A Singer’s Pride in Africa
The singer Rafiya racked up a lot of miles during her childhood. Born in Los Angeles to Congolese parents, the singer (who uses one name professionally) grew up in Congo, Cape Verde, Benin, Senegal, Guinea, Ivory Coast and Barbados, thanks to her father’s work with the United Nations.
Those peripatetic years left an imprint on her music: The countries she called home introduced her to a variety of musicians and musical techniques, experiences that she would draw on when she began writing and recording her own songs. Her 2010 album, “Amazing,” and her 2014 EP, “My Number,”fuse a 21st-century pop sensibility with contemporary African influences, in particular.