If you’re in the mood to extend the romance of Valentine’s Day, Owens Entertainment has just the show for you.
The Gem City R&B Kickback featuring Dru Hill, Jagged Edge, Jon B. and Troop will be presented at the Schuster Center in Dayton on Saturday, Feb. 18.
“With R&B and Valentine’s Day, it’s definitely a lover’s thing,” said promoter Tommy Owens. “Whether you’ve got a boyfriend or a girlfriend, or you’re solo or single, there will be something for everybody. It’s going to be a night of pure soul. True soul music and songs about love. It’s a huge show for Dayton.”
For this concert, Owens has partnered with Dayton attorney Michael Wright, a longtime friend.
“We’ve been friends since fourth grade,” Owens said. “We did this to commemorate his 26 years in law. I’m from the West Side of Dayton and I’m excited about my city and about what’s coming up for my city. I’ve been doing concerts and promotions since I was probably 18 years old. I started out doing talent shows. I’m truly excited about the Gem City R&B Kickback. This is something we both wanted to do because we thought having two headliners come would be something great for the city.”
Dru Hill: The group from Baltimore has had some lineup shifts since forming in 1992 but remains true to its eclectic mix of modern R&B with hip-hop, gospel and old school soul. Dru Hill is known for pop hits in the Top 40 like “Tell Me” and “Love MD” and Top 10 songs such as “Never Make A Promise” and “How Deep Is Your Love.” Member Sisqo also had a massive hit with “Thong Song,” a solo single.
Jagged Edge: This group emerged from Atlanta in the mid-’90s. The band hit 23 on the Billboard Hot 100 with “I Gotta Be,” from its debut, “A Jagged Era” (1997). The follow-up album, “J.E. Heartbreak” (1999), was more successful with the Top 10 pop singles, “He Can’t Love U” and “Promise.” Other Top 10 singles include “Where the Party At” and “Walked Outta Heaven.”
Jon B.: Like the other acts on the bill, Jonathan David Buck enjoyed R&B and pop success in the mid-1990s. His debut, “Bonafide,” was certified platinum and a featured “Someone to Love,” a duet with Babyface. The single reached 10 on the Hot 100 and was nominated for a Grammy. Jon B. returned to the top of the Hot 100 with his biggest hit, “They Don’t Know,” which peaked at 7.
Troop: The longest-tenured act on Saturday’s bill began its career in Pasadena, California, in the late ‘80s. While Troop never had crossover pop success, the group was a staple of the R&B charts with number one hits like “Spread My Wings” and “Sweet November” and Top 10 R&B singles like “Mamacita” and “That’s My Attitude.”
For the people
Owens is confident the concert will draw a huge crowd, proving there is an audience willing to support R&B in Dayton.
“We’ve sold a bunch of tickets (and) we’re looking to sell it out,” Owens said. “R&B music is a dying breed at this time. With all the hip-hop, Tik-Tok and stuff, R&B music is becoming extinct, but these groups all have such longevity. A lot of people have been going out of town to Columbus and Cincinnati to see R&B acts because we don’t get a lot them coming here. We could’ve done this show out of town, but we wanted to do it in our hometown. This town supports us so we want to make sure we give back to the people of Dayton.”
Contact this contributing writer at 937-287-6139 or email@example.com.
HOW TO GO
What: Gem City R&B Kickback with Dru Hill, Jagged Edge, Jon B and Troop
Where: Schuster Center, Second and Main Streets, Dayton
When: Saturday, Feb. 18 at 7 p.m.
More info: 937-228-3630 or www.daytonlive.org