American R&B singer-songwriter and record producer R Kelly will also be performing at this year’s staging of Reggae Sumfest.
According to a release sent to THE STAR, the singer is expected to hit the concert’s stage on Friday, July 22. He joins Nicki Minaj, Mavado, Beenie Man, Tanya Stephens and I-Octane on the festival’s line-up.
Johnny Gourzong, executive producer of the event, confirmed the Radio Message singer’s appearance yesterday.
“The Reggae Sumfest team is excited to be presenting R Kelly on the Sumfest stage. We have been trying to contract him for the last five years and it is great to see that it is finally happening. We are expecting a spectacular performance from Mr Kelly,” Gourzong stated in the release.
It will be R Kelly’s second performance in Jamaica. His Jamaican debut in 1996 was surrounded by controversy at a concert at Jamworld, St Catherine. The singer, who at that time was one of the hottest artistes in R&B, had dropped his pants while performing. This was followed by a public backlash.
The singer, however, has never hid his love for Jamaican music. He experimented with reggae on his 2005 album, TP.3 Reloaded, which yielded the club jam, Slow Wine and Reggae Bump Bump which he recorded with Elephant Man.
R Kelly was born Robert Kelly in Chicago, and first came to the attention of fans in the United States as a member of the R&B group, Public Announcement. He went solo in the early 1990s and it was not long after that he climbed to the top of Billboard magazine charts with 12 Play.
He is also known for the inspirational hit I Believe I Can Fly and has been known for writing hit songs for other acts. Among those songs are Stroke You Up and Foolin’ Around by Changing Faces and You Are Not Alone which was recorded by Michael Jackson. R Kelly’s last album, Love Letter, was released in 2010.
R Kelly is the latest high- profile hip-hop/R&B act to be snared by Summerfest Productions. Big names like Boyz II Men, Destiny’s Child, Snoop Dogg, Chris Brown, Wyclef Jean, Toni Braxton and Usher have also appeared on the show. Reggae Sumfest will take place on July 17-23 in Montego Bay.