Artist Spotlight – Ra.D

There are a few artists who are multi-talented and can truly represent the full breadth of the Korean music industry. One such artist is Ra.D.

Ra.D produces the hind of soulful music that not only grabs your ears, heart and your feet. Debuting in 2002 with the album ‘My Name is Ra.D’; he has managed to create a great name and place for himself in the K-music industry. The album featured soulful songs with strong R&B influences as seen in the wonderful single So One

He followed this up with his collaboration album ‘Real Collabo’ in 2008 as he wanted to work closely with talented musicians. This album is by far the most recognisable with the strong Ra.D sound that has come to sum him up. The album is a favourite of mine and features the famous songs ‘I’m in Love’ and Couple Song’.

Both songs seem to follow each other, as I’m in Love is all about confessing a strong love whilst Couple Song follows the couple once their relationship has been formed and speaks of the joy of finding the one you truly love.

Not content with just working with other artists he set up his own record label Real Collabo at the same time as releasing his album. The label features singer songwriters such as Brother Su who released two digital singles ‘It Was You’ and ‘You got Me’. Other artists under the RealCollabo label are preparing to release their albums at the end of this year.

What makes Ra.D special is that he not only works with underground or non mainstream artists but he also works with key figures in the K-pop industry. Notable collaborations include Brown Eyed Girls member Ga-In, IU and Alex of Clazziquai. Most of his features see him producing the singles which all have that soulful hip hop Ra.D sound.

This soulful hip hop sound is different from the mainstream and in my opinion infuses his music with a lot of heart. Although recently he has moved away from just being stuck into one sound but rather choosing to produce music that has a strong focuses on rhythm and emotion regardless of genre.

He received the Tam Eum Mania award in 2009 at the 28th Cyworld Digital Music Awards as well receiving the Top R&B and Soul Album award in 2010 at the Annual Korean Music Awards.

For me, his musical delivery and sound make him an important figure in the Korean music scene. His song writing and producing showcases true musical talent. He understands that music is not just about creating wonderful sound but also partnering that up with heartfelt lyrics that we can all relate to and that also describe the indescribable perfectly.

His voice although soulful is light as air and is instantly recognisable. Similarly to Junggigo, he posses a voice as smooth as butter which works very well with the hip hop soul sounds he produces. For me, Ra.D’s music is the perfect smooth soundtrack for a summer’s day.

It has been awhile since us Ra.D fans heard music from him but luckily for us he plans to begin a new album in 2013 after the artists of RealCollabo have released their albums. He is also scheduled to perform in the upcoming Healing Music Festival in September on Jeju Island. The festival will feature a wide range of different genres from classical to new age and mainstream pop music. The aim of the festival is to create an atmosphere of musical therapy where music can be used in healing.

Following the release of his 3rd album a concert will feature and there plans to perform overseas but these have not been finalised yet.

Ra.D is a master of music and in my opinion one of the most important people in the Korean music scene. He brings back soulful music that is guaranteed to put a smile on your face and a groove in your step.

For more information on Ra.D and other RealCollabo artists visit the website – http://www.realcollabo.com

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