Death metal and song parodies don't often go together, but drummer, song parody genius, and Howard Stern sidekick Richard Christy has been successful in both worlds. It's fitting that the prankster was born on April 1, 1974, in the town of Fort Scott, KS. The Uniontown Elementary School is where Christy learned to drum at the age of ten. Drumming along with Van Halen, Kiss, and Quiet Riot records after school gave him his rock chops. The first signs of Christy's double life manifested in high school when he played Metallica, Led Zeppelin, and Black Sabbath covers with his band Syzygy while also serving as the drummer for his school's own novelty act, Bung Dizeez.
After graduating from high school, Christy moved to Springfield, MO, to join the fledgling metal band Public Assassin. A daytime job was still needed to pay the bills, so he found work as a residential electrician. He also became interested in making his own films and shot the 30-minute horror/comedy Evil Ned 2 (there never was an Evil Ned 1) and premiered it at the local Hampton Inn in 1995. It was the same year Public Assassin disbanded, but Christy soon found work with Burning Inside. The new band decided to move in total to Orlando, FL, in 1996, and Christy was soon moonlighting in local metal favorites Acheron.
By 1997 Christy's reputation as a fiery and technically gifted drummer had spread throughout the metal community. It helped him land an audition with one of his heroes, Chuck Schuldiner of Death. He got the gig and appeared on 1998's The Sound of Perseverance and the supporting European tour. In 1998 Burning Inside recorded The Eve of the Entities -- an album that would go unreleased until 2000 -- and a year later Christy would appear on The Fragile Art of Existence by the Death-related band Control Denied.
In 1999 he started leaving voice mails to Howard Stern, and soon he was sending the shock jock song parodies, most poking fun at Stern staff member K.C. Armstrong. To Christy's delight, Stern played the messages and songs repeatedly and they remained a staple of the show for years. In 2000 he joined, recorded, and toured with Iced Earth, sat in with Incantation for a spring tour, did some recording with Control Denied, and recorded Horror Show with Iced Earth at the end of the year. In 2001 came a short tour with Acheron and a tour with Iced Earth that extended into 2002. He was with the band for 2003's The Glorious Burden and also worked with the underground metal supergroup Leash Law the same year.
In 2004 Richard Christy entered a contest Howard Stern was holding to replace his staff member Stuttering John, who was giving up his phone-answering duties on the radio show to be the announcer for The Tonight Show. Like the other contestants, Christy got a week to prove himself by creating song parodies and games, along with other on-air duties, before going up against an Internet vote. Christy won and quit the electrician job he had returned to when not touring, and he regretfully quit Iced Earth while putting his other musical projects on hold. ~ David Jeffries, Rovi