R&B superstars Chris Brown and Trey Songz brought their joint “Between the Sheets” tour to Nashville’s Bridgestone Arena Sunday night.
While neither Brown or Songz have been consecutively present on the Top 40 charts, together they are an undeniable powerhouse in R&B. They’ve sold over nine million albums combined and each have had two number one albums since 2011. If you have any doubts that these two could fill an arena, Sunday night’s audience of (primarily female) fans would make you rethink your position.
After an opening set by rapper Tyga, Songz, whose real name is Tremaine Neverson, came out to screams you’d expect to hear at a Justin Beiber or Justin Timberlake performance. The 30-year-old singer was accompanied by six lingerie-clad back-up dancers, but all eyes were on him during his first set of the night.
For most of his fans, Songz is more than just a musician; he’s a sex symbol. Charging through some of his sensual songs like “I Invented Sex” and “Cake,” he made the crowd swoon with his Adonis-esque physique and charisma, with one of the biggest reactions of the night coming from a seconds-long display of his abs between songs.
While Songz’s sex appeal is an undeniable factor into his success, he has the voice to back it up. He performed with very little assistance from a recorded track and soared through both his upbeat hits like “Bottoms Up” and his more soulful cuts with ease.
Despite his much scrutinized legal troubles in the past few years, Chris Brown has slowly rebuilt and maintained his fan-base through his strongest characteristic — his talent. He’s become R&B’s “bad boy” figure, but when he hit the stage Sunday night, his mind was on entertaining.
As a foil to Songz, Brown backed a group of all-male dancers, who relied on choreography more so than sex appeal. Brown’s undeniable moves through songs like 2011’s “Look at Me Now” and his debut hit “Run It” were the driving force of the performance. While this meant vocal duties went sometimes neglected, his vocal chops shined through at the night’s midpoint, where he and Songz shared the stage, alternating between each others more vocal-reliant songs before duetting on their collaboration “Songs on 12 Play.”
The night ended with each performer treating their fans to an encore solo set, with Brown bringing out Tyga for his two latest hits, “Loyal” and “Ayo.”
“Thank y’all so much for coming out here tonight,” Brown said, as confetti rained down across the arena. “We love y’all.”
For our full archive of shows at Bridgestone Arena, click here.
Follow John Connor Coulston on Twitter at @JCCoulston.
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