Shopping in the sweltering desert heat in California lead me to Eli “Paperboy” Reed. My girlfriend and I were in a Kate Spade store on El Paseo – a shopping district located in Palm Desert, California – and Eli “Paperboy” Reed came through the store’s speakers. My foot started tapping and therefore caught my attention. I was a little hesitant to ask the store clerk the name of the song, but my curiosity (and the song’s vibe) got the best of me and I asked the clerk during the song’s closing horns. Unfortunately, the lady who I had asked had only caught the last few seconds of the song and told me the song was either “Eli papaboy or paperboy”, I input this information in my phone and continued shopping.
Earlier today, I remembered I had recorded various artists names and artist’s albums in my phone and completed an internet search, particularly one for “Eli+paperboy” on trust-worthy Google. Instantly, Eli’s name came up and attached to it were numerous YouTube videos. I clicked on the first I found “Come and Get It”, and there it was, the track from the Kate Spade store!
I remember my original thought about the song on that warm, sunny day in California, which was that I could tell that the song was released very recently. Mainly because contemporary soul has a polished and often times over produced vibe to its tracks; such is the case with Eli “Paperboy” Reed. Today, this was amplified. The song didn’t strike me the same way as my first experience with it in California. I managed to listen to all tracks from Eli “Paperboy” Reed’s 2010 album Come and Get It!
My verdict? It’s good, not great, just good. Don’t get me wrong, Eli’s got a great voice. At times, he can sound like Wilson Pickett! However, I feel as though his swag is directed at nostalgic baby boomers, rather than soul fans. Eli’s style reminds me of Michael Buble, in that his target audience is the middle-aged women…lame! Come and Get It! (2010) is missing that “umph”, that drive, that force that makes you sweat, or feel…it’s missing that soul. I want to like this more than I do, I just can’t!
Try it out for yourself.