“The infinite magnetism of affections in sounds for the warmer souls”
Anselmo Ralph has conquered a special place on the international music scene, considered within his musical genre as one of Portuguese speaking countries most acclaimed and known artists, with a wide range of audiences and social status, a romantic man illustrated in his five awarded records.
His albums represent a mixture of rhythms and influences, exciting lyrics with an imaginative subjectivity which produce songs inspired in seductive romanticism and resulting in his huge success that crosses even linguistic barriers.
Forbes Magazine has considered Anselmo Ralph as the 7th most profitable artist in Africa, being the first Angolan to be in the top 10 and acting as a symbol to a flourishing and peaceful Angola.
The artist’s media exposure is evident on the number of fans on his shows, record sales of his shows, number of shows he performs, his presence on the media, the awards he won and also the credibility and influence gained in several audiences, which led him to be invited by several brands such as Coca-Cola, Unitel, Samsung, Banco Económico, Delta Q, to name a few, to be an ambassador for the brands and connect with his vast and diverse audience.
Anselmo Ralph was born in Luanda in 1981 where he studied until his teenage years. Later on, due to his father diplomatic career, he moved to Madrid and became in touch with the musical scene, meeting musician Juan Luis Guerra, one of his favourites and biggest musical influences.
Also in Madrid, Anselmo Ralph discovered a growing interest in exploring different musical genres and combining several languages – highlighting Latin music with African rhythms.
Still during the ’90s, his parents’ divorce made him live for a long period of time only with his mother and three sisters, a situation which has influenced his musical career and reflects itself on the feminine universe depicted on his albums.
Later on and wanting to follow an academic path, the artist moved to New York, where his father lived, balancing his accounting studies at the Manhattan Community College with several jobs in restaurants.
The contemporary nature of his albums is explained by the influence of American musical language. He founded a band with some friends in the US, “New Generation Band”, while singing on a Gospel choirs, which led his passion for music to grow even more.
Anselmo Ralph was attracted to Latin American music but wanted to mix it with other influences, namely African rhythms from his home town Angola and other urban roots styles, with an emotional strength to create powerful songs about real lives, experiences and feelings.
This will to explore more creative territories and other musical genres made him create his own style, admittedly more romantic, and led him to move back to Angola and dedicate himself exclusive to music.
In 2006, the new music scene in Angola witnessed a star being born.
This year would also be defined by the release of his first solo album ““Love Stories/ Histórias de Amor”, with several hits and memorable live performances, which made the artist an immediate hit and included R&B sounds and warm African rhythms, with songs about steaming passion and the emotional diversity of love.
His first album reached #1 in several countries, leading the Angolan chart for a long time.
This responsiveness from the public would lead to his first show in Luanda: about 6,000 fans were at the known club “Miami Beach” for an unforgeable evening where Anselmo Ralph sung several songs of his first album.
His first live show was also closely watched by de media, followed by another sold out show just two weeks later. More than 7,000 people showed at “Cine Carl Marx” for the artist’s second concert to showcase “Histórias de Amor”, a local record in audience terms.
Still in 2006, a South African TV channel chose Anselmo Ralph as “Best RnB Singer” (Best R&B Singer), and he was also nominated for “Best African Artist” at the MTV Music Awards held in Copenhagen that year.
After the success of “Histórias de Amor”, Anselmo Ralph released “The Last Love Stories” in February 2007: in less than a month, this new album was already a national and international hit and was on the top of the charts in several countries in Africa, Europe and America.
This triumphant beginning of his career ended with two important acknowledgements for the young singer/songwriter on that same year: “Best Male Voice” and “Best Vocalist” award, by Rádio Luanda, also becoming the most voted artist by the public of this prestigious radio station.
In 2008, Anselmo Ralph started an international tour in several African countries (Mozambique, São Tomé e Príncipe, South Africa and Namibia) and Europe (Portugal, United Kingdom and Netherlands). After this tour, we went to Brazil to perform several shows in São Paulo and Rio de Janeiro. The tour included the hits from the album “Histórias de Amor”.
2008 was also marked by the release of his important third record – “O Cupido”, which as another milestone in Anselmo Ralph’s career and it sold an absolute record of 22,000 copies on its release date and surpassed 40,000 copies only 4 months after being released.
On July 10th 2008, in Luanda’s basketball pavilion, Cidadela, Anselmo Ralph would perform for more than 42,000 people, getting his platinum record for sales regarding the album “O Cupido”.
2010 would be a year entirely dedicated to live shows, not only in several Angolan cities on a national tour, but also in countries throughout Europe, Latin America and Africa.
