Ray Ben Rue

Criciúma, Brazil

Makeshift Raft


Behind the Music

There’s at least one aspect of The Outlaw Ocean Project that resonates with individuals — whether it’s the words, the audio or the videos. For me, it was the images in the book. I even ended up printing some of the pictures in the book, hanging them around my studio to inspire me as I worked on my EP. As I crafted my tracks, I tried to create a body of work that would transport a listener to a boat, raft or even glacier floating in the sea. 

This book has truly revealed to me the untold world of the ocean — where rules don’t apply, crime goes unchecked and human beings are sold into slavery and treated without care. This realization, spurred by Ian’s reporting and storytelling, has had a massive impact on me and I hope others experience it as well.

Ray Ben Rue
About Ray Ben Rue

Brazil-based multi-instrumentalist and producer, Ray Ben Rue, is all about spreading good vibes. Born Nery Bauer, Ray Ben Rue began his musical life studying classical guitar and playing in metal bands. The electronic-inspired, instrumental hip-hop music Ray Ben Rue makes now is defined by intricate, unique influences like bossa nova guitar, jazz, hip-hop and instrumental movie soundtracks.

The results are lo-fi, chill beats that create tranquility and calmness for the listener—songs like “Vintage Erotica” have earned as many as three million plays on Spotify.

Winner of the 2021 Scripps Howard Award for Excellence in Innovation in Journalism

The Journalism behind the Music

All music in this project is based on The Outlaw Ocean, a New York Times Best-Selling book by Ian Urbina that chronicles lawlessness at sea around the world. This reporting touches on a diversity of abuses ranging from illegal and overfishing, arms trafficking at sea, human slavery, gun running, intentional dumping, murder of stowaways, thievery of ships and other topics.

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