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Jo Raharison expands French RnB on debut EP

A songwriter, producer and singer of Malagasy origin, Jo Raharison is following in the footsteps of the legends of American RnB in a first EP with English vocals.

Carried by a new and ambitious generation, French RnB has a bright future ahead of it. Jo Raharison is the perfect incarnation of this space. Inspired by the legends of black American music that he has admired since his youth (Stevie Wonder, Kanye West, Pharrell and Michael Jackson), this young prodigy composes DIY English-language RnB  on contagious pop melodies.  

Although his reference points come from the legends of soul, hip hop and RnB, as well as his family heritage, Jo is forward-looking and draws on eclectic influences from the current musical landscape such as Burna Boy and Travis Scott. His Malagasy influence is more subtle but he remembers listening to artists like Mahaleo and Eric Manana during car trips with his parents to Madagascar. Despite this formation, the artist chose English to express himself: “I don’t listen to many French artists (…) English is musical in the way it sounds; with accents, it’s more rhythmic. Maybe one day I’ll write a song in French, but for the moment English is the language I’m most comfortable writing in.”

The young artist is based in Toulouse and can see himself following the kind of world domination achieved by  Chris through this first EP, An Introduction to Jo Raharison, which has already received a promising response. From the very first marimba notes that introduce “Saint Lucia Pt. 1,” we feel the finesse of the  instrumentation with its unique timbre, before a divinely executed 808 bass launches us into the chorus. Jo Raharison’s pop sensibility permeates all the songs of this 5-track EP, from the dreamy and ambient soul of “New Dawn” to the Jacksonian “Matter Of Time,” a delight that will make listeners eager for more.

His first EP An Introduction to Jo Raharison will be released on January 13 via Syracuse Musique.

Listen to Jo Raharison in our Songs of the Week playlist on Spotify and Deezer.