Q: Hi! I love the infectious beat that “Lockdown” gives off; perfect for a clubbing night out. What do you hope listeners take away from this track?
RAUL D: Thank you, I really appreciate the kind words! I hope listeners are able to connect with the lyrics and move to the beat at the same time. All I want is for my music to make people feel a type of way…whether it be happy, sad or any shade in between. I intended it to be a sad song reminiscing on moments together with someone. Everyone has their own interpretation, so I am curious to see how it will be received.
Q: I’m always curious about an artist’s musical journey. Do you remember at what age you first fell in love with music and decided to pursue it?
RAUL D: Some of my earliest memories were of me banging on the table or singing along to songs. I started vocal lessons at the age of 8, and performed covers of songs at events throughout the Greater Toronto Area. I fell in love with music production and songwriting around the age of 19. I remember skipping school and doing the most just to be able to make music. Since then I decided I wanted to live my life through art.
Q: “Lockdown” is so expressive and exciting to listen to; I’m interested in the creative process; can you walk me a bit through it?
RAUL D: “Lockdown” started a while back. I started the music production in February of 2021 but it was just sitting on my hard drive. I had the hook almost instantly after I made the beat, but the rest of the song was still a mystery. In February of 2022, I went on vacation to Jamaica after a long time of being trapped in Canada due to COVID. I’ve always had love for Dancehall and Reggae but going to Jamaica and hearing it there was a different experience. It really resonated with me and I knew I wanted to create music with elements of Dancehall in it. While I was in Jamaica, I was listening to the beat of “Lockdown” and the first verse melody came to me that night. That caused a ripple effect. From February of 2022 until the ending of the year, I worked on refining the melodies and words. Most of 2023 was spent polishing the record and planning the marketing.
Q: What’s the best piece of advice that you’ve received about the music industry, and how has it helped you navigate through it thus far?
RAUL D: I think the best piece of advice I’ve received was to learn the music business. I used to eat and breathe music but it makes you very vulnerable on the business side of things. I believe in putting the music first, but there is a whole other side of the game that needs attention. As an independent artist, getting familiar with the music business can save you a lot of money and stress in the future. I am a student of the game and I’m still learning.
Q: Was “Lockdown” inspired by real-life events? I’m curious about the backstory of it.
RAUL D: “Lockdown” was definitely inspired by real-life events. I wanted to be able to pen a record that captured the way I felt about someone who got married in 2022. She was someone that I thought was perfect for me and when she got married, that hit really hard. I wrote this song from the perspective of us being together and reminiscing on the moments we had.
Q: In your own words, how would you describe the music that you typically create?
RAUL D: I would describe my music as Pop and R&B with elements of Soca and Dancehall. I enjoy creating Caribbean-Pop because you can move to the beat or sit back and listen to the lyrics and melodies. I like using dark beats as the canvas to paint on. It makes for great driving music in the night and most of my songs are also written in the night.
Q: If you could collaborate with any artist, dead or alive, who would it be?
RAUL D: I’d love to collaborate with PARTYNEXTDOOR. I look up to him as an artist, producer and songwriter. I love his R&B records and I also love how he’s not scared to show his Caribbean roots through records like “Not Nice”, “Run Up ” and “Only U”.
Q: Coming off a bit from the previous question, what are your top three albums of all time? I like to think of it as if I was stranded on a deserted island, what would I pick?
RAUL D: That is a tough question. I listen to a lot of music from all around the world and have albums that are hard to rank. But I’d have to say Drake’s “Views”, Drake’s “Nothing Was The Same” and Justin Bieber’s “Purpose”.
Q: What’s next for you? Are any projects in the works?
RAUL D: I’m always working on projects. Whether it be songwriting or making beats, I am always creating! Hopefully I’ll be able to drop something in the near future! I am looking to collaborate with more artists from Toronto and around the world. I also look to develop a deeper connection with my supporters, so I’ll do my best to be more present on my socials. Looking forward to getting to know them a lot better!
Interviewed by Melissa Cusano
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