Rick Rok was born Rickardo George Ducent in London, England on June 17, 1972. His parents migrated from Jamaica to England in the mid-60s in search of greater economic opportunities but never lost touch with their roots. Jamaican music played a great role in Rik Rok’s childhood. “When I was growing up it was pretty much Jamaican people who came over,” he recalls. “My father was a big Reggae fan, especially of (singers) Gregory Isaacs, John Holt and Dennis Brown. He had a big record collection and on Sunday’s he would play music all day at home.”Read More...
Rik Rok was 11 years old when he returned to Jamaica with his family. While attending Manchester High School in Mandeville, Jamaica, he discovered his singing talent and soon realized he had a flair for songwriting too. “One day I was listening to Babyface’s Tender Lover album and I remember thinking, I could probably be a songwriter,” Rik Rok says. “So I wrote a song, put it down, came back to it and tried it again. Then I started writing more and more songs. I wasn’t really good at it first; some of them were really corny, really stupid. But it was just a hobby and I never thought anything would come from it because it seemed like a completely unreachable dream being in the music business.”
After completing high school, Rik Rok enrolled in Jamaica’s University of the West Indies but never abandoned his musical aspirations, entering several school talent shows and receiving very enthusiastic responses. In 1995 he embarked on his first tour as a back-up singer for Dancehall diva Patra, where he gained invaluable stage experience. When that tour ended, Rik Rok returned to UWI to complete his education. After a brief stint performing with the Jamaican R&B/Reggae vocal quartet LUST, Rik Rok was offered a songwriting deal by Shaggy’s manager, Robert Livingston. He would write songs, create rhythms on his home computer and send the demos to Livingston in New York.
Rik Rok rocketed to stardom neglecting the instructions of denial dispensed by Shaggy on their number one hit “It Wasn’t Me.”
When Shaggy commenced work on his Hot Shot album, Rik Rok played a pivotal role in the songwriting process. Ignoring Shaggy’s advice and admitting his romantic indiscretions, earned the heretofore-unknown singer/songwriter a presence on music charts around the world, creating a demand for his own debut solo album which was scheduled for release in 2003. However, singing lead on “It Wasn’t Me, ” one of the biggest hits of 2000/2001, starring in the song’s equally popular video, as well as performing to stadium sized crowds throughout the summer of 2001 were never a part of Rik Rok’s plan.
Sting International, who produces for Shaggy said, “Let’s use Ricky on ‘It Wasn’t Me’ ” and I thought that would be cool to have a song on Shaggy’s album.” Rik Rok sang and co-wrote, “It Wasn’t Me” and “Chica Bonita” with Shaggy and shared co-writing credits on an additional six of Hot Shot’s 14 songs.
Hot Shot has sold more than 12,000,000 copies worldwide, providing Rik Rok with a huge international fan base that eagerly await the release of his debut album. The untitled work will be released on the Big Yard label, which is owned by Shaggy, Robert Livingston and Sting International. Rik Rok will be utilizing primarily the same songwriting/production team that earned Hot Shot its staggering multi-platinum sales status, but his unique artistry renders his debut venture with an entirely different sound.