It was a move to Glasgow in 1985 that saw things change for him. It was there where he formed what would become an iconic band in Deacon Blue.
The group would release their first album in 1987, and it would stay in the UK album charts for a year in a half while also spawning three hit singles.
The second Deacon Blue album, ‘When the World Knows Your Name’, reached number one in 1989 and generated five hit singles.
After years of hit albums and international tours the band split amicably in 1994 and Ricky launched a solo career. He also became a songwriter, penning hits for the likes of James Blunt, Emma Bunton, Ronan Keating, Jamie Cullum and KT Tunstall.
Deacon Blue reunited in 1999, releasing more successful albums and packing out arenas for more successful tours.
Ricky is a regular on BBC Radio Scotland and occasionally works for BBC Radio 2.
He was awarded an Honorary Doctorate of Arts by Abertay in 2014 after being nominated by lecturer Dr Mhairi Thurston who grew up with Ricky and even sang with him in a band when they were both teenagers.