Friday, April 10, 2009


Thanks Keith

Wednesday, April 01, 2009

What's on TV Wednesday night

"Shaken Not Stirred." Bad boy Bobby Brown joins Anthony Anderson, D.L. Hughley, Paul Rodriguez and John Salley on MyNetwork's comedy series, which blends elements of celebrity roasts and late-night talk shows. Brown, of course, gives the gang plenty to riff on.

Check Your Local Listings..

Friday, February 13, 2009

The Newest New Edition: Three Singers, Trading Styles With Equanimity

When Bobby Brown, snotty and kinetic and magnetic, left the megasuccessful R&B boy band New Edition for a solo career in 1986, it appeared as if it might have the effect of a puncture, slowly letting the air out of one of pop's biggest phenomena. Mr. Brown was the wild card, but also the selling point.

Eventually replacing him with Johnny Gill, a rigorous and ferocious young singer, however, turned out to be a masterstroke. Suddenly, New Edition was not only cool, but serious too.

In the decades since, New Edition has tried various reunions, all short-lived, many marred by ill will. The iteration on display at the Nokia Theater on Thursday night - a splinter wing of its best singers dubbed the Heads of State, with Mr. Brown, Mr. Gill and the effortlessly tender Ralph Tresvant - was promising and well edited, a union of old-school showmen conceding little to the years gone by.

Here again, Mr. Brown was the selling point - no other New Edition member has matched his solo success or his tabloid ubiquity - and he was again unpredictable. But not erratic: if anything, Mr. Brown shelved the wounded comic persona he has cultivated in recent years as a reality-television punching bag in favor of jovial camaraderie. The least expected element of this show was that Mr. Brown was happy being just one singer in a group of three.

In an hour and a half the men worked through mostly abbreviated versions of more than 20 solo and group hits, with their dance moves at about 60 percent strength. As ever, Mr. Gill's voice was an abrasion, all finely scratched burrs. Old age has given his vocals some of the liquidity of Luther Vandross's, heard here on "Half Crazy," but Mr. Gill is far more appealing as a growler. Near the end of the show, he dotted "Rub You the Right Way," one of his signature songs, with vibrant, sharp-edged runs that turned it from seduction to aggression. (No "My, My, My," though?)

That was followed, of seeming necessity, by a cooling off with "Sensitivity," the biggest hit from Mr. Tresvant, whose pillow-soft vocals have been the template for much of the pop-oriented R&B of the last few years. He was lithe on New Edition hits like "With You All the Way" and "Cool It Now," and by the time he arrived at "Do What I Gotta Do," his shirt was unbuttoned, revealing abs Alex Rodriguez might covet. One woman in the audience licked her finger and pressed it to her own chest, hissed seductively, then screamed, "Hot!"

And where was Mr. Brown in this weather system? Still combustible when needed: grinning during the bratty rap section of "Every Little Step" (New Edition never needed to import rappers onto its songs; the members happily rhymed themselves); leaving the stage before "If It Isn't Love," proclaiming, "My doctor said I could not do this song," then reappearing midway, sliding into the dance routine.

"I am the diabolical Bobby Brown," he said, exhausted, before an excellent midshow run of songs in which the three men performed on stools, storyteller-style, with Mr. Gill also accompanying on guitar. "We're going to try to do as many songs as we can remember being our age," Mr. Brown cautioned. "I just turned 40." ( Wisely, this 40-year-old skipped "Humpin' Around.")

Of the three, his vocals have eroded the most, so he saved his energy for a few key bursts - the end of the wistful "Roni," which became unexpectedly tense, and the 1996 New Edition reunion song "Home Again," after which he said, "I almost cried on that one."

Though the show concluded with a halfhearted version of Mr. Brown's "My Prerogative," it really ended a song earlier, on the raw ballad "Can You Stand the Rain." As on the original, Mr. Gill sang a few densely packed lines, then gave way to Mr. Tresvant, who massaged the room before passing the song back to Mr. Gill.

Throughout, Mr. Brown mostly looked on, smiling, and then, superfluously, joined in at the end - two old friends carrying a third across the finish line.

The Heads of State perform Saturday at the Keswick Theater in Glenside, Pa.; (215) 572-7650, The show is sold out.

Bobby Brown Roni Live (Feb. 12, 2009)

Thank you, Keith!

Thursday, February 05, 2009

Pop and Rock Listings: Bobby

Just when it seemed as if Bobby Brown's tumultuous personal life might fully eclipse his singing career, he agreed to be filmed for a reality show, "Being Bobby Brown," which was broadcast on Bravo in 2005. Now Mr. Brown appears ready to return to music. For this tour he has teamed up with Ralph Tresvant and Johnny Gill (both former members of the R&B group New Edition, which also included Mr. Brown); as a trio, they have dubbed themselves the Summit. At 8 p.m., Nokia Theater, 1515 Broadway, at 44th Street, (212) 307-7171,; $59.50 to $89.50.

Happy Birthday

Happy 40th Birthday, Bobby.. Stay blessed and enjoy your day!!

Wednesday, February 04, 2009

Bobby Brown Spawning Again

Bobby Brown's prerogative: procreation.

The erstwhile King of New Jack Swing and Alicia Etheridge, his companion of two years turned manager, are expecting their first child together. Brown's agent confirms that Etheridge is four months pregnant and due to pop in July.

For those counting at home, this will be kid No. 5 for Brown, 39. There's 22-year-old Landon (an aspiring performer who appeared on MTV's Rock the Cradle) with Melika Williams; 19-year-old LaPrincia and 17-year-old Bobby Brown Jr. with Kim Ward; and 15-year-old Bobbi Kristina, his sole child with ex-wife Whitney Houston.

While Brown's personal life seems to be back on track after years of turmoil, the same can't be said for his career.

Brown's hasn't hit the charts since guesting on Ja Rule's 2002 single "Thug Lovin'" and is now better known as a reality-TV train wreck, from Being Bobby Brown to the CMT series Gone Country and its spinoff, Outsider's Inn.

Friday, January 23, 2009

Bobby Brown, Johnny Gill & Ralph Tresvant - Exclusive NYC & Philly Performances - Feb 12 & 14

The Heads of State: Bobby Brown, Johnny Gill & Ralph Tresvant announce two exclusive East Coast appearances at New York City's Nokia Theatre in Times Square on February 12th & at Philadelphia-area venue the Keswick Theatre on Valentine's Day.

Tickets are currently available via for both engagements.


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