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Pheelz Good II: A Journey Through Sound, Sonic and Sentiment with Pheelz

Award-winning Nigerian artist, producer, and songwriter Pheelz released his highly anticipated EP, ‘Pheelz Good II,’ on June 28, concluding his acclaimed ‘Pheelz Good’ trilogy.

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Jul. 11 2024, Published 2:12 p.m. ET

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Photographer: Elliott Hensford

The trilogy has garnered over 400 million plays, solidifying Pheelz’s position in the global music scene. This new EP follows Pheelz's recent success with Usher’s chart-topping album, 'Coming Home,' and collaborations with Kali Uchis, The Chainsmokers, and Pharrell Williams, earning co-signs from Dr. Dre and Timbaland.

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‘Pheelz Good II’ showcases Pheelz’s innovative approach to afro beats, blending R&B, soul, hip-hop, and dance music. The EP explores themes of self-discovery, romance, celebrations, and anxiety, providing an intimate connection to Pheelz’s emotional journey.

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The EP opens with ‘Fever,’ featuring Niniola. It captures the rush of new encounters with playful lyrics and an irresistible beat. ‘Majo follows, celebrating life’s joyous moments. ‘Kamikaze delves into personal struggles, reflecting Pheelz’s battles with stress. ‘Yeye’ is a love song encapsulating romance's excitement and vulnerability. The EP concludes with ‘Rotate,’ a dance track celebrating connection and rhythm.

Pheelz describes ‘Pheelz Good II’ as an intimate reflection of his true self, embracing vulnerabilities. With accolades from Billboard, Rolling Stone, and TIME, Pheelz’s expanding influence in the music industry is evident. ‘Pheelz Good II’ promises innovative sounds and heartfelt stories, inviting listeners to embrace their own emotions through music.

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Over a video call, I sit with Pheelz, who is in his homeland of Nigeria, currently experiencing a rainy spell. Despite the weather, we tune into "Pheelz Good II," an ideal soundtrack that transports you to a place of warmth and harmony.

BLEU: Congratulations on the release of ‘Pheelz Good II.’ Could you share with us the inspiration behind concluding your trilogy with this EP?

Pheelz: The inspiration behind it is the same as all my projects: it's me interpreting my feelings and emotions through Sonics and sounds. It's me also just being human with the lyrics as well, with the message of the music. It's just me saying, hey, I go through life too, and it's okay to feel all these emotions—they all feel good. I deserve all the emotions that I feel, and it feels good regardless of whether they're the good ones or the bad ones. It all feels good, and it all works for you and is all for your benefit.

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BLEU: Amazing. I love that. By the way, I love your music. I've started listening to your EP, and it has such summer vibes. Although it's raining here, it gives off good energy. You've collaborated with big names like Usher, Pharrell Williams, and The Chainsmokers. How have these experiences influenced your music and creative process?

Pheelz: A lot, right? And the craziest thing is that the music of the people I'm working with now is music that I've listened to growing up as well. So I felt like indirectly they had been influencing my music. So just meeting them, sharing energy, making music together, learning from them, and also teaching them in a way has been... I mean, it's the stuff that dreams are made of. These are moments that I will never forget because they mean so much to me as a producer and also as an artist. Life is a movie.

BLEU: Where do you feel the greatest connection with your music—in the studio or on tour?

Pheelz: They’re both different feelings, you know. In the studio, it's just me with my thoughts and my emotions. But there's also beauty in being on stage and sharing those emotions with the fans. To see who resonates back to you, who feels the same way and connects with the lyrics or the melody. Both feelings are incomparable, to be honest, because they both have their own beauties. I'm grateful for both of them. It's a blessing.

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BLEU: ‘Pheelz Good II’ blends various genres like Afrobeats, R&B, soul, and hip hop. How do you approach creating such a unique and genre-defying sound?

Pheelz: I feel like it's my upbringing. Growing up, I was very blessed with the music that I listened to. Although I was a kid in Lagos, growing up, I was listening to a lot of varied music. I listened to NWA, Avril Lavigne, Green Day, Oasis, Yanni, Indian music, African music like Fela, and even Chinese music. I absorbed inspiration from so many different genres that it's impossible to put me in a box. It's all flowing into me, and I think life has just blessed me with experiences that opened my mind sonically to different ways to approach music.

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BLEU: The themes in your EP touch on self-discovery, romance, and anxiety. How do you translate such personal experiences into your music?

Pheelz: It's me just thinking about it and saying my truth about it. There are rules and guidelines like rhyme schemes that songwriters follow, but at the core of it, it's just me expressing myself to myself first before anybody else. It's like making what I would love to hear if I'm going through something. I don't see music as a grind or an occupation —it's life for me. It's okay to commercialize it and make money, but at the core of it, this is life for me.

BLEU: The track "Kamikaze" delves into struggles with anxiety and stress. Could you tell us more about what inspired this song?

Pheelz: "Kamikaze" is the most vulnerable song I've released so far. It's me accepting my humanness and my search for peace of mind. It's realizing that peace is inside me if I just accept it. "Kamikaze" is about acceptance—letting go and trusting life. It's me realizing that what I've been looking for outside is inside. It's me accepting all my life's darkness and understanding that true happiness lies in the acceptance and letting go.

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BLEU: You mentioned embracing your vulnerabilities with ‘Pheelz Good.’ What prompted this shift, and how has it impacted your relationship with your fans?

Pheelz: It came from fame. Sometimes, as a species, we dehumanize famous people and forget they're human too. My rise to fame happened almost immediately, and I had to confront a whole new way of living quickly. For example, I dropped a song, and two days later, I was at the O2 in front of 20,000 people performing it, and everyone sang it back to me. Being thrown into the deep end that quickly gave me whiplash, and I had to take a minute to work through all that. The ‘Pheelz Good’ series is me taking every emotion and saying that they all feel good because they all work for my benefit.

BLEU: What would you say to a fan struggling with confronting their emotions?

Pheelz: Belief is everything. Our emotions stem from what we believe to be true. Find the power in making your own choices and check your beliefs. Change the ones that don't serve you.

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BLEU: With the music industry constantly evolving, what do you see for the future of Afrobeats? Do you plan to continue innovating in this genre?

Pheelz: The future of Afrobeats—I don't know, and that's okay. It's not in our place to know. All we have to do is keep making amazing music. We are resilient and powerful. As African creatives, we need to keep being ourselves. The future will decide itself, but as long as we keep making amazing music, the future is bright.

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BLEU: You've received high praise from legends like Dr. Dre and Timbaland. How do such endorsements influence your career, and what advice have they given you?

Pheelz: Meeting my mentors made my goals feel attainable. Watching Dr. Dre come into the studio every day to make music, regardless of whether he releases it or not, for the passion of it, is inspiring. Listening to Timbaland call me Afrobeat 2.0 and having Usher give me vocal tips—these experiences are a dream come true. Life is a movie, and I'm grateful for every single experience.

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BLEU: As an artist with over 400 million plays, what advice would you give to up-and-coming musicians?

Pheelz: Three things: fall in love with the passion of creating, find that enough as a goal, and detach from expectations. Understand that no one said it would be easy, but no one said it would be impossible either. Finally, set your beliefs deeply and change any that don't serve you or your goals.

BLEU: Thank you so much for your time. It's been lovely to speak with you. Best of luck with everything, and I can't wait to see you live.

Pheelz: Thank you. It's been great talking to you too.

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