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Slapdash Interview with Raphael Saadiq at the House of Blues

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Photos by Leslie Kalohi/LAist

The talented soul man Raphael Saadiq headlined at the House of Blues on Monday night, and I arrived determined to dance until there were holes in my shoes. His latest The Way I See It had been on repeat in my car for most of 2008. Call it neo-Motown, retro boogie, soul revival, whatever, Saadiq had created one of the best albums of the year and I was thrilled to be able to review the show. Then I got to the box office.

"Oh good, you're here," a disturbingly polished woman with a clipboard greeted me. "You're interview will be in five minutes." I stared at her in horror as my lunch began to creep up my esophagus. I informed her that there had to have been some mistake, but the lady just smiled at me and said I was on the list. Five minutes. Five minutes to prepare and interview Raphael Saadiq. Jesus, I needed five minutes to prepare to meet Raphael Saadiq. In a panic, I whipped out my notepad and started scribbling. I cursed myself for forgetting my recorder. What sort of fool leaves the house without a recording device?

Five minutes later, this coiffed lady led me and my photographer up the labyrinthine stairs of the House of Blues, through a darkly lit corridor, and into Raphael Saadiq's lush dressing room. Mr. Saadiq, smartly dressed in a white button-down shirt and black tie, greeted me warmly and was kind enough not to laugh at my questions. Even when they were about aliens. Here is what was said.