It appears that Boyz II Men is more in demand these days than they were back in their ’90s prime.
The Philadelphia-bred singing group responsible for such hits as “Motownphilly,” “End of the Road” and “I’ll Make Love to You” seem to be performing all over the place. The three remaining members – Wanya Morris, Nate Morris (no relation) and Shawn Stockman (bass singer Michael McCary left the group in 2003 due to his ongoing battle with scoliosis) – will be performing with the North Carolina Symphony next week. And just recently, the guys have started a residency in none other than Las Vegas, at the famed Mirage.
“We love Vegas and we love our fans there, and it was just really the right time for us to do it,” says Wanya Morris, in an email interview.
“It’s been incredible so far – we love the energy of the audiences in Vegas, and to have a residency at one of the greatest venues, in one of the entertainment capitals of the world, is just incredible. It’s nice for us to be in one place for an extended period of time so we can really focus on the show – and, also, since Vegas is such a popular tourist destination, to give our fans traveling the opportunity to come see us while they are in town.”
The big news for them as of late is that, beginning in May, they will be part of The Package Tour, performing alongside fellow boy-band sensations New Kids on the Block and 98 Degrees.
“We were thrilled to be asked to be part of such a historic tour, and we are loving how excited the fans are!” says Morris.
Boyz II Men has always managed to go out and tour, hitting locales all over the world. “We always want to bring it 110 percent each and every night for our fans, so we really hope that that energy and that dedication come across,” says Morris. “We want everyone to forget their problems and just have an incredible night and enjoy all of their favorite songs with us.”
But the trio hasn’t been going out and performing just their classic tunes. They’ve also been working on new ones. In 2011, they released “Twenty,” their 10th studio album, which commemorated their two decades in the music business.
Morris promises new music will be on the way. “We actually just signed a publishing deal with BMG and will be recording a new album with them as well,” he says. “So fans can expect new music either later this year or early next.”
Morris admits that getting new music out there can be something of a hassle. “We’ve been lucky enough to create enduring albums that we’re proud of, and to have the label support to create quality work,” he says. “But in many cases with the music industry, the emphasis now is more on the single than on the album as a whole. We have tried, always, to stay true to our sound, and we have always been committed to creating timeless records. So our career has progressed naturally.”
Considering they are a group many believe set off the Clinton-era boom of ’90s R&B singing groups that gave us Jodeci, Dru Hill, Jagged Edge and 112, Boyz II Men still believe it’s imperative that they continue to perform, reminding people that even though they are officially full-grown men, they can still get down like the boys they once were.
Says Morris, “We weren’t the first R&B group and we won’t be the last – but to hear that we helped popularize the genre is always such high praise.”