Originally released in 1989, VAMP’s The Rich Don’t Rock album should be held in the same regard as other classic hard rock albums of the era.  Produced by Tony Platt (AC/DC, Foreigner) and stuffed to the rafters with arena-ready choruses, hooky guitars and Tom Bellini’s ballsy vocals, The Rich Don’t Rock was a creative triumph for the German group.  But like the other artists we’ve made part of the Divebomb Records family, VAMP were victims of their record label’s shortsightedness and their album went nowhere commercially.

Being the hard rock fiends we are, Divebomb Records has tracked down the members of VAMP and we’ve partnered with the band to bring The Rich Don’t Rock back with the love and attention it deserves.

The Rich Don’t Rock has been unavailable since the late ’80s and this Divebomb Records’ Deluxe Edition features newly remastered band-supplied audio, 15 unreleased professional studio demos, 2012 interview with the entire band and archival live photos.

JANUARY 15th, 20
15 (R.I.P. – Ricolf Cross)

Vamp Ricolf 01 - CopyIt is a sad day here as we were greeted with an email informing us that Ricolf Cross of VAMP had passed away. He was a amazing person to work with and went above and far beyond for VAMP fans worldwide to put together all the unreleased tracks contained on The Rich Don’t Rock reissue. We are deeply saddened at this sudden loss to the music community. We send our condolences to his friends and family in their time of grieving.

Here is the official statement from the band.

Ricolf Cross, founding member and guitarist of Vamp passed away on January 3rd, 2015. This tragic loss is a hard hit for his wife, family, band mates and friends.

Ricolf started his musical career as lead guitarist with German rock band Cross. The band had its first success after relocating to London in the early 80’s, but ultimately disbanded. In 1985 Ricolf started Vamp with fellow musicians Dicki, Tom and Oli. His songwriting and expressive guitar performance was instrumental to land a record deal with American major label Atlantic. Vamp’s debut album “The Rich Don’t Rock” quickly gained international attention and the band toured extensively throughout Europe and the US until the group’s demise in 1991.

After Vamp folded, Ricolf studied sound engineering at the prestigious SAE Institute. Following his graduation Ricolf and his wife Susanne opened the doors to their new Perle am Rhein (Pearl of the river Rhine) studios. Numerous national and international recordings confirmed Ricolf’s standing as a top-notch producer for handmade Rock music.

In 2013 Ricolf supervised the re-issue of Vamp’s debut album. He remastered the original tracks and re-engineered hitherto unpublished recordings of Vamp. At the same time he was the driving force of a re-union of the original line-up. Sadly, this reunion will not materialize.

Ricolf was a wonderful and giving person in private, a berserker on stage and a musician extraordinaire. His guitar work was influenced by Jimi Hendrix and Richie Blackmore, but he remained unique and original. Ricolf’s sound was based on simple ingredients: A Stratocaster plus a cranked up Marshall stack combined with the help of a pint of lager were the ingredients of his massive in-your-face guitar sound.

His love, his friendship, his humor and his sound will be truly missed.