Reigning from Moreno Valley, California, Arthur Joseph, otherwise known as, “AJ” Rafael has grown up all around music. His journey into music started at the age of four when he explored the play the piano, an influence from his father who passed away when AJ was nine years old. An inspiration to AJ, little did he know music would be a big part of his life.
AJ Rafael began his singing career in the summer of 2004 when he wrote his first song, "How's San Diego Pauli". The following year in 2005, he had his first show where he gained the respect of local bands in Moreno Valley, his hometown. He began to play in local cities in which he had the opportunity to discover and learn more about the music industry. Later that year, AJ produced and recorded his first own album in his garage and was released by the end of 2005. With the help of MySpace.com, AJ showcased his new songs to his friends and fans. In 2006, AJ was proud to start the MoVal Concert Chorale (MVCC), a choir which he founded and is currently directing. Through MVCC, AJ created the movement: Music Speaks. Music Speaks is a benefit show that supports families with Autism and contributes to the world renowned organization Autism Speaks. AJ began to perform in places out of Southern California starting in 2008, nationally and internationally.
Within the past four years, AJ has performed throughout the United States at school venues and major theatre venues. AJ has had the opportunity to perform in other countries such as Australia, Canada, Austria and the Philippines. Wherever he goes AJ thoroughly enjoys indulging and expressing the art of music to people all throughout the world.
AJ Rafael has become one of the top musicians with the largest social networks online. AJ became a partner with YouTube.com with over 400,000 subscribers, has reached 90 million views on YouTube, over 200,000 Facebook fans, 11 million plays on MySpace, and 129,000 followers on Twitter. AJ is recognized consistently in the Top 20 on Billboard’s “Uncharted” Chart, since January 2011. His fans have shown their true influence when AJ’s “Red Roses” album was released in June 2011 in US stores nationwide and digitally on iTunes, charting in the Top 10 Pop albums and #13 on Billboard’s “Heatseeker” chart.
AJ today performs with the “AJ Rafael Band”, his full, live band, consisting of Chad Manalo on the bass guitar, Andrew Rhim on the guitar, Eric Kern on the drums and AJ himself on the keys. The band brings forth a new sound that AJ Rafael is proud to express to the audience heard today in his latest album titled, “Red Roses.”
“I was born to play music. I grew up to live for music. I have learned to breathe music. I already feel successful in a sense that I have touched someone else's heart with my music. I only hope to inspire more people to have music in their lives: that's all it's about. Popularity, money, attention, I mean all of that's nice (not that I get much of it), but that's all temporary... music is FOREVER.” –AJ Rafael.
- Performed at Kollaboration Los Angeles in 2009