US RnB superstars Joe Thomas and Brian McKnight say they are thrilled to be in Zambia and have promised memorable performances at this year’s Stanbic Music Festival.
The duo is the headline act for the two-day festival which begins today at the Polo Club in Lusaka.
Speaking to the media at Pamodzi Hotel yesterday, Thomas and McKnight said they had been overwhelmed by the reception since their arrival in Zambia on Wednesday.
“This is really exciting to me. My crew, my team, we’ve been looking forward to this moment and been preparing and now that we are finally here we’re so excited to put up the show,” Thomas said.
“I just want to say thank you so much for everybody who has supported music, especially RnB because we don’t get as much love as I feel we should. We work just as hard, we’re very committed to the process. So thank you so much for the love and support.”
He added that he was looking forward to visiting the Victoria Falls.
“I wanna visit Victoria Falls…I know it’s one of the Seven Wonders of the World, not a lot of people get a chance to do that, so it’s something I’m looking forward to. But more importantly, it’s been such a pleasure [meeting] people … showing us so much grace, love and support.
Thomas, 46, added that there was need for artistes like him and McKnight to inspire the next generation of RnB singers.
“I think it’s really important because Hip Hop is such a big big genre right now. It’s inspired so many young kids, but we wanna inspire kids in a very positive way – not that Hip Hop’s negative – but sometimes Hip Hop can have a very negative effect. So it’s important that we come together to show the young generation [that] it’s cool to be young. It’s cool to do what we do,” said Thomas.
And McKnight, 49, said it was an honour to be in Zambia, describing it as being home.
“I was 14 years old when I first started writing music. It was always my goal to take this music all over the world and I thought I had kind of been everywhere and the fact that I’m here for the very first time says that there’s still somebody I had not touched yet,” said the multi Grammy nominee.
“I know people love what I do but I never really think that much about it until they are right in front of me and they have their cameras and it’s really an amazing feeling. I wish that everyone could really feel and understand that something that I wrote touched you and inspired you in some kinda way is truly amazing. To be here this year and share the stage with some local acts and to also get to do something that I don’t often get to do, like share the stage with my brother (Joe Thomas) who I’ve known for 25 years …it’s beyond my wildest dreams to be here with all of you.”
Among local artistes scheduled to perform this year are Wezi, Salma Sky and Kiki.