Breaking once again sales records, in 2011, the maxi single “A Dor do Cupido”consolidated the artist’s popularity, including the CD and DVD format (5 songs and 4 videos) – selling more than 34,000 copies in just two days after its release.
After this public event in Luanda, the artist went again on national tour, and his album would reach the top of the national charts – in less than 3 months, “A Dor do Cupido” sold more than 90,000 copies.
2011 was also a great year for Anselmo Ralph who signed a deal with Coca-Cola, a deal that would be in force for 5 more years as a brand ambassador.
In 2012 and 2013, Anselmo Ralph was invited to perform several shows in Europe, Latin America and Africa, strengthening his position in the international music scene.
In 2013, Anselmo Ralph became the first Angolan artist to reach the top position of the Portuguese charts with the album “A Dor do Cupido”, staying there for more than 51 weeks (the first musician of the PALOP community to conquer this since April 25th 1974) and swept away once again the audience with unforgettable live performances, selling out the biggest Portuguese concert venue, Altice Arena.
In 2013, the first edition of the Angola Music Awards took place and Anselmo Ralph was the biggest winner of the evening in several categories. Since then, he has won more than 8 awards.
The artist started a new period of media exposure in 2014 when he was invited to be a mentor on the Portuguese version of TV show “The Voice”, hosted by Catarina Furtado and broadcasted on RTP1 on prime time.
The first edition of “The Voice” was explicitly won by Anselmo Ralph with contestant Rui Drumond, being praised by the audience by his good mood and good argumentative skills.
Since this first edition, Anselmo Ralph is still on the judges panel and has won 5 editions, with “The Voice Kids”, and is recording the 6th edition of the show (August 2018).
“The Voice” has won several awards in different categories, having won the award for “Best Entertainment Show” and is a real television phenomenon with record ratings and a leader since the beginning, and has is the first entertainment show to ever cross the 1 million viewers bar.
The brand “Anselmo Ralph” was growing enormously and the artist ended 2014 with a show on Portugal’s biggest venue – Altice Arena – with more than 18,000 fans.
This unique show, which celebrated his 10 year career anniversary, gave the audience a series of performances with some of the biggest names of the Portuguese and international music scene, names such as Daniela Mercury, Naldo Beny, Anna Joyce, Paulo Flores or fado singer Raquel Tavares who joined Anselmo Ralph on stage for a sold out show, just like the artist did on previous venues, Coliseu e Campo Pequeno (Lisbon).
2014 was also important due to the release of “O Melhor de Anselmo Ralph”, which reached gold record status just 2 weeks after its release. Also in 2014, the artist was invited to perform at Cristiano Ronaldo’s birthday party, went on a spectacular tour in Luanda (with Coca-Cola and Unitel as sponsors), and gave several performances on the ADDC tour throughout Europe and Africa in important venues and events, all of them sold out.
On that same year, he also made deals with brands Cadillac, Unitel, Samsung; Antarte and BESA (Banco Espírito Santo Angola, currently Banco Económico) as an ambassador, which he still is at the moment. On the advertising world, he did a campaign with Cristiano Ronaldo for BESA bank.
Anselmo Ralph was awarded “Artist of the Year” by Portuguese radio station RFM and by its agency, Sony Music, having also been awarded Best Portuguese speaking Artist by MTF Africa. He also received several awards in Angola in events organized by important organizations, among which media company SAPO, Radio Luanda, to name a few. He also won several awards at the Gala Angola 35 graus, an event that awards Angolan personalities that work in theatre, dance, music, politics and society.
The artist also won the Portuguese big screen, by participating in “Virados do Avesso”, the best première of a Portuguese production in 2014, working side by side with some of the most important and awarded Portuguese actors, sharing the spotlight with names such as Diogo Morgado and Nicolau Breyner.
If 2014 was such am important year for the musician’s meteoric rise, working in several projects, live performances, releasing a new album “The Best of Anselmo Ralph 2014”, projects on the big screen and several advertising campaigns, 2015 presented a new role for the artist with his wife, Madlice Cordeiro, launching production company “Bom Som”.
Besides managing Anselmo Ralph, “Bom Som” started to manage Anna Joyce, currently one of the biggest voices of her generation, young musician Landrick, which has already been recognised both nationally and internationally, and gospel musician Miguel Buíla (2017), having also been important to promote several young artists, such as Bass.
Since being founded, and under his and his wife’s commands, the producer has already gained a lot of experience in managing musical careers and its thinking of promoting artists on the market as well as agencying shows both on a national and international level.
