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Ray Ray

Raphael Saadiq

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Album Review

Ray Ray looks more like a concept album — about a Blaxploitation hero — than it sounds like one. It's another ambitious release from Raphael Saadiq, who has continued to be very active as a musician, producer, and songwriter for other artists. Though he has given plenty of his ideas to like-minded artists like Jill Scott, Kelis, Truth Hurts, Mos Def, Amp Fiddler, and Teedra Moses (who guests on two songs here), his creative well seems to be pretty much bottomless. Ray Ray occasionally loses focus, slipping into moments that are either undercooked or worthy of the cutting room, but it's enjoyable enough to keep his followers happy and will certainly act as a remedy for those who don't like the gold-bricked path being taken by mainstream R&B. The album is a little funkier and a lot more energetic than 2002's Instant Vintage, yet just as full of Saadiq's stylish flourishes. The subject matter is as varied as you'd expect: for every song that's charmingly simple and full of lighthearted romantic sentiments, there's something message-oriented, such as "Grown Folks" (in which Saadiq tries on Curtis Mayfield's falsetto and songwriting style, proclaiming that the adults "need more help than the children do").

Customer Reviews

Superb....

Ralphael continues to be a forbearer of times long passed. From the Corprate riddled HiP-Hop landscape emeges one of a few who can quantify what it means to be a musician, stand on your own 2, and succeed to make music through all of the politics that is RADIO and Music Industry.

Give this guy credit...

Saadiq keps it original and fresh everytime he tags music w/ his name. From R&B to Neo-soul, whatever he puts his mind to, he succeeds. Just imagine if he made music just to sell out and be commercial, he'd be considered a modern genius in his field.

lovin him...

raphael is so amayzing and im only 15 and i know his work he needz to come back with another one he iz the apple of my eye=]]

Biography

Born: May 14, 1966 in Oakland, CA

Genre: R&B/Soul

Years Active: '80s, '90s, '00s, '10s

Throwback R&B singer Raphael Saadiq was born in Oakland, CA, in 1966, and started playing music six years later. He played bass at church and school and enjoyed his place on-stage at various local hometown events. After high school, Saadiq won a chance to join Prince and Sheila E. on the Parade tour. Such an experience...
Full Bio