Since the release of her 2017 EP Shanti, Indian-American artist Raveena has gained a dedicated following for her thoughtful, dreamy R&B. Both visually and sonically, like in her recent “Stronger” video, Raveena’s work draws from Indian and American influences. Indian music always brought her family together—her parents often sang in the shower—but Raveena started developing her own taste around age 9 or 10. “I found that R&B and soul had this quality that, when I think back, is very similar to some of the Indian ballads I heard growing up. They’re both after this feeling of pain and joy at the same time,” she shares.
Since, similar themes in these Indian ballads have begun to show up in Raveena’s music—as she often coalesces hardship and peace in her music to create intimate healing spaces with her work. On her debut Lucid, Raveena grapples openly with sexual assault, trauma—intergenerational and otherwise—and even weaves in stories from her mother and grandmother to tell a story of how she practices self-care and spirituality today.
For Raveena, this dialog is incredibly important, especially when it seems for the first time in history, communities of color can finally be vulnerable about their lives on a mainstream scale. She’s incredibly grateful for her platform and the support she’s received: “People definitely told me a couple years ago that I had zero shot at this, literally just because of my race. It was not the same culture. It’s amazing to see how it's grown... I feel very blessed that there are this many people that are down to listen to [my music],” she laughs. “I definitely still feel like [Asian women] could have more space in the industry, but hopefully our time for that will come."