1Love Artist, RichRel, releases new song "Don't judge. Just pray."

Richard “RichRel” Reliford, the Mission1Race original 1Love artist, and also Founder & President, shares his inspiration and desire behind the new song, “Don’t judge. Just Pray.” Although preceded by many other well-loved songs, RichRel’s signature sound and passion is particularly exemplified in this new song. “Don’t judge. Just pray.”, originally titled, “All Love, No Hate”, displays the struggle to work towards what should be in light of our current realities. The fight for tenacity and against ambivalence reverberates loudly throughout the lyrics and melody, culminating in the idea that “we are blinded by the lies, [but the] Spirit opens up our eyes [to] all love, no hate.” The encouragement to relinquish judgement in favor of prayer and love is skillfully woven into the song and ends in a simple statement, “One Love, One Way.”


Please enjoy our interview with RichRel regarding his amazing inspiration for this song. You can listen to the song on our homepage, and it's also available on most streaming platforms, including Spotify.



Becky Miller: All right, good evening, thank you for meeting with me. This is Becky Miller and Jackie Such, and we're so excited to talk to you about your new song. So, quick give us a rundown of the song and the inspiration behind it.


RichRel: Wow, so the rundown of the song is - it's called “Don't Judge, Just Pray” but it was previously called “Tablet”. I'll explain more about that. You’re like…’Tablet?’


It was previously called “All Love No Hate”, which you’ll hear that as it’s part of the lyrics as well. And it was like...that one rose to the top because it really aligns even more so with our cause as well as the tension that it sits in, even with my faith and/or with people of faith. It’s, sometimes there’s a posture, sometimes a judgement, versus embracing.


And the song itself was created, pretty much 98%, besides fine-tuning and things like that, in one Sunday, in one day where I created the track, created/wrote the song, both the verses as well as the hooks and lyrics and ad libs and recorded the majority of it. I did a couple of re-recordings here and there that week, but definitely, almost locked the whole song besides some of the mastering and fine-tuning that happened over a couple weeks, but the song itself was created in one sitting, on the Sunday


Becky Miller: Wow, what was the impetus for that intense Sunday?


RichRel: Yeah, I would call - it was an emotional Sunday as a lot of these dates have been and it's going to sound dramatic but the more people who know me or get to know me or hear about me...it's just everything from me as life moves on becomes why am I doing this? Why am I living? Why am I waking up? Why am I serving where I serve? Why am I doing Mission1Race? So then my music more and more has become - why am I even creating music?


And in that space in my heart, in the brokenness that’s happening in our world, I then prayed and I said God I want to make a song. I want to make a song, really my first intention, here’s what’s deep about that...I really want to make a worship song. I want to make a song where people really know the love of God. That was really my intention, so what threw me off was immediately it was a faster...and it started off slower... if you know anything about beats per minute it was actually more down in 70, it was like 70 bpm, it’s 83 now, so it slowly sped up, because there’s a place in there where I think He actually wanted to also...because who is God? It is love, it is sentimental, it is connection, but it’s also, there’s joy. So there’s the part of the song that I think the bpm's had to be also uplifting, so there’s real balance if you listen to it. Hopefully you feel both some of the fierencess in it, some of the call to action, the more you listen to it, and then it drops in like I wrote it on the tablet of my heart. And then the flow later, the rap later, I always like rap singing always have this in between style where you’re like...is he singing, is he rapping...I don’t know and I finally got comfortable with like, just be yourself.


I know I'm talking a lot, but I just want to get out the intention. And then what happened next was I prayed and my life verse, and if I have anything that's a life verse or section is Proverbs 3. So, this would explain why it would be “tablet”. And he talks about, you know what I mean, trust in the Lord with all your heart, be not wise in your own eyes, follow him in all your ways but it begins with my son listened to my teachings “write them on the tablet of your heart”. So the lyrics, he wrote it on the tablet of my heart like that part of the hook is straight from the scripture.


So, it's in a way, so think about it, if you’re a person that's not necessarily a Christian or a person of faith, it’s not in your face to where it’s like, here goes, like this in your face Christian stuff but then also there's something in that might like that feels like this kind of feels Christiany and that’s fine. This kind of feels faith-based, but when you first listen to it, you’re not like, right off the bat, this is a worship song or this is a Christian rap artist even. But if you listen to it throughout, you’ll pick it up, because I’m not ashamed of that, but also it walks in that kind of like in between space of not being ashamed of your faith but also saying, people can understand the tablet of your heart. People can understand all love, no hate. People can understand, don't judge, just pray. That's not just a Christian understanding whether a person is of faith or not. That’s a lot, but that’s the impetus around the song.


Becky Miller: Well I appreciated the increase in beats per minute when I first heard the song. I had my littlest with me and we had a little dance while we were listening to it. It was great. So which of the lines in the song do you think we're the most impactful or meaningful to you?


