Ronnie, Bobby, Ricky, and Mike descended on Chicago for a one-night stop on their tour. Those names may ring familiar because they are four of the six members of popular group New Edition. These boys turned men from Boston will be on tour until November. The 9-week tour started in Ontario, California, on September 6, 2018.
While the group was in Chicago this week, The Defender sat down with the four members to find out what fans can look forward to.
In the past, there was Bobby Brown, Johnny Gill, Ralph Tresvant, BBD (Bell, Biv, and DeVoe) and Heads of State (Bobby, Ralph and Johnny). RBRM came to be when BBD (Bell, Biv, DeVoe) were preparing to go on tour and Bobby Brown was planning a tour after his movie. It just so happened that the four of their names always went together on any New Edition song that called the names out so they decided to call the newest edition of the group RBRM, an acronym for their first names. The guys decided it would be great to tour together and be on stage together with one band. Brown said he was excited to sing “Do Me, “Poison” and “Dope” (all BBD songs) and Ricky Bell shared a little-known fact that Brown’s hit “Every Little Step” was supposed to be for New Edition but somehow Brown got the song– and Bell always wanted to sing it.
Brown said about the tour, “We are living like kids again; we are just having fun.”
NE 40th Anniversary
September 10, 2018, was the 40th Anniversary of New Edition and the week before that the world watched “The Bobby Brown Story” on BET for two nights. Just like the “New Edition Story,” this movie received record viewership. When asked about the next New Edition tour to celebrate 40 years, DeVoe, who turned 50 last year, said: “That is the million dollar question that they don’t ultimately have the answer to and it’s in God’s time.”
The future for Ronnie, Bobby, Ricky, and Mike is very bright. These guys will not stop anytime soon. While here in Chicago, they completed a song that will be on an RBRM collective album. There have been discussions about a residency somewhere for the group. BBD is working on a book about their story that will ultimately become a movie. There will also be new BBD music as they prepare for the 30th anniversary of BBD in 2020.
Bell recently released a single with his wife Amy called “Gold.” They have another single about to be released and then eventually there will be an album. Devoe and wife Shamari are Marriage Ambassadors for #Married4Life campaign and have been doing walks all over the country in support of that initiative (look for Shamari on this season’s Real Housewives of Atlanta). Bivins is continuing to work on his Sporty Rich brand, which includes community work, music, and merchandise. Brown has a new single that premiered at the end of his BET movie called “Like Bobby” produced by Babyface and Teddy Riley. He has Bobby Brown Foods and is making more marinades, sauces and more seasonings. Brown has lost 60 pounds and attributes that to the use of his seasonings. The Browns also have television productions on the horizon.
The one thing that all of the guys mentioned was how difficult it is leaving their families to go on tour. Bivins said he leaves early in the morning and kisses them while they are sleep. But when he gets home, it is like a holiday. He has four daughters and he said the oldest is excited when he is home for Parent-Teacher night, “not because of who I am but because I am her father. ” Brown said he is staying busy but trying to be home as much as possible; he has three little ones at home. His son Cassius was seen in the “Bobby Brown Story.” He said he is an award-winning ballroom dancer, he sings and he is putting him in piano lessons. Devoe has twin 14-month-old boys who keep him very busy. He said 24 hours is not enough time in the day when dealing with his sons.
The Chicago show was no disappointment; the sold-out crowd got to see the group’s signature high energy moves along with dancers and a live band. The fellas sang hit after hit and didn’t miss a beat. There’s apparently no slowing down for Ronnie, Bobby, Ricky, and Mike. They still have lots of love for their Chicago fans and the city. They are grateful for their years in the business and being able to still perform songs that are decades old to sold-out crowds.