Although it was post-Valentine’s Day, Tuesday’s Verzuz between Anthony Hamilton and Musiq Soulchild was an R&B showdown of romantic hits. Held at Avalon Hollywood in Los Angeles, the sold-out event drew an intimate crowd of R&B lovers who were unaware of what surprises were in store.
The show began at 6:20 PM PT with a DJ face-off set from KTone and DJ Popo as part of Triller’s Resident DJ Competition. Once the set ended, host DJ Scratch took the stage to congratulate Mary J. Blige on being a part of the 2022 Super Bowl performance and her new album Good Morning Gorgeous. Scratch also confirmed that the next livestream would be held during All-Star Weekend for the first-ever NBA Highlight Battle between Allen Iverson and Tracy McGrady in partnership with Bleacher Report.
After a final DJ set from DJ Zum, Hamilton and Soulchild took the stage and ran through their legendary catalogs. Soulchild opened his set with “Break You Off” his 2002 collaboration with fellow Philadelphians The Roots.
Jermaine Dupri appeared to DJ Hamilton’s entire set, also promoting his new ice cream line JD’s Vegan Ice Cream on his hoodie. Hamilton brought his backing vocalists The Hamiltones but didn’t stop there — he invited Nappy Roots member Big V for a rendition of their 2002 hit “Po’ Folks”; Leela James joined Hamilton to perform their remix of “Complicated”; and Kevin Ross, Raheem DeVaughn and Eric Roberson came to deliver their recent single “Lessons”.
“He brought out all the bros,” the night’s MC Jack Thriller joked after the performance of “Lessons”. “That was pretty good.”
While he performed notable hits from his catalog, Hamilton also sung a segment of “Back to Sleep (Legends Remix)” a cover of Chris Brown‘s 2015 song of the same title.
But Hamilton wasn’t the only one with tricks up his sleeve, Soulchild brought out Robert Glasper for a full-melisma rendition of their 2012 Black Radio collaboration “Ah Yeah.” Later, Lucky Daye surprised the event, performing his 2021 song “Over” which interpolates Soulchild’s 2002 song “Halfcrazy”.
The guests kept coming as Donell Jones came out during Soulchild’s set for a duet of 1999 song “U Know What’s Up”. Former 702 member Kameelah Williams, who also has a son with Soulchild, came to the stage after Soulchild performed his 2000 song “143”. ““Thanks y’all, of course I’m here Team Musiq. Thank you Musiq Soulchild, my baby daddy,” Williams said.
The post-Valentine’s Day special ended on a collaborative high note as Soulchild was joined Hamilton and friends for a performance of his 2007 song “B.U.D.D.Y.”
The B/R x Verzuz Highlight Battle powered by AT&T 5G will stream on the Bleacher Report App, Triller app and the Verzuz Instagram live on Friday, Feburary 18th at 11 PM.
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