RichRel: So when I look at and listen to the lyrics believe it or not, the most...man I’m getting emotional...the most impactful part and you’ve heard me say it at the end of the launch video. If you ever watched the launch video, the 3-minute version where I’m like running and I’m like let’s start living like it right and I turn around I run off and I'm going down and I'm kind of ad libbing and the drone is pulling out and I'm running down the side of the mountain and it's showing the action words and I say something I say: God presented properly is never rejected. So that same energy my favorite lyric, believe it or not, is an ad lib where I go in between the second verse and the first verse or between the second verse and the actual rap I think it's in between the first verse and the second verse. I’m ad libbing under “He wrote it on the tablet of my heart” it’s the breakdown, I said “They've been lying to you. God is love, and He’s vying for you.” That’s my favorite part. Because, I feel like people have been, God has been misrepresented and been accused of things that not his doing right but also not given the credit for there is no love in the earth in this dimension in the universe outside of God. Because God is not just loving the Bible actually says God is love.


So like, that's my favorite line, cause it’s a secret message not a diabolical one but that like saying you've been lied to whether you know it or not by maybe some angry religious people or just by indirectly or by pain or hurt and God is love and he’s vying for you. He’s like actually calling you and saying just as you are I'm here everyone gets my love. It’s available for everyone, He’s not going to force it. All of that’s packed into that line by me saying that and yeah I would say that I would say that's my that's that's the top. And then the one I probably filled with the most hate, is like even when they don't receive you, it’s part of the second verse, I still believe in Your love. Because a lot of times people just, you know, reject you.


Becky Miller: Yeah that's powerful and that's the most healing force in the world is to know that you are loved when you thought you weren't. What do you hope to accomplish as the song is released and through the release?


RichRel: I get nervous because honestly when I make it, I’ve prayed oftentimes about my music, but this one there was something different both like in the very intentional, saying I want to make a song and I'm an extremist. I want to make a song of a person listen to one song and they didn't know me, I'm no longer alive like that that song had not only... so mixed with the love of God of like this is RichRel who's also Richard, who’s Richard John Reliford, like this is and that's almost journey and the confusion in the song.


Is this emotional? Is this like trying to make me move or is it trying to make me cry or is it like it's like almost a trip like what's going on with this dude you know? It’s a bit of a hodgepodge and the more you know me as you all somewhat do and are getting to know...that’s me. That’s me. I’m not, I’m not trying to be anything, that’s just who I’ve turned out to be, who I am. You know, the nature of it and I think that’s in the song. So, like a little bit of flow, I can’t be mad...I flow. I grew up, I was rapping about a lot different things than what I’m rapping now. Tell you that much. And then you add some of the singing, then you add the original track, there’s a little bass in there because I like bass. I’m thinking about the culture, I feel like it’s culturally like Mission1Race too even though it’s not your particular style you’re like - 'I can appreciate that. I like that little break down there, okay’. I hope everyone has a moment in the song where they're like 'Okay, I hear you.'


Becky Miller: I can get behind that.


RichRel: Exactly. As a whole, I hope they all enjoy it, but then there's other parts that they might have more of an affinity towards.


Jackie Such: So, is that there's something for everyone in this song then?


RichRel: Yep. Yep.


Jackie Such: That’s beautiful.


Becky Miller: For sure. So, Richard "RichRel" Reliford is there anything else you would like your listeners to know as we talk about this song?


RichRel: Um...I think I said most of it. I’ll lean into this part of it. I’m going to go on record saying it and I appreciate you all like organically coming up saying hey we're going to have this conversation. I think this is it I think I made I've been making music since I was very young my father was a blues guitarist but played by ear. I don't read music myself so I play by ear. I make the chords, I make the keys, make the beats and tracks. I did some percussion in my younger years. I think this will be... I think I finally like there’s a couple of my songs if you listen to most of my stuff like this dude is kind of trying to find his sound and I'm doing it late hours or in between hours because I've been in my career and also serving, so I don’t have a lot of time, but this is the most purest form of expression to me. Because even when I act, it’s someone else's script or even something I wrote but you’re acting as a character. When I lead out in this space, or like I'm preaching to churches that's an aspect of me and music is just like its raw form... me in this track. I’m not saying every single track I’ve been able to do that, but like this one, I feel like this is me with no pre qualifications or anything. So, my point for all that is, I think this could be...that’s the way I release everyone like that to be honest, every album I release... I’m like, man, I feel, because here’s what’s crazy - I do make music that I...that feeds my spirit, that I enjoy. So that can be weird for people.


