Raphael Saadiq: From Heartbreak To Hitmaker

…Epicuren. I’ll use the shower gel and the facial gel. There’s another place in Berkeley where I’ll pick up the Grateful Body cleanser. It’s all natural. If I have that option to buy something that’s good and all natural, it’s something I like to do. Also, because I travel a lot, I don’t get a lot of downtime, so I need to make sure I have a good cleanser. You don’t want to use the hotel soap. At least, I don’t like to.

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“When I’m really in it, and this is not every day but when I’m really focused, I get up at 5:30 a.m. and I run three miles just about every other day.  I try to lift light weights as well. I come home, take a shower, sit and meditate for 30 minutes, and then I come to the studio and I plan the rest of the day. I’ve been running probably most of my life, and I try to stick to the same thing when I travel. I research where the good places are to eat at, and I try to go find the places to go run. I’ve also worked out with a trainer sometimes.”


“One of my trainers now is Stan McQuay, a bodybuilder and a pretty famous one. I used to go see Johnny Alves, a.k.a. Johnny Drama — the real one, not the one on “Entourage.” He’s a trainer who used to be in L.A. but lives in Boston now. I met him through a girl, and he later became a really good friend. He really got me into plyometrics. I also was doing Bikram yoga and other types of yoga, but I stopped all that. Now I just run and stretch.”

On Knowing Your Worth

After returning to Oakland from touring with Prince, Saadiq began his professional career as the lead vocalist and bassist in the rhythm and blues and dance trio Tony! Toni! Toné! He used the name Raphael Wiggins while in Tony! Toni! Toné!, along with his brother Dwayne Wiggins, and his cousin Timothy Christian. In the mid-1990s, he adopted the last name Saadiq, which means “man of his word” in Arabic. He later confessed that he did not convert to the muslim religion, but to “have his own identity” he says everyone needs that.

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