The MusicNerd Q&A With They Call Me Rico


“They” might call him Rico but to his parents and many others, he will forever be known as Frederic Pellerin. Pellerin, a former member of Quebecois band Madcaps, performs under the guise of They Call Me Rico, a one-man wonder band of sorts boasting a raw, gritty sound that is ultimately honest yet is also as catchy as hell.

Although his music predominantly leans towards the blues, They Call Me Rico also draws heavily from folk and roots music. Pellerin dropped his sophomore record, This Kind Of Life, earlier this month. He recently spoke with The MusicNerd Chronicles Magazine about the making of the record and how his hope for the future is not completely lost.

How much did the extensive touring through Canada and Europe behind your debut record help shape the songs on This Kind Of Life? 

I think touring helped me get me more confident as a performer. It was a bit easier for me recording this album because I was feeding off the energy of the live shows, which I continued performing during the process of making this record.

I noted how some of the songs on the record came together relatively quickly. Do you feel musicians get too caught up in trying to perfect their songs instead of trying to capture the emotion behind the song?

Absolutely. The first album was therapeutic for me because I have OCD [laughs]. I used to spend too much time working on the smallest details. Now I tend to record almost exclusively live. You can’t really go wrong with that because the energy and emotion is pure, and you can’t fake anything. You really capture the authenticity and honesty of the performance.

There has seemingly been a gradual shift over the past few years to a more organic / less bells and whistles approach to music. Do you think people are gravitating towards those kinds of acts out of fatigue for over-produced songs and groups?

I don’t think the big, over-produced acts are going away anytime soon but I also see a lot of younger music fans going back to folk and blues music because they see the truth in it. Thanks to guys like Jack White and bands like The Black Keys, I feel there is a lot of hope for us yet.

Article published in the November 21, 2013 edition of Here Magazine