Since 1994 Ricky has been committed to a solo career alongside his career with Deacon Blue and has established himself as a much sought after composer, writing for and with other artists, for film, television and theatre - his first foray into which was “On The Line”, Dundee Rep Theatre's production based on the story of Timex in Dundee. “On The Line” went on to win the TMA Martini Award for the Best Overall Production.
The 1996 release of Ricky Ross’ debut solo album, “What You Are”, perfectly showcased an album that saw a noticeable shift to a more live, personal approach to song-writing that Ricky felt had been inappropriate to indulge in whilst within a band context.
Ricky’s first solo shows in May ’97 saw him playing two nights alone at Glasgow's Tramway and led to his first short UK solo tour. October of the same year saw the release of “New Recording”, an acoustic album recorded simply on guitar and piano, with no guest musicians and only sparse backing tracks provided by loops. Later that year, Ricky went back to his theatre work in order to compose the music for “Much Ado About Nothing” on behalf of Edinburgh's Royal Lyceum.
“The Undeveloped Heart EP” was released in early 1998 and saw Ricky undertook his first nation-wide solo tour, going on to play further shows in Spain and Ireland. In September, he played on the bill at the Royal Festival Hall to commemorate the 25th anniversary of the Chilean coup that took the life of singer songwriter Victor Jara, hosted by Emma Thompson and with Jara's widow Joan in attendance. This spurred him to further his involvement with various charitable organisations. Thus, in November ’98 he visited Promissao in Sao Paulo state, Brazil on behalf of Christian Aid to help publicise the work of the landless movement in Brazil (MST).
After playing two shows at Celtic Connections in Edinburgh and Glasgow in 1999 Ricky embarked on a national tour accompanied by long-time collaborator Mick Slaven. In July of that year Ricky signed a new publishing deal with Warner Chappell Music, and in 2000 he embarked on a short solo tour with the band that would soon come together to record.
In the meantime Ricky composed and recorded his first TV soundtrack for “Easter Tales” providing the theme track and incidental music for 7 short monologues, featuring contributions from Claire Bloom, Joss Ackland, Eileen Atkins, Helen Baxendale and others.
2001 was an extremely busy year, seeing the release of a new Deacon Blue studio album, “Homesick”, a “Best of…” compilation and two national tours. Ricky also wrote the music for Giles Havergal's production of “A Midsummer Night's Dream” (at The Citizens in Glasgow) and was commissioned to write a second TV soundtrack for ITV Drama premieres entitled "The Lucky Ones"
The release of his third solo album “This Is The Life.” saw a return to recording with a band. Released to critical acclaim it was followed by a national tour in April 2002. More touring with Deacon Blue followed along with collaborating and writing for other recording artists such as Ronan Keating, James Blunt and J’Nay. Ricky’s co-write “High” on the James Blunt debut “Back to Bedlam” which went on to sell 2.5million albums
During this period he was also compiling a new set of songs for his next solo album which took shape in the latter part of 2004 recording with his friend and fellow artist Davie Scott. Entitled “Pale Rider” it was released to critical acclaim.