I don't like to hear myself speak. I don’t like to hear myself preach. I don’t listen to the podcasts, it’s hard, I try to...I’m going to be honest, but I can listen to my music. Because I make music for a journey of the heart, of the mind, of the soul, and it feeds me. I think of David. He’s this warrior king priest but he plays the harp, what? You’re writing psalms, David, and you’re cutting off people’s heads? Wait, you killed Goliath, and now you’re like...serenading us? What’s going on man? That’s that part of me, where I’m like yeah...this is my David moment. There are a lot of things going on in my mind. So, I think this is the one. I think this is the one that if there’s going to be a song that brings some success and attention, I think it’s partly because of the heart and the prayer that I asked for this song. The time I took... that’s the other problem I have... I have so little time, I sometimes rush my songs to be honest with you. This one I didn’t rush. So even though it came to me quickly, I took the time later on to refine it and fix some of the levels and things like that. I’m not saying it’s perfect, because I don’t believe in that. That’s why the whole last album was called “The Imperfect Ones” by the way. It wasn’t just talking about the people, it was talking about all the tracks on there are imperfect. And every time I listen to it...I know that’s wrong, that’s too high, I didn’t mean to say that... so all of them are. And this one isn't perfect but it's imperfectly perfect in a way. So I think I'm going to go on record saying like this is the one where you can be like - is that playing on KLove, is this on Air1? I wouldn’t be surprised, but I wouldn’t be surprised if it doesn’t. But my aspirations are huge for it, where it can really usher in a lot of tension and I'm going to point them toward Mission1Race. That's the master plan.


Becky Miller: So cool. Very exciting and Jackie, did you have anything else?


Jackie Such: I think the last question is being the original 1Love artist and your inspiration for the 1Love Journey, what would you say to potential 1Love artists and inviting them into this community under this gorgeous kind of landscape you've laid for it?


RichRel: Thank you. I appreciate that. So I would say look at our, and I think you have them available on the site. That's how big the team and awesome the team is now. I don't even know all of our...I love that I'm at the point where I'm like I know we have it but I might need to check with somebody on where it is. It’s a scary feeling but also a good feeling but look at our Mission, Vision, Values, Purpose (Mission1Race.org/Our-Story). Listen to your song, look at your art, listen to whatever you’re doing and be honest with yourself and go like - ‘do I feel that essence in this?’ If you do or even feel remotely, get in contact with us. Because that's the lens that we're going to be looking at it through, and we want to have multiple artists. This is not about my platform, or me talking about me, but also, I don't think it's accidental that I have been given these abilities and some of these gifts to lead out in it to set an example of what we're potentially looking for. So, yeah, I’m very passionate about 1Love, of showing people doing it right that's both in societal contexts as well as artists and things of that sort. I can name some right now that if they came to us we would...you don’t have to sign a record deal with us or anything like that, but there will be some kind of an agreement and it’s going to give you a positive platform to share out on. It’s going to be reaching people, so you think of like...you hear me say his name a lot, but Alex Boyé - this is a call to action to you right off the bat. Your music touched me, affected me, when I was at that AFSP walk. We play it at the beginning of some of our Ohana meetings, just for inspiration. Like “Bend, Don’t Break” and “Survivor”...”You don’t even know what I’m capable of”...I can’t even sing it right. You sing it better Alex. I would love to have Alex here. When I think of other artists, there are some reggae artists that I would love to, like Jah Cure, I would love to have his work on there. Things like that. That’s what I would say.


Becky Miller: Thank you so much for Richard I really appreciate your time and your thoughts behind this song. I can't wait till it comes out!


RichRel: September 28th. It’s happening.


Snippet of the track is below. Listen to the whole song on Spotify or our homepage.


"Don’t judge. Just pray." by RichRel

Song Lyrics

All love, no hate

Don't judge, just pray

One love, one way

Don't judge, just pray yo

He wrote it on the tablet of my heart

I know we all die but we can live forever

(I know we die)

I'm not planning to quit but I do surrender

(Yo I'm surviving)

Yes I see this rain but I can't feel this weather

(It's like you own me)

They try to break us apart but we're one together

(Hey we brothers man)

He wrote it on the tablet of my heart

All love, no hate

He wrote it on the tablet of my heart

Don’t judge, just pray

One love, one way

Repeat

They've been lying to you

God is love

And he’s vying for you

We're trying to do the things we’re supposed to do, get it, get it

I still trust in your love

even when they don't receive me

(Why don't you love me?)

Broken, straighten my path

don't let em just deceive me

(Why you tricking me?)

With the rest of my days speak truth defend it

(We gotta die though)

You wrote it on my heart

Your love for all is splendid

He wrote it on the tablet of my heart

All love, no hate

He wrote it on the tablet of my heart

Don't judge, just pray

One love, one way

All love, no hate

Don't judge, just pray

One love, one way

I want to spit these bars

I wanna reach the people

I wanna speak the truth

Tell you that we be equal

Not confusing

We must stop this abusing

Choosing the wrong direction

Perfection we're eluding

Our heart is what we're looting

Our souls have been polluted

Love is right there

Choose it

Hope is right there

Move it

Hate will never win

Boot it

One race til the end

Prove it

This is not anger or a stranger

It's your brother

Another human being

I don't know what you've been seeing

Blinded by the lies

Spirit open up our eyes

He wrote it on the tablet of my heart

All love, no hate (open up our eyes)

He wrote it on the tablet of my heart (open up our eyes)

Don’t judge, just pray (One race to the end)

One love, one way

All love, no hate

Don't judge, just pray

One love, one way

(Repeat 2x)

Don’t judge, just pray

One love, one way

He wrote it on the tablet of my heart

Don’t judge. Just pray.

We Are Uniquely The Same™
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