Rifan Kalbuadi releases new single “A Place to Belong”

For singer/songwriter Rifan Kalbuadi, his new single “A Place to Belong” has become a crucial turning point as far as his journey goes, both mentally and musically. Released on December 16, 2022, “A Place to Belong” marks the moment when Rifan was able to let go of his underwhelming presumption regarding efforts of any kind surrounding co-writing a song.
From the start of his career as a musician, Rifan has always treated songwriting as a very personal process. Having had a history of mental health issues, he turned to songwriting as his last line of defence to preserve his state of mind.
“When it comes to songwriting, I must confess that my ego has always gotten the better of me. I have always believed that I could never fairly share my ideas, thoughts, and emotions when I co-write with another person because I would tend to dominate the process,” says Rifan, who was born in Jakarta on February 27, 1995.
That is why all of the songs that the Bon Iver enthusiast has written and released so far were all created on his own, including the series of singles that make up “The Unsettled”, which was released periodically since March 2020.
Until Ben Beamish came along in early 2022 and shook things up.
The Australian singer/songwriter, who performs under the moniker Sleep Benjamin, was introduced to Rifan by a mutual friend. He managed to successfully pique Rifan’s curiosity to consider toying with the idea of a collaboration. Eventually, Rifan lowered his guard down and even allowed Ben to enter a space that has always been very sacred and personal to him by letting him become his co-writing partner for “A Place to Belong”.
“I was still sceptical at first. How could we create something special together when we were geographically separated and were not able to meet in person? However, I was curious as to how the end result would turn out, so I just went with it,” he remembers.
The process took less than a couple of months as they meet up every weekend online for workshops. They sent each other progress updates on a regular basis, be they melodies, chord progressions, and lyrics.
Slowly but steadily, Rifan felt more comfortable in opening himself up to the collaboration.
“What we have made is beyond my expectations. I am delighted. And surprisingly, I was able to fully enjoy each and every step of the co-writing process,” Rifan quips.
Thematically, “A Place to Belong” possesses a spirit that is similar to Rifan’s discovery from this collaboration: a turning point for his pursuit since “The Unsettled” series was rolled out in 2020. Rifan himself admits that it does not mean that he is settled, but rather he has become more aware of his place. He has found a direction that he could set out for and ready to embark on the journey.
This is reflected in his lyrics to the single, such as:
I’m at the crossroads,
And it’s time to make up my mind
Which path do I take, so I don’t keep on falling behind
So maybe it’s time that I start moving on,
So I’ll find a place to belong
So I’ll find a place to belong
Wrapped in a markedly strong blues-folk ambience, “A Place to Belong” also showcases Rifan’s trademark velvety falsetto in some parts, taking listeners back to Chris Martin’s voice during Coldplay’s early years, coincidentally a band that Rifan regards as one of his all-time favourites.
Compellingly, Rifan now also admits that he has become more confident with the prospect of collaborating with others in the future after his positive experience with Ben.
A Place to Belong” is available on all digital streaming platforms from December 16, 2022.

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