Little Featís Richie Hayward: 1946-2010
Our brother Richie Hayward was the baddest drummer that ever picked up sticks, the rhythm and pulse of Little Feat, and we lost him yesterday, August 12th, to pneumonia and complications from lung disease. Our prayers are with his soul mate Shauna, and all those who loved him. May he find peace.
Some of you might like to know more about Richie. He was born February 6, 1946 in Clear Lake, Iowa. He was in a band called The Factory in Los Angeles whose front man was Lowell George. Eventually, Lowell joined Frank Zappa, offered him the song “Willin’,” and Frank wisely said, “Go start your own band, son.” The result was Little Feat, and Richie was the first and, until his health took him off the kit in 2009, eternal drummer for Feat. He was the master of space, time, and drums, and he had as much to do with Feat’s sound as Lowell’s voice, Billy Payne’s keys, Paul’s and Fred’s guitars, Kenny’s bass, or Sam’s percussion.
Don’t just take Feat’s opinion: Richie played with seemingly half the members of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame at one time or another, an LA session star who was a peer of people like Ry Cooder and Van Dyke Parks. He recorded and performed with Eric Clapton, James Cotton, Bob Dylan, Buddy Guy, Robert Plant, Carly Simon, Tom Waits, Warren Zevon, and many, many more.
The world’s a little quieter and a lot less rhythmic today, although heaven’s a lot funkier. We urge everyone to hug your loved ones, light a candle, listen to something righteous, and pledge to give more to the world – because Richie sure did.
A tribute web page has been started for Richie. Please stop on by and leave a short note for Richie in our guest book. Additional photos and videos to be added shortly.
Donations can be made on Richie's behalf to The Happy Liver Society.