The past weekend was a thrilling one for the die-hard RnB fans, who were treated to some of Boyz II Men’s biggest hits in a live concert held at Uhuru Gardens.
The American superstar musicians graced the stage on June 10 in moments that have been described as bringing Nairobi to a standstill, performing some of their greatest hits.
The ticket price-tag was hefty, as expected, for fans who wanted to experience the four-time Grammy winning group. Regular tickets were sold at Sh 8,000, VIP at Sh15,000 and VVIP AT Sh 30,000.
There was tight security at the venue, and entrance was quite fast and convenient.
Although fans in the regular section experienced trouble with the sound as well as spilling over outside the tents, those at the VIP section were treated to proximity to the stage that was worth every penny.
The Standard Entertainment correspondents in attendance report that the fashion was relaxed, and that music took priority at the show.
It appeared to be a casual affair of jeans and sneakers for most attendees who braved the chilly weather and rain that showered on and off during the Saturday evening event.
After DJ sets warmed up the crowd at the start of the show, Kenya’s beloved Afro-pop group Sauti Sol raised the curtains for their international superstar colleagues at about 7.30PM.
Comprised of vocalists Bien-Aimé Baraza, Willis Chimano, Savara Mudigi and guitarist Polycarp Otieno, the band is adored for both new and old hits alike.
And this time round, it was a bittersweet affair as it comes after the group’s announcement of their impending break, which they made on May 20.
They serenaded attendees with tracks mostly from their first album, 2008’s Mwanzo- songs that are reminiscent of their entry into Kenya’s music scene, and how they changed it for good with their soulful take and undeniable chemistry.
After 2 hours of Sauti Sol’s seamless, breath-taking show, it was time for Boyz II Men to hit the stage.
Dressed in all white, the boy-band was received warmly by their eager fans, and they did not disappoint. They sang top hits like I’ll Make Love to You, On Bended Knee and One Sweet Day- and they even gifted some fans with roses. A Song for Mama was, however, conspicuously missing from their line-up.
The performance was every bit magical, as the group showed off their incredible vocal skills that were just as stellar in person as they are on screen.
The celebrated vocal band is comprised of baritone Nathan Morris and tenors Wanyá Morris and Shawn Stockman.
The talented band rose to fame in in 1991 and has since been described as the biggest selling RnB act of all time.
“Their silky-smooth brand of R&B, dubbed “hip-hop doo-wop” by the group, helped redefine the genre, winning them legions of fans worldwide,” UDiscover Music reports.
It adds: “Boyz II Men celebrated their 20th anniversary in 2011 by releasing Twenty, an album which featured their first original songs in a decade, alongside reworkings of their classics. Well received by critics, it also continued their commercial revival as it debuted at No.20 on the US charts. 2014 saw another album of new material, Collide, which found the band spreading their wings with a variety of new music styles.”
Ahead of their Uhuru Gardens concert, the band held a press briefing, where they expressed their excitement for the show.
“It’s going to be a festive evening and we just want everyone to enjoy themselves,” Shawn Stockman said at the sit-down.
Wanyá Morris said: “What Boyz II Men has always represented was music from the heart, lyrical content, emotions and expressions of love. To be able to have the songs that we have last this long, it's amazing, its something that you can’t really forecast. We just feel like as long as music still exists, Boyz II Men will still exist.”
The memorable concert was notably star-studded, and attracted the who’s who from the local entertainment scene, including Nyashinski, Kate Actress, Fena Gitu, media personalities Shaffie Weru and Maina Kageni and Nairobi city Governor Johnson Sakaja.