Interview: Billy Raffoul – “This EP Is A Little Bit Of Everything That I’m In Love With”
Prior to the release of his latest EP, I WISH YOU WERE HERE, Recordspin caught up with Ontario-based singer-songwriter Billy Raffoul.
Billy Raffoul is an award-winning singer-songwriter and producer hailing from Leamington, Ontario. Music has always been a part of his life, with his father being a popular regional performer. As a child, Raffoul spent countless hours playing guitar and singing, leading him to perform “Blackbird” by The Beatles for the first time during ninth grade.
Since then, Raffoul has made a name for himself in the music industry, generating hundreds of millions of streams and earning acclaim from American Songwriter and Paste. He has shared the stage with big-name acts such as Kings of Leon, Kaleo, and X Ambassadors, and his music has been described as having a “rough-shod, whiskey-honeyed rasp.”
Raffoul’s debut EP for Nettwerk showcases his talent as a songwriter who writes music to experience sharing it with other people. His music is filled with emotion and energy, and his voice echoes with a graceful grit that comes straight from the gut.
Recordspin caught up with Billy Raffoul via email to discuss his latest EP, I WISH YOU WERE HERE, and what else lies ahead in 2023. Here’s what he had to say.
Hey Billy! Thanks for spending the time to answer some questions for us. How are you doing today?
I’m good! Thanks for asking, just got a done a studio session. I’m excited about how it went.
I read about how your father was a popular regional performer. How did growing up in a musical household influence your own music?
He actually still is! Growing up in musical household was definitely very inspiring and encouraging. Both my mother and father are massive music fans. I really feel like I got the best of both worlds. My dad taught me The Beatles. My mother, U2.
With I WISH YOU WERE HERE EP, you worked with longtime collaborator Justin Zuccato, can you tell us a bit about the creative process behind the record and how that experience affected the process vs. previous recordings?
Justin and I have been making music together for years now and this EP was no different. We grew up 20 minutes from each other and went to the same high school. The majority of this record was created in his bedroom. I’d go there every day until these songs started to feel complete.
I also read about how you worked with your brother on the songwriting process. What was that experience like and how did that influence the record?
My brother Peter and I are constantly writing songs together. When we work together it feels like we are literally in each other’s brains. The song “I Wish You Were Here” was done in 2 hours after watching the movie Interstellar. We also wrote the song “Alligator” together.
Watch Billy Raffoul’s “I Wish You Were Here” live video below
How does this EP compare to your previous work, and what can fans expect in terms of themes and musical styles?
I think this EP is a little bit of everything that I’m in love with at the moment. Acoustic songs, rock songs, and a piano ballad. I hope you find something you resonate with!
Aside from the title track, are there any other particular songs that you’re excited for people to hear?
Jim Carrey or Alligator!
Listen to Billy Raffoul’s “Jim Carrey” below
What else are you hoping to achieve in 2023?
I want to tour more in 2023 than I ever have. (I think we’re well on our way to achieving that!)
To close, what song/EP/album have you been playing on repeat recently?
The Car – Arctic Monkeys
I WISH YOU WERE HERE EP was released on March 24th, 2023, via Nettwerk. For more information on Billy Raffoul, visit his website here.