I loved the first single, Cecil Cassandra off Rick’s self-titled first cd. I had the chance to sit down and chat with this fabulously talented musician.
GOM: I have to ask, is Cecil Cassandra a real person?
Rick Ellis: (muffled laughter) Uh, well, yes and no. Cecil came about in a car drive with a buddy of mine. The first couple of lines hit me as we were talking about past experiences of mine. I made him pull the car over so I could call home and leave the lines on my message machine. I do that a lot. I wrote the rest that evening when I got home. Cecil Cassandra is a lot of women I’ve been involved with, but it isn’t one woman.
GOM: When you sit down to write how do you envision your work? Your music to me seems like novellas put to music…do you see the same thing?
Rick Ellis: Well, thank you for that, first of all. It’s hard to envision the songs as you’re writing them. Cecil happened to fast and it surprised me to tell you the truth. Painted Horses is still a mystery to me. I’ve come to a point as a writer where I’ve realized to trust my instincts and to stop editing myself. I’ve grown as a writer and I can see that in my work.
GOM: How did this album happen?
Rick Ellis: Well, I was at a concert and just started talking to Paul Mahern(worked with John Mellencamp) and we swapped numbers. I sent him a demo and he responded favorably. The funny thing is none of the songs from the demo made the cut (laughs). I guess they needed some work. I ended up calling some people and we just made it happen. I’ve gone into debt to make this cd but I wouldn’t change a thing. I’m very proud of this band, this cd, this cd we’re putting out together.
GOM: What does the future hold for Rick Ellis?
Rick Ellis: Touring. Touring. Touring. We’re playing live shows constantly and trying to make it, like everybody else. So far two record companies have passed on it but you can’t get caught up in all that. You just have to go out and play the music, the rest will tend to itself. In May we kick off a European tour and we’ll come back in mid June to start getting some exposure in the States.
GOM: Thanks for your time…we appreciate it.
Rick Ellis: You’re welcome. I’m just looking forward to getting this out there and getting this heard!
The truth is very clear, the road to success is tough and mined along the way but Rick Ellis has the talent and the product to navigate the road in this reviewer’s opinion. Rick Ellis is someone to watch.