Instant Vintage → Raphael Saadiq (2002)
“I kind of knew that I had to start over with this album. There were people who sort of didn’t believe in me. I got the title from my first solo album Instant Vintage from a friend of mines Ray Murray of Organized Noize. He worked with me on some of the songs. So when he heard the album he was like, ‘You should name this record ‘Instant Vintage.’ His words kind of made a lot of sense because I wasn’t just talking about the sound of the album. I was talking about myself.
Instant Vintage was something that started the thread to what I would be doing for the next ten years. I just really thought I was going to make one of my best classic records that people could grab any song from. I didn’t know what the label situation was going to be like because Universal was new. I didn’t know if they really believed in it, so I just said I was going to make the best possible record I can make and give my listeners something they can hold onto.
I started Instant Vintage off with an introduction (‘Doing What I Can’) telling people who I am and what I’ve been going through such as my family deaths—the three brothers and my sister. I never really talked about it. This is me…this is Instant Vintage. I just wanted to pour my soul out on the table and say, ‘This is who I am…let’s take this journey together.’
I always wanted to use the tuba. I always liked marching bands and I just wanted to throw something at the fans out of the blue. That’s what you heard on ‘Just Ray.’ With ‘Be Hear’ I was messing around in the studio. I looked around at a few people in the room and they said, ‘You know who would be cool on this?…D’Angelo.’ I brought him to L.A., he heard it and was like, ‘Oh yeah…I’m down.’ It turned out really well.”