Back in 2019, pop-R&B singer Adiel Mitchell was in an off-and-on relationship. His phone would blow up with late-night texts from his girlfriend: "Hey, you should come over."
“And then it’s like, I know that I probably shouldn’t, given the circumstances that we were in,” Mitchell says. "But part of me was like, ‘We have history, and we have all of this going on.'"
That inspired his song "Want It Now," which drops on January 15.
At the time he was writing it, Mitchell had an Instagram series in which he tested the waters with his own material, posting clips of songs, and he was cycling through beats that had either been sent to him or that he took from YouTube. When he posted a demo of “Want It Now," which he wrote, his followers weighed in with positive feedback: “O my gosh, what song is this? Is this your song? Did you write this? Is it finished? Is it out?”
He sent the track to DMD (The Producer), who reworked it, incorporating the singer's exact feelings into the beats. Mitchell was amazed.
“I think that was something that just made it so magical, and I was connected to the song instantly from that moment,” he says.
Mitchell had considered releasing “Want It Now” last spring or summer, but with the Black Lives Matter protests and COVID-19, he didn’t feel it was the right time to put out his fun, feel-good pop.
“That’s not the message that I'm trying to portray,” Mitchell says. “That's not who I am, and I think that that's what ended up making me sit on it. I'm so grateful that I did, because I don't think the song was ready at that time. I think that the song felt good, but I think that that was me just itching to put something out, and because of 2020 and everyone kind of being forced indoors. I record all of my stuff from home, and it kind of locked me away to just be in my studio and just revisit it.”
Mitchell, who released the EP About Last Night in 2018, says “Want It Now” will be part of his debut full-length album slated to drop later this year, a project that tells the story of his off-and-on relationship with his girlfriend, leading up to its current iteration.
“The album has got to kind of dance around that narrative of how we first met to the troubles that we face, to our decision to break things off, to then the revelation of what I learned in that relationship and how it kind of ties back into the beginning,” Mitchell says.
While there’s an overarching story throughout, he adds, "If you listen to the songs at random, it also tells its own version of the story.”
“Want It Now,” like the rest of the album, has an introspective, feel-good vibe, perfect for driving down the road and blasting music. The song nods to some of Mitchell's favorite artists — Bruno Mars, Drake, Jaden Smith and gospel singer Fred Hammond.
“As I got closer to God, I feel like [Hammond's songs] kind of connected me more with my musicality,” Mitchell says. “I feel like I got a lot of my energy from Bruno, the kind of vibes of pop summer hits from Drake, and then the uniqueness and the not-dark but storytelling aspects of Jaden Smith.
“I think once I started getting more into gospel music, it just started to uplift my spirit in so many different ways," he says. And he hopes that even the instrumentals will take listeners on an inspirational journey.
Mitchell’s been making music for nearly a decade. He and Nick Voelker started the pop duo Two Worlds in 2012. They put energy into their online presence and had success with YouTube videos. After a five-year run, Mitchell set out on his own as a solo artist.
The 26-year-old, who has been dancing since middle school, almost gave up his career as a dancer to put all his energy into music.
“I think that I had finally mustered the courage and had enough confidence from everything that we had experienced to say, ‘Okay, I think I'm ready to step out on my own,'” Mitchell says. “I feel like I have a voice, and I have a story that needs to be told. And I just ran with it.”
Mitchell’s song “Black Dress,” which was on About Last Night, was an indicator that he was on the right path. He remembers listening to the final version of the song on a Bluetooth speaker in his car and thinking that all the cards were on the table and everything felt right.
The song "2nd Chances,” also on the EP, was included on the 2018 Already on II: The Return of R&B compilation album, which received a Grammy nomination.
“That was the turning point of my confidence and my career, because after that moment, from 2018 on, it's just been almost nonstop,” Mitchell says. “The ball has been rolling, and I've just been fortunate to stay afloat and stay on the wave.”
Hear more at Adiel Mitchell's YouTube page.
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