With a striking mix of Persian/English/Scottish heritage, North London raised Singer/Songwriter Raphaella has produced a maturity and eclecticism of sound far beyond her years. Considered in her approach to life and music this 23 year old is catching the eye of industry trendsetters with a recent Guardian newspaper article, BBC 1Xtra DJ Target’s Targo Embargo & Mistjam’s Radio Ripper, BBC’s DJ Yasser’s BBC Introducing Artist Of The Week and BBC Introducing London plays/live acoustics, named MusicWeek’s ‘BreakOut’ of the Week, G3’s one to watch and French TV NRJ12 Le Mag’s Revelation of 2013 and her live piano acoustics for Reload Sessions have accumulated over 350,000+ YouTube plays.
Raphaella is the antithesis of what we see from her generation today, representing everything that is cutting edge and exciting whilst presenting herself as a role model and alternative to her contemporaries, she is a brand Ambassador for Nutz headphones and charity Ambassador for Global Angels & Kids Count UK. There is substance behind her music and her artistic endeavour, ask her what she’s reading and, no doubt, she will surprise you – with 5 A Grade ‘A’ levels she decided not to take the Oxbridge route of her peers to study music but relished writing her dissertation on Political Protest Music whilst at University. Classically trained in piano and violin she grew up enveloped in music from all sides, with jazz and classical music blasting out from her Artist Grandfather’s studios - an avid collector of vinyls & 78’s, her mother’s love of Ella Fitzgerald & Peggy Lee, and father’s love of traditional Persian music.
She independently released her debut single Parallel Lines 25th Feb and sophomore EP Start A Fire 23rd March, including a Zed Bias aka Maddslinky Remix on her own label Koochulu -meaning ‘Little One’ (she’s 5ft 1” on a good day she says). Raphaella has part funded the project with Persian carpets she’s received over the years as birthday presents from her father who’s a specialist in the field. Working with high calibre multi-platinum selling producers and writers excited to come on board her flying carpet so to speak, in this sophomore EP, she explores the introduction of traditional Persian instruments into her alternative-pop sound. Being completely involved with the production, she perfectly captures her dual heritage, something she’s wanted to do for a long time and felt the timing was right. Unquestionably it’s Raphaella’s East-meets-West vocal and demeanour that distinguishes her in the industry, whether sitting alone behind a piano acoustically or fronting her live band, she exotically combines new elements both culturally and musically to produce a hybridised genre of music like nothing we have ever heard before.
Raphaella has collaborated with among others: Afrojack, Ishi, Zed Bias, Ben Cullum, Martin Brammer, Jez Ashurst, Adam Argyle, Kristian Bush (Sugarland), Brandon Bush (Train) and Brit-Award winner Blair Mackichan, who says she “is the most exciting unsigned artist” he’s ever worked with.
An accomplished musician and songwriter with a first class honours degree in Music from the Institute of Contemporary Music Performance (Foxes, Daughter) transferring mid course from Goldsmiths, Raphaella was published within months of graduating University by respected UK indie publishing company Phrased Differently (Miley Cyrus, Avici, Tiesto, Hardwell, Little Mix & Tinie Tempah among others). Within two years her songwriting successes include 30 international releases, a Platinum Sales Award with the German winner of The Voice, a Top 20 Single with Afrojack for the Voice of Holland winner and further releases for The Voice winners worldwide, a top 5 album in Spain with Spanish superstar Chenoa including a duet feature and a No.1 album in Denmark with Nabiha. Raphaella’s next cuts due for release are for super Korean boy band EXO, LA Reid Epic US signing Zara Larsson and more.
Her artist career to date has seen her join line-ups with Nicole Sherzinger, Natasha Bedingfield, Stylo G, Josh Kumra, Lady Lykes, Little Nikki, Texas, Joss Stone, Beverley Knight, Chenoa, The Rizzle Kicks, Clement Marfo And The Front Line, Lianne La Havas, etc.
Highlights to date she says are having her songs synched with BSB Sky TV, a German Voice Contestant getting through her blind audition covering her ‘Price Of Love’ from Raphaella’s debut EP Idiot, performing on the iconic Shark Stage at the London 2012 Olympics & Paralympics as one of the few selected artists by Emerging Icons & The Roundhouse, the mud of The Secret Garden Party & Hop Farm festivals where she got to christen her red wellies! Her original track ‘Above The Water’ selected as one of the songs to make the official 2012 accredited Olympic album ‘Album in the Park’ with Emerging Icons.’ Manoto TV featuring Raphaella in a primetime documentary 'One day with Raphaella' introducing her to the Persian Diaspora and Middle East across the world and performing on the recent Chaharshanbe Suri show. Raphaella has also played at The Roundhouse (Camden) for the Music Week Awards, The UEFA Champions League Private Party, Roundhouse Rising 2014 & Roundhouse Access All Areas. While at University Raphaella was selected to take part in the 30:30 EMI Roundhouse project (2010) and the ‘Unconvention: Album in a Day’ project where she was selected alongside Viv Albertine and Charli XCX to record her beautiful arrangement of the Clash’s iconic ‘I’m not Down’ live and found the Emerging Artist programme invaluable when leaving University and has since gone on to become one of a very few selected Roundhouse Associate Artists.
2014 is already set to be another busy year The Drop, Nobu Unplugged, BBC New Music Day with 1Xtra & BBC Asian Network, Naked Noise, Ont’Sofa Gibson Guitar & IAmMusic live Sessions, upcoming collaborations and features with Zed Bias, Vicetone, East&Young, Netsky, Fedde Le Grand, Will&Bill, Matt Nash & Dave Silcox and Hardsoul.