Meet the Brooklyn singer-songwriter putting his own spin on R&B and borderline pop music.

rum•gold releases his brand new EP
rum•gold releases his brand new EP

Brooklyn-hailed singer-songwriter rum.gold has been putting out his own atmospheric spin on R&B and pop music. His spellbinding body of work showcases his remarkable talent, with his iconic and mesmerising voice capturing the likes of Jamila Woods and producer George Moore.

The masterful vocalist has been working in secret up until now, releasing his music under anon, but now rum.gold  is ready to take centre stage with his latest EP “aiMless” firmly marking him as an artist to watch this year. His soulful gospel tune “Save You” displays intimate and raw emotion over captivating pipe organs for a passion and honest melody.

We caught up with singer talking influences, his new EP and creativity…

How did you come up with your name rum.gold?
It’s my last name. My last name is Drumgold, but I’m not a drummer by any means, so I took off the “d”.

Who were your biggest inspirations growing up?
Growing up I listened to a lot of R&B. A lot of Brandy, Lauryn Hill, Usher, etc. I also played the trumpet for the majority of my childhood and throughout college, so I listened to a lot of jazz as well. Ella Fitzgerald, Chet Baker, Louis Armstrong, Roy Hargrove (The RH factor as well). All of which informed my current taste in music and how I approach creating as well.

How did growing up in DMV influence your sound?
Growing up in the DMV was a blessing. It’s incredibly diverse. I had friends and neighbours from very different walks of life. On an average day, I’d come in contact with 10 different genres of music. On our morning drives to school, my aunt would be playing the Confessions album by Usher or the Emancipation of Mimi album by Mariah. It was usually one or the other haha. I’d go to a class where my friends were listening to anything from Bon Iver to go-go music, then I’d get to jazz band rehearsals where I’m listening to Coltrane and Miles Davis, playing jazz standards. All of it influenced me. The DMV is so culturally rich and I’m grateful to be from there.

You say up to now you’ve been keeping your music a secret – why is this?=
My confidence. I simply just didn’t believe that I had anything worthwhile to say or contribute to music. It’s still something I grapple with daily. But I’m learning to push through those feelings of insecurity.

abstract photo of rum•gold
abstract photo of rum•gold
abstract photo of rum•gold
abstract photo of rum•gold

What is “aiMless” inspired by? And what is the meaning of the name?
I think the feelings I’m trying to explore on “aiMless” are much more complex than those of my first EP, because I’m trying to understand why I am the way I am. “aiMless” is me attempting to explore where I come from, to know where not go. In some ways, I feel like I bit off more than I could chew because trying to understand the ways in which trauma cycles through generations and my place in that cycle would require more space than a 4 song EP. But, this is just a beginning.

What’s the best feedback you’ve ever had on your music?
The messages I get from people saying that my words got them through something are by far the most important to me. But I LOVE reading tweets about me, “Y’all don’t listen to rum.gold? That’s ghetto.” Is one of my favs.

How are you adapting to the lockdown and how is this influencing you creatively?
It’s definitely been challenging. Mainly because I’m so used to thinking three steps ahead but now I can’t do that. I’m lucky enough to have my space, my health, and people around me who love and support me. So lockdown has given me time to just reflect on the bad habits I’ve developed over the years due to the hustle mentality. I’m rediscovering why I fell in love with music. It’s a process but I’m starting to enjoy it again.

What’s next for you/what are you excited about?
I’m trying to shift to album mode, but in the meantime, staying safe and staying happy is important. And I hope everyone else is doing the same!

Brooke Didonato

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