|Birth name||Nicholas Furlong|
|Born||September 16, 1986|
|Origin||Carson City, Nevada United States|
|Genres||Rock, alternative, dance, electronica, pop|
|Occupation(s)||Singer, musician, songwriter, producer, remixer|
|Associated acts||Avicii, 5 Seconds of Summer, All Time Low, Steve Aoki, Good Charlotte, WALK THE MOON, Krewella|
Nicholas Furlong (born September 16, 1986), professionally known as RAS, is an American singer, songwriter, and record producer. His work as a songwriter and producer is noted to cross many musical genres, ranging from pop, rock, and dance music, to hip-hop. Furlong has had many chart successes, both in America and internationally. He is best known for working with artists including Avicii, 5 Seconds of Summer, Steve Aoki, All Time Low, Diplo, Good Charlotte, and Waka Flocka Flame.
Furlong was raised in Carson City, Nevada. A self-taught musician, he began writing music at the age of twelve. His early influences included acts like House of Pain, The Chemical Brothers, Nine Inch Nails, Rage Against The Machine, and The Beastie Boys. As a teenager, he started recording his own songs and sharing them on various music sites. While still a junior in high school, his music was discovered by a music director at Midway Games, who offered him an opportunity to write songs for video games. Furlong contributed to various game soundtracks between the years of 2004-2005. At the age of twenty he moved to Los Angeles to pursue a career as a songwriter and producer. Through networking and word of mouth, he met and began working with various other songwriters and producers.
2010-2013: Career breakthrough
Furlong had his first commercial success in 2010 as a co-writer of the Big Time Rush and Jordin Sparks' duet, "Count On You". The song was featured on the band's debut album BTR, which debuted at number three on the Billboard 200. Shortly after, Furlong caught the ear of OneRepublic's Ryan Tedder, who signed him to a publishing deal. Alongside Tedder, Furlong worked with many artists including Colbie Caillat, Jordin Sparks, Leona Lewis, and The Wanted. Furlong worked with Big Time Rush again in 2011, when he co-wrote "Time of Our Life" for their sophomore album Elevate. The band shot a live music video for the song during the 2012 Nickelodeon Kids' Choice Awards, which premiered after the show.
In 2012, Furlong began transitioning into electronic music, after co-writing a song for Diplo's Express Yourself EP. "I'd always been a fan of dance music in general, but working on Diplo's project gave me a completely different perspective of the genre as a whole." Later that year, Furlong started collaborating with dance music superstar Steve Aoki, co-writing the single "Singularity." They would collaborate again in 2013, when Furlong wrote and sang vocals on the single "Bring You To Life (Transcend)", which peaked at number forty-four on the Billboard Dance/Electronic Songs chart. Furlong performed the single alongside Aoki at his 2013 concert in Los Angeles at the Shrine Exposition Hall, during which two Guinness World Records were set for "the longest scream by a crowd" and "most people simultaneously lighting glow sticks."
2014-2015: Commercial recognition
Furlong began frequently collaborating with close friend John Feldmann in 2014. Together, they wrote several songs with pop punk band 5 Seconds of Summer for their debut self-titled album, including "Everything I Didn't Say" on the full-length album, "Social Casualty" on the Deluxe edition, and "Independence Day" on the Target exclusive version. "Everything I Didn't Say" was released as a promotional single where it peaked at number twenty-four on the Billboard Hot 100. The song was also featured on the band's live album LiveSOS. Later that year, Furlong and Feldmann worked with post-hardcore band Sleeping With Sirens co-writing "Kick Me," the first single off of their fourth studio album Madness. The single peaked at number twenty-three on the Billboard Hot Rock Songs chart. "Kick Me" won an award for song of the year at the 2015 Alternative Press Music Awards.
In 2015, Furlong worked with All Time Low for their sixth studio album, Future Hearts, co-writing "Runaways" and "Don't You Go." Despite it being the best selling album of its opening week, Future Hearts debuted at #1 in the UK and #2 on Billboard, still making it the band's highest debut ever. Furlong worked once again with Steve Aoki, contributing a song with Weezer's Rivers Cuomo to Aoki's third studio album Neon Future II. Later that year, Furlong co-wrote and co-produced "Game On," a single by Waka Flocka Flame featuring Good Charlotte, which served as the theme song of the Adam Sandler film, Pixels. Pixels was released in 2D, 3D, and IMAX 3D on July 24, 2015. Though uncredited, Furlong was noted to have co-written the song "Open Your Eyes" for Disturbed's sixth studio album, and first album since a four year hiatus, Immortalized. The album debuted at number one on the Billboard Top 200, making it Furlong's sixth number one album in his career, and fourth within one year. Furlong ended his year co-writing the Good Charlotte single, "Makeshift Love," which debuted at number nine on the Billboard Rock Charts. Variance Magazine claimed that 2015 was a "pivotal year" for the songwriter and producer.
Avicii single: "The Nights"
In addition to co-writing, Furlong was also the vocalist of Avicii's single "The Nights". The single premiered on the soundtrack of FIFA 15 on September 23, 2014. It was released on December 1, 2014 on The Days / Nights EP, alongside Avicii's prior single "The Days", and as a single in the UK on January 11, 2015. "The Nights" peaked at number one on the UK Dance Chart, number six on the UK Singles Chart, and number ten on the Billboard Dance/Electronic Songs chart. It has accumulated more than two-hundred million streams on Spotify and has achieved certified sales in numerous countries. Furlong is also said to have introduced the idea of using his friend Rory Kramer's footage for the official music video, which has since surpassed two-hundred and ten million views on YouTube.
2016: Current projects
In 2016, Furlong was a co-writer of the song "Marchin' On" with Krewella for their Ammunition EP. Soon after, he collaborated again with Steve Aoki on the single "Back 2 U," which features vocals by WALK THE MOON. The song was released as a stand-alone single, and peaked at number twenty-three on the Billboard Dance/Electronic Songs chart. Furlong is currently executive producing, co-producing, and co-writing an album with Papa Roach, co-writing and co-producing new music with All Time Low, writing with Nick Petricca and WALK THE MOON, as well as executive producing, producing, and co-writing the debut EP by former Big Time Rush member, Logan Henderson. He is also reportedly one of the first few outside songwriters to work with blink-182 on new music.
Awards and nominations
|2015||"Kick Me"||Song of the Year||Won|
- "Nicholas "Ras" Furlong - Credits - AllMusic". AllMusic. Retrieved September 3, 2015.
- "Kobalt Music". Kobalt. Retrieved September 21, 2010.
- "Douglas High graduate finds music success". The Record Courier. Retrieved September 3, 2015.
- "Patriot Records". patriotrecords.com. Retrieved September 3, 2015.
- "Big Time Rush - Time Our Lives Music Video - 2012 Kids Choice Awards". perezhilton.com. Retrieved September 3, 2015.
- "Singer, Songwriter and Producer Nick "RAS" Furlong Has Hustle and Flow [Interview]". EDMTunes. Retrieved September 3, 2015.
- Music News Desk. "Steve Aoki to Release New Single 'Bring You To Life (Transcend)' on 10/15". broadwayworld.com. Retrieved September 3, 2015.
- "Interview: Avicii Collaborator RAS Says Rock's Comeback 'Already Happening'". variancemagazine.com. Retrieved September 3, 2015.
- List of UK Dance Chart number-one singles of 2015
- "See It First: Avicii's Euphoric New Video, 'The Nights'". yahoo.com. 15 December 2014. Retrieved September 3, 2015.