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Published: 12/8/2015

SESAC Signs Cheap Trick’s Rick Nielsen

Rick Nielsen, primary songwriter and lead guitarist for the enduring and unrivaled American band Cheap Trick, has signed with SESAC for representation. Nielsen, the composer of Cheap Trick’s biggest hits, including “I Want You To Want Me,” “Surrender,” and “Dream Police,” is a co-founder of Cheap Trick, forming the band in 1973.
“Rick Nielsen is revered by his peers and admired by his fans, a creative talent that has been a part of one of America’s most classic bands,” said John Josephson, Chairman and CEO, SESAC. “We are proud to welcome Rick to the SESAC family.”
“SESAC is on the forefront of technology and really making some ground-breaking developments in these changing times,” stated Rick. “I’m all about innovation especially when it comes to taking care of songwriters so in that regard, SESAC made me an offer I couldn’t refuse.”
During their four-decade career, Cheap Trick has performed at more than 5,000 concerts and recorded 16 studio albums, 7 live albums, and over 13 compilations. They have also just completed recording in Los Angeles and Nashville for a new album to be released in 2016.
The band’s popularity is worldwide, with Japanese press often referring to Cheap Trick as the “American Beatles.” The band was ranked in the top 25 in VH1’s list of the 100 Great Artists of Hard Rock. The group, known for its legendary live shows, has toured with the likes of Aerosmith, AC/DC, Pearl Jam, The Kinks, Mötley Crüe, Foo Fighters, Stone Temple Pilots, Smashing Pumpkins, and many more. In 2015 the band toured Australia and New Zealand with Billy Idol, and just finished a summer tour with Peter Frampton. The band’s hit single “Dream Police” was featured in the popular video game “Guitar Hero” and the group also performed the theme song for the film “Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen” and for the last 9 years, their theme song played nightly on Comedy Central’s “The Colbert Report.”

In addition to his role as guitarist with Cheap Trick, Nielsen is known for his guitar collection, including his famous Hamer custom five-neck guitar. The notable guitar collection has been featured in the book, “Guitars of the Stars,” which highlighted 200 of Nielsen’s instruments; many of his guitars are highlighted in countless other books and publications worldwide.

In 2012-2013, the Burpee Museum of Natural History in Nielsen’s hometown of Rockford, Illinois hosted an exhibit entitled “Rick’s Picks: A Lifelong Affair with Guitars and Music” attended by thousands of fans from around the world, as well as being featured on an episode of “American Pickers.”
Rick and Cheap Trick have received over 50 Gold and Platinum Recording Awards over their extensive career.
The band’s music has been featured in numerous movie soundtracks such as Top Gun, Daddy Day Care, Caddy Shack, Fast Times at Ridgemont High. Private Parts, Say Anything, Heavy Metal, Joe Dirt, Detroit Rock City, Tequila Sunrise, Over The Edge, Mr. Holland’s Opus, and Last Action Hero – and many others.
Rick’s recording credits also include: John Lennon – Double Fantasy, Hall & Oates, Kiss, Aerosmith, Concrete Blond, Mötley Crüe, Alice Cooper, Ministry, Posies, Revolting Cocks, and Screaming Lord Sutch, as well as various commercials (Diet Coke – National, Pepsi – International, HBO Fall Line-Up, and others).