Raphael Saadiq‘s new album Stone Rollin’ hit stores today, and the man himself hit up VH1′s New York City offices, appearing for an interview on Big Morning Buzz Live this morning and then recording an exclusive VH1 Top 20 Live set that we were lucky enough to witness.
The youthful Saadiq (if not for Tony! Toni! Ton?! you’d never believe he turns 45 on Saturday) immediately got the assembled crowd clapping?and even singing a callback?for “Heart Attack,” the album’s opener and one of its more straight-ahead soul tracks. But despite adapting retro song styles (like the blues form of “Daydreaming”), his songs still sounded like music of today, a distinction implicitly proven by their juxtaposition with the band’s cover of Marvin Gaye‘s 1963 classic “Pride and Joy.” That cut was retro in the best way: some audience members even provided callbacks without prompting.