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Stuff WaPo Got Wrong Re: Prince Tribute at 9:30

Ugh, I hate to be a contrarian for general purpose, but--

There's so much wrong with this Washington Post review of the recent Prince Tribute at the 9:30 Club that my side-eye twitcheth with the frustration of a dozen underpaid fact-checkers at a nationally-recognized traditional media outlet. And how would I know? Well, for one, SOULBOUNCE WAS TOTALLY IN THE HOUSE, DAWGIES!

The opening paragraph is riddled with wrongery! To the point I'm embarrassed for the person that wrote it (Chris Richards). Peep the numbered flags and corresponding card-pulling. Get into it:

The 9:30 club felt more like a karaoke bar [1] Friday night, with some of Washington's finest soul crooners assembling to pay tribute to pop super-genius Prince. "21/20: A Masterpiece Tribute to 'Parade' and 'Sign 'O' the Times' " featured Baltimore soul squad Fertile Ground as the backing band, while local [2] singers Eric Roberson, Navasha Daya, Martin Luther, W. Ellington Felton, Wayna, Deborah Bond, Curt Chambers and others [3] each took a crack at Prince's 1986-87 songbook.

[1] Mean!
[2] Eric Roberson, Curt Chambers and Martin Luther are not local. It might seem like they are because they dare perform at 9:30 on a $15 ticket with a few local cats, but no. So no!
[3] Others? Right, those guys would be called ZWEI. And Bilal Salaam did some backup, but we won't take you to task for that, Chris, since you obviously left before the announcement was made.

But nothing came close to the thrills provided by surprise guest Raheem DeVaughn.
The locally raised, Grammy-nominated singer took the stage for the
final two songs of the night -- the quiet storm of "Adore" and the
superlative funk of "Kiss." Only DeVaughn's pipes seemed athletic
enough to animate these jams properly, and he zigzagged through his
registers to the delight of smiling fans. Sure, DeVaughn may have been
paying homage to Prince, but that smooth, airy delivery evoked another
pop icon entirely: Marvin Gaye.

We can see how that would read as authentic by someone up in nosebleed. But if you were up by the stage like us, you saw this:

Why does Raheem keep looking down, you wonder? It's because some enterprising individual taped the lyrics to the stage before the concert started. That's me, Butta and Vivrant Thang talking greasy in the background. The conversation went something like:

"Ha! You got a shot of the lyrics!"
"You know it!"
"Girl wait 'til we post this SHOCKING video on SoulBounce.com, the TMZ of Soul Music™!"

I know. There goes our interview! But, shoot, we keeps it real here! And we still got love for Raheem. The point of this is, Raheem was good, but he shouldn't be credited with "saving" the show. Fertile Ground's Navasha Daya brought the house down! Check her out doing "Housequake", easily the best performance of the night.

Butta has more coverage (including videos and shots) of the show on the way. She didn't know that prior to me writing this, but blogging is supposed to be spontaneous right? Also, she's "hopping mad" (direct quote) with Mr. Chris Richards. Personally, I just want him to let me have his press pass next time.

Homage to Prince Ends on A High Note [WaPo]


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9 Responses

  1. Okay, I don't know what that Chris Richards person is on. To me, DeVaughn's performance was more Karaoke-like than the others. He was unprepared and lost his place in both "Adore" and "Kiss" causing the omission of the musicians solos in the latter song.
    The purpose of this concert was not to attempt to imitate Prince, but pay homage to his music. There's no way you can take anything away from Eric Roberson's performance of "If I Was Your Girlfriend," or the tear jerking rendition of "Sometimes it Snows in April." Even Curt Chambers brought guitar licks worthy of the Artist during, "I Could Never Take the Place of Your Man," and brought much excitement to "U Got the Look," with Deborah Bond.
    Seems like to me this Richards person is not a fan of the local and independent artists on the bill, because that's who everyone in the house came to see. Sounds like he's just jocking on the one Grammy nominee on the bill who he's most familiar with. And from the errors in his article it appears Richards knows as much about other artists as DeVaughn knows Prince lyrics.

