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Raffeal: Making Music Is Enough Fulfilment, Not Money 

By Chinonso Ihekire
01 April 2023   |   3:07 am
There are many things that endear one to emerging voices in music, and Raffeal seems to have them in his grasp. Being a young musician, the Nigerian-American act keeps popping up on the radar every now and then, with some fiery releases.


There are many things that endear one to emerging voices in music, and Raffeal seems to have them in his grasp. Being a young musician, the Nigerian-American act keeps popping up on the radar every now and then, with some fiery releases.

Saturated or not, Raffeal seems to not care about the hurdles with seizing the spotlight in the music scene. With Raffael, everything remains a pursuit of expression, a satisfaction in the journey, and a never-ending aspiration for greatness. “It’s not really about the money,” he tells Guardian Music. 

One thing with Raffeal is that he stays true to his style. After starting his career making Christian gospel music, he made a twist with his creative muses and started creating music that caters to both the romantic and sensual desires of listeners. But his star-factor stays in his vocals. With charming mid-tempo melodies, the young musician remains relevant as one voice on an inevitable ascent to stardom. 

In this edition of Guardian Music where we explore fresh talent on the ground, we spotlight the emerging act, exploring his newest record dubbed Let You Go, his journey to the limelight, and why he remains steadfast in his dream chasing despite the throes of starting fresh. 

Congrats on the new record. How does it feel for you? 
THANK you so much, I feel blessed, I feel happy, I feel unstoppable honestly. 

What really inspired the record? 
The heartbreak of my homeboy inspired the record. We were in the studio and he repeatedly talked about how he couldn’t let her go and I just wrote a song off of it. 

When did you get into music? 
When I was about 13, I started playing the piano for my church; I was in the choir. But I didn’t start recording till I was like 17 and I didn’t start acting, writing and making music until I was 20. 

What has kept you going as an artiste? 
Honestly, just the grind. I’m at the point where I do not care about blowing up anymore; I just care about making good music and putting it out there. I’m in love with the grind, I’m in love with the photo shoot and video shoots. I’m in love with the promotions; I’m in love with the planning and preparation, all of that means a lot to me. 

What’s your typical creative process? 
I like to record alone and I am very selective with my beats. Some days, I make the most amazing sounding music ever and some other days, I make the worst type of music. So, it all depends on whatever I come across and how the vibe flows.

Who are some of your major influences as an artiste? 
Honestly, everybody. At the end of the day, music is art and art is supposed to inspire. So, if I listen to someone and it inspires me, I appreciate it a lot.

Why the name Raffeal? 
Raffeal is who I am and that is what people have been calling me my whole life. Although it is spelled RA – PH – AE – L, but I had to change it up and make it unique and different; I want to stand out so when people see that name, they know who it is and they respect that name. My birth name is Chukwuebuka Raphael Onyeise.

Are you working on any body of work? 
Honestly, not really; I’m just making music. I am not forcing anything; I am just creating whenever and however I can. If it’s good enough, I will put it out, but that doesn’t mean I won’t be putting out an album or EP in the future. 

Why do you prefer this style of music? 
I make happy music, I make love music, I make music that makes you wan to dance. I love this style of music, because music fuels your emotions and I don’t believe music and violence goes together. So, I make happy sounds and spread the love around to whoever is listening.

What would you say is your biggest strength as an artiste?
My biggest strength as an artiste is that I know when I make a bad song or when I put out a bad song. I feel like a lot of artist don’t have a proper team around them, that is willing to tell them that they need to step back a little bit and work on their craft a little bit more.

As an artiste, what are some of your core challenges in the industry? 
My core challenges in the industry is consistency, because if we are being honest, the music industry revolves around money, so if money no dey, how you go take promote your music?
Also, me being in the United States of America makes it more difficult for my target audience to find me and listen to my music.

Do you ever feel like quitting? 
Yes of course, all the time. I’ll be lying if I said I don’t feel like that when I’m recording sometimes or to give up. But I’m addicted to this; I don’t think I will ever quit. 

Who are some people you look forward to collaborating with?
It’s a list of them, but right now, I’m just focused on getting better with my craft. Some people I can’t wait to work with and I believe I would make great music together with are Victony, American rapper J.I the prince of New York, Simi, Fireboy, Omah lay, Ckay, Rod wave.

What’s next for you in your career? 
The vision is to be great and be the best me that I have seen yet. 

If you could describe yourself in one sentence, what would it be? 
I am a dedicated, intelligent mastermind.

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