Hailing from California, Raymond Revel is a singer-songwriter with music in his bones. Blending elements of folk with contemporary pop and hip-hop undertones, Raymond is breaking boundaries with his clear vocals and moving melodies. We speak with this distinctive US-based artist about his new release The Living Room, creative processes, discovering new music and future plans.
What can you tell us about your album The Living Room?
Growing up, my family had one piano and it was in our living room. Those were the keys that I first learned on and I really discovered my love for music by playing in that space. When we would have friends or family over, I would always play them new originals that I had written in our living room. So, in a sense, my album The Living Room is a nostalgic tribute to that place and that time in life.
What was the recording and writing process like?
You’ll notice that in comparison to my other work, The Living Room is much more stripped down. The major features of this album are piano, vocal and a little bit of strings. No background vocals, no additional instrumentation, just simplicity. The reason for this is because I want the album to feel just like my living room. I want it to feel authentic and intimate, and so the overall recording and writing process was very unique in that I kept everything very raw throughout the producing process?
What is your creative process?
This is such a loaded question! I love discussing creativity so much. In terms of looking at my process, I think it just varies from project to project, but what I’ve realised is that my creativity comes in spurts and for me my projects usually come together relatively quickly because I get so obsessed and wrapped up in each of my projects at that very moment. For some projects, I begin with the piano line; other projects, I might be walking through a store and I hear a vocal melody in my head. I usually can’t time it but, regardless, I generally record the initial ideas on my phone somewhere. I’ve said this to a few of my friends before, but all of my deepest darkest secrets are held within my voice memos on my iPhone!
Did you face any challenges when producing this album?
I don’t want it to sound too romanticised, but not really. In recording this album, due to the nature of it being so authentic and raw, there weren’t all too many challenges to be faced. Each song on its own was incredibly exciting to produce. Everything fit together fairly seamlessly and now I’m just excited for everyone to hear it.
Describe your music in three words.
Genuine, inventive and…unpredictable!! 😉
What do you hope people take from The Living Room?
Many of the songs in The Living Room revolve around human purpose and internal dialogue mixed with some story telling. I hope that people feel impacted positively from these tunes and that they fell “welcomed into the room” by listening to these tunes. I tried to produce the tunes with a particular warmth and I hope that both this feeling and my songwriting resonates with each listener.
What do you believe is the best way to discover new music nowadays?
I think that at this moment in time Spotify playlists are incredibly powerful. Obviously starting with the editorial playlists, then tiering down to label playlists and then independent. The number of Spotify users continues to grow worldwide and all of these playlists feed into one another. So listeners, if you enjoy what you hear be sure to add it to your playlists!
Another really cool way that I’ve learned about new musicians is on Clubhouse. I’ve made so many awesome musical connections on that app!
Do you have any future plans?
Absolutely! So many plans, both individual and collaboration projects. I already have the workings in place for a few singles as well as the next album. I’ve been in this phase recently where I just want to keep creating all the time. I can’t wait to keep sharing my music with the world. For now, I hope you all enjoy The Living Room!