Q & A: Raphael Saadiq

By Drum Digital
11 December 2015

By Ayanda Sithole

Drum spoke to Grammy Award winning R&B artist Raphael Saadiq ahead of the BET Experience Africa that will host local and international artists as well as local comedians. The event takes place on Saturday 12th December.

  1. Some of your biggest hits have been in collaboration with well-known Hip Hop artists, do you often feel pressure to collaborate with hip hop artists so that your music is more commercial?

I don’t feel pressure to collaborate with artists to produce commercial music, when I do collaborate I do it with people that I like and enjoy making music with.

  1. Is there one musician that you admire, that you have not collaborated with and would like to collaborate with in the future?

Collaboration often happens as trial and error, some artists contact me or at times I bump into someone while I’m shopping. I met Mary J Blige in London and we spoke about working together now we will both be performing at the BET Experience Africa in South Africa.

  1. Are there any South African artists that you know of that you would like to make music with?

I am not familiar with South African artists by name but I am not opposed to collaborating with anyone who I admire.

  1. What is your next project?

In April 2016 I will be dropping an album. I haven’t given it a name yet because I always wait until the last day of recording to name my records. I’m excited about this project because I’ve worked with great artists from Los Angeles where I live.  I have recorded a song with Kendrick Lamar, I also worked with Ziggy Marley. The idea was just to make great music with good musicians more so than featuring celebrities.

  1. What is your fondest memory throughout your music career?

Working on my first solo album called Instant Vintage was a memorable experience because I took my time in creating it.

  1. We never hear anything about your personal life for example if you are married or have a girlfriend and children, is there someone special in your life right now?

I’m not married and I don’t have a girlfriend, I’m living life one day at a time. I was in a relationship for 12 years but now I’m single. I don’t like to put my private life into the public because I believe that music is music and life is life. Many people put their relationships in the public eye but I don’t feel the need to do it.

  1. You are considered to be a very stylish man, where do you get your fashion inspiration from?

I really like old-school fashion and prints from Africa. Collecting my clothing is always a fun experience because it just happens just like making music.

  1. What can your South African fans look forward to when you perform at the BET Experience AFRICA this weekend? 

South Africans are going to have a great time at the BET Experience Africa and I’m super excited to be coming to Africa. I’ve always wanted to travel to Johannesburg and Cape Town. I’m looking forward to meeting interesting people. I am probably more excited than my fans.

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