Singer Rai Ragland is a resident of the Atlanta Metro Area, and stands tall among the Southeast's most elite performers. Known for her distinctive style, smooth supple voice , and unique performances. Rai performs as a Crooner, Balladeer, and Smooth Uptempo performer utlizing, the classic and contemporary modes for her arrangements for "Romantic and Intimate" settings in the genre of "Adult Contemporary Music".
Hailing from New York/New Jersey, she began singing at the age of eight(8), being inspired and encouraged by her mother Mrs. Beatrice W. Ragland, and her music teacher/mentor Ms. Edith Philips in Jersey City, NJ.
It was here during her early teenage years that she met, fell in love, and married her late husband of 30+ years, lead guitarst of Kool & The Gang, "Claydes(Charles)Smith"(although at that time while still teenagers, the band was evolving from various names into finally Kool & The Gang, changing their direction from jazz to funk).
Rai's singing career was put on hold voluntary, as to the raising of children and supporting her late husbands' sucessful music career as he traveled world wide performing their many well known top charting hits(Celebration, Ladies Night, Jungle Boogie, Cherish, Joanna, Summer Maddness, Hollywood Swinging, etc.), Rai knows all too well, the workings and makings of the live on-stage music arena, and what it takes to produce first class performances, as she does so well, and has returned to the stage in rare form to share her gift to all.
She is featured with her swinging band, under the direction of bandleader/drummer Vernard ("Sticks") Hoover, and availble for performances at numerous venues to include but not limited to: performance arts centers, concert halls, festivals, hotels, supper clubs, museums, jazz clubs, and private events. Periodically she is featured on Comcast Cable TV Show "Atlanta Jazz & Blues".