referred to as a bonafide Beach Music classic.

Strickland plays guitar, bass, and drums, but is most noted for his four octave vocal range and unique harmony arrangements. He has been praised by legendary Rockabilly artist Carl Perkins of Blue Suede Shoes fame for background vocals on Perkins’s song, Rise Above It. Strickland’s session work included background harmonies on Angel Inside by fellow South Carolinian and Arista recording artist Rob Crosby.

Strickland has been a studio musician and composer for over twenty years, and he has produced over fifty albums and numerous singles in all styles of music. He has written, produced, and performed recordings for The ShagTime Band including I Could Be Your Everything, which won ShagTime “Best New Artist of the Year”, and the original version of She Can’t Fix Grits, which still gets heavy airplay in the Shag clubs and on Beach music radio in the southeast. Strickland wrote and produced three songs, Little Diva, Try, and Sandy for The Mighty Kicks. Two climbed to the top ten in the Beach Music Charts which featured Strickland’s background vocals.

His past work includes vocal performance in Robbie Benson’s movie, “Modern Love”, musical performance for the Georgia Music Awards backing up Tommy Roe, Joe South, and Ray Stevens, composition and performance of two productions, The Ugly Hair Blues and Through Rose Colored Glasses for the Modern Dance Troupe of the Columbia City Ballet, and three national tours as musical director for Billy Joe Royal. While working for Billy Joe Royal, Strickland opened for Waylon Jennings and Willie Nelson, Tammy Wynette, Martina McBride, the Turtles, Jan and Dean, John Sebastian and the Lovin’ Spoonful, and Tommy James and the Shondells. He has also opened shows for the legendary B.B. King in Central Park, NYC, NY, The Red Hot Chili Peppers, The Fifth Dimension, Clarence Carter, Chairmen of the Board, and others.

Strickland’s commercial work includes numerous jingles and television themes such as: the DUI commercial, “Killer Time”; Columbia, SC’s The Koger Center’s commercial, “High Heel Sneakers”; vocals on Tons of Toys commercial; Columbia, SC’s WIS-TV’s George Felton Show theme song; and the theme song for the Wyndham brother’s morning show on Charleston, SC’s the Breeze 98.9 FM.

On stage, Srickland’s aim is make each performance an event which will leave a lasting impression on the audience.