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VIDEO: Rico Love Defends Chris Brown (thumbnail)

Where is Rico Love from? Rico Love is from New Orleans, Louisiana, where the singer, songwriter, rapper, and producer was born Richard Preston Butler, Jr. on December 13, 1982. Love’s parents divorced early on, and as a result, he spent his childhood growing up in two different cities: Milwaukee, Wisconsin, and New York City. As a young boy, he developed an interest in poetry, and by the time he was a teenager, he’d discovered hip-hop. While he had a hunch music would be his future, he attended college at Florida A&M University in Tallahassee. As he told the Fader, however, he was “kicked out” of school, though by that time, he was spending weekends in Atlanta, where his manager lived. Rico Love eventually got hooked up with Usher, and he wrote the tune “Throwback” for the R&B star’s album “Confessions.”

Thus began Rico Love’s career as a songwriter, though as the New Orleans native told Fader, he never intended to follow that particular career path. “I was a rapper,” he said. “I really thought I was gonna be the next Jay Z. I thought it was a blessing to be able to have written this song and have revenue come in and I just thought, well that’s another thing for me to talk about in my rhymes. But when the label thing fell through, the songwriting worked itself out.”

It certainly did. Love became a chart fixture in the latter half of the ’00s, and between 2005 and 2012, he landed seven of his compositions in the Top 10 of the Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs chart. They included Usher’s “There Goes My Baby,” Trey Songz’ “Heart Attack,” Kelly Rowland’s “Motivation,” Mary J. Blige’s “Mr. Wrong,” and Melanie Fiona’s “4AM.” It’s around this time people probably began asking where Rico Love is from, as the Big Easy multi-talent seemingly came out of nowhere. Rico Love is also an artist in his own right, and in 2013, he dropped the EP “Discrete Luxury.”

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