Rak-Su of ‘The X Factor UK’ Proves Friendship Never Ends

Justin Jenkins
Jason Ginsburg
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Rak-Su is an English RnB and hip hop boy band. The group consists of friends Ashley Fongo, Jamaal Shurland, Mustafa Rahimtulla and Myles Stephenson. Rak-Su won Season 14 of The X Factor, being mentored by Simon Cowell in the Groups category.

The popular band continues to create their own lane as they become music superstars. We are looking at fun facts that their fans will enjoy.


Rak-Su Audition

The group took a big risk auditioning with an original song. After judge Simon Cowell stopped the group midway through their rendition of Justin Timberlake’s Señorita, the foursome performed their original song “I’m Feeling You.” The judges quickly resonated with the energy of the song and gave the group four yeses. They went on to become the first male group to win X Factor.

Rak-Su is an innovative group. Each member brings a different skills to help form something unique. This is not your typical singing band. Jamaal is a singer and songwriter. Ashley is a rapper, songwriter, and a poet. Myles is a rapper and producer. Mustafa is a DJ, dancer, and beatboxer. Each member showcased their talent throughout Season 14.

Early Success

Riding the wave of their win, Rak- Su’s “Mona Lisa” entered the UK charts at number two. The group could have gone number one if it wasn’t for Ed Sheeran. Still, the band had the highest placing single for an X Factor act since Season 11. They also saw global success entering the Irish charts at number 36. Their song “Feeling You” also hit number one on iTunes.


In February 2018, they joined their fellow Top 6 finalists and wildcard act Sean and Conor Price on the X Factor 2018 Live Tour. In a twist the tour allowed the audience to vote for who they thought was the best performing act each night. Rak- Su topped the vote at the Manchester concert as well as the following three dates.

Rak-Su joined X Factor group winner Little Mix on their Summer Hits tour. As the opening act on the arena tour the group heavily promoted their single “”Pyro Ting.” The members of each group have become friends for nearly a decade. When Little Mix group member Jesy Nelson decided to leave the group, Rak-Su spoke out saying it was best for her mental health.

Rak-Su Changed Music Labels

Like most winners on Simon Cowell-led talent shows, they received a record contract with Cowell’s Syco music label. After spending a couple of years with the record company the group left to sign with RCA records. With a new label to support them the group released their second EP, Rome. In 2019, Rak-Su released their new single “Yours or Mine.” They also released their single “Rotate (Clockwise).” By the end of Summer 2019 it was reported that Rak-Su had been dropped from RCA due to lack of mainstream chart success.


In November 2019 Rak-Su released their first single as independent artists, “La Bomba.” They followed up with their song “Girl.” In July 2020 Rak-Su released “Who Am I? (Black Lives Matter)” in response to the Black Lives Matter movement. In 2021 Rak-Su released their debut mixtape called Finally Free. The group is now a trio due to Mustafa leaving for mental health reasons.

 

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