In 2015, Anselmo Ralph would once again captivate the different advertising brands and signed a deal with Delta Q in Angola, which consolidates the artist’s popularity in his native country, which the brand Delta Q considers him an example for the youth of Angola in his generosity and dedication.
Besides the deal with Delta Q, the artist was invited to be the face of a new Portuguese technology brand, Bling, featuring Anselmo One, the smartphone of the product range BLING by Anselmo Ralph.
In 2014, the artist reached the big screen in“Virados do Avesso” and 2015 would be undoubtedly marked by the première in Portugal and Angola of the biographical documentary – “Vontade de Vencer”, which reveals to the audience not only his musician side but also his private side – family relationships, his relationship with the fans and his daily struggle against myasthenia gravis (a neuromuscular autoimmune disease which cases involuntary muscle fatigue), a condition which is severe and sometimes incapacitating but never stopped Anselmo Ralph to reach his goals.
A documentary by Portuguese director André Banza (known for his works for Portuguese TV such as “Os Contemporâneos” and “O Grande Teatro do Mundo”) followed Anselmo Ralph and his crew on the worldwide tour “ADDC” with over 80 shows.
Also in 2015, the artist performed live all over the world during the tour “A Única Mulher”, which was extraordinary received by the fans in sold out venues.
The fans, the industry and the general public had high expectations for his new record – released in early 2016 but soon went to the top of the charts reaching gold record status and surpassing, once again, sales records with over 50,000 copies sold.
Songs like “Casa Comigo”, “Virou Amor”, “Money”, “Por Favor DJ” and “Todo teu” were included on the new record, which mixed urban beat with a strong R&B sound, north american trap or Axê Music from Bahia, Brazil, thus showing the artist’s evolution and his constant passion to explore new sound environments and mix different languages on an emotional frame in which love stories are the stage or his creations.
A record which talks about a love story, where in each track the original music depicts the particular moments of that relationship, guided by love, passion, betrayal, encounters, disagreements and forgiveness.
This new record adventure constitutes his 5th album which was produced by Klasszik and edited by Sony Music, with a total of 15 songs with guest collaborations by Laton, Paulo Flores, Dream Boyz and Plutónio.
After the album’s release, the artist started two world tours in simultaneous – “Amor é Cego” and “Anselmo Ralph – Em Acústico” – which included unforgettable moments in intimate shows with a close contact with the fans and were held in 2016 and 2017.
The fact that so man different audiences like him and the media phenomenon he’s become made him being invited to perform at Portugal’s inauguration celebration for President Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa.
Still in 2016, he won Best Title Song for “A Única Mulher” (Portuguese soap opera shot both in Portugal and Angola and welcomed by both the audience and the industry, having won several awards in different categories).
The artist continued his deal with brands such as Unitel, Bling Bling, Delta (the Portuguese coffee brand signed a one year deal with Anselmo Ralph in 2016 with a collection of coffee capsules with the exclusive signature of Anselmo Ralph – “O meu café é um show” (My coffee is a show)) in 2017, he’s invited to be the face of the new healthcare plan Muxima (for every Angolan who wished to have healthcare in Portugal), created by Medicare in collaboration with Saúde Global Angola and in which he is an ambassador (he’s included in the communication strategy, also participating in several platforms, from the TV advertising to social media).
2017 was the year of internationalization, namely to conquer such markets as South America as well as some European and African territories, where he had won the fans already but did not settle himself in artistic terms.
Therefore, Anselmo Ralph signed a deal with Sony Music Iberia and through this partnership he will release 3 new albums in Spanish so that they are marketed in Spanish territory but also in all Latin America.
After being more than a year on tour with “Amor é Cego” simultaneously with the tour “Anselmo Ralph – Em Acústico”, in 2018 the artist released the new single “1 em 1 milhão” (written by famous Portuguese songwriter Carolina Deslandes) which also is the name of the tour for 2018. This tour promises to be emotional in several important dates in venues around the world.
The tour “1 em 1 milhão” included a show in Altice Arena in which Anselmo Ralph shared the stage with experienced musician Enrique Englesias, driving the fans wild in a performance which sold out the biggest venue in Portugal.
Hits like “Curtição” or “Não Me Toca” have reached new audiences through versions by famous Brazilian singers, such as Zé Filipe, which covered “Não Me Toca” and made the song a new hit, a Brazilian one.
The YouTube Channel and social media such as Facebook or Twitter have leveraged the phenomenon associated to Anselmo Ralph: millions of views of his clips or the fan’s admiration that we can attest in several platforms are a testament to an artistic identity which is very appreciated way and above his language.