Special Story by Daood aka Soul Detective, Contributor for Diversity News Magazine.
Whether crooning in his baritone or escaping into his falsetto like a thief in the night, stealing women hearts with classics, “Feel Like Making Love,” or new material, “Another Life,” D’Angelo is R&B’s Elijah.
“When I die I hope to be, the kind of man that you thought I be…” lyrics of a gospel-style arrangement by D’Angelo brought a volley of cheers. The genesis of Wednesday’s 4th of July spectacular sunset strip performance at, “The House of Blues.”
While his appearance not exactly the infamous video untitled (How Does it feel) it didn’t keep one damsel who didn’t appear to be in distress from throwing a balled up bill on to the stage. A brief moment causing my mind to race back to an article about his voodoo tour. In which D’Angelo angrily picked up the money and threw it backatcha. But not tonight, even though pausing to turn around to see where the money landed, D’Angelo exhilarated an artist born again. Whether a slice of the “Devil’s Pie,” from the voodoo album or you’re my “Lady,” from Brown Sugar debut cd, the experience was Pentecostal.
While D’Angelo is an accomplished pianist, his new musical acquaintance appears to be a black trimmed in white customized Diablo guitar. From D’Angelo there was no guitar solos reminiscent of Mr. Hendrix tonight; but the cover of Parliament-Funkadelic “I been watching You,” had D’Angelo along with formerly “The Time,” guitarist Jesse Johnson, interplaying a groove Jimi would have applauded.
After performing several songs including the new rock-oriented cut “Aint That Easy,” D’Angelo and 9 members of his band left the stage leaving only two keyboard players. A brief interlude between keyboard players started out as a classical style composition evolving into a Sci-Fi outerspace message? It was over and now a couple of roadies moved D’Angelo’s keyboard from the side of the stage to front and center; performing a medley of songs D’Angelo’s has the audience captivated; from “Brown Sugar, “Higher,” to “One Mo Gin,” a crowd expressing tears as well as joy.
With the band now back on stage the audience joined in as they did all night with “Send It On.” D’Angelo gave a riveting performance of track six from his debut cd Brown Sugar; continuing to bounce between the old and the new cuts such as “Charade,”and “SugarDaddy which by for is as intoxicating as your favorite bottle of wine.
D’Angelo closed the show with a uptempo rendition of “Brown Sugar. It was “Sly And The Family of Stone, Parliament-Funkadelic, Prince and others that the Richmond, Virginia born artist pays homage through his music; championing the music of the past with his new songs being the future, presently R&B has another savior…D’Angelo.
About D’Angelo: Michael Eugene Archer (born February 11, 1974), better known by hisstage name D’Angelo, is an American R&B and neo soul singer-songwriter,multi-instrumentalist and record producer. He is known for his production and songwriting talents as much as for his vocal abilities, and often draws comparisons to his influences, Marvin Gaye, and Prince. D’Angelo was one of the most influential artists during the rise of the neo-soul movement. For more information about D’Angelo visit his IMDB at http://www.imdb.com/name/nm0195248/?ref=atw
Photos credit to: © Timothy Norris/D’Angelo Funk Connection Facebook Fan Page & Daood Obaid Aka Soul Detective.