Raury burst onto radars earlier this month with “God’s Whisper,” a booming folk/gospel(?) anthem that felt even more urgent coming from the wiry frame of a 17-year-old black kid from the East Side of Atlanta. From the Larry Clark-esque video for “God’s Whisper” (which was initially removed from YouTube “for being too real”) to the viral-primed, crowdsourced footage of his show-crashing “Anti-Tour,” Raury has a knack for bursting through the walls between the personal and public. So when he told The FADER he wrote and produced “Sunshine” in anticipation of his senior prom, which he attended just this past Saturday, it made sense.
“Prom was hands down one of the single greatest nights of my life,” he tells us from his home Sunday afternoon, with his date still seated close by. “Sunshine” is a spacey duet with guest vocalist Ari that bleeds into a breathless verse where he promises to give his girl “the kind of love my father lacked.” It’s a sharp turn left for the young artist who’s still figuring out his sound amid a sweep of newfound attention—including studio sessions with Thundercat, Mac Miller, and SBTRK, as well as an email of encouragement from Kanye West. There’s still one name left on his wishlist, and he came closer than ever during Coachella’s opening weekend. “Andre 3000 is my hero, my favorite artist of all time,” he says. “I snuck onto the side stage while Outkast performed. Prince was standing to the left of me and Busta Rhymes was to my right.” Seeing your idols perform is no senior prom, of course, but it sounds like a close second. Stream “Sunshine” and check out exclusive polaroids from Raury’s prom night below.
Stream: Raury, “Sunshine”