A lavish buffet dinner, classic soul music from the ’70s, ’80s and ’90s and the smooth falsetto of veteran R&B singer Howard Hewett made this a Mother’s Day to remember. The Brooklyn Soundstage concert series, founded by singer Will Gardner, presented its inaugural event: A Classic Soul Mother’s Day starring Howard Hewett on May 10, and Sister 2 Sister was on the scene to enjoy the festivities.
It was a truly classy event with mothers and their guests coming out in their Sunday best for this special occasion. After a delicious meal—that we’re sure left many stuffed—guests were treated to the opening night performance of Karizz as he performed his new single, “If Loving U is Wrong.” It was the perfect way to open the night since Karizz’s soulful style segued nicely into Howard’s set.
The former lead singer of the hit ’70s group Shalamar (along with pop diva Jody Watley and Jeffrey Daniels) and successful solo artist performed nearly all of his greatest hits, much to the crowd’s delight. Howard effortlessly weaved in and out of his falsetto and catered to the ladies in the crowd.
Watching Howard seduce the ladies with nothing more than his voice and charm was a reminder to some of today’s young male R&B artists that you don’t always need to gyrate on a woman to get the crowd riveted. Howard closed his set with his signature song, “Say Amen,” that had everyone waving their hands to the heavens and in the mood for some church.
Will almost didn’t perform due to not feeling so well. However, when he came on stage to say a few words he couldn’t resist, and gave us all a taste of his five-octave range that left everyone wanting more.
In the upstairs VIP section, Howard revealed that after more than 30 years in the business. he is finally at a place of complete independence and happiness since he has found who he is.
“At this point I am basically doing it the way I want to do it. It’s really important to have that type of peace of mind to be able to do this the way you want to do it,” Howard told S2S. “This is a business where fads come in and go out. There’s a lot of cats that say, ‘I gotta do this or that’ and not only do you lose your audience, but a lot of times you lose yourself. I know where I am and I know who I am and I am comfortable with what I am.”
That sense of comfort doesn’t mean that Howard is taking it easy. Howard is still working very hard and has a secret film project in the works with Robert Townsend and ideas for a new live DVD.
“On the next project I want to go back and do love songs from the ’50s, ’60s, and ’70s—like an acoustic version of ‘If this World Were Mine,’ or Shirley Horn’s ‘Here’s to Life,’ and stuff like that,” he said.
Singer Meli’sa Morgan was also in the VIP section. She was at the event to introduce Howard, but due to a hoarse voice, she stayed upstairs and mingled with the crowd. Meli’sa told us that her recent move to South Carolina has inspired her to want a southern gentleman.
“I’m renovating my grandmother’s house in South Carolina and I’m really looking for a southern guy,” she dished. “Going down there and learning their lifestyle is different than in NY. I like the peace, tranquility, and the friendliness so I’m really looking for a southern guy.”
So what is Meli’sa looking for in a man? “I need a good man, a good southern country man to spend lots of money on me, love me, pay lots of attention to me, and pamper me,” she explained.
For her, finding a man is not that easy. “Yeah it’s hard cause they are scared that I’m too high maintenance for them and all of that. Well they got to have a little money come on,” she joked.
In the meantime, Meli’sa is focused on making her own money as she is working with some German producers on an album to be released this fall. In June, she’ll also be in the play, Beauty in the Eyes of the Beholder, with Cherrelle and Dave Hollister.
After we spoke with Meli’sa we were served delicious red velvet cupcakes, drinks, and watched the two stars of the night interact with guests. With each smile brought to a fan’s face we knew that this was a memorable Mother’s Day for everyone.