About Rag'n'Bone Man
As a bearded bloke with a great big voice trading under the unabashedly old-fashioned name of Rag’n’Bone Man, Rory Graham shattered the mold for music stars who broke out of the UK in the 2010s. Then again, he was bound to break something given the power that pours out of him on “Human,” his debut single in 2016. The fusion of blues and hip-hop established the singer/songwriter—born in 1985 in the English town of Uckfield—as one of the decade’s most unique new arrivals. It’s also an arresting showcase for the booming baritone that Graham himself was surprised to discover when he tried singing a Muddy Waters song at an open mic in the mid-2000s. Until then, he’d spent his teenage years rapping for hip-hop and drum ‘n’ bass crews in his hometown. His take on vintage blues—as well as soul and funk, two words he has tattooed on knuckles—still reflects his love of the more modern sounds and sensibilities provided by collaborators like producer Two Inch Punch a.k.a. Ben Ash on Rag’n’Bone’s 2017 debut album Human. With “Giant”—a 2019 match-up with Calvin Harris—Graham got another chance to show how his old-school gusto and soulful delivery can heighten a song’s intensity without overwhelming it or blunting its pop appeal. Even with all of Graham’s potential force, he knows the value of restraint, too.
HOMETOWNUckfield, East Sussex, England