Friday, March 13, 2009

Raphael Saadiq at the Bluebird, 10th March, 2009

Tuesday night several Twist & Shout folks were treated to a terrific show by Raphael Saadiq. He and his band (four instrumentalists, two backing singers) took over the Bluebird Theater for a full-on soul revue of his hits (both solo and with Tony Toni Tone) and a generous portion of his great new album, The Way I See It. As the band hit the stage, the crowd was obviously loving the moment, excited and geared up for the show. Two backing singers – one male, one female – entered in matching suits and Saadiq took the stage in a fine pastel green suit and picked up a guitar for the first number. I was a little bummed that his guitar didn’t feature much more in the night, but given that he traded multi-tasking for a terrific vocal performance, I can’t really complain. Besides, it’s not like he didn’t have another guitar player to take care of things – the four-piece band was flawless, performing really tight versions of the music and concentrating on recreating the ambience of the studio versions without being tied down to making exact copies on stage. Band stayed tight in the back while Raphael and his backing singers carried the front line with charisma, with energy and with great voices across the line. A beautiful night of music overall and I know I saw a bunch of our regulars there – hope you enjoyed it as much as we did, though I can’t imagine the person who wouldn’t have enjoyed this.

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