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by vivrant thang on raphael saadiq concert review
I’ve already given you a sneak peek of the show Raphael Saadiq put on in the DC area a couple of weeks ago in support of his third solo album, The Way I See It. I had to come back and drop an actual review and more videos. As I said before, this will easily go down as one of the top five concerts I’ve attended this year. I don’t have to remind you that I’ve been to 27 and counting.
Raphael took the stage in front of a packed house who were eagerly awaiting his arrival. I was just in from Barbados and had to go to work the next day but I was beyond hyped to finally see the sound I’ve been in love with for years live and in stereo. I’ve never had the pleasure of seeing Raphael, Tony Toni Tone, or Lucy Pearl in concert.
I’ll admit, my love affair with Raphael Saadiq didn’t start until the release of the second Tony Toni Tone album, The Revival in 1990 and . By then, I had acquired my little pink boom box and would let my tape rock til my tape popped. It’s virtually impossible to pick a favorite off that one. So many classics. “Just Me and You” will probably always hold a special place in my heart because of my undying love for “Boyz in the Hood.”
Check out the live performance of “Just Me and You,” and “Ask of You” (his first solo song in 1995 for the Higher Learning soundtrack – damn I’m old). You finally learn what the correct words for the chorus really are. You know you been mumbling some mess for the past eighteen years!
Our relationship was cemented with the next two releases, Sons of Soul and House of Music. Talk about albums full of songs that were often playing on the soundtrack to my life. I bet you remember just what was going on in your life when “Anniversary” and “It Never Rains In Southern California” were coming though your speakers in 1993. I was a senior in high school and was sure wishing some boy would “pay for the rest of my day!” Victoria sure wouldn’t be no secret! Yup, I was fast back then.
Other hits from the Tonys he performed:
I’m ashamed to admit that I was late to the party when Raphael embarked on a solo career. When he released Instant Vintage in 2002, I was fresh out of graduate school and pretty much brain dead. When I finally got my hands on it, it was another one in constant rotation. Even today, from the time I press play, I can just let her rip. Not one single song on there I don’t like. Instant vintage indeed.
From his solo albums, he performed:
Check out what I consider one of the highlights of the evening, Skyy, Can You Feel Me.Talk about being “wide open.”
Now four years after the release of Ray Ray, which I only got my hands on in the last year or so, I was excited when I read over at SoulBounce that he was coming back with an ode to the classic soul sounds of the 60s, which I like to call the music our parents grinded to under the red lights at those basement parties. I am a huge fan of the Motown sound…done correctly.
From the first listen of “Love That Girl,” I was caught up in the rapture. I think you’ll feel the same after watching the live performance. I found his look and the choreography to be beautifully authentic. I think the Temps would vote yes.
I think the Chi-Lites might not even mind him borrowing their song title. Check out his live performance “Oh Girl.”
To my delight, he gave us a preview of a few songs from the new album I hadn’t heard before:
As you can see, we got a “top notch” performance from Raphael as well as his super talented background singers and band. He blended in old and new music perfectly. If you watch the videos, you’re surely see (and hear!) that there was never a lull in the crowd’s energy. We were mesmerized from the moment he took the stage.
I just got my hand on The Way I See It last night and am anxiously trying to make room in my schedule to really sit down and spend some time with it in anticipation of trying to bang out one of my first album reviews. I’ve heard mixed results from my Twitter fam. Feel free to speak your mind on the album and his live performance if you’ve been so lucky.
We’re fortunate to have him back in the DC area later this month to celebrate MN8’s 7th Anniversary. I’m sitting this one out unfortunately. I blame him. I’ll be thinking of him while I’m getting tipsy out at the Virginia Wine Festival.
According to his myspace calendar, he will grace Philly, New York, Atlanta, Charlotte and Nashville with his presence over the next few weeks.
You should be there.
Loverly review! I agree that that was one of the best shows I’ve been to all year. He gave us our money’s worth and then some. Like I said in my interview with him, he is a musical genius. We are so blessed to have artists like this to let us know that real music is alive and thriving.
I see Raphael, whether solo or in a group evrytime he’s in the same city I’m in–just saw him in LA, and he is by far one of the best showmen out there–always has been.
