Enrico de Jesus Puno (born 13 February 1953), better known as Rico J. Puno, is a popular Filipino pop singing artist and television host who is credited as a pioneer-promoter of original Filipino music. He started the trend of incorporating Tagalog lyrics in his rendition of the American song The Way We Were and other foreign songs. Also known as Rico J. and as The Total Entertainer, Puno is a singer who regularly infused his on-stage performance with comedy and jokes. He hosted the noontime variety show Pilipinas Win na Win alongside Rey Valera, Marco Sison and Nonoy Zuniga for two months in 2010. He also hosted on Happy Yipee Yehey together with John Estrada, Randy Santiago, Mariel Rodriguez, Pokwang and Toni Gonzaga as one of the main host Replacing Pilipinas Win na Win.
Puno has also been active in politics. In 1998, he was elected as the City Councilor of Makati City from its 1st district until his third and last term ended in 2007. He ran for a comeback in 2010 as the vice mayoralty candidate of Makati City, but was unsuccessful.
Puno was born in Manila to parents, Felipe Puno Sr. and Corazon J. Puno. Although he earned a Bachelor of Arts degree from the Philippine School of Business Administration, Puno dreamed of becoming a singer.
Puno introduced himself and his talent to the entertainment business by performing at folk houses and small clubs in Metro Manila. In 1975, while singing at the Palazzi, Puno met and performed with the American Motown group, The Temptations. Puno's talent was later noticed by the executive producers from Vicor Records (now Vicor Music). His first record was Love Won't Let Me Wait, while his first big hit was the Tagalog-infused The Way We Were.
In 1976, Puno won the Aliw Award for Most Promising Entertainer. Two years later, he became Aliw's Entertainer of the Year. His Rico in Concert show at the Cultural Center of the Philippines launched him as one of the foremost Philippine pop stars.
In 1977, Puno covered the Carpenters song Merry Christmas Darling from his 1st Christmas Album, The Spirit of Christmas which was originally sung by Karen Carpenter.
In 1978, Puno's popularity and his regular concerts at the Araneta Coliseum (now SMART Araneta Coliseum) in Quezon City and his performance tours in the United States broke records in terms of audience attendance. His fame also made him into a sought-after product endorser including advertisements for San Miguel Beer Corporation in the 1970s.
In 1979, Puno represented the Philippines at the Tokyo Music Festival in 1979, with Lupa (Ground), a song that imparted messages on how an individual could strive to change for the better, on how to gain humility and other human values, on how not to judge others, and on how to struggle against one's own weaknesses.
From 2001, the Greatest Hits series in Manila, produced by Viva Concerts helped maintain Puno's popularity. These Greatest Hits concerts brought him together with other Greatest Hitmakers in the Philippine music scene during the 1980s, namely Philippine pop icons: Hajji Alejandro, Rey Valera, Nonoy Zuñiga and Marco Sison.
He also covered the song Ang Huling El-Bimbo in 2005 and originally composed by Ely Buendia, who was originally from the Eraserheads.
He also covered the song Mabuti Pa Sila in 2010 and originally composed and recorded by Gary Granada.
During Puno's recent performances, he is often joined on stage by his oldest daughter, Tosca Camille. Rico's son is also a singer and a band member.
Puno's hit songs included Kapalaran (Fate), Buhat (Ever Since), Macho Gwapito (Gorgeous Young Man), Lupa (Soil), Damdamin (Feelings), May Bukas Pa (There's Still Tomorrow)", Ang Tao'y Marupok (People Are Weak), Magkasuyo Buong Gabi (Together Through the Night) - a duet with Elsa Chan - and his Filipino rendition of You Don't Have To Be A Star (To Be In My Show).
One of Puno's recent album is Aliw by Sony BMG Records. Its carrier single was Kay Hirap Mong Limutin (It Is Hard To Forget You) by Lito Camo.
Among his contemporaries in the original Filipino music industry, Puno is one of the still consistently-active performers since he launched his career in 1975. The duration of his career as a Philippine singer now spans three decades. He became a favorite of the Philippine Amusement and Games Corporation (PAGCOR) and other casinos around Metro Manila and the provinces. His performances included tours in the United States, Canada, Dubai, Hong Kong, Japan, Australia and European countries.
Rico Baby (BBC),
Rated A (MBS),
Lunch Date (GMA Network),
Chibugan Na! (RPN),
Talentadong Pinoy (TV5),
Show Me Da Manny (GMA Network),
Pilipinas Win Na Win (ABS-CBN),
Macho Guwapito (Makisig Network),
Willing Willie (TV5),
Umagang Kay Ganda (ABS-CBN),
Happy Yipee Yehey (ABS-CBN),
The X Factor Philippines (ABS-CBN),
Lorenzo's Time (ABS-CBN),
Little Champ (ABS-CBN),
Home Sweetie Home (ABS-CBN),
Who's That Girl? (2011) - Rico,
Asboobs: Asal Bobo (2003) - Capt. Palma,
Pakners (2003) - Richard de Guzman,
A.B. Normal College (2003),
Alas-Dose (2001) - Congressman,
Juan & Ted: Wanted (2000) - Mr. Mariano,
Matalino Man ang Matsing na-iisahan din! (2000),
Alyas Boy Tigas: Ang Probinsyanong Wais (1998),
Sailor's Disaster (1994) - Bruno,
Tom & Jerry: Hindi Kaming Hayop (1993) - Alfie,
Dr. Potpot Travels to the Moon (1991) - Enzio,
Isang Platitong mani (1986),
Annabelle Huggins Story (1982),
Bullet for your Music (1978),
Silang mga mukhang Pera (1977),
Bawal na pag-ibig (1977)