Web designer Ryan Richardson kicked off 2011 in retro style by taking it back to the glam rock year of 1973! On January 1st, 2011, he launched the website STAR 1973, a lovingly constructed homage to the short-lived controversial 1970's teen magazine STAR (not to be confused with the similarly titled current-day celebrity news/gossip magazine) which lasted only five issues back in '73. With a web design whereby you can digitally turn the pages of the magazine, Richardson has painstakingly archived every square inch of each issue of the ill-fated monthly on his new site.
"The first issue of STAR hit the stands in February 1973. With its over-the-top advice and irreverent coverage of LA's teenage groupie scene, it wasn't long before Petersen Publishing was feeling the heat from "concerned citizens." Five issues and five months later, publication ceased,' writes Richardson on the site's introduction, further explaining, "Such controversy along with coverage of'"new breed' Sunset Strip groupies (Shray Mecham, Sable Starr, Lori Lightning, Queenie Glam) and glam venues like Rodney Bingenheimer's English Disco cemented the mag's later cult status among fans and collectors."
The magazine, which makes ample use of the words "fox" and "foxy," sold for 50 cents, had no advertising in its five published issues, and is reputed to have had its sixth issue all ready to go when the plug was pulled in mid 1973. Last week I caught up with the Austin, TX based Richardson, who had not quite reached his first birthday when STAR was being published, to ask him how he first discovered the magazine and what qualities attracted him to it.