Introducing Ari Abdul

by Emma Balfour

07 Oct 2022 |

Story Contributors

Artist: Ari Abdul @arianna.abdul / Words: Emma Balfour @emmabal4

Ari Abdul’s pop-noir debut album Fallen Angel  has landed, levitated by alluring melodies and her warm, luminescent vocals.

Earlier this year, Ari released her debut single “BABYDOLL” followed by the sped-up version “BABYDOLL (Speed).” Both versions garnered viral success with over 83M global streams, 400M TikTok views, and 420K TikTok creations.

From going viral on TikTok, to the influence living in Brooklyn has on her work, Ari tells all to OffTheRails.

Congratulations on your debut EP Fallen Angel. What is the inspiration behind the EP?

Thank you so much! The inspiration for the EP came about after the debut of my very first single ‘BABYDOLL’. I knew I wanted to create a villainous character and had to figure out a way to get there. Through the songs, I tell that story using religious imagery. 

Tell us about the lead single “HUSH”

“HUSH” is a song that comes from the perspective of someone who has lost it. They take interest in a person but like them too much to actually do anything so they just need them to be quiet. 

How would you describe your current sound? 

My sound is definitely driven by emotions. In each song, I attempt to convey whatever I’m feeling for that song and get that across to whoever is listening. I enjoy intense sounds. 

Do you think that your environment of living in Brooklyn, NYC impacts the style of music you create? 

I definitely think New York City culture has influenced my style of music. All the different types of music I grew up hearing play a role in my sound today. 

You’re incredibly successful on TikTok and we love following you there. Do you think that there is a formula for what makes a viral/ successful song on the platform?

Tiktok moves very fast and it’s constantly difficult to tell what will go viral and what will not. However, if you are able to catch attention and just consistently roll with whatever helped you gain that attention, you can make it big. 

What keeps you staying inspired?

Listening and discovering more music that is not my own. Watching movies and being surrounded by art keeps me inspired to create. 

Your music has been used before for fashion shows. Do you have any favourite designers?

I would first like to make it known that I absolutely love fashion and watching fashion shows. Vivienne Tam is definitely a favorite and the fact that she used my music for her show felt like a dream come true. 

What do you find to be the best platform for music discovery? 

Although it is not a music platform, Tiktok is the best for discovering music. It successfully makes songs that have been out for some time gain more attention. It also helps smaller artists build a name. Tiktok is a big part of where I am at now. 

What is the most OffTheRails thing that you have done?

Growing up in New York, everyone likes to break the rules in their own way. I think the most OffTheRails thing I’ve done so far, specifically in my music career (so I won’t get in trouble) is drop a sped-up song. There’s many sped-up versions of songs now but when I did it, it was very early on and I was told numerous times it wouldn’t work. 

What’s next for Ari Abdul?

Simply create, whether it’s music, visuals, or content. Just create and have fun.