Rag’N’Bone Man: “It feels like we really concentrated on the songs before anything else was done”

Rag'N'Bone Man
(Image credit: Fiona Garden)

Deftly fusing prismatic prongs of blues, soul, pop, folk, rock, grime and hip-hop, Rag’N’Bone Man simply refuses to be pigeonholed. That’s been the case since the East Sussex singer-songwriter, real name Rory Charles Graham, dropped his debut EP Bluestown in 2012 – where on one track he croons with a gruff, battered twang alongside dusty acoustic strums and a ripping harmonica solo, and on the next he spits menacing rap bars over jazzy keys and 808 beats. 

Graham burst into the mainstream with his full-length debut in 2017, boldly dubbed Human. In addition to a torrent of critical acclaim, it earned the distinction of being the fastest-selling debut album by a male artist in the 2010s, debuting in the Top 5 on nine countries’ charts (and taking out the #1 spot in five) and selling over 2,000,000 copies worldwide. Naturally, the task of whipping up a sequel came with a fair whack of pressure.

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Ellie Robinson
Editor-at-Large, Australian Guitar Magazine

Ellie Robinson is an Australian writer, editor and dog enthusiast with a keen ear for pop-rock and a keen tongue for actual Pop Rocks. Her bylines include music rag staples like NME, BLUNT, Mixdown and, of course, Australian Guitar (where she also serves as Editor-at-Large), but also less expected fare like TV Soap and Snowboarding Australia. Her go-to guitar is a Fender Player Tele, which, controversially, she only picked up after she'd joined the team at Australian Guitar. Before then, Ellie was a keyboardist – thankfully, the AG crew helped her see the light…