An array of hip-hop and r&b talent on the verge of mainstream success commanded the stage at BMI’s “Know Them Now” showcase, held December 16 at The Xchange in New York. Attendees were treated to beverages provided by Hennessy and performances by r&b quartet 718, DC-bred Kal and special guest Universal Motown recording artist/producer Ron Browz. The invite-only event attracted more than 300 guests who braved the stormy weather to convene for a night of must-see, buzz-worthy performances.
Hitting the stage first was Kal, whose r&b sounds incorporate a unique fusion of traditional African rhythms, hip-hop beats and soul. Joined by two vocalists, Kal set the energetic pace with a two-song, keyboard-backed performance. Rhythm and blues brethren 718 followed, delivering a commanding set which prompted favorable comparisons to other historically esteemed quartets. Harlem-bred producer Ron Browz nailed the capstone on the evening. Known for creating hits for Nas (“Ether”), Ludacris (“Blow It Out”) and Snoop Dogg (“Oh No”), Ron showcased his innovative sound by performing two songs including his Billboard R&B/Hip-Hop chart-climbing single “Pop Champagne.”