  2. Welcome Back Homies! Lawd, ya'll were cutting up something awful. We gotta do that more often.
    First I have to almost sell my body to afford to ride Metro this morning and now this. I took this joker to task on the WAPO site, as did the above poster. I think the friendly Soul Bounce editors need to pay them a visit as well. Thanks for alerting us to this tomfoolery.
    Here's what I wrote:
    Ok, I'll try to keep it pleasant because well, we're all professionals...oh wait, maybe one of us isn't because if you were, you would have your facts straight before posting an article full of inaccuracies.
    While we would LOVE to claim them, Eric Roberson, Curt Chambers and Martin Luther are NOT local artists. Were your fact checkers still on holiday break? Guess so, so let me help you out. Eric Roberson is from New Jersey, Curt is from Philadelphia and Martin Luther is from San Francisco. Get...it...together.
    You are entitled to your opinion on the performances, although I vehemently disagree. Navasha Daya almost started a "Housequake" at the 930 club with her performance and Curt Chambers and Deborah Bond left the stage in flames after
    their performance of "U Got The Look." Admittedly, NOBODY can do Prince like Prince. However,no one was trying to. This was a tribute and I think most of the performances certainly did the respective songs much justice. Don't think so? The crowd seemed to.
    Your contention that nothing came close to Raheem Devaughn is laughable. While I love him and felt that he did a decent job, obviously he needs to
    stick to his own music. Had you actually been close enough to the stage, as a professional media person reporting for THE paper in DC should
    have been, you would have been able to see that he did not know the words to either of the songs he performed, which is just sad. "Adore" and "Kiss" are perhaps two of Prince's most famous songs. Not to mention, none of the other
    artists performing Prince's more obscure songs needed the words. Tsk, tsk, Raheem. And um, Marvin Gaye would NEVER have done a tribute to an icon without knowing the words to that artist's song. So you need to put down your pen for a LONG while after making that comparison!
    If you need these facts checked, visit YouTube and search for Tribute to Prince Sign O The Times and Parade. It's all there.

  3. Just saw the WaPo article, and it seems as though Chris Richards is swinging on the nuts of Raheem Devaughn a little too hard. To not give propers to Erro & Fertile Ground at the very least is just insulting.
    And BTW, unless Raheem Devaughn is from Mars or never listened to a Quiet Storm braodcast available in any major US city from the early '90's until the present, he should know the words to "Adore" by heart. That is a Quiet Storm mainstay, just like "Turn Off The Lights" by Teddy Pendergrass or "In Between The Sheets" by The Isley Brothers. This WaPo article and Raheem's lack of knowledge of the lyrics to this classic are equally shameful to say the least.

  4. @ ill Mami:
    Umm, Welcome back? Happy Belated Birthday? How was your trip?
    Totally putting you on blast for the enjoyment of the SoulBounce audience! lol!

  5. Why, yes, it was my birthday! It always feels great to turn 25 (again) ;-p
    And JamRock was off the hook!
    Seen!
    *holding up lighter*

  6. I'm feeling kind of bad about how we're dogging Raheem so I have to come to his defense.
    At least he didn't leave his coat check ticket with the coat check lady.
    I'm just sayin.

  7. @ Aunt Vive:
    Too insidery.

  8. I was up in the balcony Friday night, and I have NO idea what show Chris Richards saw...it couldn't have been the same one. I love Raheem and will continue to support him, but there is absolutely NO EXCUSE for him to not know all the words to Adore, mainly because he performs it regularly in his own show! And I think he got caught up a bit too much in living out his Prince fantasy onstage during "Kiss", because he seemed to be messing up the musicians while trying to call out solos and changes.
    I enjoyed everyone's performances, but to say that no one else came close to Raheem??? Not in my opinion. Navasha Daya KILLED Housequake, and Zwei (who I had not heard of prior to the show) turned it out. They brought the energy way up.
    I normally find a good bit of truth in the Post's reviews of local shows, but I have to wonder if Mr. Richards is just lazy, or really doesn't have a clue.

  9. @SororSalsa
    I think Richards must have gotten there real late and just made all that stuff up!



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