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Ric’key Pageot: Steinway Artist Honoring Tradition While Moving It Forward
Episode 1615th October 2023 • The Conduit • Crewest Studio + Danube Productions
00:00:00 01:03:44

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Where you grow up can have a huge influence on you, from the friends you make to the schools you attend. And while it’s not always recognized as such, Montreal is a uniquely vibrant and diverse city, with exceptionally high rates of integration that set it apart from other cosmopolitan areas like New York and Los Angeles, both of which are home to diverse communities, but still contend with high levels of segregation.

Today we are joined by Ric'key Pageot, an accomplished LA-based musician and Steinway Artist who has played piano and accordion for the likes of Diana Ross, Madonna, Cher, Dr. John, and many more. In this conversation, we talk with Ric'key about his upbringing in Montreal, how it exposed him to different cultures, why he was set on attending McGill University, and how his career has unfolded since. He describes what it was like growing up in a family filled with talented musicians — and the various concerts they held — before reflecting on his time at McGill and how it prepared him for life as a performer. We also talk about Parlor Social, the band that he started with his wife, Dessy Di Lauro, and how their music pays homage to Harlem Renaissance culture while also moving it forward.

Ric’key’s life as a musician has led him down some incredible paths, and in today’s show he reflects on his journey, the many lessons he’s learned, and some of the amazing people he’s met along the way.  So sit back, relax, and tune in to this fascinating conversation with Ric'key Pageot!

Key Points From This Episode:

  • Ric’key’s upbringing in Montreal and what it was like being part of a musical household.
  • How he discovered the piano and the jam sessions he had with his family.
  • Ric’key’s Haitian heritage and how it influenced his career as a musician.
  • The story of how he would sometimes bump into Justin Trudeau as a child.
  • Some facts about the professional art school Ric’key attended as a teenager.
  • The music that inspired Ric’key growing up: classical music, R&B, and hip-hop.
  • Why Ric’key decided to earn his BA in jazz performance at McGill University in Montreal.
  • How combo class prepared Ric’key to become a professional jazz musician.
  • An overview of the traditional jazz musicians that have had the biggest influence on Ric’key.
  • Ric’key’s first tour with Madonna and how he met Herbie Hancock.
  • What it was like being a touring musician while still studying at McGill.
  • Ric’key’s experience with Dr. John and his band.
  • The diversity of Montreal, why it's uniquely well-integrated, and the positive impact this had on Ric’key.
  • What it was like working for Cirque du Soleil.
  • Why he learned to play the accordion and how that helped him get a job with Madonna.
  • Ric’key and his wife Dessy Di Lauro’s group, Parlor Social, and how their music pays homage to Harlem Renaissance culture while also moving it forward.
  • How the COVID-19 pandemic affected Parlor Social. 
  • Hear about their upcoming performance at the Newport Beach Jazz Festival.

Links Mentioned in Today’s Episode:

Ric'key Pageot on LinkedIn

Ric'key Pageot on Instagram

Ric'key Pageot - Steinway & Sons


Christina Aguilera

Diana Ross


Jill Scott

Earth Wind & Fire

Dr. John

Cirque du Soleil

Dessy Di Lauro

Parlor Social

École secondaire Pierre-Laporte

Brand Nubian

Big Daddy Kane

A Tribe Called Quest

De La Soul

Bob James

Ron Carter

McGill University

Herbie Hancock

Bill Evans

McCoy Tyner

Horace Silver

Gonzalo Rubalcaba

Quincy Jones

Chick Corea

Earl Van Dyke

The Beach Boys

Professor Longhair

Flaco Jiménez

Portrait of Tracy

Newport Beach Jazz Festival

Crewest Studio

DanUbe Productions




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