Remy Producers is coming to SA and the face of it is none other than Boss Zonke himself, Riky Rick.
The announcement was made last week at a swanky event that hosted the music industry's whos-who and saw variations of Remy Martin Cognac flowing like water, also had surprise performances by the man himself.
The competition, called Remy Producers, is an American format that has been running for five seasons in the USA, with it featuring acts like Big Sean and Mustard. Past seasons have featured other big names, including Timberland and Wyclef Jean. The brand hopes to replicate this success in South Africa.
The cognac brand has partnered with the Sidlukotini hitmaker and will start a country-wide search of the hottest up and coming producer. This producer will win a once-in-a-lifetime, career-making chance to work with Rick, producing and co-signing on a track with him.
Speaking about the competition, Jerome Adonis, Rémy Martin South Africa's Brand Manager, said they believe this will be the biggest and most exciting music platform to hit SA.
"We believe that this will be the biggest and most exciting music platform to hit South Africa to date. We want to discover and celebrate emerging music producers and we are excited to see what talent will be uncovered. And we don’t believe we could have partnered with anyone better than Riky Rick – he really is at the top of his game, and serves as an inspiration and mentor to many in the music scene," Adonis said.
"We believe in supporting the process of music making, as well as championing talents and creativity. It speaks to our belief as a brand that anything – whether that be making music or cognac – is most successful when done collaboratively," he continued.
The muso said for him, the collaboration was about doing unique and special things.
"We try and do things that are special all the time. So whenever we collaborate with a brand, it’s really not about the product only, but it’s also about what the vision and the values are. So when Rémy Martin came through, they didn’t come saying we want you to be our ambassador, we want you to be popping bottles in the club, we want you to be doing the usual things that people do. They said let’s together, create a programme where we’re able to take the values of Rémy Martin, the values of Riky Rick, and help other people with that. Automatically it was always a conversation to be had," he said.
He added that his passion to give a leg up to upcoming artists comes from the fact that when he was new to "Johustleburg," someone gave him a chance.
"When I came to Joburg I was 18 or 19 years old. I was looking for opportunities. Not knowing anyone in the city, not knowing where the opportunities are, or where the cyphers were happening. I learned that once you get your foot in, you find that it's quite difficult to get your second foot in. That was a big frustration in my career, it motivated me a lot, to not get opportunities until I was at an older age. I think I was 26 or 27 years old when I got the chance to come into the industry. So if I'm able to shave off five years on the journey of any other younger people, and they can keep doing that...it’s more about teaching the younger people to give a hand to someone else," he said.
Riky Rick added that he had achieved what he's wanted to achieve but now it was time to give the space to other people. "I have been winning for a really long time. I have always been good looking, I have always been good at sports, I’ve had great things to do in life, now it’s just time to distribute the goodness."
To convince other people that may want to enter the competition but who don’t quite think they’ve got the right stuff Riky said: "The first step is acknowledging that no one is good enough. We are all trying to perfect what we did last. So you will never be good enough if you’re a musician because every time you lay down a verse, you will always want to make a better one. So you’re never going to be perfect. You must keep striving, keep putting yourself in positions that you feel are the deep end, and this may be the deep end. Even for us, choosing one person will be daunting," he said.
On whether or not this was his official come back he said: "When people say I’m back, it sounds really nice. But I don’t want to be back. I don’t wish I'd have the success of my first album all over again, I don’t wish I'd have the success of previous singles again, that's done to me. I am turning 32, I have put myself in a different mindset where it’s about exploring things. And the beautiful thing about exploring is that not everyone is going to see you do the exploration, that’s going to be private. But when I do come out to do something in public, it's always going to be big," he said.
For more information about the competition visit Rémy Producers SA’s website here.