Another one video from a big D’Angelo fan! Enjoy!
Brothers in Arms [D’Angelo & Questlove] feat. fdeluxe (the family) and Stokley William (of Mint Condition)
Article by: JON BREAM
- Updated: June 20, 2013 - 10:24 AM
After disappearing for a decade, neo-soul star D’Angelo is back with a First Avenue gig and a new album coming this fall.
D’Angelo’s friends simply call him “D.” His fans call him M.I.A.
The Roots drummer talks about the soul artist’s highly anticipated new album.
I wonder why there is soooo much hush hush surrounding that album title though.
No stranger to the jazz tradition, D’Angelo, born Michael Eugene Archer in 1974 in Richmond, Va., to a Pentecostal pastor father and a mother who was a Jazz aficionado, grew up on gospel music, the R&B and soul of the 1970s, Miles Davis and Donald Byrd. A number of jazz musicians have been featured on his albums (trumpeter Roy Hargrove played and arranged horns on several of the Voodootracks; Frank Lacy, Russell Gunn and Jacques Schwarz-Bart played horns on theVoodoo tour). A pared-down, hornless group, the Vanguard, is D’Angelo’s most recent touring band.
The buzz in Montreal had been building for weeks. After 13 years, promoter Rickey D Daley (in collaboration with Evenko) finally managed to book D’Angelo. When he walked onto the stage at L’Olympia, the 1,400 fans went wild. As soon as he began to sing, it seemed all was indeed right with the world. The enthusiastic, cross-generational audience could drop a verse at the sound of an opening chord, indicating his appeal to a younger crowd than those who bought Brown Sugar andVoodoo back in the day, and likely listened to the CDs till they wore out. Spotted among them were singers, drummers, bassists and DJs representing Montreal jazz, soul and R&B. D’Angelo’s nine-piece band had something for everyone, with Cleo “Pookie” Sample (keys), Pino Palladino (bass), Chris “Daddy” Dave (drums), Jesse Johnson and Isaiah Sharkey (guitars), Robert Lumzy (percussion and backup vocals), Jermaine Holmes and Jack E. King III (backup vocals).
D’Angelo was in fine form, channeling Marvin Gaye (perhaps his most profound inspiration), James Brown, Jimi Hendrix, Sly Stone, Funkadelic and a rocking Prince, who seems to be the strongest current influence on his music. Decked all in black, slinging a hot-pink guitar, D’Angelo performed beloved classics along with several new songs (“The Charade,” “Ain’t That Easy,” “Sugah Daddy” and “Really Love”). Honing his guitar skills for quite some time, he has only recently begun playing the instrument in public, practicing five to six hours a day, as ?uestlove attests, with songs such as Funkadelic’s “Maggot Brain.”
The fans were forgiving of the venue’s sound challenges, which made it difficult to hear D’Angelo’s vocals or appreciate the brilliance of Palladino, Johnson and Dave. A brief intro led into a funky, James Brown-infused version of “Left and Right”; then came the sumptuous “Brown Sugar,” featuring a fresh guitar riff. The new psychedelic soul-rock vehicle “The Charade” had a Prince-esque quality, while the Latin-tinged “Really Love” (leaked in 2007) evoked D’Angelo’s earlier material, highlighting his wistful falsetto.
With some of the sound issues resolved mid-set, D’s vocals were more audible, and the band as a whole sounded more balanced. And that’s when D’Angelo really got into it, fully energized, clearly feeding off the love and energy in the room. Momentum built with “ S**t, Damn, Mother**cker,” Johnson shredding and Dave offering an all-too-brief solo. Then the stage emptied; D’Angelo returned, alone, water bottle and cigarette in hand. Sitting at his keyboard, the lights low and smoke billowing all around him, he performed one verse and the chorus of “Cruisin’” as the adoring crowd sang along in unison.
Still at the keyboard, he segued into the immediately recognizable “Untitled (How Does It Feel),” sending the crowd into an even bigger frenzy, as he paused intermittently to listen to the sound of hundreds of voices asking, “How does it feel?” All smiles, he replied: “Feels so good, Montreal!” The band returned for a new arrangement of “Smooth” followed by “Spanish Joint.” The laid-back lovers’ jam “Lady” transformed into a rock anthem, people jumping up and down, D’Angelo unleashing JB-style wailing, kneeling in front of the audience as the tune built to a crescendo. “D! D! D!” hollered the audience for an encore, delivered in the form of the super funky new “Sugah Daddy,” which (finally) gave Palladino some space to shine. “Put the funk in the air!” hollered D’Angelo, and a sea of waving arms filled the room. His magnetic stage presence was undeniable, and his loyal, supportive audience was more than satisfied with this 90-minute set of pure energy, heart and inspired musicianship.
And what of the long-awaited new record? “Totally brilliant,” promises ?uestlove, a “radical 180 turn” featuring his guitar playing and a unique new keyboard sound, using a guitar processor. The first single, “Really Love,” drops around the 4th of July; the album in its entirety will be released in September, featuring Palladino, ?uestlove, Hargrove, Fred Wesley, Dave, James Gadson, Jesse Johnson, Isaiah Sharkey, Eric Leeds, Cleo Sample and Q-Tip. A tour in support of the album begins in August (U.S.) followed by dates in Europe (October-November). Judging by his Montreal performance, D’Angelo is sure to renew the oxygen supply to his soul-starved fans. Stay tuned.
D’Angelo and the Vanguard || Really Love (Live @ L’Olympia de Montreal, 5/30/2013)
schmeeline asked: Please tell me D'Angelo will be performing in NY again? I missed BK Bowl. Started following you after that horrid moment.
So far, D’Angelo’s team has not announced a concert for NYC, but there may be more concerts announced for August as the summer progresses. I would assume that, as we near an album release date, more information on a full-fledged tour will become available (assuming that an album is still set to come out in August or Q4 of this year).