Haven’t seen him live yet, but love his unique talent. “Instant Vintage” was on constant rotation for me. Loved him since his “Tony,Toni, Tone”days. I miss “Lucy Pearl” because that album was The Business.
El Gabacho Chingón said:
Thanks for the serving of soul.
Helps me warm up on a rainy night in Helsinki, craving a bit of proper comfort.
Time for me to holler at Raphael, see if he can bring some of this heat to Finland.
Michael A. Gonzales said:
…diggin’ your scene
come say hello when you can
I remember back when people stood in line to buy a Tony Toni Tone album. They made some good music, and always what the women wanted to hear. I kept their music playing during the summers of 1989 and 1990.
The good times…
Oh and…I just saw you said you picked Steelers on the pool sheet. How did that work out for ya? LOL! Happy Mondayyyyyy!
Hella funny. So far I’m 6-9 this week. Yep, bad week for picking NFL games.
I would have to agree with both you and Butta that that was one of, if not THE very best concert I’ve been to this year. When he took off his jacket to perform “Skyy, Can you feel me?”, I knew he was about to put it down; that was one of the best moments that night! So amazing.
Soul UK said:
All you lucky people!! I just hope he finds the time to make a stop in the UK so I can get the chance to see him live!
Not yet got my hands on the album … it’s been a busy month (music purchase wise) so gotta wait for my next paycheck!
So far this month I have purchased: Maiysha – This Much Is True (5/5), Bryn Christopher – My World (4.5/5), both Jazzyfatnastees albums (also managed to ‘get hold’ of a copy of an unreleased album), Hil St Soul – Soul Organic and Algebra – Purpose (cannot decide what I think of it yet).
Still to buy this month: Raphael Saadiq, Jazmine Sullivan and Sugarush Beat Company (please check them out if you havn’t yet – Rashaan Pattersons’ new project!)
vivrant thang said:
@Butta – Thanks a million! I hope he performs more joints from the new album.
@invisiblewoman – Sho you’re right!
@sdg- Agree, agree…and agreed!
@el – first off, welcome! I am so psyched to see my international fan base is growing 🙂 I hope you find plenty of good stuff here. I’m sure Raphael will make his way over sees. I pray it’s in your neck of the woods. Please do share what soulful tunes you’re rocking out to over there. I learn from ya’ll.
@michael – thank you! i’ll be stopping by.
@don – what the women wanted to hear huh? so you used their music to make the panties come tumbling down! ain’t nothing wrong with that. i think every musician likes to think some babies are being made off their music. LOL!
@coco- indeed, that was a highlight for me. it was a special moment.
@souluk – i can imagine that he will make a swing through the UK. You really have to. Often these artists get more love overseas.
I just got my hands on Bryn and Maiysha as well. Haven’t had a chance to listen but I am encouraged by your ratings. I understand what you mean by Purpose. As I mentioned before, I had to see her live to appreciate it more.
I would put Raphael and SugarRush at the top of the list. I’m still deciding how I feel about JazSul’s release. I think I expected to fall head over heels like I did with Chrisette’s album since there was that same type of anticipation. CM defintiely delivered. I will be saying more later.
I am definitely excited about Rahsaan’s project. I was listening to Afterhours the other day. I love him. I can’t wait to see what he does on this.
I have been boycotting a lot of my favorite artists this year b/c of high ticket prices so for $34 I definitely got my money’s worth with Raphael Saadiq. I attended the earlier concert he gave and the one on 9/28. This man’s music is excellent and his show is always a class act. Raheem Devaughn came on stage at the end of the show and got him to do the Skyy encore again. It was just as good as the first time. Another extra bonus to this show was the fact that Saadiq came out at the very end and signed autographs for anyone who wanted one. Usually you have to wait awhile for an artist to come out (if they come out at all) after the show but Saadiq came out about ten minutes after the show ended. He was very pleasant, very shy and just a very gracious artist. I have been a huge fan since “Hey Little Walter” and will always support him.
Girl…This is a HOT site!!! I love Saadiq’ music! I’ll be visiting often, oh yeah I purchased his cd”Thw way I see It”…Ive been jammin’ it everyday…That cd is the bomB!
I want to know why the Atlanta show was canceled last night????