We caught up recently with singer, producer and songwriter Raphaella who’s been remarkably busy in the studio this year, collaborating with a plethora of talent including Rudimental, Gorgon City, MNEK, Wilkinson and NVOY. Recently featuring on Michael Calfan’s ‘Thorns’ and Midnight City’s ‘Just Like That’ she doesn’t look like stopping and with the release of her single ‘Alien’ we caught up with Raphaella to chat music.
Raphaella! Great to speak to you again, it’s been a little while since we last checked in. First and foremost we’re huge fans of the new track ‘Alien’ and it really seems to be picking up some heat online! What’s the idea behind the track?
Thank you so much :)! I wanted to write a song about celebrating the fact that we’re all different. Just because you’re not the same as everyone else- doesn’t mean you’re an alien, it means you’re you. I love the world for all its quirks and uniqueness.
You featured on Michael Calfan’s track ‘Thorns’ too recently, how’d that collaboration come about?
We first collaborated over emails through our managers, with me top lining a track he sent through and we really enjoyed working remotely together so it was a natural progression to get into the studio together when he was a holding a writing camp here in London. As soon as I heard the track I loved it and it had such a haunting darkness to it, that writing the topline came really naturally- I think one of the first things I ad-libbed was the hook melody on ‘I’ve got these thorns’. I co-wrote it with Holly Partridge and it was lovely because I think we felt like kindred spirits who had just met for the first time. It was written & recorded in just a few hours because Michael was only in London for the camp- so it flowed really nicely.
You’ve also been working with Midnight City and featured on their track ‘Just Like That’. Are these relationships you’ve created through writing with other artists over the years?
A lot of the collaborations that I’ve been working on have either come through our Managers, Publishers or the label. Then often after I work with one person on a label or team, I meet or get introduced to the others on the roster and more collaborations come in like that. Recently I’ve been really lucky because a lot of requests have come through just by people hearing me on tracks that I’ve released. I always like to make friends also with the people that I work with, so a lot of collaborations are just natural and organic progressions.
Are there any other artists you are currently working with we should know about?
Recently I’ve been in the studio & working with Gorgon City, MNEK, Rudimental, Wilkinson, NVOY, Sub Focus and Culture Shock. It’s always so much fun working with other artists.. seeing what we can create by combining our different styles together.
What are you plans for future releases? Can we expect an EP soon?
At the moment I’m releasing singles because I think they’re a much more exciting and real-time reflection of what I’m doing because there’s always such a time difference and delay on what you’re putting out vs what you’re making. I’ve also got some really exciting collaborations and features coming out over the next few months which you’ll be hearing very soon!
Talk to us about production, you often produce a lot of your tracks yourself. What came first, the production or the singing?
I’ve been singing for as long as I can remember.. and started playing violin and piano classically when I was about 6. I remember when I was about 9 I wrote my first song just acapella and I think I quickly realised there was so much more I wanted to create and hear inside my head so moved quite quickly to the piano. I grew up being trained in a really classically dominated environment so before I even knew what production was or that you could even make music on a computer, I had a Tascam 4 track recorder that I would just build sounds, harmonies, beats and chords up live with. My love for beats and bass quickly made me realise 4 tracks was never going to be enough! So when I was about 16 I worked for the first time with a producer and was introduced to Logic and realised there was a whole world of production out there that was possible on the computer. I didn’t really think about the production and singing as separate things.. I just wrote songs and recorded them from start to finish because that’s how I heard them in my head.. so I think they both naturally happened at the same time.
Can we expect to see you live this summer? If so, let the people know!
I’m super busy in the studio at the moment writing new material, but there is a possibility that I’ll be playing live towards the end of Summer/beginning of Autumn so I’ll keep you all updated on my twitter/facebook/insta/website!