His streak as producer and writer has been impressive, to put it mildly. Platinum singles for Jason Derulo, Pitbull and Fifth Harmony; recent projects with Meghan Trainor and Phantogram; and an upcoming collaboration with Kesha. The apparently very busy Ricky Reed also fronts the Oakland-based act Wallpaper, who have become noted for their cheeky parodying of the vagaries of pop music.
This year he added “Grammy nominee” to his CV. So we can add him confidently to the “ones to watch” list.
But despite his pranksterish history, he plays is pretty straight with the alluring, almost ethereal new solo single “Joan of Arc,” released this month (and co-written by Charli XCX, Mark Foster and James Fauntleroy). The dreamlike song, with its gossamer guitars and languid beat, is exuberant and restrained at once, with a catchy chorus full of clever wordplay (“Dress me in your coat of arms / I will be your Joan of Arc”).
Its attendant video shows him strolling pensively through the woods, before encountering a random cadre of dancing accomplices. If only life could be so.