Raphael Saadiq – Stone Rollin’ LP Live Listening Session, NYC | Review + Video

Last week Raphael Saadiq held an exclusive listening session entitled “Saadiq Sessions” at The Royalton Hotel in New York City. For the evening Saadiq turned the hotel into a juke joint. Intimate setting, low lighting, and music that touches your soul. He walked out with the biggest smile on his face, signature black frames, blue plaid pants, crew neck shirt and blazer and got right into the music without saying much, but letting the music speak for itself. With a bassist, percussionist, and Saadiq on guitar, he performed six songs from his upcoming 10 track LP Stone Rollin’ due out March 22nd.

He started the 40-minute session with the album’s lead single “Radio” then delved into the title track of pure funk, on which he croons about being mesmerized by a voluptuous woman. Then he eased into “Moving Down The Line” – my favorite of all the songs he previewed. The melody at the end of each stanza is heavenly and his tone is so inviting you have to wonder how could a woman would ever leave him.

A woman leaving will give most men the blues so “Good Man” was the perfect transition. He then raised the energy in the room making us clap along to “Just Don’t,” which he told us was going to be the last song. He’s still broke up inside about his lady leaving him and just doesn’t know what to do.

Before leaving he blessed us with one more song that wasn’t expected, vowing only to perform it if the crowd interacted and sang along. A very groovy track so we were ready and willing from the first riff; “Heart Attack,” another song about still not having his lady back and how she should let love bring them back together.

Raphael Saadiq is the perfect example of an artist whose albums don’t give you the full experience of how great their talent is. Live he is beyond amazing and vocals are better than anything he’s ever recorded. Stone Rollin’ is a musical love story infused with funk, blues, and soul that touches on everything from the initial chase to the break up. He describes the album as “a mix of [his previous LPs] Instant Vintage and The Way I See It.

Saadiq said he’s on a journey to bring back REAL MUSIC but with him around it hasn’t really went away. This project is the epitome of REAL MUSIC.

Check out video below where he performs “Radio,” “Stone Rollin’,” “Moving Down The Line,” “Good Man,” “Just Don’t,” and “Heart Attack”.

Stone Rollin’ Tracklisting:
1. Heart Attack
2. Go to Hell
3. Radio
4. Over You
5. Stone’ Rollin’
6. Day Dreams
7. Moving Down The Line
8. Just Don’t
9. Good Man
10. The Answers

Stone Rollin’ is due for release on March 22 through Columbia – pre-order now available on Amazon.