Meet Cleffy, the Artist Fighting His Demons With Intoxicating, Alternative R&B


Leaning in rather than recoiling, Cleffy turns on his light to illuminate the rest of us still stumbling through the dark. Honoring themes of loss, grief, and the perils of existing, his alternative R&B is both cathartic and liberating.

Australia’s Samuel Maunge, known under the guise of Cleffy or Wyclef, has only recently emerged onto the scene, yet has already amassed over two million monthly Spotify listeners and a deeply connected social media following. Though the numbers are major, Cleffy’s fan base maintains a sense of intimacy, as they all can’t help but bear naked in reflection of his work.

His debut project Clean Sheets, dirty walls dropped in fall of 2023, an album that meets dark R&B with acoustic-driven melodies. From coping with vices to masking depression, every layer of his shedding is revealed through this painfully raw work.

Garnering over 34 million streams Spotify alone, at the time of this writing, “Meet you at the Graveyard” is his most successful single to date, and unsurprisingly, his most vulnerable. Digging deep into an open wound, Cleffy is no stranger to true grief, having lost a friend to suicide. The single has become a vigil for every listener who has lost someone they were promised to do more life with, finding healing in knowing they’re not alone in their mourning.

In a war against his own demons, Cleffy’s earnest lyricism and devotion to faith seem to be his fighting chance. As he gives words, music, and spiritual meaning to his suffering, he dethrones its power. There is nothing more ceiling-shattering than a Brown man able to feel the full depth of himself, and Cleffy will only continue to save more lives by saving his own.

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