One of the best among today’s bright class of R&B crooners, and one who also isn’t afraid to sound old-fashioned, the 34-year-old man born John Stephens in Springfield, Ohio, positively beams throughout his fourth set Love In The Future. Released just a couple weeks before he got hitched, the album, co-produced by Kanye West, is a strong showcase for Legend’s vocals and romantic feelings. A particular standout is the dramatic, rousing single “Made to Love” featuring Kimbra, the underrated jazz/pop Kiwi best known for adding layers of emotion to last year’s surprise big hit from Gotye, “Somebody That I Used To Know.” With Legend she adds a jazzy touch by simply cooing and scatting as if an old-timey jazz singer, ending the song in pure ecstasy, an aural state of bliss. The result is a song so powerful, you were made to love it. (Of additional note, the creamy video features two women getting amorous among its various couples.)
Kimbra toured last year with Gotye, but sadly she’s not repeating that this time around with Legend, who stops tonight, Oct. 23, at D.A.R. Constitution Hall in a concert presented by I.M.P. Productions. But who knows, maybe opener Tamar “Toni’s Little Soprano Sister” Braxton might sub for Kimbra and sing along with Legend. A fan can dream…
Wednesday, Oct. 23. Doors at 7 p.m. D.A.R. Constitution Hall, 1776 D St. NW. Tickets are $55 to $74. Call 202-628-1776 or visit dar.org/conthall.