Monica Richards Bio:
Monica Richards is an uncompromising Artist in the broadest sense of the word: singer, songwriter, composer, painter, illustrator, writer, philosopher and poet. Considered as a nonconformist by independent critics, Monica Richards surpasses current fad and fancy, expressing instead her personal truths and life's path through her music and art that reaches fans throughout the world.
In over twenty years as a front woman in Underground music, Monica Richards has a well-deserved reputation of the highest respect for her powerful voice and theatrical stage presence. An old school punk rocker who began writing songs at the age of 15, her sharp, intelligent lyrics and musical talents are the highlights of Faith and the Muse, as well as her solo project, Infrawarrior.
Monica began singing in her early teens, fronting a number of bands (Hate From Ignorance:82-'83, Madhouse: 83-'86) during the heyday of the Washington D.C. hardcore punk scene. She performed at the same time as other well-known D.C. Punk bands - Bad Brains, Minor Threat, and SOA (Henry Rollins' first band), and was one of the earliest female singers in the harDCore scene.
Her early days are well documented in books that chronicle the harDCore scene: "Banned In D.C." [Connolly/Clague/Cheslow] and "Dance of Days" [Anderson/Jenkins], which can be found on Amazon.com, Tower Records, and any bookstore that sells Independent publishers.
Monica formed Strange Boutique in 1987 with the intention of exploring a more art-driven style of music. With Daniel Ingram (Ex-Untouchables/Youth Brigade/Madhouse), Ex-Beefeater guitarist Fred "Freak" Smith, and the addition of bassist Steve Willett in 1988, the band's first EP, "Easter Island" was released in the Spring of 1989, showcasing Monica's more refined voice and the band's diverse musical talents.
Strange Boutique released 3 CDs on their own Bedazzled records label, performed throughout the U.S. and even in the UK in support of for Killing Joke before the band broke up in late 1993. Monica Richards reunited with Strange Boutique for a Reunion show in Washington D.C. on July 3rd, 2004, and a 'Best Of' CD of Strange Boutique songs was released on Metropolis Records, entitled Strange Boutique - The Collection: 1988-1994.
In 1993, Monica created Faith and the Muse with William Faith, (Ex-Mephisto Walz/Shadow Project/Christian Death) with the purpose of having no boundaries to their music, reaching across historical genre and cultural style. Amidst a diverse musical background ranging from Dark Alternative Rock and Electronica to World Music & Neo-Classical, to Jazz, Avant Garde and Folk, Faith and the Muse allowed Monica to combine her love of art, theater and music.
With the release of five albums and one double CD live/remix album, along with extensive touring throughout the U.S. and Europe over the last 11 years (more than 250 performances), the band managed to gain the attention of a vast assortment of music fans, owing to their constantly evolving sound: indefinable but unmistakable. Faith And The Muse have been called “an art band with a pop sensibility”; artists in the truest sense, refusing to conform to current fads in music, a high caliber of musical output in their wake - integrity without question. Well-known and widely respected in the Underground community, Faith And The Muse have already made their indelible mark on Independent music and culture. Monica's theatrical side and penchant for costume are released full force, allowing her a larger-than-life presence on stage.
In 2009. Faith and the Muse released : ankoku butoh : CD/DVD/Book set which featured a new album plus a DVD of their 2007 Convergence Festival show as well as new and rare videos. The : ankoku butoh : Book was a 30 page piece of art, lyrics and poetry created by Monica. In 2011, F&TM released a live DVD : shoumei : which documents the : ankoku butoh : live tour.
Monica released her solo CD, InfraWarrior in 2007, an electro-tribal work focusing on "the power within" as well as songs based on Matriarchal mythological themes with all the cultural echoes, elements and seasonal faces they present. The connection between Woman and Nature is a prominent theme in Monica's work...
In 2011, Monica Richards brought her personas of 'InfraWarrior' to vivid life with an interactive multimedia performance. Like theater, the film interacted with Monica on every song to create a living art piece.The show included Lucretia•Renee as her partner and Familiar, who had joined Faith and the Muse as half of the dance troupe Serpentine. The show alos included live musicians Lesley Malone and Caroline Jago of 7th Harmonic for the European Festivals, and Steven James, Marzia Rangel and Dizhan Blu for the US show.
Monica is finalizing her latest solo release, NAIADES, working with new collaborator and partner, renowned horror writer and musician, Steve Niles. NAIADES is set for release in January, 2012!