This might sound a little strange at first, but has your dog ever written a song? By that I mean, has your favorite pooch ever sat down and conveyed their innermost thoughts and feelings and set them to music?
Well, that’s just what Surf Dog Ricochet, the champion surfer and therapy dog, has done. In partnership with an animal communicator called Paula Brown, Ricochet recently holed up at the recording studio run by the Laurel Canyon Animal Company (which bills itself as the only record label that’s all about creating music for and with animals) and composed the lyrics to a track called “I Am Here For You.”
The result of the session is a laid-back, synth-swaddled production that has something of a ’70s pop sheen to it, with lyrics that convey Ricochet’s thoughts on the world around her.
Intrigued by this non-conventional way of recording music, I spoke to Ricochet’s human, Judy Fridono, about the intricacies of the recording process, the idea of Ricochet expressing her soul through her lyrics, and whether we’ll be hearing any more of this dog’s music in the future.
Dogster: Were you skeptical about the idea of using an animal communicator to help write a song with Ricochet?
Judy Fridono: No, not at all. I’ve used animal communicators before. Ricochet is a good communicator in general, and I can usually tell what she’s trying to communicate. The animal communicator just confirmed what I already knew.
Were you surprised at any of the lyrics that ended up in the song?
None of the lyrics surprised me. When I first heard the [original version of the] song, I knew Ricochet wasn’t sold on it. That’s when she communicated to the animal communicator that this wasn’t just [going to be] her song… it was [going to be] her soul… and she wanted that to be clear.
How did Ricochet behave in the recording studio?
She’s very sensitive to sound and often doesn’t like speakers. I told them ahead of time so they could start with the volume low and increase it accordingly. There were some notes she didn’t like, so they were changed.
How did Ricochet react when she heard the song?
The original version was sung by a man — and she didn’t like that. She wanted it to sound more soft, so they got a female singer. She also wanted them to make sure soul was put into the song.
What was your own reaction to hearing the original song?
I agreed with Ricochet! I didn’t care for the male voice. I knew what Ricochet was trying to convey, and it needed a more spiritual sound. Ricochet connects with people immediately, and it’s on a very deep level, so the song had to express that.
Does Ricochet ever show any reactions to any other songs she’s heard?
No, not really. But she was never asked what she thought before. With this, the animal communicator pretty much told Ricochet’s story through the song. Ricochet’s already had an inspirational video [which includes her surfing] go viral with nearly 6 million views on YouTube; it brings people to tears, and she wanted the song to touch people as well.
Now that she’s released “I Am Here For You,” do you have any plans for Ricochet to record any more music?
If it would help someone, raise money, inspire, or heal… then, yes, she would record more music.