Behind The Track: Ragz Originale, ‘Troublin’

Behind The Track: Ragz Originale, ‘Troubling’ | Soho House

We caught up with the producer-turned-artist ahead of his recent show at 180 House – part of our Soho Rising series, in partnership with Bowers & Wilkins

Wednesday 6 December 2023 By Soho House

Hailing from north London, music artist Ragz Originale is no newcomer to the industry. As a producer, he’s worked with the likes of FKA Twigs and the late SOPHIE, and co-produced Skepta’s megahit ‘Shutdown’, only stepping into the limelight himself with debut album Nature, in 2018. That was followed by a series of mixtapes: 2020’s txt ur x, 2021’s Woah and 2022’s Iconicy

It's with the recent release of new album Bare Sugar, however, that Ragz has really begun to catch the attention of fans. And with a feature list that reads like a who’s who of the British music industry – Sampha, Knucks and Dua Saleh all appear – matched with a progressive blend of rap, R&B and alternative electronic sounds, it’s easy to see why. 

Behind The Track: Ragz Originale, ‘Troubling’ | Soho House
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‘It’s fun to see how different people describe my music,’ he says, ‘Everyone’s experience is different; it's always personal to them. It’s a very forward-thinking sound.’

Equal parts sultry and witty, on new single ‘troublin’, Ragz’ smooth voice wraps like silk around tongue-in-cheek lyrics such as: ‘Don’t leave your girl ’round me’. We caught up with the artist to discuss the single in more detail ahead of a celebratory gig at 180 House. 

‘I got that from one of my favourite Usher songs,’ he says when we bring the aforementioned lyric up. ‘I always wanted to use that in my music somehow, and I feel like it really catches the energy [of the song]. ‘troublin’ is about someone getting caught doing things they’re not supposed to do. No one really thinks about what goes through someone’s head when they’re in those kinds of situations. It’s the soundtrack to someone’s conscience.’

As for the process of building up the beat behind the lyrics: ‘I found a loop,’ he says. ‘It’s kind of like a trance. So I started with that and added what we call the “Ragz Bounce” – I’m a bounce man. After that, there’s a snare, the kick, and then we added the bass line.

‘I have a lot of ad libs in my music,’ Ragz continues, ‘they kind of keep the rhythm going. I got that from Michael Jackson. Put with the drums, it adds to the percussion. You might not hear it but if you listen super carefully, that’s in most of my music.’

Our Soho Rising platform, in partnership with Bowers & Wilkins, uncovers emerging talent in the music industry through a series of performances around our Houses, giving members the opportunity to experience the stars of the future before everyone else. Previous artists have included Arlo Parks, Flo, Gabriels, Griff, Holly Humberstone, Joy Crookes, and Kojey Radical.

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