- 30 Jun 21
The pop singer shared with fans on Twitter that she has been waiting to release her debut album under Polydor Records since 2014.
London-based singer-songwriter Raye has spoken out about the strains of working under her current label, who signed her to a four-album deal seven years ago and yet allegedly refuse to release her material.
The artists, real name Rachel Agatha Keen, wrote her frustrations to fans on Twitter last night, saying she's "sick of being slept on" due to her record label delaying the release of her debut album.
The pop singer claims to have "albums on albums of music sat in folders collecting dust," which she is now giving away to other "A-list artists" as she waits for her label to allow her to release her first LP.
"I’ve done everything they asked me, I switched genres, I worked 7 days a week, ask anyone in the music game, they know," Raye tweeted. "I’m done being a polite pop star. I want to make my album now, please that is all I want. Holding it inside and pretending I am 100% fabulous will only hurt more. So here it is. Today I feel like a toilet. I’m going to be brave and talk about it. You are not alone, we can talk about our worries and our tears. It’s not embarrassing to speak out, It is brave."
"Sometimes we don’t speak out of fear, we stay silent," Raye added. "I’m really glad I spoke out today. Regardless of the consequences tomorrow, today you have made me feel heard."
The British musician is signed to Polydor Records which operate as part of Universal Music Group, and is best known for her collaborations with David Guetta, Joel Corry and Jax Jones. Her songwriting skills have even earned her credits on Beyoncé's most recent album, The Lion King: The Gift.
The 'Natalie Don't' singer told fans on Twitter that the success of her latest single 'Call On Me,' will determine whether or not her label will give her the green light to release her debut album.
Imagine this pain
I have been signed to a major label since 2014...and I have had albums on albums of music sat in folders collecting dust, songs I am now giving away to A list artists because I am still awaiting confirmation that I am good enough to release an album.
— RAYE (@raye) June 29, 2021
So now I’m being told if Call On Me does well then I can do my album but there can’t be a green light until....
imagine the PRESSURE of me waking up every day frantically looking at numbers and stats hoping that I can just make MY BLOODY FIRST ALBUM
— RAYE (@raye) June 29, 2021
The singer, who boasts over 22 million listeners on Spotify, also revealed that she has not put out an album despite being on a four-album deal since 2014. She told fans she is "sick of being in pain about it this is not business to me this so personal".
Artists have spoken out in solidarity with the singer, including Charli XCX who tweeted, "Tell them to pay everyone & scream at them till they release it. If u played nice then get mean coz u have hits & ur a great artist & they work for u not the other way around".
ugh hate this, i support u @Raye. My advice is to make the entire thing, artwork/font/music/everything. Tell them to pay everyone & scream at them till they release it. If u played nice then get mean coz u have hits & ur a great artist & they work for u not the other way around https://t.co/rUM5MagakJ
— Charli (@charli_xcx) June 29, 2021
MNEK also shared his support for Raye, calling her "one of our country’s best PERIOD," while British-Japanese musician Rina Sawayama also offered words of comfort.
I just tried calling you @raye but, I’m gonna tell everyone on here the exact same thing. Raye is one of our country’s best PERIOD. There is no reason her light should be dimmed or she should be made to feel her HARD WORK is in vain. https://t.co/JzGewMo2C1
— MNEK (@MNEK) June 29, 2021
this is so devastating I’m so sorry. I literally heard your song on the radio in berlin today. can’t imagine the pain of not being able to release music you’ve worked so hard at for years. we love u and support u ! ur the sweetest and most hardworking
— RINA SAWAYAMA (@rinasawayama) June 29, 2021
“You know what’s sad is that I’ve met a lot of female producers who have stopped making music because they felt either totally dismissed or harassed, and it’s really awful,” Raye explains. “It’s a constant struggle for women, even in 2021. We’re doing a lot of incredible things in front of the camera. Women are levelled up as equals in the media, making it seem like all of these amazing changes are happening, but behind the scenes, it’s still so tough.”
Raye also spoke about the importance of songwriters getting better deals when signing to record labels.
"Imagine going to sessions all of the time and writing for weeks at a time; you have to hope that the artist eventually chooses the song, uses it as a single and that the track actually becomes successful. After that whole process, you have to wait a whole year for your first cheque to come through. It’s nuts.”
Watch the video for 'Call On Me' below: