Ricochet is back, and better than ever. The iconic band just released their new album, Ricochet Then & Now…The Hits & More, celebrating some of their biggest hits, including “He Left a Lot to Be Desired,” along with several new songs. The track, which was first released in 1997, was the debut single from Ricochet’s sophomore Blink of an Eye album.
When choosing which of their previous songs to include on Then & Now, lead singer Heath Wright knew “He Left a Lot to Be Desired” had to be included on the project.
“I just loved that song,” Wright tells Everything Nash of the song, which was written by Larry Boone and Rick Bowles. “And to me, it’s one of those wish you had written it songs. ’cause you hear that phrase all the time. ‘Well, he left a lot to be desired.’ And you think to yourself, ‘Man, what a great idea for a song.’ If a man were to leave a woman, you could just give a laundry list of all the things that are great about her, and all the things that other men are gonna desire. That’s the premise of the song.”
Not since 2012 has Ricochet released any music, with Ricochet 15 Years of Hits and Counting their last record. The release of Then & Now, combining both fan — and band — favorites with new songs is in many ways a celebration for Wright, who once wasn’t sure he would ever fully return to country music.
“I had resigned myself to the fact that Nashville was done with me,” Wright admits. “And I’m fine with that. We all have shelf lives. Country music artists, most of them have shelf lives. You don’t see a whole lot of Alabama careers out there with bands. Bands usually get five to seven years on the radio. And then you just go off and you tour on your past successes. That’s kind of what I had resigned myself to.”
Wright returned home to Oklahoma, working on his Rockin’ W ranch, committed to doing that work instead, which seemed promising and steady, and a complete turn from the career in country music that he loved.
“I’m thinking to myself, ‘Well, I’m just gonna be a cattleman for the rest of my life,'” Wright recounts. “‘And I’m gonna go out and do my country music thing on the weekends, whenever a county fair comes along, or there’s a bunch of casinos here in eastern Oklahoma.'”
Wright might have continued being happy with that plan, if the coronavirus pandemic hadn’t brought live shows to a complete halt. The time away from stage, in any capacity, reminded him of why he loved performing, and ignited in him a desire to return to a career he still loved.
“I’m sitting here at the ranch and thinking to myself, ‘This is fine and everything, but I still got things I want to say. I still got music I want to record. I want to play the Grand Ole Opry again.’ I got sort of nostalgic that year, just sitting at home thinking.”
Wright signed with a new management company, and set to work making Then & Now, an album that he made for his longtime fans, while also gaining an entire new generation of fans, even those who aren’t aware of Ricochet’s legacy.
“It’s a great way to bring our fans the music that they love, and then introduce them to some new stuff,” Wright explains, adding that he signed a three-album deal with Encore Music Group. “It’s just the beginning of a new chapter for Ricochet. I can’t believe that I’m 56 years old and I’m still putting out new music. That’s cool to me; that’s very cool. I was just gonna be a cowboy for the rest of my life. But I’m happy with where we’re going right now. And I’m really excited that new music is in my future.”
Ricochet Then & Now…The Hits & More Track Listing:
What Do I Know
Love Is Stronger Than Pride
He Left A Lot To Be Desired
What You Leave Behind
Keep You Lovin’ Me
No Wrong Way
It’s Gonna Be Something
The Beauty of Who You Are
Feel Like Fallin’
I Had To Be
Freedom Isn’t Free