With a career spanning over twenty years, Raphael Saadiq‘s musical journey has been nothing short of magical. Having created some of R&B’s best heartfelt ballads, and with an angelical vocal range to make your heart melt. To me, Tony Toni Toné, were the progenitors of Neo Soul; they were doing it long before people even realised it was a movement!
The Central Park SummerStage show on Saturday, July 17 2010, also marked Giant Step‘s 20th Anniversary of Summerstage shows and they couldn’t have chosen a better artist for the celebration! The show started off in high energy, with cuts from his latest 50s retro album, The Way I See It, then quickly turning into a Tony Toni Toné, Raphael Saadiq, and Lucy Pearl revival. When Raphael launched into “Lay Your Head On My Pillow,” it became a beautiful moment of nostalgia for the audience as a each song after song, caused an uproar — “It Never Rains,” “It Feels Good,” “Anniversary,” “Just Me and You” (from the Boyz n’ the Hood soundtrack), “Ask of You” (from the Higher Learning soundtrack), to Raphael‘s brilliant debut solo album Instant Vintage with “You Should Be Here,” “Skyy…Can You Feel Me?” to Lucy Pearl‘s “Dance Tonight,” all performed effortlessly. We were reminded of how great a contribution Raphael Saadiq has been to R&B, Soul, and Neo Soul. He commanded the stage as though we were in sermon, and we sang with him in praise. A brilliant performance!
R&B singer, Aloe Blacc was the supporting artist, and was a perfect match as he is also embracing 50s retro movement that Raphael is doing right now. The DJ set was provided by the talented singer/DJ Vikter Duplaix.
Check out the photos from the show below!