Gary Richards (born December 31, 1970), known by his stage name Destructo, is an American music executive, concert promoter, and DJ. He is the founder and CEO of HARD Events, a concert brand that has put on popular music festivals since 2007, and which was acquired in 2012 by Live Nation Entertainment. He has performed professionally as a DJ under the name DESTRUCTO for more than 20 years, having toured around the world. He is credited with being a leader in the Electronic music business in North America, and through his events, has helped bring artists like Deadmau5, God Lives Underwater, Basement Jaxx, and Justice into the spotlight. Richards was included on both Rolling Stone's "50 Most Important People in EDM" list and inthemix's list of the "50 Most Powerful People in EDM,". In 2013, he released his second EP as DESTRUCTO titled Higher.
Richards was born in Washington, D.C., growing up in the music industry with a father who worked in radio and concert promotion. By age 10, he was already attending concerts by the likes of Led Zeppelin and Alice Cooper. His family moved to New Orleans, LA, and then to Myrtle Beach, SC, where he worked as an on-air Radio Personality. The family then moved to Los Angeles, CA, where by age 18 he was booking his first shows and performing as a DJ.
In the mid 1990s, Gary Richards began performing as a DJ under the name DESTRUCTO. He is quoted as saying that the DESTRUCTO name derives from "My goal to play the hardest and most gnarly techno out there. I'd blow up the sound system and the mixer at clubs if I could. I wasn't only into Kraftwerk and Daft Punk; I loved Metallica and Black Sabbath as well. So when I performed, it was aggressive and had to be banging." He has released remixes for Depeche Mode, Major Lazer, YG, White Zombie, Digitalism, and others. In 2012 he released his debut EP titled Technology. He has performed around the world for more than a decade, sharing the stage with some of the biggest names in Electronic music. Destructo's second EP titled Higher was released on June 10, 2013 via OWSLA/Boysnoize Records and features remixes by Tommy Trash and Brodinski.
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