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Jan Richard Mattias Palmstruch (born May 1, 1974) is a Finnish-American-Canadian musician and singer-songwriter. He is best known as the current bassist and backing vocalist of the Canadian funk metal band Zammboney, and is also a member of Derek De Vriendt's solo band and Animalization.

Palmstruch is known for performing in face and body paint, prosthetic makeup and uniforms, usually representing anthropomorphic dogs, specifically the English Bull Terrier. When he joined Animalization in 2018, he took on the name "Rickie the Wonder Dog".

Early life

Palmstruch was born to a Swedo-Finnish father and African-American mother in Helsinki, Finland. His mother emigrated to Finland as a war resister to the Vietnam War, and met his father in the Åland Islands. Palmstruch holds multiple citizenship with Finland, the United States and Canada.

In 1979, Palmstruch relocated with his parents to Denmark, where they remained for a year until they obtained a U.S. visa. His parents chose to move to his mother's hometown of Huntsville, Alabama, where they lived in the neighborhood on Monte Sano Mountain. His father worked at a Swedish restaurant in Huntsville until Palmstruch was 17, when they relocated to London when his father got a job as a security guard for the Finnish embassy. Although he began schooling at S. R. Butler High School in Huntsville, Rickie completed his schooling at The American School in London. As a result of his time spent in Alabama, Palmstruch speaks with a noticeable southern African-American accent.

Palmstruch's interest in R&B music, especially the new jack swing genre, piqued when he heard Bobby Brown's hit song "Every Little Step" on the radio one evening. He later recalled "And one night this song comes on the radio, and it's this ex-New Edition member singin' a song that goes "Every little step I take, you will be there, every little step I make, we'll be together!", and I never heard this type of R&B before. I wanted to try it out sometime."



While attending The American School in London, Palmstruch met Zack van Egmond, a Canadian student. Together in 1997, they formed a duo named Zammboney, playing the London club scene together. The two relocated to Toronto, Ontario, Canada in 1999 at the advice of a friend who had taken notice of bands from the Toronto music scene such as Barenaked Ladies.

Personal life

Palmstruch lives in Riverdale, Toronto with his partner Liza Degner, the vocalist for Seek the Fate.

When asked if he was a furry, Palmstruch replied "Yes. I've always been a sort of "furry", always wishing I could be, you know, a dog." Palmstruch had attended his first furry convention when he was 20, where he first had the idea for his modern-day onstage appearance.