Beginning to Understand the Aura of Raveena

 
 

Words by Rachel Blackman


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Raveena has the kind of voice that can make a cold winter day feel like springtime. Her sugary timbre is somehow both sultry and delicate floating over breezy production. While the tempos and beats she uses are reminiscent of 90’s R&B, there’s a laciness and buoyancy to the layers that give the music an ethereal filter. On the heels of the release of her latest track, “Sweet Time” and its accompanying visual (above), she is already consistent and defined with an elegance that feels like a rarity, making her an artist to keep on your radar. 

Raveena has been drawn to dreamy atmospheres since her childhood in rural suburban Connecticut. Raised in a conservative environment and tasked with balancing being an “artist/sensitive feeler/all around brown weirdo, I was definitely an outsider in both my Indian and school community.” Her response was finding solace and independence in the woods. “I think…my younger years made me really in touch with nature (I would spend afternoons talking to trees…and created all these magical worlds in my backyard alone with the flowers and stones).” This period of discovery in her life also granted her the time she needed to explore and obsess over music, “sing along to jazz greats all day, and completely absorb myself in my own little dream world, which…shaped everything about me and the sound I make today.” 

Moving to New York at 16 presented a whole new range of experiences for Raveena. While Connecticut represented the youthful surrealism that molded her sound, “New York was a time marked by pretty tumultuous teen years in one of the wildest cities in the world, and then finding my womanhood, my sound, my spirituality, my visual world, and my life partner/producer following all that!” With her own personal growth came musical growth and a deeper understanding of the significance creating and writing holds in her life. “I write to heal and I write as a form of self-therapy. I've been through a lot as a woman and I'm just usually trying to work through everything going on in my mind and body in words and…music, because it's become the most natural way of expression for me.”

Another key moment for Raveena was meeting her producer and partner Everett Orr. It is with him that she feels she has truly been able to develop the sound she knew she wanted. Both citing the funk of the 70’s and the R&B of the 90’s as their sonic inspirations, they realized immediately that their visions and wavelengths were in sync. They knew they had reached something really special “when Everett made "You Give Me That", which I think was one of the first 3-4 demos Everett and I had ever created together in the first few months of our relationship.” Their love for each other and capacity to create together has made the process all the sweeter. “Everything we have made together feels so natural and born out of true love. He is the reason my sound exists and sounds the way it does.”

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As organic as their creative process is, Raveena and Everett are trying not to be pressured by the stresses of releasing music. Raveena explains, “releasing music is so intense, so fun, but SO distracting from creating. I don’t think we’re the kind of people who can do it every 2-3 months and stay sane.” As their work streamlines and they continue to build up content for their listeners, their focus will always remain sharing the best work they can, not the most. “Quality is the #1 thing for us, so we don't mind waiting a little bit in between releases to get the music and visuals sounding and looking really, really beautiful. Although we will promise to try and not wait a year and a half again between the smaller single/EP releases.”

The visuals have been especially notable lately with the release of Raveena’s self-directed music video for her single “Sweet Time”. A warm, rosy celebration of women of color, the video marks Raveena’s directorial debut, and it’s just the beginning for her. “I want to do it forever and I want to direct other people's videos. I am completely in love with it and it fits my personality type a lot.” It fits her sound as well. “I was very inspired by Castle in the Sky by Miyazaki and the lush floral, pink tinted and detailed world he created for the children in the clouds. It just felt really right for this song.” Working with Director of Photography, James Ronnko, has helped her achieve the enchanting candle-lit softness she was looking to encapsulate. She raves, “he…knows how to take my visions and make the sets I create look like a dreamy heaven. His cinematography is absolute poetry.” With “Sweet Time” freshly under her belt, Raveena is already looking to her upcoming visuals, which she hopes to expound upon by “integrating story-lines…you will see in the next music video.”

From her undeniably serene sound and the blushing hues of her visuals, to her journey through both the turmoil and the romance of life and womanhood, Raveena is well-rounded artist poised for a very bright future. As her following continues to grow, she wants to provide her listeners with an environment like “a sunny, flower-filled cloud in outer space, at ease and safe from all the bad stuff and bad people in the world. Understood, heard and loved…by the music and by me.”