Not too long ago we spoke with Duane Caleb, about his new single ‘Whoa’. A light summer bop, that’s sure to get you in a good mood. Sitting down with Duane, we got the opportunity to talk to the man behind the single and dissect some of the processes which help to inspire his music.
Could you give those new to you, a quick introduction into who Duane Caleb is?
Duane: Singer-songwriter from South London Croydon. I am 26 years old, a Christian, and I make Christian RnB.
What has influenced your music style?
Duane: I enjoy catchy hooks from Pop music, but also my voice has been influenced by RnB singers. Growing up I only listened to secular music artists like D’angelo and Mariah Carey. But as I grew up I was influenced by a gospel group called Commision. So my influences are an amalgamation of different genres and my faith.
What inspired you to become exclusively a Gospel Minister?
Duane: At first I was a regular artist, but people at church would suggest that I release Christian content. At this time I was already in the church music team but I wanted to keep those worlds separate. But the turning point was at uni, when I was speaking to a friend. They had experienced the manifested presence of God in a dream and were asked “Do you want to write for me, or do you want to write for the world?”. I internalised this question as an indirect to me. Then I made the change from just inspirational music, to music for God because I couldn’t hide my faith. Since then it has been a steady climb.
For your single ‘Whoa’, how would you describe the sound?
Duane: The song is an uptempo, afro-swing, with a summer vibe. The sound complements the message of the song because it has a bright tone to it. My hope is that it uplifts people at this time, as people are dealing with these lockdown measures. The song is very much for the summer. It was originally meant to be on my last project, but it didn’t quite fit. So I redid the production, managed to get some features on the song. This helped flesh it out and give the sound you hear now.
What is the takeaway message of this song ?
Duane: To be set free and have no limits. Knowing that I am able to be free in Christ and not have anything hold me back. In Christ, we are set free in every way and we can be everything He has called us to be. There’s freedom in the identity of Christ.
You said you had prepared the song a year before, why was now the right time for people to receive this message ?
Duane: I remember at the start of lockdown, I felt very trapped and I had some anxiety actually – but this message helped me. I also know there are some people who may feel trapped at home in terrible and abusive situations. So I hope that as people listen, they recognise that Jesus is a God of freedom. He can provide that to them in their current situation. They don’t have to feel helpless in their current situation. In Christ there is freedom from their current situation and their life beyond that. So I felt it was an important message to share now.
Finally what message has God laid in your heart during this time of isolation in lockdown ?
Duane: I’ve been reminded that God is still in control, especially as Christians. There’s no need to fear. If I can encourage somebody out there, it is by reminding you that God has you in His hands. He has planned your life so just stand on the promises he has spoken into your life. They will surely come to pass. This is just a season, God is in control above everything else.
‘Woah’ is now streaming on all good platforms where music can found, including Apple Music and Spotify.