Ric'key Pageot and Dessy Di Lauro of Parol Social

Ric’key Pageot and Dessy Di Lauro of Parlor Social: Keeping the Faith in 2020

“I wake up every morning thanking God that we have a roof over our heads because it could be any of us. These are the times we’re living in and it’s important to count your blessings and pray for others who are going through it right now. Other people have moved from LA because they don’t have anything. There are no gigs and they can’t afford to pay their rent. There's an influx of musicians and our friends leaving right now. That's the hard reality.” — Dessy Di Lauro [1:11:52.0]

Just press the play button to listen now

This year has understandably been tough for artists. With increasing levels of stress and anxiety, it is not easy to be freely creative. Yet, art, in all its forms, is more important than ever for getting people through these difficult times.

Parlor Social is at the top of their game, and Ric’key Pageot and Dessy Di Lauro, the husband-and-wife duo behind the band, join us today to share what the pandemic has been like for them.

We start by talking about some of the ways they have adapted to not being able to perform live and go on tour. Despite their initial reluctance to live streaming, they have found more connection than they ever thought possible with their virtual audience.

Ric’key and Dessy talk about why they decided to give free access to their content, where they acknowledge their privilege of not being stressed about finances. We also hear about some of the other blessings that have come from this time for the pair like increased creativity and getting better at their craft.

Naturally, the conversation goes to Black Lives Matter, where we talk about the issues of race and police brutality and what needs to be done to dismantle these imbalanced structures. Correcting racial injustices needs to happen at so many levels, including the arts, where Black and PoC artists have always been marginalized. Ric’key, with roots in classical music, talks about the underrepresentation of Black people in this musical genre and the work he is doing to give back.

Although these times are dark in many ways, Ric’key and Dessy are doing so much to spread hope and be positive forces in people’s lives. They are the embodiment of selfless artists who want to spread light and joy through all that they create.

“The people who are going to survive 2020 are the people who are going to accept that fact that we are going to have to reimagine how we are going to go about doing things.” — @RickeyPageot [0:06:37.0]

Parlor Social streaming live on FB for Soulful Jazz Brunch on Sundays
Parlor Social streaming live on FB for Soulful Jazz Brunch on Sundays

“People need the word, need the positive message, upliftment and support and encouragement. Because people are going through it right now.” — Dessy Di Lauro [0:19:52.0]

Key Points From This Episode:

  • Hear some of the creative ways Ric’key and Dessy have adapted to these trying times.
  • The time that we all have now is a blessing if we can use it well.
  • Ric’key and Dessy’s skepticism around the vaccine and why they would still take it.
  • How Ric’key and Dessy’s respective families are doing during the pandemic.
  • Why Ric’key and Dessy decided to create Soulful Jazz Brunch and the reception to the event.
  • The decision to not charge a fee for Soulful Jazz Brunch; wanting to make content accessible.
  • The importance of engaging with your virtual audience to create connection.
  • An idea Ric’key has to release an album of all the songs they recorded during the pandemic.
  • When Ric’key and Dessy finally found their stride with live streaming.
  • The major improvements Ric’key and Dessy have seen getting to perform every week.
  • Some of the technical difficulties Ric’key and Dessy have faced going virtual.
  • Work Ric’key is doing to get back to his classical music roots and some incredible discoveries he’s made.
  • Hear about the progress Ric’key has made with his upcoming movie project.
  • Why Ric’key wants to give back at this stage in his career and ways he plans on doing so.
  • Ric’key’s experience at McGill University, where there were very few Black students.
  • Why Dessy feels even though conversations around race and police brutality are important, they are not enough.
  • How Ric’key and Dessy believe you can spread hope in these difficult times.
  • The hope that Sourdough has for his kids, who are growing up in a world different to his.
  • The problems the U.S. is currently grappling with are not unique to the country; they are global issues.
  • Where to find Parlor Social online and what they have in the pipeline.
  • Dessy’s words of comfort to her fellow artists: Be kind to yourself in this hard time.
  • Find out about the line of skincare products Dessy has created.

“You got to give yourself time. You got to be kind to yourself. Be gentle with yourself because these are not normal times and it’s OK to go through whatever processes you need to go through right now.” — Dessy Di Lauro [0:26:33.0]

DD Naturals: New all natural line of hair and skin care products from Dessy Di Lauro
DD Naturals: New all natural line of hair and skin care products from Dessy Di Lauro

“Who knows where the world would be right now, in 2020, without artists? Art is what’s helping people. It's saving the world; it’s saving this country right now.” — @RickeyPageot [1:04:09.0]

“We are the busiest unemployed people we know.” — Dessy Di Lauro [1:09:46.0]

Links Mentioned in Today’s Episode:

Dessy and Ric’ky performing in a pre-Covid gig

“I’m really in a phase of my career where I really want to have purpose by giving back by doing my part in helping the next generation. Whether it’s through teaching them about Black composers or just mentorship. I'm about to have a meeting with the Black Alumni Association at McGill and they’re setting up a new mentorship program for Black students. I really want to be part of that.” — @RickeyPageot [0:43:27.0]

Scott "Sourdough" Power

Scott “Sourdough” Power is the the creator and executive producer of NotRealArt.com. He is also the co-founder of Crewest Studio a digital media company in Los Angeles dedicated to creative culture and the $2T creative economy.