by Ben Richel
In France, when I ask: “What kind of music do you listen to?” most people answer “J’écoute de Tout” (I’m listening to everything).
When people ask me what kind of music I do, I say “Le Tout”!
It’s my own musical genre, my philosophy. It’s an approach of reinforcing ties instead of retiring ourselves in a caricatural box behind some society walls.
Listen to the song while reading the text.
In my childhood, in La Savoie, France, I lived most of my free hours in my imagination. Imagining grandiose destinies but also standard and common stories: From fishers in the Philippines to western rockstars, from 19th-century wars to post-collapse scenarios, from my own Star Wars spin-offs to projections of myself onstage later, from machines that could fly to realistic routines of the French middle class…
For me, everything is interesting.
My life was built through imagining & connecting lives. It was evident that I would someday create characters, partly because expressing my whole personality cannot be done by simply embodying one cliché role given by society.
I started music imitating my favorite pop, rock, and electro stars, developing my high head voice in an interactive dance with my original deep low voice. This gap drives me to a versatile approach, expressing my mixed personality with my polyvalent voice, which I also often use with no words to express emotions like with another instrument, but deeply human, with articulations and tones directly from what’s inside my vibes and inspirations.
I sing mainly in English; I want to limit the borders of the language. I keep my accent, and I use some French words. I want to show that behind my “Folie des Grandeurs” and my characters, there’s the real me.
My approach is questioning what music, art, humans, and the rest are by sincerely doing the music I want to do, as wide as it might be.
My first official single, “The River Slowly Gets Drier,” abstractly represents my memories of the region of Ardèche du Sud, with acoustic folk influences. This vibe makes me think of the West of the West. But it’s not that; that’s why I say “more or less colonized by some” and “authenticity is inside all that exists.”
This song inspired me to create the character of Paul Darivan, a farmer from an unknown place; that’s him that I embody on all my modern social channels content for this particular song.
My next single will be an enormously different vibe, a new character that rarely meets the other one but still through me. Still me.
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