It’s okay to swoon when Brian McKnight takes the stage for the 25 June premiere of AFE’s Heat Wave virtual summer concert series. Smooth, relaxed, charming and genuine, he’s a singer women want and men want to be like.
McKnight has charted with top-selling singles and albums, has sung the national anthem for the World Series and the NBA All-Star Game, hosted a variety/chat show, appeared in popular TV shows (Sister, Sister, Celebrity Apprentice, The Masked Singer) and performed on Broadway. Maybe that’s why he can’t be confined to a single classification as a pop, R&B or soul singer.
He’s been hard at work for more than 30 years. His first record deal was with Wing Records, a subsidiary of Mercury Records, in 1992. His platinum debut album, Brian McKnight, included the hit single “One Last Cry” which became a classic “get over a breakup” song. He wrote if for a woman to sing, but wound up making it a hit for himself.
As a producer and performer, he and Vanessa Williams collaborated on the hit duet “Love Is” in 1994 for the Beverly Hills 90210 soundtrack. When it charted on the Billboard Top 100, he was already paving his own road toward music stardom. He collaborated with Boyz II Men – guys he had known for years – producing their 1993 Christmas album, adding their signature sound to the classic “Let It Snow” and was becoming a sought-after producer and balladeer.
McKnight’s hit song and album Anytime went double platinum in 1997. Then he exceeded his own success with the triple-platinum album/single Back at One in 1999 on the Motown Records label. Soulful and deep, the song resonated with country artist Mark Wills who covered it that same year. His version topped the country charts, giving McKnight two versions of one hit song.
Among his most memorable professional and personal moments is the time he spent with NBA legend Kobe Bryant as the pair recorded the duet “Hold Me.” He considers it one of his career’s most meaningful collabs.
McKnight will bring his unique sound, style and stories to the exclusive AFE show streaming free beginning 25 June. Check out all the major artists in the Heat Wave global virtual summer concert series with fresh shows premiering 15 June, 25 June and 29 June. It’s all free, exclusively for you on our Heat Wave hub.